Frontiers Lecture: Dr. Jennifer Heemstra

MoSE 3201A
Tuesday, January 4, 2022 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm
"Harnessing biomolecular recognition in the lab and building resilience in the classroom"
Abstract: Nucleic acids are exquisitely adept at molecular recognition and assembly, making them foundational to life processes and enabling researchers to harness them for applications beyond their canonical biological roles. As an example, aptamers have been evolved in nature to regulate cellular processes and can also be generated in the laboratory and utilized for biosensing and therapeutic applications. We have leveraged the molecular recognition capability of aptamers to generate chiral sensors for high-throughput measurement of small-molecule enantiopurity, thus addressing a critical bottleneck in biocatalysis. We demonstrate fluorescence-based enantiopurity measurement in a microplate format and via flow cytometry, and have developed a method for the direct evolution of new aptamer sensors.

…And we’ve encountered a lot of failure along the way. As researchers, we recognize that failure is both an unavoidable and necessary part of discovery, and that overcoming failure requires resilience. This led us to ask the question: when and how do undergraduate STEM students develop the resilience they need to persist through failure? To address this question, we founded FLAMEnet as a nationwide collaborative aimed at developing, implementing, and disseminating educational interventions that leverage psychological frameworks to promote retention and success of students in STEM.
Contact Information: 
Host: Amit Reddi
Map of Georgia Tech

School of Chemistry & Biochemistry

901 Atlantic Drive Atlanta, GA 30332-0400

(404) 894-4002 (phone) | (404) 894-7452 (fax)