Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at UMass Amherst
Hebert and Gierasch labs publish advanced gene therapy research
Teaching muscle cells to produce the protein alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT) could pave the way to treating a wide range of genetic diseases.
Alice Cheung and Hen-Ming Wu expand the limits of plant breedingTheir latest research, published in Nature in collaboration with former postdoc Qiaohong Duan (now a professor at Shandong Agricultural University), explores how the FERONIA and S-locus receptor kinase respond to signals from compatible or incompatible pollen. Their findings show that this system can be manipulated, overcoming the species barrier and allowing for interspecific hybridization in crops.
Jedaidah Chilufya receives K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award from the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AAC&U)The K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award recognizes graduate students who show exemplary promise as future leaders of higher education and who are committed to academic innovation in the areas of equity, community engagement, and teaching and learning. Jedy, a graduate student in the Wang Lab, received her award at the AAC&U Annual Meeting in January.
Vierling Lab describes the importance of the HSP101 protein in helping plants survive in extreme heatIn their recent study in the journal Plant Cell, the Vierling Lab described how a factor known as CstF77 is essential for HSP101 to accumulate. HSP101 is found in all plants, so its role in tolerance of extreme heat is widespread, and their finding suggest that plants require very specific levels of HSP101 to survive. The study benefited from support of the M2M focus group in IALS for help with the bioinformatic analysis.
Hung (Harry) Pham '22 named Fall 2022 UMass Rising ResearcherHarry has been using his experience in Food Science and BMB to make food more resilient, healthy, and accessible. His latest research project focuses on physical modification of plant proteins as a simple approach to improve food 3D printing applications.
Meg Stratton receives five-year, $1.8 million NIH MIRA grant to continue her research on long-term memoryThe Maximizing Investigators’ Research Award (MIRA) program is designed to enhance scientific productivity among talented and promising scientists, increasing the odds of important breakthroughs. The Stratton Lab studies the CaMKII protein, which is key to the development of long-term memory.
Timothy Mehrmann ‘23 named Fall 2022 UMass Rising ResearcherTimothy has always had an interest in studying infectious disease, and the COVID-19 pandemic further cemented his passion for virology. His research focuses on how the protein C19ORF66 (named “Shiftless”) inhibits Kaposi’s-sarcoma associated herpesvirus (KSHV).
Meet with a BMB Peer Advisor!
BMB Peer Advisors are upperclassmen majoring in Biochemistry who are able to answer and resolve general advising questions. Okoh, Maddy, Vidhya, Boula, and Anish are available to meet with undergraduates throughout the semester. Ask them about:
- Degree requirements for BMB
- Course prerequisites
- Advanced Electives
- How to get into a research lab
- Choices for Gen Ed classes
- Use of SPIRE
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