Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics E-Newsletter

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Cori Lecture-Remembering a Legacy

Holiday Party

Tim Lohman-2015 Biophysical Society Fellow and WUSM Distinguished Faculty Award

David F. Silbert Summer Fellowship Award Lunch

Chili Cook-off 

Welcome to New BMB Faculty, Students & Postdocs

Research Awards

Latest Publications
Cori Lecturer - Remembering a Legacy
The department hosted the 2014 Cori Lecture on November 18, 2014.  This year the Cori Lecture was presented by Dr. Joan Steitz from Yale University in the Eric P. Newman Main Auditorium.  Dr. Steitz presented her talk on “Noncoding RNAs: with a viral twist” to a packed house. 
Dr. Steitz earned her BS in chemistry from Antioch College in 1963. Significant findings from her work emerged as early as 1967, when her Harvard PhD thesis with Jim Watson examined the test-tube assembly of a ribonucleic acid (RNA) bacteriophage (antibacterial virus) known as R17. Dr. Steitz spent the next three years in postdoctoral studies at the Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, England, where she used early methods for determining the biochemical sequence of RNA to study how ribosomes know where to initiate protein synthesis on bacterial mRNAs. In 1970, she was appointed assistant professor of molecular biophysics and biochemistry at Yale, becoming full professor in 1978. At Yale, she established a laboratory dedicated to the study of RNA structure and function. In 1979, Dr. Steitz and her colleagues described a group of cellular particles called small nuclear ribonucleoproteins (snRNPs), a breakthrough in understanding how RNA is spliced. Subsequently, her laboratory has defined the structures and functions of other noncoding RNPs, such as those that guide the modification of ribosomal RNAs and several produced by transforming herpes viruses. Today, her studies of noncoding RNAs include microRNAs. Dr. Steitz is an investigator of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, the National Academy of Sciences, and the Institute of Medicine. Her many honors include the U.S. Steel Foundation Award in Molecular Biology (1982), the National Medal of Science (1986), the Lewis S. Rosenstiel Award (2002), the FASEB Excellence in Science Award (2003), the RNA Society Lifetime Achievement Award (2004), E.B. Wilson Medal (2005), Gairdner Foundation International Award (2006), Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research (2008), [shared with Elizabeth Blackburn], Harden Jubilee Medal, British Biochemical Socie-ty (2009), The Robert J. and Claire Pasarow Foundation 23rd Annual Medi-cal Research Award for Extraordinary Achievement in Cancer Research (2011), The Pearl Meister Greengard Prize (2012), Joseph Priestley Award, Dickinson College (2013), Vanderbilt Prize in Biomedical Science (2013), EMD Millipore Alice C. Evans Award, American Academy of Microbiology (2013), La grande médaille 2013 de l'Académie des sciences, Insititut de France. She is the recipient of 17 honorary degrees. 
Immediately following the seminar, a reception was held for all of the attendees.  In the evening the faculty in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, and their spouses, enjoyed a dinner at the Whittemore House. Photos...
History of the Cori Lectureship:
The Cori’s came to Washington University in 1931 and during the ensuing years, they elucidated the pathway for glycogen degradation. 
They also discovered that protein phosphorylation represented a mechanism for regulating the activity of enzymes.  For their discoveries, Carl and Gerty Cori were awarded the Nobel Prize in 1947.  Gerty died in 1957.  Upon Carl’s death in 1984, the department established the Carl and Gerty Cori Lecture to celebrate the life and work of this remarkable couple.  The couple’s lasting legacy includes the training of successive generations of scientists – six other future Nobel Laureates worked with Carl and Gerty Cori in their laboratory at Washington University: Christian de Duve, Arthur Kornberg, Edwin G. Krebs, Luis F. Leloir, Severo Ochoa, and Earl W. Sutherland.  Previous Cori Lecturers include Gobind Khorana, Arthur Kornberg, and Jim Wells.
Holiday Party
The department holiday party was held on December 15, 2014 in the King Center. Santa made a special appearance and handed out lots of toys to all the good little boys and girls. Back by popular demand was holiday trivia hosted by Nick Caito. The winning trivia table was Carl Frieden, Tim Lohman and Alex Kozlov.  Please enjoy the attached photos...
2015 Biophysical Society Fellow and WUSM Distinguished Faculty Award
Congratulations to Dr. Timothy Lohman, who was awarded Biophysical Society Fellow at the Biophysical Society’s 59th Annual Meeting held in February. Dr. Lohman was recognized for his pioneering biophysical studies of the mechanisms and energetics of protein-DNA interactions, including the enzymology and kinetic mechanisms of DNA helicases and translocases, and single stranded DNA binding proteins.

