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Contact Information
Biology Department

Kimberley Grant Laham, Ph.D
Program Director

Henderson Hall 216

Phone: (973) 290-4088

Sofya Borinskaya, Ph.D.

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SEU biology faculty Sofya Borinskaya, Ph.D.Dr. Sofya Borinskaya is an interdisciplinary biomedical scientist with research experience in cell biology, biochemistry, genetics, developmental and computational biology. She has a unique passion for mentoring undergraduate researchers and prides herself on creating an inclusive, playful and safe learning environment.

Dr. Borinskaya holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Binghamton University, SUNY, and a Ph.D. in Biomedical Science from UCONN Health. She also completed NIH-IRACDA (Rutgers University) postdoctoral program that included research-intensive training.

Research Focus

Her research is about the dynamics of the cellular polymer, actin. Dr. Borinskaya uses mathematical modeling and C. elegans (microscopic nematode worms) model organism to investigate how actin supports formation of cell-cell junctions in tissues. This process is critical for development of an organism and is disrupted in various types of cancer.

Research and Teaching Interests

  • Dynamics of actin cytoskeleton and its role in:
    • Cell motility and cell polarization
    • Development and morphogenesis
  • Biochemical and mathematical modeling in biology research and education
  • Active learning, Improvisation and play approaches in teaching and learning
    • Diversity, inclusion and equity in the classroom

Examples of Student Independent Research Projects

  • Role of branched actin in recycling of Cadherin via the Endocytic Recycling Compartment
  • Computational Model of Cadherin Trafficking
  • Role of linear actin nucleators in C. elegans pharynx development
  • Role of linear actin in C. elegans morphogenesis and development


  • Sasidharan, S.* and Borinskaya, S.*, Patel F., Bernadskaya Y., Mandalapu S., Agapito M., Soto M. C. (2018) "WAVE regulates Cadherin junction assembly and turnover during epithelial polarization." Developmental Biology. 434(1):133-148 (* - first authors and equal contributors)
  • Borinskaya, S., Velle, K. B., Campellone, K. G., Talman, A., Agaisse, A., Wu, Y. I., Loew, L. M., Mayer, B. J. (2016) "Integration Of Linear And Dendritic Actin Nucleation In Nck-Induced Actin Comets." Molecular Biology of the Cell. 27(2):247-59
  • Taslimi, A., Vrana, J.D., Chen, D., Borinskaya, S., Mayer, B., Kennedy, M.J., and Tucker, C.L. (2014) "An optimized optogenetic clustering tool for probing protein interaction and function". Nature Communications. 5:4925
  • Borinskaya, S., Marchenko, O., Loew, L. M. (2016) "Modeling Actin Dynamics." Encyclopedia of Cell Biology (CELB). Elsevier.
  • Landau, R.H., Mulder, G., Holmes, R.M., Borinskaya, S., Kang, N. and Cristian Bordeianu. (2014) "INSTANCES: incorporating computational scientific thinking advances into education and science courses" Concurrency And Computation: Practice And Experience.