Matthew J. Tyska, Ph.D.

Matthew J Tyska, Ph.D.

Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology

Scientific Director, Cell Imaging Shared Resource

3154 Medical Research Building 3
465 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37232-8240
(615) 936-5461

Dynamics and function of the actin cytoskeleton in polarized cells.
Lab Website

Dr. Tyska received his Ph.D. in Molecular Physiology and Biophysics from the University of Vermont in 1999.  After completing postdoctoral training with Dr. Mark Mooseker at Yale University in 2004, Dr. Tyska joined the Department of Cell and Developmental Biology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center as an Assistant Professor.  At Vanderbilt, Dr. Tyska quickly recruited outstanding trainees and established a thriving research program focused on investigating how the cytoskeleton controls cell shape and function, specifically in the context of polarized, transporting epithelial cells that line the intestinal tract. After five and half years at Vanderbilt, Dr. Tyska was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure. Over the past nine years, the Tyska Laboratory has made a number of fundamental and field-leading discoveries on the assembly and function of the enterocyte brush border. Dr. Tyska’s approach combines elements of biochemistry, biophysics, and cell biology. Although light and electron microscopy serve as principle discovery tools, investigations are decidedly broad in scope, ranging from physiological experiments in mouse model systems, to optical trap-based measurements on single cells, to single molecule imaging in live cells. As the Tyska lab’s efforts directly impact our understanding of human intestinal physiology and pathophysiology, much of their work has been supported by NIH-NIDDK (currently R01DK07555 and R01DK095811). In light of the broader implications their studies hold for epithelial systems outside the gut (e.g. inner ear, kidney, lung), Dr. Tyska’s program has also attracted support from foundations such as the American Heart Association, March of Dimes, and American Hearing Research Foundation.  Dr. Tyska was also P.I. on a recent, successful high-end S10 application that brought super-resolution microscopy to Vanderbilt. Dr. Tyska currently serves as the Director of Graduate Studies for the Cell and Developmental Biology Graduate Program.

Selected Publications