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Thesis Defense

Use of Graphene Oxide for Sorption of Radionuclides and Other Cations and Synthesis of Graphene-Based Nanoribbons

Friday, December 12, 2014, 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM
Alexander Slesarev, Doctoral Candidate

This dissertation will focus on two topics: the application of graphene oxide to radionuclides and other ions separation from various media, and synthesis of some graphene-based nanoribbons. In the first part, the efficacy of graphene oxide (GO) for more  »

Thesis Defense

Development of a Diagnostic Assay for the Multiplexed Detection of Ovarian Cancer Biomarkers at the Point-of-Care

Wednesday, December 10, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Basil Shadfan, Doctoral Candidate

Point-of-care (POC) diagnostic platforms have the potential to enable low-cost, large- scale screening. As no single biomarker is shed by all ovarian cancers, multiplexed biomarker panels promise improved sensitivity and specificity to address the un more  »

Thesis Defense

Investigations of the Specificity of Oxidosqualene Cyclization: Errors are the Rule, Not the Exception

Thursday, December 4, 2014, 2:30 PM - 4:30 PM
Paul Bodager, Doctoral Candidate

This thesis describes the characterization of oxidosqualene cyclases from numerous organisms, through heterologous expression in Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and extraction from organismal tissue. Oxidosqualene cyclases are a family of proteins which ca more  »


Exploiting Versatile N-N and N-O Bonds: Rapid Synthesis of Functionalized Biaryls and N-Heterocycles

Thursday, December 4, 2014, 12:15 PM - 1:15 PM
László Kürti, UT Southwestern Medical Center

The growth of knowledge in the chemical sciences has seen a dramatic increase since the beginning of the 21st century. The advance is particularly significant in synthetic chemistry because of its centrality and value to society. Key to all of this i more  »


Using De Novo Designed Peptides to Understand Metalloprotein Folding and Metalloenzymology

Wednesday, December 3, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Vincent Pecoraro, University of Michigan

We have previously shown that short, synthetic peptides in the TRI family will aggregate at neutral to moderate pH as three stranded coiled coils (TRI sequence= G(LKALEEK4)G). When the hydrophobic interior of these peptides is modified to include a more  »


Identifying Design Principles of Human Cells

Tuesday, December 2, 2014, 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Amina A Qutub, Assistant Professor, Rice University - Department of Bioengineering

Oxygen is fundamental to life on Earth. This dependency spans all biological scales: molecular to organ system. Abberrant hypoxic response is a critical part of many diseases including Alzheimer’s, stroke and cancer. On the other hand, appropriate ma more  »



Guiding Principles of Spatiotemporal Organization in Biological Communities

Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
KC Huang, Associate Professor, Stanford University

The notion of community in biology can take on many forms, from the interactions of intracellular organelles, to multicellular behaviors of normally single-celled organisms, to complex populations of bacterial species within a host. Dissecting the ru more  »

Thesis Defense

Theranostic gold nanoshells and nanomatryoshkas for cancer therapy

Thursday, November 20, 2014, 9:20 AM - 11:20 AM
Ciceron Ayala-Orozco, Doctoral Candidate

This dissertation presents the synthesis of multifunctional gold nanoparticles designed for therapy and diagnosis of cancer (theranostics), and the evaluation of their therapeutic efficacy and bioimaging of tumors in mice. The design of these metalli more  »


Protein Folding and Functional Dynamics

Wednesday, November 19, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Feng Gai, Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Endowed Term Professor of Chemistry, University of Pennsylvania

Proteins can undergo various conformational transitions. Due to the multidimensional nature of the underlying conformational energy landscape and the fact that protein structural motions can occur over a wide range of timescales, it is often difficul more  »


Measuring Folding Dynamics, Energy Landscapes, and Conformational Diffusion in Single Biomolecules with Force Spectroscopy

Tuesday, November 18, 2014, 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Michael T. Woodside, Assistant Professor, University of Alberta

Understanding how structure forms in biological molecules like proteins and nucleic acids has been a central problem in biology, biophysics, and biochemistry for decades. In recent years, experiments in which a single molecule is held under tension t more  »


Strategies to Create Diverse Collections of Natural Products

Monday, November 17, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Scott Snyder, Scripps Research Institute - Florida

Thesis Defense

Meniscus-Mask Lithography

Friday, November 14, 2014, 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
Vera Abramova, Doctoral Candidate

This dissertation will focus on meniscus-mask lithography (MML) method of nanofabrication. The meniscus-mask lithography allows for large scale production of precisely on-chip positioned high aspect ratio nanowires or nanoribbons with widths down to more  »


Chemical and enzymatic methods for the synthesis of complex molecules

Thursday, November 13, 2014, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Alison Narayan, University of Michigan

Natural product biosynthetic pathways are responsible for the production of compounds that often possess exquisitely complex structures and potent biological properties. The first portion of this seminar will concentrate on the development of chemica more  »


Photophysics and photochemistry of nanoscale semiconductors

Wednesday, November 12, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Gordana Dukovic, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, University of Colorado at Boulder

Colloidal semiconductor nanocrystals are remarkably versatile materials that exhibit a high degree of tunability in electronic structure, optical spectra, and surface properties. They are generally strong light absorbers and have potential applicat more  »


Computer-based Design of Protein Structure and Function

Tuesday, November 11, 2014, 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Brian Kuhlman, Professor, University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill

