The Nanoscale Science Ph.D. Program at UNC charlotte would like to congratulate Derek Peloquin and Nathan Behm for getting their team project work published in a peer-reviewed journal. The advance copy of their article, “High-throughput microwave synthesis and characterization of NiO nanoplates for supercapacitor devices” is available online at the Springer’s Journal of Materials Science(DOI: 10.1007/s10853-012-6929-6). As Nathan remarks, “It’s cool to have a publication out of one semester work.”
Department of Biostatistics & Bioinformatics,Duke University
“USING HIGH-THROUGHPUT DATA TO DERIVE NEW MODELS OF PROTEIN-DNA BINDING SPECIFICITY”
Transcription factors (TFs) regulate gene expression by binding to specific, short DNA sites in the promoters or enhancers of the genes they regulate. Most eukaryotic TFs are members of large protein families that share a common DNA binding domain and thus have similar binding specificities. However, paralogous TFs (i.e., members of the same family) typically perform different regulatory functions in vivo by binding to different sets of genomic sites. Current models for DNA binding specificity, such as position weight matrices (PWMs), cannot typically distinguish among the DNA sites bound by paralogous TFs. This significantly restricts our ability to computationally predict genomic targets for individual members of TF families. I will describe new regression-based models for TF-DNA binding specificity, that are able to capture differences among closely-related TFs even when their PWMs are virtually identical. We train our models using high-throughput in vitro data from custom protein binding microarray (PBM) experiments. Our PBMs are specifically designed to cover a large number of potential TF-DNA binding sites in their native genomic context. Thus, our models are able to accurately predict how genomic regions flanking putative TF binding sites might affect DNA binding specificity. Our PBM-derived regression models represent an important step toward a better understanding of DNA binding specificity within TF families.
Friday, February 8, 2013 @ 1:30 PM in Bioinformatics 105
Department of Chemistry, University of South Florida
“LIGHTING-UP METAL ORGANIC FRAMEWORKS: PHOTOCATALYTIC GUEST ENCAPSULATION IN METAL ORGANIC FRAMEWORKS”
Metal organic frameworks (MOFs) have emerged as an important class of porous materials noted for extremely high surface areas, functionalizable building blocks, and ease of synthesis. To date, a plethora of MOFs have now been synthesized and their physical properties examined with a focus on gas storage and separation. The catalytic diversity of MOFs, on the other hand, is emerging as an important area of MOF functionality with photo-catalysis a primary target of investigation. Two general strategies have been employed in the development of MOFs as photo-catalysts. The first utilizes the metal cluster building blocks and/or the ligands composing the framework as the photo-active component of the MOF. These photo-active framework MOFs typically contain lanthanide metal clusters or porphyrin based organic linkers which are both photo-chemically active. Alternatively, recent advances have been made in the development of MOFs in which the ligands connecting the metal clusters are composed of either free base or metallo-porphyrins. The advantages of this type of MOF photo-catalyst include a high density of available catalytic sites, ease of access of photochemical reactants and the ability to tune the framework to be selective for specific photo-chemical reactants. However, the drawbacks include non-specific photo-chemistry as the reactants can simply react with surface sites on the solid and difficulty in design of reactive cavities which can impart high selectivity.
Monday, January 28, 2013 @ 4:00 PM in Burson 115