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Seminar Speaker Professor Jeffrey Klauda from University of Maryland

The Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering is pleased to announce the third speaker in our Fall 2014 Seminar Series. Dr. Jeffrey Klauda, from the University of Maryland Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department will be speaking Wednesday, September 24, 2014 in Room B023 in Iacocca Hall at 2:30. Seminars are open to the public and all interested visitors are welcome to attend.

“Probing Small Molecule Self-assembly, Lipid Membranes and Membrane-associated Proteins”

Although molecular simulations have been used as a tool to probe physical properties of simple gasses and liquids, it has not been until recently (~15 years) that this technique has been able to probe timescales of self-assembly and mechanisms of bio-macromolecules. This talk will focus on utilizing all-atom simulations to investigate mechanisms of small molecule self-assembly, lipid membranes and a peripherial membrane protein. First, I will describe our self-assembly simulations of a hydrotrope (tert-butyl alcohol, TBA) in water indicate that these molecules can form quasi-micelles. Hydrotropes are small amphiphilic molecules that alone do not form stable micelles, but can enhance the solubility of hydrophobic substances in water. In collaboration with Dr. Anisimov’s lab at UMD, we have found that TBA may act like a surfactant and reduce the water/oil surface tension, which leads to stable mesoscale droplets of oil (~100 nm). Our smaller-scale MD simulations demonstrate the ability of TBA and a water shell to act as a protective coat to oil droplets.
In addition to more traditional chemical engineering research, my lab also focuses on simulations and modeling of biomolecular systems, specifically lipid membranes and proteins. Since membranes in biology consist of many different lipids and varying concentrations, we have developed accurate all-atom force field parameters for a wide variety of lipid types, known as the CHARMM36 (C36) lipid force field. For this talk, the parameterization of sphingolipids will be presented as these are important lipids in the outer membrane of cells.

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Professor Jeffery Klauda received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering and Applied Mathematics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. His Ph.D. research was done at the University of Delaware under the advisement of Prof. Stanley Sandler focusing on thermodynamic modeling of gas hydrates and gas adsorption on nanoporous carbons. He switch is research focus to biological areas and molecular simulation during his postdoctoral fellowship at the National Institutes of Health in the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI). In 2007, he joined as a tenure-track professor in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Maryland – College Park. He is the recipient of the NSF CAREER award and is currently an Associate Professor.

Colloquium at 2:30 PM, Room B023, Iacocca Hall - Refreshments at 2:15 PM
Mountaintop Campus, Iacocca Hall, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA 18015

 

Jeff Klauda

Dr. Jeffrey Klauda, University of Maryland Professor

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