Event Title

Protein Interactions: Faculty Research Panel


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Zoom - http://bit.ly/research-tues

Start Date

23-2-2021 4:00 PM

End Date

23-2-2021 5:00 PM

Speaker Bio

Josh Steimel, PhD: Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering

I majored in Materials Science and Engineering at MIT for my undergrad and graduate studies. I specialized in polymeric and biomaterials and my research interests involve developing novel experimental platforms and devices to mimic vital and ubiquitous biological systems of interest. These systems are synthetic and aim to mimic biological processes in order to better understand any underlying physical phenomenon driving unique biological behavior. In particular, I work on measuring the affinity and kinetics of biological interactions using actively driven microscopic magnetic tribological probes. I am also interested in studying novel collective dynamical behavior in active matter systems and understanding the origin of such unique non-equilibrium behavior. I am starting the Laboratory for Biomimetic Active Matter Systems at the University of the Pacific and I encourage undergraduates, grad students, and anyone who may be interested in this research to contact me to discuss potential projects.

Joseph Harrison, PhD: Assistant Professor, Chemistry

The overarching theme of my independent research will be to study the role of histone ubiquitylation in epigenetics, with a focus on the link between histone ubiquitylation and DNA methylation (DNAme). The role of ubiquitin conjugation in regulating protein function, degradation, and localization has long been established; however, histone ubiquitylation is emerging as a critical epigenetic mark. While the functional consequences of ubiquitylation to a few specific lysines on histones are known, the regulatory role of ubiquitin in epigenetics is underappreciated, highlighted by the number of sites of histone ubiquitylation with unknown functions identified with mass spectrometry.

Craig Vierra, PhD: Professor, Biology

My research focuses on understanding the molecular mechanics of black widow spider silk and how these properties relate to the fiber's high tensile strength, elasticity, and toughness. Because spider silk is five times stronger relative to steel (when equivalent masses are compared), it has attracted the attention of material scientists. Scientists are currently trying to manufacture silk synthetically using expression systems in yeast, bacteria and goats. The "holy grail" of the spider silk community is to produce fibers for industrial applications that mimic natural silk. Synthetic silk could be used for bullet proof vests, medical sutures, fishing lines, ropes and chords, as well as applications for nanotechnology.

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Feb 23rd, 4:00 PM Feb 23rd, 5:00 PM

Protein Interactions: Faculty Research Panel

Zoom - http://bit.ly/research-tues