Holly Goodson

Holly Goodson

Molecular and Cell Biology and Biophysics


Professor, University of Notre Dame
Associate Professor, University of Notre Dame
Assistant Professor, University of Notre Dame
Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Geneva, Switzerland
Ph.D. in Biochemistry, Stanford University
A.B. in Molecular Biology, Princeton University

Selected Awards

Keynote Address, "Chemical Machinery of the Cell" Scialog, Research Corporation
"Frontiers of Science - From Physics to Biology" Panel Member, Solvay Conference in Physics
Thomas P. Madden Award for Exceptional Teaching of First Year Students
Joyce Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching
Elected member, American Society for Cell Biology National Council
Helen Hay Whitney Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship
EMBO Postdoctoral Fellowship
National Science Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship

Research Interests

The Goodson laboratory uses multifaceted approaches including biochemistry, molecular biology, and computational biology to address cell biological questions. We focus on the microtubule cytoskeleton – the dynamic network of protein fibers that pulls the chromosomes apart at mitosis, acts as "railroad tracks" for intracellular transport, and organizes the cytoplasm. Questions that interest us include: how does this network assemble? What governs its dynamic turnover? How do other parts of the cell (organelles, chromosomes, the cell cortex) interact with microtubules? To answer these questions we use a combination of biochemistry, molecular biology, quantitative microscopy, and (in collaboration with applied mathematician Mark Alber) computational models of microtubule dynamics. Topics of particular interest include microtubule plus-end tracking proteins (+TIPs), a network of diverse proteins that dynamically track growing microtubule plus ends, as well as the disease-associated proteins Tau (Alzheimer's) and stathmin (cancer).

A second long-term interest in the Goodson laboratory is molecular evolution. While establishing the history of protein families is an important goal in itself, our primary interest has been in using the history of a protein family to help understand how its members work now. We use nature’s mutagenesis (the set of related sequences present in the genome databases) and combine it with bioinformatics techniques such as homology modeling to perform structure/function analysis. Recently we have taken advantage of unique continuous culture systems developed for a biosensor project to begin a new project studying the process of evolution in vitro and in silico.

Recent Publications

  • Mahserejian, S. M.; Scripture, J. P.; Mauro, A. J.; Lawrence, E. J.; Jonasson, E. M.; Murray, K. S.; Li, J.; Gardner, M.; Alber, M.; Zanic, M. and Goodson, H. V. "Quantification of Microtubule Stutters: Dynamic Instability Behaviors that are Strongly Associated with Catastrophe" 2022 Molecular Biology of the Cell, 33 (2), ar22. DOI: 10.1091/mbc.E20-06-0348.
  • Wu, Y.; Bryant, A. T.; Nelson, N. T.; Madey, A. G.; Fernandes, G. F. and Goodson, H. V. "Overexpression of the Microtubule-Binding Protein CLIP-170 Induces a Plus TIP Network Superstructure Consistent with a Biomolecular Condensate" 2021 PLOS One, 16 (12), e0260401. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0260401.
  • Thakkar, P. V.; Kita, K.; Del Castillo, U.; Galletti, G.; Madhukar, N.; Navarro, E. V.; Barasoain, I.; Goodson, H. V.; Sackett, D.; Diaz, J. F.; Lu, Y.; RoyChoudhury, A.; Molina, H.; Elemento, O.; Shah, M. A. and Giannakakou, P. "CLIP-170S is a Microtubule Plus TIP Variant that Confers Resistance to Taxanes by Impairing Drug-Target Engagement" 2021 Developmental Cell, 56 (23), pp.3264. DOI: 10.1016/j.devcel.2021.09.023.
  • Shepherd, H.; Trentman, M. T.; Tank, J. L.; Praner, J.; Cervantes, A.; Chaudhary, P.; Gezelter, J.; Marrs, A. J.; Myers, K. A.; Welsh, J. R.; Wu, Y. and Goodson, H. V. "Development of a Yeast-Based Assay for Bioavailable Phosphorus" 2021 ACS ES&T Water, 1 (9), pp.2020-2028. DOI: 10.1021/acsestwater.1c00111.
  • Trentman, M. T.; Tank, J. L.; Shepherd, H.; Marrs, A. J.; Welsh, J. R. and Goodson, H. V. "Characterizing Bioavailable Phosphorus Concentrations in an Agricultural Stream during Hydrologic and Streambed Disturbances" 2021 Biogeochemistry, 154 (3), pp.509-524. DOI: 10.1007/s10533-021-00803-w.
  • Goodson, H. V.; Kelley, J. B. and Brawley, S. H. "Cytoskeletal Diversification Across 1 Billion Years: What Red Algae can Teach Us about the Cytoskeleton, and Vice Versa" 2021 Bioessays, 43 (5), e202000278. DOI: 10.1002/bies.202000278.

Contact Information

  • Professor; Director, Integrated Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program
  • Office: 439 Stepan Chemistry Hall
  • Phone: 574-631-7744
  • Send an email

Primary Research Areas

Research Specialties