Resident Faculty

Helen M. Berman
Board of Governors Distinguished Professor Emerita
Chemistry & Chemical Biology, School of Arts & Sciences
Director Emerita, RCSB Protein Data Bank
Founding Director, Center for Integrative Proteomics Research
Resident Member, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

From 1998-2014, I was the Director of the Research Collaboratory for Structural Bioinformatics Protein Data Bank (RCSB PDB). RCSB PDB is a member of the Worldwide Protein Data Bank (wwPDB) that manages the PDB archive of information about the structures of proteins, nucleic acids, and complex assemblies. I play a leadership role for the EMDataBank and am working to develop infrastructure for the archiving of structures determined using Integrative/Hybrid Methods.

The work on these projects has been informed by our research and studies in structural biology, in particular protein-nucleic acid interactions, collagen, binary and ternary complexes with catabolite activating protein (CAP), and nucleic acids. Currently, we are working in new classification schemes for transcription factors with a focus on understanding the details of the protein-nucleic acid interface.

Most recently I am working on how to use film to communicate to a broader audience about the importance of structural biology in medicine and health.
Proteomics Building
Room 208NP
848-445-4667

Stephen K. Burley
University Professor & Henry Rutgers Chair
Founding Director, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine
Director, RCSB Protein Data Bank
Member and Cancer Pharmacology Program Co-Lead, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey

As University Professor and Henry Rutgers Chair, Founding Director of the Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, and a Member of The Cancer Institute of New Jersey, I aim to foster interactive networks of research groups that utilize multidisciplinary approaches to address important biological and biomedical challenges.

In my capacity as Director of the RCSB Protein Data Bank, dividing my time between Rutgers and the University of California at Sand Diego, I work to sustain open access to the single global archive of biomolecular structure data with >99% uptime 24/7/365.
Proteomics Building
Room 117

David Case
Distinguished Professor
Chemistry & Chemical Biology, School of Arts & Sciences
Resident Member, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

Our group studies theoretical chemistry of biomolecules, using molecular dynamics simulations of proteins and nucleic acids, electronic structure calculations of transition-metal complexes that model active sites in metalloenzymes, and development and application of methods for NMR structure determination.
Proteomics Building
Room 208AB
848-445-5885

Wei Dai
Assistant Professor
Cell Biology & Neuroscience, School of Arts & Sciences
Resident Member, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine
Associate Member, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey

Our research focuses on charactering the structures of macromolecular machinery in their cellular context using three-dimensional (3D) cryo-electron tomography (cryoET) and correlative light and electron microscopy. Structures of intracellular macromolecular complexes are usually heterogeneous and dynamic, relying largely on interactions with other cellular components. Using cryoET to determine the structure of cellular machinery inside the cell avoids damage to the complexes during purification, captures snapshots of the complex while in action, and provides information on cross-talk of the complexes with their cellular partners during biological processes. Our current research interest includes: Huntington's disease: structure and organization of protein aggregates; 3D architecture of the diseased cells under misfolded protein aggregation stress & Structural biology of phage/virus maturation.
Proteomics Building
Room 208G
848-445-6560

Shuchismita Dutta
Scientific Educational Development Lead, RCSB Protein Data Bank
Associate Research Professor, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

I am a structural biologist, dedicated to promoting a molecular structural view of biology and medicine. I work with educators to develop curricular materials and case studies for students (high school, undergraduate, and graduate) to learn about biomolecular structures and visualization. I am also committed to STEM Education, and interested in Science Pedagogy.
Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine
Room 114
848-445-4915

Zukang Feng
Principal Scientific Application/Web Developer
RCSB Protein Data Bank

My research interest focuses on developing tools for data acquisition, data validation, data standardization, and data analysis in the structural biology.
Proteomics Building
Room 113

Jason Kaelber
Director, Rutgers New Jersey CryoEM/CryoET Core Facility
Assistant Research Professor, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

As director of the cryoEM/ET core facility, I support structural biology research across the IQB and Rutgers community via scientific collaborations, technical services, and the development of new methods. Cryoelectron microscopy can solve structures of biomolecules in their native states at atomic resolution; it is fundamentally a single-molecule imaging technique, and by developing project-specific strategies, we can test hypotheses over a set of individual molecules. Additionally, I investigate the deep evolutionary history of viruses through comparative structural analyses. I have a specific interest in ssDNA viruses including their potential applications.
Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine
Room 010D
848-445-5302

Sagar Khare
Associate Professor
Chemistry & Chemical Biology, School of Arts & Sciences
Resident Member, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine
Graduate Program Director, Quantitative Biomedicine

The Khare lab seeks to develop new enzymes and proteins using a combination of computational protein design and experimental characterization. Our goal is to develop a quantitative and predictive understanding of enzymatic structures and functions and use this understanding to inform various therapeutic and synthetic applications. Some areas of interest are biodegradation of pollutants, improving cancer chemotherapy, and designing catalytic protein drugs.
Proteomics Building
Room 208M
848-445-5143

Arek Kulczyk
Assistant Professor
Biochemistry & Microbiology, School of Environmental & Biological Sciences
Resident Member, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

Our laboratory integrates structural approaches, in particular single-particle cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) and single-molecule techniques to study DNA replication and repair in human mitochondria. We also develop novel correlative light and electron microscopy (CLEM) methods that allow simultaneous visualization of an enzymatic activity and structure determination.
Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine
Room 208H
848-445-4553

