In my current research, I am engineering epitope-targeted protein-catalyzed capture agents (PCCs) that modulate protein-protein interactions to treat cancer and infectious diseases. Protein-catalyzed capture agents are macrocyclic peptide ligands that bind judiciously selected epitopes on proteins. Our work specifically aims to develop PCCs that disrupt interactions between the proteins Myc and Max, which are perhaps the most important protein interactions in oncology. Separately, with funding through the ISB innovator program, my ISB collaborators and I are developing PCCs as immunotherapeutics against antibiotic resistant bacteria.
My graduate school research at UC Santa Barbara focused on incorporating the photo-active membrane protein Proteorhodopsin into nanostructured surfactant-silica materials for solar-to-electrochemical conversion. Our group developed a novel synthesis procedure that enabled proteorhodopsin molecules to be incorporated into synthetic nanostructured materials at high loadings with retained protein function and structure. We also demonstrated the generality of the synthesis approach by adapting it to incorporate other functionally-active membrane proteins.
Combinatorial chemistry, Membrane proteins, NMR spectroscopy, UV-visible absorption spectroscopy, Self-assembly, High-surface-area materials
Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering with honors (2008-2012), University of Washington, Seattle
Doctorate of Philosophy in Chemical Engineering (2012-17), University of California, Santa Barbara
Graduate Certificate in Technology Management (2012-17), University of California, Santa Barbara
Post-doctoral Researcher in the Heath lab (2017-18), California Institute of Technology
Post-doctoral Researcher in the Heath lab (2018-current), Institute for Systems Biology