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Tom Rapoport is interested in the molecular mechanisms by which proteins are transported across the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membrane in eukaryotes and the plasma membrane in prokaryotes. Working in mammals and yeast, Rapoport and his team strive to define the mechanisms behind ER-associated protein translocation and degradation, as well as what determines ER morphology – specifically the formation and shape of the tubular ER network. They are also interested in how proteins are imported into membrane-bound organelles called peroxisomes. More recently, the team has been investigating how lamellar bodies are formed in alveolar cells of the lung. The group’s work informs our understanding of diseases in which proteins are misdirected or misfolded.