Our general interests are mainly in the development of advanced computational methods and their applications to the study of biomolecules and biomaterials. These methods include more accurate protein force fields at atomistic and coarse-grained levels, as well as various enhanced sampling and efficient GPU-enabled algorithms. A particular emphasis has been on understanding how intrinsical disorder of proteins mediates function and how such functional mechanisms may be altered in human diseases. Our research has been supported by NSF, NIH and various local and state funding agencies.
Research in the Chen lab currently focuses on five key areas:
- Development of advanced sampling techniques and accurate implicit solvent models, particularly multi-scale enhanced sampling (MSES) method and balanced implicit solvent force fields;
- Intrinsically disordered proteins: structure, function and disease;
- Multi-scale simulation of fibril growth and nucleation;
- Computational characterization and design of novel functional peptides; and
- Advanced software for molecular modeling of small angle scattering.