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Lisa Lapidus

Biophysics - Experimental
Biomedical-Physical Sciences Bldg.
567 Wilson Rd., Room 4227
(517) 884-5656

Lapidus Lab website 

B140 Biomedical-Physical Sciences Bldg.
(517) 884-5701
B175 Biomedical-Physical Sciences Bldg.
(517) 884-5706

1998: Ph.D., Harvard University

Selected Publications

Dutagaci, B., G. Nawrocki, J. Goodluck, A.A. Ashkarran, C.G. Hoogstraten, L.J. Lapidus, and M. Feig, Charge-driven condensation of RNA and proteins suggests broad role of phase separation in cytoplasmic environments. eLife. 10: p. e64004 (2021).

Lapidus, L.J., The road less traveled in protein folding: evidence for multiple pathways. Curr Opin Struct Biol. 66: p. 83-88 (2021).

Lapidus, L.J., Physics at the Molecular and Cellular Level (P@MCL): A New Curriculum for Introductory Physics. The Biophysicist. 2(1): p. 30-39 (2020).

Professional Activities & Interests / Biographical Information


Biological Physics, Protein Folding

Research Focus

The Lapidus lab studies the early stages of protein folding and the dynamics of unfolded proteins.

In collaboration with Michael Feig we study the dynamics of proteins in crowded conditions as you would find in a cell, which result in many transient interactions and liquid-liquid phase separation.

We also study protein aggregation, which is involved with many neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's, by looking at the dynamics of the disordered protein before aggregation. 

For further information on some results of this research, see the following articles:

"Complex biological phenomenon may have a surprisingly simple explanation"
"Alzheimer's beginnings prove to be a sticky situation"
"Longtime antidepressant could slow Parkinson's" 
Researchers Identify Path to Treat Parkinson's Disease at Inception
Curcumin Shows Promise in Attacking Parkinson's Disease” 

curriculum development

Over the past several years, Lisa has developed a new curriculum for life science majors that pulls examples from molecular and cellular biology.  The courses, PHY 221 and PHY 222 are offered to all life science majors at MSU in the new STEM Teaching and Learning building. These curriculum materials are available to physics instructors upon request.

For more information, see

"Defying gravity: A new spin on intro physics for life sciences"