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Biochemistry, Quantitative Biology, Biophysics, and Structural Biology (BQBS) Track

BQBS Track Leadership

  • Co-Director of Graduate Studies, BQBS Track

    Professor of Pharmacology and of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry; Co-Leader, Developmental Therapeutics, Yale Cancer Center; Co-Director Therapeutics/Chemotherapy Program

    Karen S. Anderson is a Professor of Pharmacology and Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry. She is involved in teaching undergraduates and graduate students about drug discovery and structure-based drug design. She also serves as an undergraduate research mentor and is a fellow at Pierson College at Yale serving as a undergraduate freshman advisor. Dr. Anderson's research utilizes mechanistic enzymology and structure-based drug design. Her work focuses on understanding how enzymes, playing critical roles in such diseases as cancer and infectious diseases, including AIDS, work at a molecular level. She uses that information to develop new drug therapies. She has trained over 50 undergraduates, graduate students, M.D./Ph.D. students and postdoctoral students who have gone on to graduate school and medical school as well as successful careers in academia and industry and who are involved in biomedical research.




  • Director of Graduate Admissions, BQBS Track

    Associate Professor Tenure; Director of Graduate Admissions, Biochemistry, Quantitative Biology, Biophysics and Structural Biology (BQBS)

    Matt grew up in Ann Arbor, MI and received his Ph.D. in Chemistry from UC Berkeley. He commuted between Berkeley and UCSF, working with Kevan Shokat developing chemical methods to make synthetic chromatin substrates to study the biochemistry of epigenetics. He continued this work as a Helen Hay Whitney Foundation post doctoral fellow in Robert Kingston's laboratory at the Massachusetts General Hospital, where his interests expanded to include large non-coding RNAs and their impact on chromatin. He is part of the Chemical Biology Institute on Yale's West Campus, and The Department of Molecular Biophysics & Biochemistry, where his group's research focuses on developing new chemical and biochemical means of investigating regulated gene expression at the level of chromatin and RNA biology.

  • Co-Director of Graduate Studies, BQBS Track

    Professor of Molecular, Celluarl and Developmental Biology and of Physics

    Thierry Emonet is a Professor of Molecular Cellular and Developmental Biology & Physics at Yale University. His research combines mathematical modeling and quantitative experiments to understand the biological computations that enable organisms to sense and navigate their chemical environments. As model systems, his lab uses bacterial chemotaxis and fly olfaction, in which they can make multi-scale measurements and compare to quantitative mathematical models. Navigation requires performing many non-trivial computations and can be quantified precisely. The Emonet lab exploits this quantitative framework for discovering how biological systems compute, and how computations are implemented in molecular and cellular mechanisms. Before coming to Yale in 2007, Thierry studied physics at the ETH Zürich. He received his PhD (cum laude) in theoretical astrophysics from the University of La Laguna (Spain) in 1998, before doing postdocs at the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder CO and The University of Chicago, discovering key mechanisms that enable magnetic field to float to the surface of the Sun to create Sunspots. During his postdoc Thierry became fascinated with the question of where individuality comes from and what is its functional role in life and he switched to biology. His work is supported by NIH, NSF, the Paul G Allen Family Foundation (Distinguished Allen Investigator), the Whitehall Foundation, the James S. McDonnell Foundation and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Outside of science, Thierry’s main interest is art. He grew up at the intersection of science and art and he is married to renowned sculptor Susan Clinard

Faculty

  • Co-Director of Graduate Studies, BQBS Track

    Professor of Pharmacology and of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry; Co-Leader, Developmental Therapeutics, Yale Cancer Center; Co-Director Therapeutics/Chemotherapy Program

    Research Interests
    • Molecular Biology
    • Pharmacology
    • Anti-Retroviral Agents
    • HIV Reverse Transcriptase
    • Multifunctional Enzymes

    Karen S. Anderson is a Professor of Pharmacology and Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry. She is involved in teaching undergraduates and graduate students about drug discovery and structure-based drug design. She also serves as an undergraduate research mentor and is a fellow at Pierson College at Yale serving as a undergraduate freshman advisor. Dr. Anderson's research utilizes mechanistic enzymology and structure-based drug design. Her work focuses on understanding how enzymes, playing critical roles in such diseases as cancer and infectious diseases, including AIDS, work at a molecular level. She uses that information to develop new drug therapies. She has trained over 50 undergraduates, graduate students, M.D./Ph.D. students and postdoctoral students who have gone on to graduate school and medical school as well as successful careers in academia and industry and who are involved in biomedical research.




