I am a Senior Scientist at Lyell Immunopharma in Seattle, WA where I use protein design to develop the next generation of cell-based therapies. We’re just getting started, so check back to see what we’re up to!
Proteins are the building blocks of life and are involved in biological functions as far-ranging as catalysis, muscle development and contraction, and the immune system. A protein’s function is determined by its structure, which is in turn determined by the sequence of amino acids that constitute the molecule. My research focuses on using and deepening our understanding of protein sequence–structure–function relationships to design novel proteins to address problems in human health.
Before joining Lyell, I was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Washington’s Institute for Protein Design supervised by David Baker. I developed new approaches to design novel enzymes as well as proteins that bind polar small molecules. Designing functional proteins helps us to better understand the foundations of biology and provides us with new tools to address human needs in a rational manner.
I completed my PhD at Johns Hopkins University in 2015, supervised by Jeff Gray. My doctoral work focused on developing computational methods to reliably predict the three-dimensional structure of antibodies, specifically the third hypervariable complementarity determining region (CDR) loop on the heavy chain (H3). I worked closely with Roland Dunbrack throughout my graduate career. To learn how to model antibodies and dock them to antigens, see my paper in Nature Protocols.
My work in the Baker Lab was supported by an Innovation Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Washington Research Foundation.