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NICHOLAS NOINAJ

NICHOLAS NOINAJ

Assistant Professor
HOCK 333
Phone: 765-496-0061

Personal Site: Link

My research interests are in understanding how pathogenic Gram-negative bacteria are able to use virulence factors found on their surface to mediate infection. These virulence factors are found in the outer membrane and belong to a class of surface proteins commonly referred to as outer membrane proteins (OMPs). In particular, my lab investigates the multi-component complex called BAM, which is responsible for the biogenesis of all OMPs, in hopes of understanding how it is able to fold and insert OMPs into the outer membrane. Additionally, we study the TOC complex, the import machinery found in plastid containing organisms such as those causing malaria. We use a combination of techniques to accomplish our goals including X-ray crystallography, electron microscopy (negative-stain and cryo), crosslinking, and various functional assays. Our ultimate goal is to use the information from the structural and functional characterization as a starting point for drug discovery and development targeting these pathogens.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Professional Faculty Research

Primary Research Area: Structural and Computational Biology & Biophysics
Secondary Research Area: Microbiology, Immunology, and Infectious Diseases

Education
BA/BA, Chemistry/Mathematics, Berea College, Kentucky
PhD, Biochemistry, University of Kentucky College of Medicine, Kentucky
Postdoctoral Fellow, NIH/NIDDK, Bethesda, Maryland

Awards
2017 College of Science Team Award, Biological Sciences, Purdue University
2013 Fellows Award for Research Excellence (FARE) Award Winner
2012 Fellows Award for Research Excellence (FARE) Award Winner

Conferences/Meetings
2018 Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Biomolecular Galaxy symposium, Purdue Univ.
2018 13th Annual Midwest Protein Folding symposium, Notre Dame
2018 Gordon Research Conference - Protein Transport Across Membranes (Invited talk)
2017 American Crystallographic Association Meeting (Invited talk)
2017 Tessman symposium, Purdue Univ.
2017 Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Biomolecular Galaxy symposium, Purdue Univ.
2017 12th Annual Midwest Protein Folding symposium, Notre Dame
2016 Zing Conference – Protein Secretion Across Membranes
2016 FASEB Meeting – Molecular Biophysics of the Membrane (Invited talk)
2016 11th Annual Midwest Protein Folding symposium, Notre Dame (Plenary talk)
2015 Membrane Proteins Symposium at APS/Argonne IL
2014 International Union of Crystallography (Invited talk)
2014 American Crystallographic Association (Invited talk)
2014 Gordon Research Conference - Protein Transport Across Membranes (Invited talk)
2014 44th Mid-Atlantic Macromolecular Crystallography meeting (Invited talk)

Courses
BIOL 595 | Spring - Introduction to X-ray Crystallography
BIOL 195 | Fall - First Year Research Experience: Phages to Folds

Other Activities
Faculty Advisor | Biology Graduate Student Association 2018 - present
Faculty Advisor | Structural Biology Journal Club (SCBB) 2015 - present
Faculty Advisor | Hitchhiker's Guide to the Biomolecular Galaxy 2016
Co-organizer | Tessman Symposium 2017

Publications
See link at the right of the page (or click HERE).

Funding
We would like to offer special thanks to the following for funding: NIH/NIGMS, Purdue University EVPRP, Showalter Trust, NIH/NIAID, Achaogen.

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