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Dauben Lecture in Organic Chemistry: Nobel Laureate Frances Arnold
Dauben Lecture in Organic Chemistry: Nobel Laureate Frances Arnold
WhenWednesday, May 15, 2019, 1:30 – 2:30 p.m.
Campus locationMagnuson Health Sciences Center A (HSA)
Campus roomHogness Auditorium (A-420)
Event typesLectures/Seminars
Event sponsorsHyp J. Dauben Jr. received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from The Ohio State University and his Ph.D. from Harvard University. He joined the University of Washington Department of Chemistry in 1945, and until his death in 1968, he played a major role in the development of the Department’s research facilities. Professor Dauben was internationally renowned for his research on nonbenzenoid aromatic compounds, carbocations, and reaction mechanisms.

This Lectureship was endowed in his memory by his family, friends, colleagues, and students.

Hyp J. Dauben Jr. Endowed Lecture in Organic Chemistry

"Innovation by Evolution: Bringing New Chemistry to Life"

Professor Frances Arnold – Linus Pauling Professor of Chemical Engineering, Bioengineering, and Biochemistry and Director of the Donna and Benjamin M. Rosen Bioengineering Center, California Institute of Technology

2018 Nobel Laureate in Chemistry

Not satisfied with nature’s vast catalyst repertoire, we want to create new protein catalysts and expand the space of genetically encoded enzyme functions. I will describe how we can use the most powerful biological design process, evolution, to optimize existing enzymes and invent new ones, thereby circumventing our profound ignorance of how sequence encodes function. Using mechanistic understanding and mimicking nature’s evolutionary processes, we can generate whole new enzyme families that catalyze synthetically important reactions not known in biology. Recent successes include selective carbene insertion to form C-Si and C-B bonds, and alkyne cyclopropanation to make highly strained carbocycles, all in living cells. Extending the capabilities and uncovering the mechanisms of these new enzymes derived from natural iron-heme proteins provides a basis for discovering new biocatalysts for increasingly challenging reactions. These new capabilities increase the scope of molecules and materials we can build using synthetic biology and move us closer to a sustainable world where chemical synthesis can be fully programmed in DNA.

Host: Jesse Zalatan…
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