Nik Sgourakis, Principal Investigator
During my postdoctoral work with David Baker and Ad Bax I developed Rosetta methods for determining the structures of protein complexes from sparse NMR data. In my Ph.D. with Angel Garcia at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, I used enhanced sampling MD simulations to model intrinsically disordered proteins. In my Master’s degree in Bioinformatics from the National University of Athens, Greece I developed Hidden Markov Models that predict properties of G-protein coupled receptors.

Viviane Silva de Paula, Visiting Scientist
I obtained my biological chemistry, M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees at Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), where I elucidated the structure of plant and human defensins and their interactions with membranes by solution NMR. During my Post-doc at National Center of NMR I used NMR spectroscopy, molecular dynamics and docking to characterize the molecular interactions involved with human b-defensin recognition by the immune system. Currently, I am Assistant Professor of Biochemistry at UFRJ and my research interests span various aspects of protein structure, dynamics and molecular recognition for the biological functions of chemokines and their receptors in inflammation.

Giora I Morozov

Giora Morozov, Visiting Scientist
My research interests are focused on study of immunodominance and immunogenicity in the context of the MHC. I earned my PhD degree from the Ben Gurion University, Beer Sheva, Israel, laboratory of Yaffa Mizrachi-Nebenzahl. I have characterized a previously unknown iron-binding Streptococcus Pneumoniae protein FlaR and demonstrated its involvement in S. Pneumoniae pathogenicity. As a postdoc I worked in the lab of David Margulies, NIAID, NIH. My project there was connected to the characterization of MHC-I peptide editor TAPBPR and reconstitution of its activity in vitro. When I moved to the lab of Daniel Barkan at Faculty of Agriculture, Hebrew University, Rehovot, Israel, I started to develop an in vitro system for immunodominant epitope selection using recombinant TAPBPR and HLA-A2. I joined Sgourakis lab with great expectation to work on the development of new diagnostic and vaccine tools.

Andrew McShan, Postdoctoral Scholar
I earned a B.S. in Biochemistry and subsequently a Ph.D. in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology from the University of Kansas. In my Ph.D. research I used NMR spectroscopy to characterize the molecular interactions involved in the assembly of bacterial type III secretion systems and to discover small molecule binders of type III proteins to be used as scaffolds for the development of novel antibacterial therapeutics.

Sarah Overall, Postdoctoral Scholar
I obtained my PhD in Immunology and Biochemistry at the University of Melbourne, Australia in the lab of Prof. Paul Gleeson, where I investigated the role of TCR stimulation in thymic regulatory T cell development and antigen presentation in inflammation induced autoimmunity. I then spent a year working with Prof. Frances Separovic using solid-state NMR to characterise 31P- signals from live bacteria and investigating the structure of pore-forming antimicrobial peptides in bacterial membranes.

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Santrupti Nerli, PhD Student (Computer Science) 
I completed my B.E degree in Computer Science at SJCE, India. I obtained my M.S degree in Computer Science from SJSU, where I developed algorithms, using decision trees and Hidden Markov Models to detect splice sites and cryptic splice sites in human genome, under the guidance of Dr. Sami Khuri.

Danai Moschidi, PhD Student (Chemistry & Biochemistry)
I obtained a BSc and MSc in Chemical Engineering at National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) in Greece. After graduation, I earned a six-month intership at the National Hellenic Research Foundation, Greece as an assistant researcher at the Laboratory of Enzymology in the Institute of Biology, Medicinal Chemistry and Biotechnology. This experience drove me to enter to Interdisciplinary Postgraduate Program based on Drug Design titled “Medicinal Chemistry: Drug Discovery and Design” in University of Patras, Greece.

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Hau Truong, CB3 PhD student (Chemistry and Biochemistry)
I completed my B.S. in Biological Sciences from the Universtiy of California, Irvine (UCI). There, I had the opportunity to work with Prof. Sheryl Tsai to study polyketide synthesis, by probing how polyketide synthases function and interacts using x-ray crystallography, biochemistry, and molecular modelling. It was here that I became fascinated with understanding protein-protein and protein-substrate interactions.

ALUMNI

Joey Toor, Junior Specialist

Mareike Badstübner, Undergradaute Research Assistant

Vlad Kumirov , Postdoctoral Scholar

David Flores-Solis, Postdoctoral Scholar