Redefining the interface between chemistry, biology and human health
Chemical Biology is home to our interdisciplinary graduate training program in Quantitative and Chemical Biology (QCB) and attracts students interested in exploring problems at the interface of chemistry, biology, and human health. A highly collaborative research environment that integrates synthesis, structural biology, biophysical chemistry, drug discovery and state-of-the-art spectroscopy and mass spectrometry provides students an unparalleled opportunity to design a unique course of study in preparation for careers in academic science and biotechnology. Our laboratory rotation program ensures that all students have the opportunity to spend time in different research groups prior to joining a group to better understand their research options available in the department, to build a sense of community between groups, and to enable students to identify potential areas of collaboration between groups.
Bio-Organic ChemistryJ.P. Gerdt Nicola L. B. Pohl Richard DiMarchi Michael VanNieuwenhze
We use the tools of organic chemistry, including organic synthesis and physical organic chemistry, to address problems in biology. Research topics include molecular probe design, enzyme inhibitor/drug design, glycobiology, automated organic synthesis of biomolecules, and natural product biosynthesis.
Quantitative Biology and BiophysicsDavid P. Giedroc Jonathan Schlebach Megan Thielges Yan Yu Charles Dann III Martha Oakley
A quantitative understanding of biological systems provides fundamental insights into the natural world and improve our ability to diagnose and cure disease and engineer biological systems for novel applications. Research areas include enzymology, X-ray crystallography, cryo-electron microscopy, IR spectroscopy, NMR spectroscopy, single molecule/particle methods, structural dynamics, and membrane biophysics.
Protein EngineeringJared Lewis Trevor Douglas Jonathan Schlebach
Proteins are molecules of amazing complexity and are responsible for a dizzying array of functions in living systems. We focus on engineering and evolving these molecules for new applications in biocatalysis, biomimetic materials chemistry, supramolecular assembly, and pharmaceutical applications.
Metals in BiologyJared Lewis David P. Giedroc Jeffrey Zaleski Trevor Douglas
Metals are essential for the function of a broad range of biomolecules. Understanding the roles of metals in biological systems, both natural and engineered, involves research at the interface of biochemistry, inorganic chemistry, and biophysics. Our studies in these areas include engineering artificial metalloenzymes for chemical catalysis, designing organometallic reagents for biomedical applications, understanding metallostasis in bacterial pathogens, and developing supramolecular nanoreactors.
Chemical biology bridges a number of disciplines, and our seminar series is designed to expose students and faculty to a broad range of topics in the field. Click here for the latest seminar schedule.
Our department maintains a wide range of facilities that uniquely enable cutting edge research in chemical biology. Importantly, staff scientists are available to assist and train students with all of the instruments housed in these facilities. This combination of advanced instrumentation and hands-on training provides students with the tools and expertise needed to push their projects in exciting new directions. Several departmental facilities and the Center for Genomics and Bioinformatics provide particularly useful resources for chemical biology students.