Enzymologist Expert Keynote Speaker at Biophysics Program

Posted 09/17/07
Deciphering codes and genomes, DNA replication and biological catalysis are among topics to be discussed during the 8th Annual Molecular Biophysics Program on Sept. 20 at Wadsworth Mansion in Middletown beginning at 10 a.m. The event is open to the public.

This year’s keynote speaker is Stephen J. Benkovic, the Evan Pugh Professor and Eberly Chair in Chemistry at Penn State University. Benkovic will speak on DNA replication.

Benkovic is one of the leading mechanistic enzymologists in the world, noted for the versatility of his research. His work on the chemistry of biological systems has made important contributions towards understanding the mechanisms of the T4 replisome, tetrahydrofolate-requiring enzymes, and coupled networks in enzymic catalysis, and towards the modular design of biological catalysts.

In addition to the biophysics program, Benkovic will speak on “Perspectives on Biological Catalysis” at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 19 in Hall-Atwater, Rm. 84.

The schedule of speakers and topics includes:

10 a.m. Ishita Mukerji, chair and professor of molecular biology and biochemistry, will speak on “Spectroscopic and molecular dynamics evidence for a sequential mechanism for the A to B transition in DNA.”

10:45 a.m. Robert Lane, assistant professor of molecular biology and biochemistry, will speak on “The use of bioinformatics in deciphering regulatory code in the genome.”

11:30 a.m. Posters

12:30 p.m. Lunch

1:30 p.m. Siying Chen, graduate student, “The work of a clamp loader in DNA replication“

2:15 p.m. Posters

3 p.m. Erika Taylor, assistant professor of chemistry, will speak on the “Exploration of lipopolysaccharide biosynthesis.“

4 p.m. Keynote Speaker Stephen J. Benkovic will speak on “DNA Replication.”

5 p.m. Reception and Posters

The program and seminar are sponsored by the NIGMS Molecular Biophysics Training Grant GM08271, Raymond E. Baldwin Lecture Fund, the Molecular Biophysics Program, and the departments of Chemistry and Molecular Biology and Biochemistry at Wesleyan.

Contributed by the Chemistry and Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Departments