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Jianhan Chen

Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

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.

Current Research
Research in the Chen lab currently focuses on six key areas:

  1. Advanced sampling techniques and accurate implicit solvent models
  2. Intrinsically disordered proteins: structure, function and disease
  3.  Multi-scale simulation of fibril growth and nucleation
  4. Gating and regulation of BK channels and TMEM16 family proteins
  5. Computational characterization and design of novel functional peptides
  6. Advanced software for molecular modeling of small angle scattering

Learn more at https://people.chem.umass.edu/jchenlab/

Academic Background

  • B.S. 1998, University of Science and Technology of China
  • Ph.D. 2002, University of California at Irvine
Z. Jia, J. Schmit and J. Chen, "Amyloid assembly is dominated by misregistered kinetic traps on an unbiased energy landscape", Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 117 (19) 10322-10328 (2020). (PNAS)
XM Liu, H. Gao, J. Ward, XR Liu, B. Yin, T. Fu, J. Chen, D. R. Lovley and J Yao, "Power generation from ambient humidity using protein nanowires", Nature 10.1038/s41586-020-2010-9 (2020). (Nature)
X. Li, K. H. Lee, J. Chen and M. Chen, "Different Anomeric Sugar Bound States of Maltose Binding Protein Resolved by a Cytolysin A Nanopore Tweezer." ACS Nano 14(2): 1727-1737 (2020). (ACS)
C. Liang, S. Savinov, J. Fejzo, S. Eyles, and J. Chen, "Modulation of Amyloid-beta42 Conformation by Small Molecules Through Non-Specific Binding" J. Chem. Theory Comput. 15:5169-5174 (2019). (ACS)
X Liu and J. Chen, "Residual structures and transient long-range interactions of p53 transactivation domain: Assessment of explicit solvent protein force fields" J. Chem. Theory Comput. 15, 708-4720 (2019). (ACS)
S. C. Le, Z. Jia, J. Chen and H. Yang, "Molecular basis of PIP2-dependent regulation of the Ca2+-activated chloride channel TMEM16A" Nature Communications 10:3769 (2019). (Nature)
T. Le, Z. Jia, S. C. Le, Y. Zhang, J. Chen and H. Yang, "An inner activation gate controls TMEM16F phospholipid scrambling", Nature Communications 10:1846 (2019). (Nature)
Z. Jia, M. Yazdani, G. Zhang, J. Cui and J. Chen, "Hydrophobic gating in BK channels", Nature Communications 9:3408 | DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-05970-3 (2018). (Nature)
J. Chen and R. Kriwacki, "Intrinsically disordered proteins: structure, function and therapeutics", J. Mol. Biol. 430, 2275-77 (2018). (ScienceDirect)
X Liu and J. Chen, "Residual structures and transient long-range interactions of p53 transactivation domain: Assessment of explicit solvent protein force fields" J. Chem. Theory Comput. (in press) T. Le, Z. J
ia, S. C. Le, Y. Zhang, J. Chen and H. Yang, "An inner activation gate controls TMEM16F phospholipid scrambling", Nature Communications 10:1846 (2019).
Z. Jia, M. Yazdani, G. Zhang, J. Cui and J. Chen, "Hydrophobic gating in BK channels", Nature Communications 9:3408. (2018).
J. Chen and R. Kriwacki, "Intrinsically disordered proteins: structure, function and therapeutics", J. Mol. Biol. 430, 2275-77 (2018).
M. Yazdani, G. Zhang, Z. Jia, J. Shi, J. Cui, and J. Chen, "Nonspecific membrane interactions can modulate BK channel activation" eLife 9:e55571 (2020). (eLife)
 
Contact Info

Departments of Chemistry, and Biochemisty and Molecular Biology
S585B Life Science Laboratories
240 Thatcher Road
Amherst, MA 01003-9292

(413) 545-3386
jianhanc@umass.edu

people.chem.umass.edu/jchenlab