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Amy Susanne Gladfelter

Instructor in the Department of Cell Biology
Cell Biology

Research Interests


The two main research focuses of the Gladfelter lab are how the cytoplasm is spatially organized and how cells sense their own geometry. Her team uses a variety of model systems to study syncytia, including Ashbya gossypii, Neurospora crassa, myotubes, and the syncytiotrophoblast of human placenta to study the architecture of the cytoplasm. Gladfelter seeks new fungal systems derived from the marine environment, which are extremophiles and show morphologic characteristics not found in more conventional model systems.

Gladfelter made the discovery that the nuclei of the multinucleate fungus Ashbya gossypii, despite sharing the same cytoplasm, progress through the cell cycle independently. This has led to further work uncovering how liquid-liquid phase separation of RNAs and proteins can permit autonomy among syncytial nuclei and help to establish cell polarity. Recently, the lab has begun examining phase separation in the context of SARS-CoV-2 infection, with a focus on understanding mechanisms of viral packaging.

Another area that Gladfelter's lab explores is how cells sense their shape. Gladfelter and her lab have extensively studied the ability of a conserved family of proteins called septins, which localize to areas of the cell that change shape or are highly curved, to sense cell curvature.

Selected Grants


Tri-Institutional Molecular Mycology and Pathogenesis Training Program

Inst. Training Prgm or CMEMentor · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2024 - 2029

The role for phase separation in oncogenesis and aberrant chromatin looping formation

ResearchCollaborator · Awarded by National Cancer Institute · 2023 - 2027

Training Program in Developmental and Stem Cell Biology

Inst. Training Prgm or CMEMentor · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2001 - 2027

Biophysics of the nucleus

ResearchPrincipal Investigator · Awarded by Massachusetts Institute of Technology · 2023 - 2026

How septin-membrane interactions direct septin assembly

FellowshipPrincipal Investigator · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2024 - 2026

Tri-Institutional Molecular Mycology and Pathogenesis Training Program

Inst. Training Prgm or CMEMentor · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2024 - 2029

The role for phase separation in oncogenesis and aberrant chromatin looping formation

ResearchCollaborator · Awarded by National Cancer Institute · 2023 - 2027

Training Program in Developmental and Stem Cell Biology

Inst. Training Prgm or CMEMentor · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2001 - 2027

Biophysics of the nucleus

ResearchPrincipal Investigator · Awarded by Massachusetts Institute of Technology · 2023 - 2026

How septin-membrane interactions direct septin assembly

FellowshipPrincipal Investigator · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2024 - 2026

The role of biomolecular condensates in regulating the cytoskeleton

FellowshipPrincipal Investigator · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2023 - 2025

Cellular surfaces as regulators of biomolecular condensate assembly

ResearchMentor · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2023 - 2025

Double-stranded RNA dictates SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid condensation temperature

ResearchSponsor · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2023 - 2025

Leica Stellaris Confocal for a Campus-wide Shared Resource

EquipmentMajor User · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2024 - 2025

Evolution of the Biophysical properties of the Cytoskeleton

ResearchPrincipal Investigator · Awarded by National Science Foundation · 2023 - 2025

Dissecting the mechanistic role of multinucleation in breast and trophoblast cancers

ResearchSponsor · Awarded by National Cancer Institute · 2023 - 2024

Cytoplasmic Organization by phase transitions

ResearchPrincipal Investigator · Awarded by National Institutes of Health · 2023 - 2024

Gene Expression Variability and Nuclear Territory Autonomy in Syncytia

FellowshipPrincipal Investigator · Awarded by National Institute of General Medical Sciences · 2023 - 2024

External Relationships


  • Dewpoint Therapeutics

This faculty member (or a member of their immediate family) has reported outside activities with the companies, institutions, or organizations listed above. This information is available to institutional leadership and, when appropriate, management plans are in place to address potential conflicts of interest.