  • Assistant Professor of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology; Assistant Professor

    Research Interests
    • Endoplasmic Reticulum
    • Molecular Biology
    • Nuclear Envelope
    • Organelles
    • Caenorhabditis elegans
    • Lamins
    • Lipid Metabolism
    • Diseases

    Dr. Bahmanyar received her undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley and her Ph.D. from Stanford University.  She was a post-doctoral fellow with Dr. Karen Oegema at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research at UC San Diego where she recognized the advantages of the early C. elegans embryo as a tractable model system to dissect mechanisms that control nuclear envelope dynamics to ensure genome protection. Her post-doctoral work with elucidated an important new principle involving local regulation of phospholipid synthesis in specifying the nuclear envelope domain within the continuous endoplasmic reticulum (ER). Her work now is focused on elucidating mechanisms underpinning regulatory roles for lipid composition and dynamics in nuclear envelope and ER membrane remodeling and genome protection. 

  • Associate Professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry, and of Cell Biology

    Research Interests
    • Biophysics
    • Cell Biology
    • Cytoskeleton
    • Endocytosis
    • Kinetics
    • Microscopy
    • Microscopy, Fluorescence
    • Models, Theoretical
    • Schizosaccharomyces
    • Nonlinear Dynamics
    • Microscopy, Confocal
    • Mechanics
    • Systems Biology
    • Mathematical Concepts
    • Machine Learning
    • Single Molecule Imaging

    Julien Berro was initially trained in Applied Mathematics, Physics and Computer Sciences at the Institut National Polytechnique of Grenoble, France. He obtained his Ph.D. in Mathematical Modeling in Biology at Université Joseph Fourier, Grenoble, France, where he worked with Jean-Louis Martiel and Laurent Blanchoin on mathematical models for actin filament biochemistry and mechanics. After a brief tenure as an assistant professor in the department of Mathematics at Université Claude Bernard, Lyon, France, he decided to further his training by learning cell biology and quantitative microscopy in the laboratory of Tom Pollard at Yale University. Since he started his own laboratory in 2013, he has combined experimental, computational, and theoretical approaches to uncover the mechanisms of molecular machineries that produce forces in the cell, with a particular focus on the actin cytoskeleton and endocytosis.

  • Professor of Cell Biology and of Biomedical Engineering

    Research Interests
    • Cell Nucleus
    • Endoplasmic Reticulum
    • Microscopy, Fluorescence
    • Microscopy, Confocal
    • Cellular Structures

    Joerg Bewersdorf is a Professor of Cell Biology and of Biomedical Engineering at Yale University. He received his Master's degree (Dipl. Phys., 1998) and his doctoral degree in physics (Dr. rer. nat., 2002) training with Dr. Stefan W. Hell at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Goettingen, Germany. After 4 years at The Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor, Maine, he relocated his research group to Yale University in 2009. An optical physicist/biophysicist by training, Dr. Bewersdorf has been a long-time contributor to the field of super-resolution light microscopy development and the application of these techniques to cell biological questions.

