Research in the Haran lab focuses on the dynamics of individual molecules. Using modern laser techniques, they study the relationship between the motion of molecules and their function. Clarifying the underpinnings of molecular activity is particularly relevant in biophysics; in particular, they are interested in how single molecules assemble and operate as “molecular machines." One example concerns the varying paths taken by protein molecules as each folds into a functional, three-dimensional structure. A more recent focus is the conformational transitions that proteins undergo as they perform their biological function. In an additional direction of research, the lab has been mapping the distributions of proteins on the rugged surfaces of cells of the immune system, using super-resolution microscopy techniques.