The talk will summarize the use of the Rosetta macromolecular modeling suite to design new protein structures, complexes and switches. I will begin by briefly summarizing how Rosetta identifies favorable sequences for target structures and functions more  »


Copper-Catalyzed Cross-Couplings for Carbon-Carbon Bond Formation

Monday, November 10, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Ramesh Giri, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, University of New Mexico

Cross-coupling reactions are widespread for the construction of carbon-carbon (C?C) bonds in organic molecules, critically important for manufacturing pharmaceuticals, materials, as well as commodity chemicals. These transformations are typically ca more  »

Thesis Defense

Optical Properties of Plasmonic Heterodimers and Nanoantennas for Surface-Enhanced Infrared Absorption

Monday, November 10, 2014, 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Lisa Brown, Doctoral Candidate

Electromagnetic interactions in nanoscale systems are a driving force of research in the field of nanophotonics. A unique type of interaction called a Fano resonance occurs when the excitation frequencies of broad and narrow energy modes overlap, res more  »


“Integrating chemistry and biology to discover small-molecule therapeutics”

Monday, November 10, 2014, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Stuart Schreiber, Harvard University

Small-molecule drugs were originally discovered using compound-based drug discovery: opportunistic discovery of a biologically active compound, often a natural product (e.g., penicillin) followed by a search for a disease that might be treated with t more  »


Ligand Design in Transition Metal Catalysis: Advances in C–H Activation and Olefin Metathesis

Thursday, November 6, 2014, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Keary Engle, California Institute of Technology

Numerous pharmaceuticals, materials, and fine chemicals are synthesized by homogenous transition metal catalysis. The power of homogenous catalysis stems from the fact that both the reactivity and selectivity of a given catalyst can be tuned by modif more  »


Single-Molecule Dynamics of Nanocatalysis and Transcription Regulation

Wednesday, November 5, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Peng Chen, eter J. W. Debye Professor of Chemistry, Cornell University

This presentation will cover two topics: (1) Studying single metal nanoparticle catalysis at the single-turnover and nanometer resolution. I will present how we interrogate the catalytic activity and dynamics of individual metal nanoparticles, resol more  »


Controlling Partially-Known Networks Using Response Surfaces

Tuesday, November 4, 2014, 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Gemunu Gunaratne, Professor and Chairman of Physics, University of Houston

Control of complex processes is a major goal of network analyses. Most approaches to control nonlinearly coupled systems require the network topology and/or network dynamics. Unfortunately, neither the full set of participating nodes nor the network more  »


A Practical, Fully Synthetic Route to Macrolide Antibiotics and the First Chemical Synthesis of Palau’amine

Monday, November 3, 2014, 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Ian Seiple, Harvard University

A practical synthetic route to macrolide antibiotics, broadly defined, has been achieved by the highly convergent assembly of 8 simple molecular building blocks. In this way more than 150 novel macrolide antibiotic candidates have been prepared, seve more  »



Adapting decades-old chemistry and physics to improve modern molecular imaging

Thursday, October 30, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Warren Warren, James B. Duke Professor of Chemistry, Professor of Radiology, Biomedical Engineering, and Physics, Duke University

Molecular imaging-the use of chemical signatures to image function instead of merely structure-promises to enable a new generation of clinical modalities that can revolutionize both diagnosis and treatment. I will focus on two specific modalities-ma more  »

Lecture/Lecture Series

ATOMS and IONS Universality, Singularity, and Particularity : On Boltzmann's Vision a Century Later

Wednesday, October 29, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Michael E Fisher, Distinguished University Professor and Regents Professor, Institute for Physical Science and Technology, University of Maryland

Ludwig Boltzmann died by his own hand 108 years ago this September. He was a passionate believer in atoms : underlying thermodynamics, he felt, lay a statistical world governed by the mechanics of individual particles. His struggle against more  »


Advancing Graduate Education in the Chemical Sciences

Wednesday, October 29, 2014, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Bassam Shakhishiri, University of Wisconsin

Thesis Defense

Magnetic nanomaterials for applications in magnetic resonance imaging and cancer stem cell biology

Tuesday, October 28, 2014, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Meghan Jebb, Doctoral Candidate

Magnetic nanomaterials are uniquely suited for applications in biology and medicine. With size compatibility, tunable physical properties, and the capacity for external magnetic control, nanoscale magnetic particles have been exploited for drug deliv more  »


Micromechanical Studies of DNA-protein Interactions and Chromosome Organization

Tuesday, October 28, 2014, 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
John F. Marko, Professor, Northwestern University

The centimeter-long DNAs in our cells are folded up into micron-scale chromosomes through an array of protein-DNA interactions. Our group uses single-DNA micromanipulation – stretching and twisting of the double helix– as a tool to analyze a variety more  »


Development of Bio-inspired Catalysts for Efficient Peptide Hydrolysis

Wednesday, October 22, 2014, 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Rajeev Prabhakar, Associate Professor of Chemistry, University of Miami

The selective hydrolysis of the extremely stable peptide or amide bond of peptides and proteins is required in a wide range of biological, biotechnological and industrial applications such as control of the cell cycle, cell death, proteomics, protein more  »


A Tug-of-War Between Driver and Passenger Mutations in Cancer

Tuesday, October 21, 2014, 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM
Leonid A. Mirny, Associate Professor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cancer progression is driven by a few mutation and chromosomal alterations that affect oncogenes and tumor suppressors. Cancer genomics, however, shows that these ‘driver’ mutations occur alongside thousands of random ‘passenger’ mutations -- a natur more  »