  • Assistant Professor

    The Bhattacharyya Lab studies molecular mechanism of kinase signaling, especially in the context of learning, memory and neuropathological conditions. Dr. Bhattacharyya received her PhD in Computational Biophysics at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore where she used molecular dynamics simulations and graph theory to study allosteric communication in proteins and its complexes with RNA/DNA. She made a transition into experimental biology during her postdoctoral studies at the University of California Berkeley as a Human Frontier Science Program Long Term Fellow. She used structural biology, single-molecule microscopy, and native mass spectrometry along with computational techniques to study the molecular mechanism of regulation in a calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase that is critical for learning and memory. The Bhattacharyya Lab takes an integrative approach to understand the molecular mechanism of cellular signaling using both experimental and computational techniques.

  • Professor of Therapeutic Radiology; Chief, Pediatrics Central Nervous System Radiotherapy Program, Therapeutic Radiology

    Research Interests
    • DNA Repair
    • Glioma
    • Medical Oncology
    • Pediatrics
    • Radiology
    • Therapeutics
    • Central Nervous System Neoplasms
    • Radiation Oncology
    • Genomics
    • High-Throughput Screening Assays

    Dr. Ranjit Bindra is a physician-scientist at Yale School of Medicine and Co-Director of the Yale Brain Tumor Center at Smilow Cancer Hospital. In the laboratory, his group recently led a team of four major laboratories at Yale, which reported the stunning discovery that IDH1/2-mutant tumors harbor a profound DNA repair defect that renders them exquisitely sensitive to PARP inhibitors. This work was published in Science Translational Medicine, and Nature, and it has received international attention with major clinical implications Dr. Bindra is now translating this work directly into patients, in four phase I/II clinical trials, including an innovative, biomarker-driven trial specifically targeting the Adolescent/Young Adult (AYA) cancer patient population. In addition, he is lead co-PI of a 35-site, NCI-sponsored Phase II trial testing the PARP inhibitor, olaparib, in adult IDH1/2-mutant solid tumors (NCT03212274). As a biotech entrepreneur he recently co-founded Cybrexa Therapeutics, a Series B round-funded company focused on developing an entirely new class of small molecule DNA repair inhibitors, which directly target the tumor microenvironment. Dr. Bindra received his undergraduate degree in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry from Yale University in 1998, and both his MD and PhD from the Yale School of Medicine in 2007. He completed his medical internship, radiation oncology residency, and post-doctoral research studies at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in 2012.

  • Assistant Professor

    Research Interests
    • DNA Replication
    • Genomic Instability

    Dr. Bleichert’s research focuses on understanding the operating principles of macromolecular machines involved in chromosome replication and in the maintenance of genome stability using a combination of structural biology, biochemical, biophysical, and cellular approaches. She obtained her PhD from Yale University in 2010 working on ribosome biogenesis, and afterwards performed her postdoctoral work at UC Berkeley as a Miller Fellow, and then at Johns Hopkins Medical School. As a postdoctoral fellow, she determined the structure of the eukaryotic initiator complex, a key component in the assembly pathway of the DNA replication machinery. Since 2017, Dr. Bleichert has been an independent research group leader at the Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research in Basel, Switzerland. She will join Yale’s Department of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry as an Assistant Professor in January 2020.

  • Associate Professor of Pharmacology and of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry

    Research Interests
    • Biochemistry
    • Crystallography
    • Molecular Biology
    • Protein Kinases
    • Substrate Specificity
    • Signal Transduction
    • Hemangioma, Cavernous, Central Nervous System

    Dr. Boggon is a structural biologist interested in the molecular basis of cytosolic signal transduction cascades. He completed his Ph.D. at the University of Manchester, U.K., and postdoctoral studies at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Columbia University and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (at Harvard Medical School). His lab is interested in understanding how RhoGTPase signal transduction pathways are regulated at the molecular level, and the molecular basis for acquisition of cerebrovascular disorders.

