The undergraduate summer research fellows presented posters on their accomplishments on July 26. Twenty-six of the presentations were on work done in the Chemistry Department, representing nine different research groups. For more on the event, visit News @ Wesleyan. A list of the chemistry presenters is below the photographs.
“Expressing and Characterizing Heptosyltransferase Enzymes”
“Selectivity and Byproduct Formation in Thiol-Michael Reactions”
“Computational Studies on the Catalytic, Asymmetric ‘Interrupted’ Feist-Benary Reaction”
“Characterization of the solution speciation of vanadyl complexes through longitudinal and transverse relaxation times”
“Mapping the Allosteric Network of Glutathione Peroxidase-4 (GPX4)”
“Synthesizing Analogs of Anti-Cancer Molecule, Rocaglamide”
“Expression and Purification of Computationally Designed Mini-Proteins”
“Synthesis of 6-(aminomethyl) picolinate”
“Synthesis of Nigrospine”
“Synthesis of Bimetallic Palladium-Copper (Pd-Cu) & Silver-Platinum (Ag-Pt) Nanoparticles”
“Non-Linear Dependence of 1H Relaxation Rates on the Concentration of Copper Hexaaqua Ion”
“Investigation of Seed-Mediated Synthesis of Gold Containing Nanoparticles”
“Subcloning LpxE from pET-15b to pNGFP-BC”
“Modification of Pyridine Donating Groups in TPADA and TPAMA to Optimize Stability and Relaxivity”
“Fingerprinting Biomolecules and the Detection of Disease Markers Through the Use of Rhodium Nanocubes For Surface Enhanced Resonance Raman Spectroscopy”
“Synthesis and Study of a Water-soluble Macrocycle”
“Molecular Dynamics of the 530 Loop of the Ribosome”
“Computational Design of DNA Scaffold for Optimization of CryoEM”
“Conformational Isomerism of 1-Iodopentane and 1-Iodohexane”
“Dendrimer Synthesis via Highly Efficient Thiol-Michael Reactions”
“The Synthesis of a Probe for Lignin Depolymerization Detection”
“Kinetic Ensemble Refinement Improves Protein NMR Structures”
“Mutagenesis of E. coli Heptosyltransferase I to Disrupt Enzyme Dynamics and Chemistry”
“Ab Initio Investigation of Radical Organic Compounds”
“Electrochemical Synthesis of Gold Concave Nanocubes”
“A Computational, Energetic Analysis of the Roles of Initiators in Thiol-Vinylsulfone Reactions”
The Annual Chemistry Department Summer Picnic was held on June 27. In addition to being a nice break from the usual routine, the annual picnic serves as an effective way of zeroing out the department’s discretionary budget before the end on the fiscal year. Students, staff, and faculty enjoyed the traditional grilled treats. Fireworks (commercial and legal, of course) were a highlight.
A total of thirty-nine degrees in Chemistry were awarded on May 27 at the 186th Commencement. The department proudly congratulates all its new alumni/alumnae.
Ph.D. recipients: Joy Cote
M.A. recipients: Paul Brauchle
Yoon Jeong Choi
B.A. recipients: Abby Cahn-Gambino
Joanna Korpanty (with High Honors)
Ji Yoon Park
Daniel Robertson (with High Honors)
David Solti (with Honors)
Aaron Stone (with Honors)
Jeanette Thornton (with High Honors)
Ann-Dorie Webley (with Honors)
Associate Professor of Chemistry Erika Taylor has been named a recipient of the Binswanger Prize for Excellence in Teaching. The prize is awarded by the Wesleyan University Alumni Association to recognize excellence in teaching, as exemplified by commitment to the classroom and student accomplishment, intellectual demands placed on students, lucidity, and passion. In the past few years Prof. Taylor has taught courses in sophomore organic chemistry, biochemistry, medicinal chemistry, and environmental chemistry. She joins four other members of the department who have previously received the prize (Michael Calter, Andrea Roberts, Irina Russu, and T. David Westmoreland).
The Prize will be formally presented at Commencement on May 27.
Stephen Frayne recently defended his Ph.D. dissertation and will be receiving his degree at commencement this May. Steve joined the Department of Chemistry at Wesleyan in 2012 after having received his B.S. in chemistry from Fordham University. At Fordham Steve worked in the laboratory of Dr. Ipsita Banerjee focusing on the rational design of artificial biomaterials. While in the Banerjee group Steve investigated the pH-dependent self-assembly of plant-based acids such as abscisic acid and ellagic acid into templates for the growth of cadmium selenide (CdSe) nanoparticles, with potential applications in bioimaging, cell targeting, and environmental remediation. Upon coming to Wesleyan, Steve joined the lab of Prof. Brian Northrop where he has been conducting experimental and computational research with the aim of streamlining the design and synthesis of organic materials. Much of Steve’s work has focused on the fundamentals of thiol-Michael reactions and, in particular, selective thiol-Michael reactions that enable researchers to synthesize multifunctional polymers and dendrimers more rapidly and efficiently. After graduating Steve will be joining the lab of Prof. Jeffrey Grossman in the Materials Science and Engineering department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he will apply his experimental and computational expertise to develop new materials that address important energy related challenges, such as nanoporous membranes for water desalination.
The 3rd annual Big Drop was held on May 9 outside the Exley Science Center to mark the last day of classes for the Spring semester. A series of smashable items—including water balloons, bouncy balls, watermelon, apples, pineapple, discarded computer equipment, plastic, and Oobleck—were dropped from the building’s rooftop. The Free Radicals also contributed a variety of explosions including the burning of an Orgo Lab report in liquid oxygen.
David McCamant, an alum of the Class of ’95, has received the very first College Award for Undergraduate Teaching and Research Mentorship from the University of Rochester, where he is Associate Professor of Chemistry. He notes that “his goal is pass along to students the same excitement he felt as a chemistry undergraduate at Wesleyan University.” You can read the full story at the link below. Congratulations Prof. McCamant!