Wednesday, April 12
12noon - 1:00pm
290 Hearst Mining Building
Developing new microfluidic technologies for high-throughput biophysical measurements of molecular interactions
Assistant Professor of Genetics and Bioengineering
Fellow, ChEM-H Institute
Recent technological advances have led to an explosion in our knowledge of the macromolecular parts that exist within cells. The next great biological challenge lies in making quantitative measurements of the interactions between them and developing biophysical models that allow us to predict their cellular consequences. To address this, we have developed two new microfluidic tools that retain the quantitative aspects of traditional, one-at-a-time measurements while dramatically increasing their throughput. The first tool (MITOMI) consists of a microfluidic platform that enables quantitative measurement of binding affinities and kinetics for up to 4,000 interactions in parallel. We are currently combining this platform with deep sequencing to understand how transcription factors find their genomic targets, and adapting it for high-throughput enzymology measurements with the goal of improving enzyme design. The second tool is a microfluidic platform for producing spectrally encoded beads with an extremely large potential coding space, which we are currently using to understand how proteins involved in cell signaling find their target substrates.