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.
- Dr. Leighton Core, Molecular Cell biology, UCONN (Nov 28th, 2018)
- Dr. Gordon Carmichael, UConn Health Center (Jan 24th, 2018)
- Dr. Vadim Dudkin, Janssen Discovery Sciences (Feb 21st, 2018)
Please check back for details throughout the semester on upcoming talks.
- Congrats to Joshua Santiana, Dr. Binglin Sui, and senior undergraduate researcher Nicole Gomez on their recently published paper, Programmable Peptide-Crosslinked Nucleic Acid Nanocapsules as a Modular Platform for Enzyme Specific Cargo Release, published in Bioconjugate Chemistry!
- Saketh, Alyssa and Josh all gave great posters at the 2017 Nanomedicine Drug Delivery Symposium (NanoDDS2017) at the University of Michigan this September in Ann Arbor (picture to right).
- Saketh Gudipati and Josh Santiana (bottom left) presented their work on new enzyme-mediated assembly of ligands on nanoparticle surfaces at the 254th ACS National Meeting in Washington D. C.
Undergraduate Researcher Nicole Gomez (pictured below) presented her work this summer on peptide crosslinked nucleic acid nanocapsules at the joint REU/Summer Chemistry Fellowship Symposium.
The group welcomes two ACS SEED High School Scholars, Zaret Rodriguez (left) and Maiena Kheyabani and (right) with Alyssa Hartmann their summer research mentor.
Dr. Joseph Awino (right), former postdoc from the
accepted a position as Chemistry Lecturer at Iowa
– Congrats Joseph!
The group says good bye to Jamie, our Glastonbury High School researcher who will be going off to the University of Pittsburgh this Fall.
The Lab hosted UConn’s Early College Experience (ECE) training workshop for High School Chemistry Teachers in Connecticut on May 12th 2017. The workshop titled “Integrating lessons in bionanotechnology research with lessons in teaching: A workshop for high school chemistry teachers” gave high school teachers hands on experience in the research the lab does using biomaterials at the nanoscale.
Pictured left, Alyssa Hartmann working with teachers on separating nanomaterials using gel electrophoresis.
Congrats to Saketh, Alyssa, Josh, Dom, Nicole and Joseph on their paper Nucleic Acid Nanocapsules for Enzyme-Triggered Drug Release in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.
Great discussions of undergraduate research were had Connecticut Valley Section of the ACS Undergraduate Symposium. Also, UConn Researchers joined Trinity College Scientists in standing up for Science on Earth Day.
At the Connecticut Valley Section ACS meeting Emily Saccuzzo from our group presented her work on aptamer-NPs.
Congrats to undergraduate researcher Emily Saccuzzo (pictured at right) for winning a Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) from UCONN to conduct her research in the group this summer!
Congratulations also to undergraduate researcher Nicole Gomez for receiving a Summer Research Fellowship from the Chemistry Department to conduct her research this summer!
The group welcomes new freshman undergraduate researchers Halle Barber and Kris Channa to the group. Welcome Halle and Kris!
The group celebrated a great semester with a competitive game of bowling.
The group is excited to welcome Dominic Cairns-Gibson from the University of Edinburgh. He will spending a year in the group as an exchange student doing research. Welcome Dom!
Joseph and David’s recent work on NP-templated lipid bilayer formation was recently accepted for publication in Nanoscale – congrats!
The group welcomes Dr. Binglin Sui as a postdoctoral researcher to the Lab!
We recently traveled to Bethany Community School in CT to share the potential of DNA and nanoscience with elementary school students in their innovative GEMS program (pictures).
Saketh Gudipati and Josh Santiana at AAPS local meeting (pictured right).
Congrats to Nicole Gomez who has been selected for an undergraduate summer research fellowship from the UConn chemistry department !
The group had fun participating in the Center for Talented Youth family series on Chemical Approaches to Nanomaterials (pictures).
The group welcomes UCONN Chemistry sophomore Nicole Gomez to the group!
The group welcomes our first undergraduate researcher, Emily Saccuzzo!
The group welcomes new graduate students to the group: Saketh Gudipati, Alyssa Hartmann, David Loe and Josh Santiana!
The group welcomes Dr. Joseph Awino as a new Postdoctoral Researcher to the group.