  • Associate Professor of Pathology

    Research Interests
    • Calcification, Physiologic
    • Osteoarthropathy, Primary Hypertrophic
    • Pathology
    • Pseudoxanthoma Elasticum
    • Sickle Cell Trait
    • Rare Diseases
    • Vascular Calcification

    Demetrios Braddock was born in Tennessee, educated at the University of Chicago, trained at the NIH in Anatomic Pathology and Biophysical Chemistry, and came to Yale in 2004. He practices Hematopathology and leads a laboratory that studies the ENPP enzymes – a family of extracellular enzymes that create small molecules in the extracellular environment that regulate organismal homeostasis in processes such as hemostasis, bone mineralization, and vascular development. We are especially interested in a rare disease of lethal vascular calcifications called 'Generalized Arterial Calcification of Infancy' (GACI) associated with ENPP1 deficiency, and designed and validated an enzyme therapy that was curative in a mouse model of GACI. We are now moving this therapy into patients in collaboration with a company we founded (Inozyme Pharma). We have also identified a form of early onset osteoporosis associated with ENPP1 deficiency, and are investigating the role of ENPP1 in low bone mass and increased tissue calcification, a medical condition called 'Paradoxical Mineralization' which occurs in the general medical population in conditions such as aging and chronic kidney disease.

  • Sterling Professor of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology and Professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry; Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology

    Research Interests
    • Bacteria
    • Biochemistry
    • Biology
    • Biotechnology
    • Fungi
    • Genetics, Microbial
    • Microbiology
    • Molecular Biology
    • Computational Biology
    • Genomics
    • Metabolomics

    Dr. Breaker is a Sterling Professor of the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology at Yale University, is jointly appointed as a professor in the Department of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry, and is an Investigator with the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. His graduate studies with Dr. Peter Gilham at Purdue University focused on the synthesis of RNA and the catalytic properties of nucleic acids. As a postdoctoral researcher with Dr. Gerald Joyce at The Scripps Research Institute, Dr. Breaker pioneered a variety of in vitro evolution strategies to isolate novel RNA enzymes and was the first to discover catalytic DNAs or “deoxyribozymes” using this technology. Since establishing his laboratory at Yale in 1995, Dr. Breaker has continued to conduct research on the advanced functions of nucleic acids, including ribozyme reaction mechanisms, molecular switch technology, next-generation biosensors, and catalytic DNA engineering. In addition, his laboratory has established the first proofs that metabolites are directly bound by messenger RNA elements called riboswitches. Dr. Breaker’s research findings have been published in more than 220 scientific papers, book chapters, and patent applications, and his research has been funded by grants from the NIH, NSF, DARPA, the Hereditary Disease Foundation, and from several biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. He is the recipient of fellowships from the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, and the Hellman Family Trust. In recognition of his research accomplishments at Yale, Dr. Breaker received the Arthur Greer Memorial Prize (1997), the Eli Lilly Award in Microbiology (2005), the Molecular Biology Award from the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (2006), and the Merck Award from the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (2016). Dr. Breaker was inducted into the U.S. National Academy of Sciences in 2014. He has cofounded two biotechnology companies and is a scientific advisor for industry and for various government agencies. He serves on the editorial board for the scientific journals RNA Biology, RNA, and Cell Chemical Biology.

  • Assistant Professor, Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology

    Research Interests
    • Cell Compartmentation
    • Cell Cycle
    • Cell Biology
    • Homeostasis
    • Signal Transduction
    • Genomics
    • Organelle Shape
    • High-Throughput Screening Assays

    David Breslow is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology at Yale University. David received an A.B. in Biochemical Sciences from Harvard University in 2004, working in the laboratory of Dr. Stuart Schreiber. David did his graduate work at the University of California, San Francisco in Dr. Jonathan Weissman’s lab. There he developed new high-throughput functional genomic tools for budding yeast and defined the function of Orm family proteins in sphingolipid homeostasis. As a postdoctoral fellow, David worked with Dr. Maxence Nachury at Stanford University, where he used a semi-permeabilized cell system to study protein entry into primary cilia and developed a CRISPR/Cas9-based screening platform to investigate ciliary signaling. A central focus of David’s work has been applying new systematic approaches to address fundamental questions in cell biology, with a current emphasis on the regulation and functions of the mammalian primary cilium. David joined the Yale MCDB faculty in January 2017 and his lab is located in the Yale Science Building.

