Research + Discoveries

  • Wang and Warren Collaboration Report a Novel Hyperpolarization Tagging Strategy

    A Departmental Collaboration is lighting up MRIs! Junu Bae of the Wang Lab and Zijian Zhou of the Warren Lab have developed chemical tags that attach to molecules, making them light up under MRI! Read more about these tags and how they could change how drugs target illness in the Wang/Warren lab article available in the March 9 publication of Science Advances.

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  • Charge Splitters and Charge Transport Junctions Based on Guanine Quadruplexes

    Professors David Beratan and Peng Zhang, with collaborators at NYU and ASU, have designed, built, and demonstrated current splitters and charge-transport junctions based on self-assembling nucleic acids. These constructs promise to expand the functionality of self-assembling bio-inspired electronic devices at the nanoscale.

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  • Malcolmson Lab Illustrates Olefins as Alkylating Agents for Enantioselective Synthesis

    The Malcolmson lab has demonstrated that olefins may act as alkylating agents for the enantioselective intermolecular addition of enol-type nucleophiles under Pd catalysis. Typically, polarized electrophiles are required for couplings with enolates/enols or their equivalents, reducing atom economy and potentially functional group tolerance. In this work, Prof.

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  • Beratan Group Sheds Light on DNA Repair

    The high temperatures and intense UV irradiation of the early earth made DNA particularly susceptible to damage. Beratan’s group used theory, modeling, and simulation to explore the mechanism of photochemical repair of damaged DNA by the enzyme photolyases. The group focused on the critical (and much debated) photo-induced electron-transfer reaction that leads to DNA repair.

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  • Beratan, Therien and Collaborators Pack a Porphyrin into a Protein Puzzle

    The de novo design of a protein capable of binding a cofactor in a unique orientation is a challenging problem because a range of structurally similar, yet different, complexes are often formed. Now, a team led by former graduate student Nick Polizzi and by Professors David N. Beratan and Michael J. Therien at Duke, and by Professor William F. DeGrado at UCSF, report a protein — designed entirely from first principles — that binds a small-molecule cofactor in a unique and precisely predetermined orientation (shown schematically on the journal cover).

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