Josh Baker

Josh Baker, Ph.D.

Associate Professor; INBRE Principal Investigator/Director; Interim Chair, Associate Vice President for Research


  • Ph.D., Biochemistry Biophysics and Molecular Biology, University of Minnesota, 1999
  • B.S., Physics, Hamline University, 1987

Professional experience

  • 1987-1988 Computer programmer, Honeywell
  • 1988-1993 Systems analyst, David Mitchell
  • 1999-2003 Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Vermont
  • 2004-2010 Assistant Professor, University of Nevada School of Medicine
  • 2010-present Associate Professor, University of Nevada School of Medicine
  • 2023-present Associate Vice President for Research, Research & Innovation, University of Nevada, Reno

Research interests

We use single molecule and whole cell imaging and mechanics to determine the molecular mechanisms of muscle contraction and regulation in bioengineered smooth and striated muscle systems. We study the effects of protein modifications and small molecule effectors on molecular, cellular, and tissue mechanics to determine disease mechanisms and to test potential therapies. We develop simple models that integrate single molecule, cell, and tissue mechanochemical measurements into simulations of muscle contraction that are molecularly explicit yet easy to implement.