Claire E. Walczak

Claire E. Walczak

Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Medical Sciences Program

Adjunct, Biology

  • (812) 855-5919
  • Myers Hall 262
  • Office Hours
    By Appointment Only


  • Ph.D. in Biochemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1993
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, University of California-San Francisco, 1998



Myers Hall 260
(812) 855-6785
Walczak Lab website

  • Research Exemplar Award
  • Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Scholar Award
  • American Cancer Society Research Scholar Grant
  • American Society for Cell Biology, Junior Woman in Cell Biology

My lab is interested in the fundamental mechanisms that cells use to accurately distribute their genetic material. Defects in this process lead to aneuploidy and genomic instability, which are hallmarks of cancer. Using a combination of biochemistry, biophysics, cell biology, and high resolution imaging techniques we ask about how cells control mitotic fidelity.

The process of mitosis is carried out by a remarkable cellular machine, called the mitotic spindle, which is composed of microtubules and hundreds of associated proteins. This structure is highly dynamic, which raises the perplexing question of how the cell can use such a dynamic structure to carry out a process in which the chromosomes need to stay attached to the spindle itself. The spindle microtubules are also the target of multiple anti-neoplastic agents that are used as front-line treatments for multiple cancers. In addition, many of the spindle associated motors that we study are highly mis-expressed in numerous cancers and are correlated with poor prognosis. Together our studies are focused on understanding the molecular mechanisms by which the spindle and spindle proteins function in both the normal and tumor state so that we can uncover novel ways to prevent tumor cell proliferation.


IU Medical Sciences Program faculty profile


Walczak CE, Zong H, Jain S, Stout JR. Spatial regulation of astral microtubule dynamics by Kif18B in PtK cells. Molecular Biology of the Cell. 2016; 27(20):3021-3030.

Chen S, Stout JR, Dharmaiah S, Yde S, Calvi BR, Walczak CE. Transient endoreplication down-regulates the kinesin-14 HSET and contributes to genomic instability. Molecular biology of the cell. 2016; 27(19):2911-23.

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