Susan Treves, PhD
The main focus of Dr. Treves’s laboratory at the University of Basel (Switzerland) is to study intracellular calcium homeostasis in mammalian cells under normal and pathological conditions, with particular emphasis on skeletal muscle excitation-contraction coupling. One of the models she uses to study calcium dysregulation in skeletal muscle is unique to her laboratory since they use biopsy-derived human skeletal muscle cells differentiated into myotubes in vitro. As a result of her PhD work in the laboratory of Prof. Tullio Pozzan, one of the pioneers in the development of fluorescent Ca2+ indicators, she has a broad understanding on the use, pitfalls, and advantages of the available methods to study calcium homeostasis with fluorescent calcium indicators. This expertise coupled with access to patient material has allowed her laboratory to directly assess the effect of mutations in the human ryanodine receptor calcium channel in muscles obtained from patients affected by neuromuscular disorders. Her laboratory applies a broad range of techniques, including cell and tissue culture, molecular biology, cell biology, biochemistry, microscopy and imaging, and fluorescence measurements of intracellular [Ca2+].