Dr. Lohman also received the 2015 Washington University School of Medicine Distinguished Faculty Award. The award ceremony was held on February 18th in the Eric P. Newman Auditorium.  A YouTube video of the award ceremony can be found here.
 David F. Silbert Summer Fellowship Award Luncheon
Pictured: Dr. Marco Colonna, Diane Aum, Dr. Shirley Silbert, James Zou and Dr. Albert Kim
The 2014 Silbert summer fellowship award was given to Diane Aum and James Zou.  On February 25th, the department hosted a luncheon with Dr. Shirley Silbert (Dr. Silbert’s wife), the Silbert fellows and their research mentors: Drs. Marco Colonna and Albert Kim. Also in attendance, Roselyn Robinson, Drs.  Koong-Nah Chung, John Cooper and Linda Pike.  During lunch the fellows gave a brief description of their summer research projects and talked about how their summer research experience impacted their future scientific careers. 
Diane worked with Dr. Albert Kim, an Assistant Professor, in the Department of Neurological Surgery.  Dr. Kim’s research interest focuses on signal transduction in malignant brain tumors and brain development.  During the summer, Diane worked on Glioblastoma multiforme. 
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is one of the most malignant and aggressive brain tumors with a short survival time and limited treatment options. Currently, glioblastoma multiforme is poorly understood at a molecular level. Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) plays an important role in cell metabolism which is critical for cancer cell function. Nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (NAMPT) is an enzyme that catalyzes NAD production. Studying the role of NAD and NAMPT in GBM could elucidate important cellular mechanisms which could lead to new approaches for treatment of this challenging disease. The hypothesis of the study was that the inhibition of NAMPT decreases cellular NAD levels and leads to a decrease in the self-renewal, invasiveness, and tumorigenesis of cancer stem cells in Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM).
James worked with Dr. Marco Colonna, the Robert Rock Belliveau MD Professor, in the Department of Pathology and Immunology, and Internal Medicine.  Dr. Colonna’s research focuses on the innate immune responses in infections, autoimmunity and tumors.   James’s research project involved making antibodies against a molecule called IL-26, a poorly understood molecule involved in the mucosal immune system.  
Antibodies are normally created by immune cells in the body and each antibody is specialized to bind to a single target.  James attempted to generate these antibodies by producing IL-26 in bacteria and then injecting the IL-26 into mice, whose immune cells would then generate antibodies against IL-26. The antibodies could then be used in studies to determine the role of IL-26 and related molecules. Additionally, if IL-26 is involved in any disease processes, the anti-IL-26 antibodies could also be used therapeutically.
About the Award
The David F. Silbert Fellowship was established in 1997 by contributions in memorium of Dr. David Silbert.  Each year one or two medical students receive support from this fellowship to perform short-term research on projects related to Dr. Silbert’s area of interest. 
David Silbert was born in 1936 in Cambridge, Massachusetts and received a degree in medicine from Harvard Medical School in 1962.  He completed his internship and residency at Barnes Hospital then worked as a research associate in the Laboratory of Molecular Biology at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  Dr. Silbert returned to St. Louis as a postdoctoral fellow in 1966 and joined the faculty of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics in 1968.  His research focused on the role of macromolecular interactions in cell function.
For more information on the Silbert Fellowship, please visit the Silbert webpage at:
1st Annual Chili Cook-off
Our first annual Chili Cook-off Competition was held on February 27th.  We had seven labs/groups (1st Year Students, Admin Office, Bowman Lab, Burgers Lab, Ellenberger Lab, Havranek Lab and Henzler-Wildman Lab) that competed for first place.  The winning chili was made by Dr. Tom Ellenberger.  The Ellenberger lab wins a free catered lunch and trophy.  We will see if they can hang on to their title next year. Photos...
BMB Department welcomes....
Hollie May Beck (Noia)-Research Technician in Jim Havranek's lab.
Jim Havranek-Assistant Professor
Adam Joyce-Graduate Research Assistant in Jim Havranek's lab.
Ming Li-Senior Scientist in Tom Ellenberger's lab.
Chengyu Liu-Research Technician in Jim Havranek's lab.
Elias Tannous-Postdoctoral Research Associate in Peter Burgers' lab.
Chi Zhang-Graduate Research Assistant in Jim Havranek's lab.
Research Awards

Garland Marshall, Ph.D., professor, has received a grant award from Epigenetx, LLC for his research entitled “Characterization of Lysine Deacetylase Inhibitors (KDACIs)”.
Upcoming Events:

March 17, 2015
BMB Seminar
Jon Ellman - A Substrate-Based Fragment Approach for Enzyme Inhibitor Discovery

March 20, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Alex Kozlov (Lohman lab) - Intrinsically Disordered C-terminal Tails of E. coli SSB Regulate Cooperative Binding to ss-DNA

March 24, 2015
BMB Seminar
John Gross - Resolving the Host-Pathogen Conflict Between APOBEC3 Innate Immunity and the Lentiviral Protein Vif

March 27, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Student Revisit

April 3, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Tridib Mondal (Frieden lab) - TBA

April 7, 2015
BMB Seminar
Yifan Cheng - Study of Integral Membrane Proteins by Single Particle CryoEM

April 10, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Rotation Talks: Sukrit Singhe and Tyson Todd - TBA

April 14, 2015
BMB Seminar
Jianmin Gao - TBA

April 14, 2015
Biophysical Evenings
Philip Bayly - Making Waves: The Mechanics of Cilia and Flagella

Apirl 17, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Kamaldeep Gill (Pike lab) - TBA

