The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) has selected me to participate in their 2014 Hill Day advocacy campaign. As a participant, I will travel to Washington, D.C. and discuss issues of science funding and policy with congressional representatives.
Presenting at the 4th Annual LSS
My poster, “Efficient Protein Design by Symmetric Expansion of the Folding Nucleus” was awarded 2nd place at the 4th Annual Life Sciences Symposium in Tallahassee, Florida. Over 50 posters were under consideration and graduate students and post docs from a variety of departments, ranging from Molecular Biophysics to Neuroscience, participated.
An opinion article penned by Dr. Michael Blaber and me entitled, “Prebiotic Protein Design Supports a Halophile Origin of Foldable Proteins,” has been accepted to Frontiers in Microbiology. In the manuscript we argue that the halophile (high-salt) environment served as the cradle of proteogenesis (the origin of foldable proteins). You can read the article here.
My manuscript, “Biophysical characterization of a thermoalkalophilic esterase from Geobacillus sp.” has been accepted for publication in Journal of Proteins and Proteomics. This work resulted from an international collaboration between the Blaber Lab (Florida State University, USA) and the lab of Gulşah Şanlı-Mohamed (Izmir Institute of Technology, Turkey). In the report, we describe the biophysical characterization of an esterase cloned from a bacteria native to the Balçova geothermal site in Turkey.
Many thanks to the FSU Graduate School for awarding me one of the 2013 Dissertation Research Grant Awards. These $750 grants are designed to help students defray the costs of travel, textbooks, and supplies necessary for the completion of a doctoral dissertation.
Today I judged the 7th grade Chemistry section at Raa Middle School, and the projects were impressive. In particular, I was shocked to find several students using ImageJ (a freely available image processing program developed by the NIH) to quantify their experimental results.
My manuscript, “Alternative Folding Nuclei Definitions Facilitate the Evolution of a Symmetric Protein Fold from a Smaller Peptide Motif” has been accepted for publication in Cell: Structure. Dr. Jihun Lee, a former postdoc in the lab, is co-first author on this paper.
The competition was stiff, but Connie Tenorio (undergraduate student that I mentor in the Blaber Lab) walked away a winner. Congratulations, Connie!
Connie standing next to her prize-winning poster!
Liam presenting in Boston
At the symposium, I presented a poster on prebiotic protein design and delivered a short invited talk about my recent work on the foldability-function tradeoff hypothesis.
In addition, I enjoyed many posters and talks from fellow protein scientists, notably George Rose’s talk on redefining a protein domain in terms of folding cooperatively; Alexander Tischer and Matthew Auton’s poster revealing expansion of the denatured state in response to perturbation; and Kresten Lindorff-Larsen’s talk that put reasonable bounds on the extent of the influence that dynamics has on catalysis.
I’m already looking forward to attending the next Annual Symposium of the Protein Society!
My manuscript, “Symmetric Protein Architecture in Protein Design: Top-Down Symmetric Deconstruction” has been accepted for publication in a Protein Design issue of the Methods in Molecular Biology series.