We have defined distinct regulatory mechanisms and biophysical characteristics of two modes of intestinal barrier regulation. Both are essential for health but can also contribute to disease. This work is aimed at defining the mechanisms that disrupt and developing means of restoring the barrier in disease. The Student will have the opportunity to participate in analysis of: i) in vitro stem cell and cell line models; ii) human and mouse tissues; iii) mice with experimental disease; critical and iv) signaling events and protein interactions. The breadth and depth of each will be determined based on the students' goals and abilities in the areas of cell biology, gastroenterology, pathology, and biomedical imaging.