Author: gtr12001

Paper Published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society

Guberman-Pfeffer, M.; Greco, J. A.; Samankumara, L.; Zeller, M.; Gascón, J.; Birge, R.R.; Brückner, C. ‘Bacteriochlorins with a Twist: Discovery of a Unique Mechanism to Red-shift the Optical Spectra of Bacteriochlorins’ J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2017139 (1), 548–560. DOI: 10.1021/jacs.6b12419
Figure from ACS publication
A collaborative effort within the chemistry department brought experiment and theory together to explain the unique optical properties of a class of analogues to the bacterial photosynthetic pigments. We hope this work will point the way in the design of mechanochromic dyes, i.e., dyes that change their color when exposed to mechanical stress.

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Paper Published in the Nature Journal’s Scientific Reports

Spundana Malla, Karteek Kadimisetty, You-Jun Fu, Dharamainder Choudhary,
John B. Schenkman & James F. Rusling

Methyl-Cytosine-Driven Structural Changes Enhance Adduction Kinetics of an Exon 7 fragment of the p53 Gene. Sci. Rep. 7, 40890; doi: 10.1038/srep40890 (2017).
nature-scientific-report
In a collaborative effort with UConn Health (Profs. Schenkman and Choudhary), Spundana Malla, Karteek Kadimisetty, Dr. Fu and Prof. Rusling reported a new LC-MS method to investigate the kinetics of gene damage. The paper describes the use of the method to investigate metabolite-related damage to p53 tumor suppressor gene, which is damaged in 50% of all cancers. Results show that a specific cytosine-guanine site (codon 248) on the p53 gene reacts 3-fold faster when the cytosine is methylated. 

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Islam Mosa Wins International 3MT People’s Choice Award

Islam Mosa wins 3MT competitionCongratulations to Graduate Student Islam Mosa for winning the People’s Choice Award in the International Universitas 21 (U21) Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition. This is the first international award for UConn in the U21 3MT competition. Islam received his award from Dr. Kent Holsinger, Dean of the Graduate School. Also, President Herbst has invited Islam to attend the Board of Trustees meeting to congratulate him for his achievement. Islam is now the winner of the Department’s and UConn’s 3MT competitions, as well as the International U21 3MT People’s Choice Award.

The 2016 competition experienced the highest number of participating students – over 1000 students presented in local heats across the network – and the People’s Choice Award saw its highest total number of online votes in the competition history; Islam received the highest number of votes among all participants.

Islam would like to thank his advisor, Dr. Jim Rusling, for the support and constructive feedback, Dr. Challa Kumar for instructing the technical communication course, and to the entire Chemistry Department for voting and supporting him!

Full U21 Story >>> | Video >>>

Accelerate UConn

Accelerate UConn logoDr. Challa Kumar and Graduate Student Melissa Limbacher are the recipients of an Accelerate UConn Fall 2016 Grant for their project entitled, “GlowDots.”

Kumar and Limbacher will participate in the Fall cohort of Accelerate UConn, the University’s National Science Foundation I-Corps site. All winning teams receive special training and a $3,000 seed grant to help understand whether and how their technology might create customer value.

See all Accelerate winners here >>>

Alumnus Serves as Postdoctoral Fellow on Team of 2016 Nobel Prize Winner

Michael OtleyAlumnus Michael Otley is now a postdoctoral fellow on the team of one of the 2016 Nobel Prize winners in Chemistry, Dr. J. Fraser Stoddart, at Northwestern University. During Michael Otley’s graduate studies in the Sotzing Group (Ph.D. Organic Chemistry, 2015), Michael focused on developing the next generation of organic electronics using conductive polymers.

Currently, Michael is still working with organic electronics but now uses macrocycles instead of polymers in the Stoddart Group. He has developed a self-assembly system of redox-active macrocycles to form ‘nanotubes’ for membrane applications, and also works on energy storage by using rigid redox-active macrocycles for organic rechargeable batteries.

Dr. Tomoyasu Mani receives 2016 Blavatnik Award

Tomoyasu ManiDr. Tomoyasu Mani is the recipient of a 2016 Blavatnik Regional Award for Young Scientists.

The Blavatnik Award honors outstanding postdoctoral scientists from institutions across New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. Three winners and six finalists are chosen from the fields of Life Sciences, Chemistry, and Physical Sciences and Engineering. Mani is being recognized for his “advances in the understanding of electron transport occurring in organic photovoltaics used in solar energy capture and conversion!”

Read more (blavatnikawards.org) >>>
Read more (Brookhaven National Lab) >>>

Zhao Group Perspective Featured on the Journal of Physical Chemistry Lectures

journal of physical chemistry cover

Dr. Jing Zhao and graduate student Swayandipta Dey wrote a perspective to The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters. The perspective is highlighted on its August 2016 cover.

About the cover: “The cover art illustrates that by positioning single quantum dots close to metal nanoparticles, the interaction between the excitons and plasmons will significantly alter the single and multi-exciton emission of the hybrid system.”

Cover Image | Full Article