Catherine Lawson
Associate Research Professor
Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

My research explores the diverse landscape of biological structure-function relationships, with the goal of improving our fundamental understanding of life processes. My current projects involve structure database development (EMDataResource, Nucleic Acid Database, Protein Data Bank), with emphasis on improving representation of large biological assemblies.
Proteomics Building
Room 109
848-445-5494

Sang-Hyuk Lee
Assistant Professor
Physics & Astronomy, School of Arts & Sciences
Resident Member, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

Lee lab is a single-molecule biophysics/biophotonics laboratory. Our lab features a wetlab, cell culture facility, and a one-of-a-kind single-molecule optical instrument. Utilizing advanced fluorescent microscopy, optical tweezers, and digital holography, we are pushing the limit of our understanding of biological processes at the single-molecule level.
Proteomics Building
Room 308A
848-445-5286

Ezra Peisach
Assistant Research Professor
Chemistry & Chemical Biology, School of Arts & Sciences
Biocurator, RCSB Protein Data Bank

My research centers on the automation of biocuration activities, distributed computing and distributed infrastructure management of distributed of RCSB Protein Data Bank.
Proteomics Building
Room 118
848-445-4948

Chenghua Shao
Assistant Research Professor
Chemistry & Chemical Biology, School of Arts & Sciences

My research focuses on data curation and analysis at the Protein Data Bank (PDB). PDB provides free public deposition and distribution services on macromolecular 3D structures determined by experimental methods. As PDB data are broadly used in biomedical research, we develop system and methods for data process and validation, to ensure data accuracy and archive consistency. With combination usage of structure biology, biochemistry, and statistics, we also perform data analysis to find trends, patterns, outliers, and the underlying biological explanation, which enables better data collection and curation to improve data quality. In addition, I supervise curation on the structural and chemical data of ligands and drugs to ensure the PDB representation of such compounds is up to the standard for their usage in biomedical research.
Proteomics Building
Room 118
848-445-4968

Brinda Vallat
Assistant Research Professor
Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine
PDB-Dev Project Lead

I am a computational biologist interested in understanding the molecular basis of life. My research interests include modeling and analysis of biomolecular structure and function using data obtained from experimental and theoretical methods. I currently lead the PDB-Dev project, which is focused on building the infrastructure for archiving integrative structural models of macromolecules. Integrative modeling methods combine complementary information from various experimental and computational techniques to determine the structures of complex macromolecular assemblies. The complexities of handling different data types involved in integrative modeling provide challenging opportunities for data acquisition, standardization, archiving, validation and dissemination.
Proteomics Building
Room 105
848-445-8377

Lu Wang
Assistant Professor
Chemistry & Chemical Biology, School of Arts & Sciences
Resident Member, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

We develop and utilize theoretical and simulation methods to study the structure, dynamics and spectroscopy of biological systems.
Proteomics Building
Room 208D
848-445-4555

Sijian Wang
Associate Professor
Statistics & Biostatistics, School of Arts & Sciences
Resident Member, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

Our long-term research goal is to develop, evaluate, and disseminate effective statistical and computational methods to identify the biological mechanisms underlying complex diseases, and use the information to improve patient outcomes. We utilize advanced statistical and machine learning methods (including high-dimensional regression, causal inference, modern survival analysis, SVMs, boosting, random forest, deep learning and reinforcement learning) to addresses some of the most important statistical and computational deficiencies that are currently preventing the scientific community from turning valuable high-throughput measurements into meaningful results.
Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine
Room 308D
848-445-4562

John Westbrook
Research Professor
Chemistry & Chemical Biology, School of Arts & Sciences

My research focus centers on developing new tools and infrastructure to support technical challenges in data acquisition, data validation, data standardization, and data mining in the structural biology and life sciences domains. I have been actively involved in the development of standards for representing macromolecular structure data for the Nucleic Acid Database (NDB) and the Protein Data Bank (PDB). A continuing emphasis of my research addresses the evolution and extension of these data standards to meet both the rapidly evolving technologies within structural biology and the increased demands of the life sciences user community.
Proteomics Building
Room 112
848-445-4290

Darrin York
Professor
Chemistry & Chemical Biology, School of Arts & Sciences
Resident Member, Institute for Quantitative Biomedicine

The York Group research involves the development of a broad range of theoretical methods aimed, ultimately, at providing the computational biology community with greatly improved tools for the simulation of biological macromolecules in solution. The main application focus of our group is on an extremely interesting and challenging area of biology: the study of the molecular mechanisms of RNA catalysis. This area is immensely important, not only from a fundamental biological perspective, but also for the design of medical therapies that target genetic disorders, and new biotechnology such as allosteric RNA chips.
Proteomics Building
Room 308G
848-445-5199

Jasmine Young
Research Professor
Chemistry & Chemical Biology, School of Arts & Sciences
Biocuration Team Lead, RCSB Protein Data Bank
Global Project Lead, worldwide Protein Data Bank

I oversee practices, management, and OneDep tool developments for data deposition, curation, validation, and remediation of the Protein Databank (PDB) archive to ensure data standardization, high quality and uniformity. Collaborating with wwPDB partners globally, I represent RCSB PDB to set common annotation practices and procedures, set data standards, and establish daily operation and weekly release procedures across wwPDB sites. I also manage wwPDB projects across wwPDB partners, including development of OneDep tools, data remediation, data analysis, and strategic planning.
Proteomics Building
Room 111
848-445-4920