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 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.
Sara O’Rourke, Associate Project Scientist
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.
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.
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.
Hailey Wallace, NSF-REU research intern
Danai Moschidi, Chemistry MS student
Sarah Overall, Postdoctoral Scholar (Post-doc, ETH)
Joey Toor, Undergraduate RA, Junior Specialist (MD/PhD student, Wayne State University)
Ben Sherman, Undergraduate RA, Computer Science MS student (Intern, Samsung Mountain View)
Karissa Yamaguchi, NSF-REU research intern
David Flores-Solis, Postdoctoral Scholar (Post-doc, Max Planck)
Vlad Kumirov , Postdoctoral Scholar (Instructor, University of Arizona)