  • Benjamin Silliman Professor of Chemistry

    Research Interests
    • Electron Spin Resonance Spectroscopy
    • Metalloproteins
    • Molecular Biology
    • Photosynthesis

    A graduate of the University of Minnesota, Prof. Gary Brudvig earned his Ph.D. at the California Institute of Technology. He joined the Yale faculty in 1982. In addition to serving as a professor in and chair of the Department of Chemistry, he is also Director of the Energy Sciences Institute on Yale's West Campus, is a professor of molecular biophysics and biochemistry and is affiliated with the Yale Center for Green Chemistry.

    Brudvig is the project leader of a team of Yale chemists and other scientists who, under the auspices of the U.S. Department of Energy, are hoping to improve the efficiency of solar-energy utilization. Its aim is to attach manganese complexes to titanium dioxide nanoparticles in order to develop a system that will efficiently produce renewable fuel using solar energy.

    From 1983 to 1986, Brudvig was a Searle Scholar at Yale. The Searle Scholarship program supports outstanding work by junior faculty members at select academic institutions. He was the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Teacher Scholar, a distinction given to “talented young faculty in the chemical sciences,” from 1985 to 1990. He was an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow 1986-1988.

    Brudvig was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1995.

  • Assistant Professor of Pharmacology

    Research Interests
    • Biochemistry
    • Biophysics
    • Electrophysiology
    • Pharmacology
    • Smell
    • Taste
    • Cryoelectron Microscopy
    • Ligand-Gated Ion Channels

    Joel received his undergraduate degree from the University of Alberta, Canada, and his Ph.D. from Columbia University. He received postdoctoral training in the MacKinnon and Ruta Laboratories at The Rockefeller University before joining the Department of Pharmacology at Yale in 2020. As a postdoc, Joel used single-particle cryo-electron microscopy to determine the first high-resolution structure of an olfactory receptor, the insect Orco. At Yale, Joel is continuing to study smell and taste receptors to elucidate the elementary principles of chemosensory detection.

  • Yale College Associate Dean for Science & Quantitative Reasoning Education, Professor of Laboratory Medicine, Pathology and Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry; Associate Director, Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory

    Research Interests
    • DNA Damage
    • Molecular Biology
    • Pathology
    • Werner Syndrome
    • Telomere-Binding Proteins
    • Early Detection of Cancer
    • Diseases

    Dr. Chang graduated with a BS from Yale College in 1988, and obtained his MD from Cornell University Medical College and his PhD from Rockefeller University in 1997. He completed residency in Clinical Pathology at the Brigham and Women's Hospital, and did his postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Ronald DePinho at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School. He was an Assistant and then Associate Professor in the Department of Genetics, MD Anderson Cancer Center, before joining the faculty at Yale Medical School as a tenured Associate Professor in 2010. Dr. Chang's research interests focuses on how telomeres, protein/DNA structures at the ends of chromosomes, are properly maintained to protect chromosome ends from engaging a DNA damage response.

    Dr. Chang is the recipient of numerous awards, including those from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Ellsion Medical Foundation, the Sidney Kimmel Foundation for Cancer Research, and the Ellis Benson Award from the Academy of Clinical Laboratory Physicians and Scientists. He was elected into the American Society of Clinical Investigation in 2009.

    Beginning in 2017, Dr. Chang is also the Associate Dean of Science Education and Quantitative Reasoning and Undergraduate Research at Yale College.


  • Henry Bronson Professor of Pharmacology; Chairman, Consortium for the Globalization of Chinese Medicine (CGCM)

    Research Interests
    • China
    • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
    • Hong Kong
    • Medicine, Chinese Traditional
    • Neoplasms by Histologic Type
    • Pharmacology

    The Cheng laboratory studies the action of antiviral drugs against HBV, HIV, EBV, and HCV, as well as the discovery of antivirals with unique mode of action against those viruses.