Steven J. Sandler
Professor and Department Head of Microbiology, University of Massachusetts
Ph.D.: University of California at Berkeley
Postdoctoral Training: Advanced Genetic Sciences Inc.; University of California at Berkeley
My research interests focus on the broad area of DNA transactions. This includes how DNA is repaired, recombined, and replicated at the molecular level. One group of projects uses genetics to address why and how the process of DNA replication is needed to do recombination. This is particularly new and exciting because most mainstay models of recombination require little or no DNA replication. The other projects ask how organisms that grow in extreme environments recombine and replicate their DNA. Here we study Sulfolobus solfataricus. It grows in the laboratory at 75°C and pH 3 and is amenable to most current molecular genetic techniques. We are also interested in surveys of Archaeans from different environments: soil, ocean, swamps, etc., to study the biodiversity of the RecA family of proteins at the molecular level and for use as a phylogenetic marker.