Dr. Rouge receives the 2019 NSF CAREER award from the Chemistry Division for her work entitled: Multi-stimuli Responsive DNA-Nanoshells – Compartmentalizing Molecules at the Nanoscale for Enhanced Reaction Selectivity and Sensitivity. With this funding the group will be able to explore new nanomaterial designs that can be used to control the ways in which nanomaterials are assembled and degraded in response to specific stimuli. The award will also help to support the various outreach activities of the group. Thank you NSF for this generous support!
Dr. Rouge is the recipient of the Program in Accelerated Therapeutics for Healthcare (PATH) Award from the Office of the Vice Provost for Research. Together with the lab of Dr. Steve Szczepanek in the Department of Pathobiology the Rouge Group will study the pharmacology of nucleic acid nanocapsules (NANs), in particularly how their unique nucleic acid delivery platform is metabolized within cells and tissues. The Rouge lab thanks the OVPR for their generous support!
Dr. Rouge, in collaboration with electron microscopist Dr. Lucas Parent received a 2019 Research Excellence Award from the OVPR to visualize DNA nanomaterials using Liquid Cell Transmission Electron Microscopy (LC-TEM). The work will be carried out at the Thermo Fisher Scientific Center for Advanced Microscopy and Materials Analysis (CAMMA) at UConn’s Tech Park, where the nucleation of biomaterials and enzyme-mediated nanoparticle assemblies will be studied in real time.
The lab welcomes Dr. Md Arifuzzaman to the group from Iowa State University. Welcome Arif!
Congrats to undergraduate researchers Patrick Corrigan and Halle Barber for being awarded research fellowships for this summer! Patrick received the Chemistry Department’s Research Summer Fellowship award and Halle received UConn’s Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) award. Looking forward to a summer of great research!
Congrats to Cassie George, Glastonbury high school researcher in the lab who was chosen as a finalist at the 2019 Connecticut Science and Engineering Fair for her work on nanocapsules!
Our group’s Review Article on delivering nucleic acids using nanomaterials was accepted in Trends in Biotechnology! Congrat’s Saketh Gudipati.
Thank you to all our speakers who came to present at the student-speaker RNA Salon meeting Dec 13th! At the first 2019 meeting we learned about viral RNA inhibitors of PKR, RNA that can sense metal ions, and interesting interactions that can occur when RNA is circularized. We thank our speakers, Cassie Zerbe (UConn), Jose Cobo (CUNY), and Qikun Yu (UMass Amherst) seen below holding 3-D printed RNA and protein crystal structures (their speaker gifts!). All talks supported by funds from the RNA Society, co-organized by Saketh Gudipati and Dr. Rouge.
From left to right: Dr. Rouge, Cassie Zerbe (Cole Lab, UConn), Jose Cobo (Ryan Lab, CUNY), Qikun Yu (You Lab, UMass Amherst), Saketh Gudipati (UConn).
The Rouge lab has received a second year of funding for the UConn RNA Salon from the RNA Society! We will be organizing another series of exciting talks on RNA Chemistry and its applications in the coming months, stay tuned for future announcements.
Dr. Rouge presented at an exciting session on “Nucleic Acid Chemistry” at the 14th Annual Meeting of the Oligonucleotide Therapeutics Society in Seattle Washington.
- Our recent paper in ChemBioChem was featured on the front cover. (Pictured to the right) Congrats to Alyssa Hartmann and her co-authors!
- Congrat to David Loe for being awarded a Thermo Fisher Scientific Fellowship from the UConn Thermo Fisher Center for Advanced Microscopy and Materials Analysis (CAMMA).
- Congrats to Alyssa, Dom, Josh, Mark, and undergraduate researcher Halle Barber on their publication in ChemBioChem entitled “Enzymatically Ligated DNA–Surfactants: Unmasking Hydrophobically Modified DNA for Intracellular Gene Regulation.”
- Congrats to graduating seniors Emily Saccuzzo and Nicole Gomez! Emily will be heading off to Georgia Tech’s Chemistry PhD program this Fall and Nicole will be heading off to a research position at Yale. We will miss you but wish you the best at your new research positions!
Left: Emily Saccuzzo, ’18. Right: Nicole Gomez, ’18.
- Congrats to Tushar Sondhi on getting accepted to Berkeley University! We wish you the best as you embark on your undergraduate studies on the west coast!
Right: Tushar working with Dr. Rouge on preparing AuNP templated reverse micelles for nucleic acid delivery.
Dr. Rouge and UConn Health Collaborator Dr. Ephraim Trakhtenberg win a Promising Project Award from the Program in Innovative Therapeutics for Connecticut’s Health (PITCH) program. The work will involve the targeting of novel nucleic acid nanomedicines to retinal ganglion cells (bottom left) for promoting axon regeneration in optical neuropathies. Details of the work can be found here.
Congrats to Glastonbury high school researcher Tushar Sondhi in our group for being selected as a finalist at this years Connecticut Science and Engineering Fair for his project entitled:”Engineering an enzyme responsive genetic delivery vehicle.”
Right: Tushar Sondhi at the Glastonbury STEMposium presenting his work on “Engineering an Enzyme Responsive Genetic Delivery Vehicle.”
- The chemistry department’s 2018 Randolph T. Major Lecture series hosted an exciting set of lectures this year with an RNA-centered theme! We thank Dr. Szostak and Dr. Jaffrey for sharing their fascinating research with us!
Above: Dr. Samie Jaffrey of Weill Cornell Medical College, sharing his recent advances with fluorescent RNA aptamers (left) and Dr. Jack Szostak from Harvard/MGH sharing his synthetic chemistry approaches that help elucidate the RNA world hypothesis and the origins of cellular life (right).
This year the Biological Chemistry Division of the UConn Chemistry Department will be organizing the 2018 Randolph T Major Lecture Series in Chemistry. This years Keynote speaker will the 2009 Nobel Laureate Dr. Jack Szostak – check back for details.