Apirl 24, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Lixuan Hao (Lohman Lab) - TBA

April 28, 2015
BMB Seminar
Andrew Marcus - Studies of Structure and Dynamics of Protein-DNA Complexes by Single Molecule and Two-Dimensional Fluorescence Spectroscopy

May 1, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Alex Holehouse (Pappu lab) - TBA

May 8, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Jay Rammohan (Galburt lab) - TBA

May 12, 205
BMB Seminar
Joseph Corbo - Seeing Red: Biochemical Switch for Far-Red Vision

May 15, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Yerdos Ordabayev (Lohman lab) - TBA

May 22, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
John Robinson (Beverly lab) - TBA

May 29, 2015
BMB Science Fridays
Welcome to Summer Happy Hour

Latest Publications

Wu, E.Y., Walsh, A.R., Materne, E.C., Hiltner, E.P., Zielinski, B., Miller, B.R. 3rd, Mawby, L., Modeste, E., Parish, C.A., Barnes, W.M. and Kermekchiev, M.B. Conservative Isoleucine to Leucine Mutation Causes Major Rearrangements and Cold Sensitivity in KlenTaq1 DNA Polymerase. Biochemistry (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

DuBay, K.H., Bowman, G.R. and Geissler, P.L. Fluctuations Within Folded Proteins: Implications for Thermodynamic and Allosteric Regulation. Acc. Chem. Res. (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Bowman, G.R., Bolin, E.R., Hart, K.M., Maguire, B.C. and Marqusee, S. Discovery of Multiple Hidden Allosteric Sites by Combining Markov State Models and Experiments. PNAS (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Makarova, A.V. and Burgres, P.M. Eukaryotic DNA Polymerase Zeta DNA Repair (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Kim, I-K., Stegeman, R.A., Brosey, C.A. and Ellenberger, T.A. A Quantitative Assay Reveals Ligand Specificity of the DNA Scaffold Repair Protein XRCC1 and Efficient Disassembly of Complexes of XRCC1 and the Poly(ADP-ribose) Polymerase 1 by Poly(ADP-ribose)  Glycohydrolase. J Biol Chem (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Xiao, X.Y., Chung, H., Banan, B., Manning, P.T., Ott, K.C., Lin, S., Capoccia, B.J., Subramanian, V., Hiebsch, R.R., Upadhya, G.A., Mohanakumar, T., Frazier, W.A., Lin, Y. and Chapman, W.C. Antibody Mediated Therapy Targeting CD47 Inhibits Tumor Progression of Hepatocellular Carcinoma. Cancer Lett. (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Xiao, X.Y., Banan, B., Jia, J., Manning, P.T., Hiebsch, R.R., Gunasekaran, M., Upadhya, G.A., Frazier, W.A., Mohanakumar, T., Lin, Y. and Chapman, W.C. CD47 Blockade Reduces Ischemia/Reperfusion Injury and Improves Survival in a Rat Liver Transplantation Model. Liver Transpl. (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Frieden, C. ApoE: The Role of Conserved Residues in Defining Function. Protein 24:138-144 (2015).

Rammohan, J., Ruiz Manzano, A., Garner, A.L., Stallings, C.L. and Gailburt, E.A. CarD Stabilizes Mycobacterial Open Complexes via a Two-Tiered Kinetic Mechanism. Nucleic Acids Research (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Feldmann, E.A., Koc, K.N. and Galletto, R. Alternative Arrangements of Telomeric Recognition Sites Regulate the Binding Mode of the DNA-Binding Domain of Yeast Rap1. Biophysical Chemistry (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Melnykov, A.V., Nayak, R.K., Hall, K.B. and Van Orden, A.K. The Effect of Loop Composition on the Stability and Folding Kinetics of RNA Hairpins with Large Loops. Biochemistry (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Joyce, A.P., Zhang, C., Bradley, P. and Havranek, J.J. Sturcture-based Modeling of Protein: DNA Specificity. Brief Funct Genomics 14:39-49 (2015).

Batchelor, J.D., Malpede, B.M., Omattage, N.S., DeKoster, G.T., Henzler-Wildman, K.A. and Tolia, N.H. Red Blood Cell Invasion by Plasmodium vivid: Structural Basis of DBP Engagement of DARC. PLoS Pathog (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Kozlov, A.G., Weiland, E., Mittal, A., Waldman, V., Antony, E., Fazio, N., Pappu, R.V. and Lohman, T.M. Intinisically Disordered C-Terminal Tails of E. coli Single Stranded DNA Binding Protein Regulate Cooperative Binding to Single Stranded DNA.  J. Mol Biol (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Whitely, K.D., Jia, H., Sokoloski, J., Lohman, T.M., Ha, T. and Chemla, Y.  Direct Observation of Structure-function Relationship in a Nucleic Acid Processing Enzyme. Science (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).

Petrova, V., Chen, S., Molzberger, E., Tomko, E., Chitteni-Pattu, S., Jia, H., Ordabayev, Y., Lohman, T. and Cox, M.  Active Displacement of RecA Filaments by UvrD Translocase Activity. Nucleic Acids Res. (E-pub ahead of print.) (2015).


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