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About October 2008

This page contains all entries posted to Chemical and Biochemical Engineering News & Events in October 2008. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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October 2008 Archives

October 1, 2008

James Pallikal Sucessfully Defends MS

James Pallikal successfully defended his MS today. James preformed his research in the Good lab. The title of his dissertation was "Investigation of MUC1 in Alzheimer's Applications."

October 10, 2008

PhD Defense - Yonghyun (John) Kim

You are cordially invited to the dissertation defense of Yonghyun (John) Kim.

Date: October 10, 2008
Time: 2:00pm
Location: BIOL 004

Some refreshments will be provided.

TITLE: Proteomic Identification of Novel Regulators and Effectors of Osmoadaptaion and Autophagy of Model Filamentous Fungi Aspergillus nidulans

ABSTRACT:
The genus Aspergillus is an important grouping of filamentous fungi for study, as it contains a number of species which are either extremely helpful (e.g., in the bioprocess industry) or harmful (e.g., human/animal/crop pathogens). Here, we focus on a representative, model species, Aspergillus nidulans, and study a key cellular process called autophagy. Autophagy (more specifically, macroautophagy) is an important cellular mechanism by which cells first degrade and subsequently recycle portions of the cytosol when there is limited nutrient supply. Autophagy proteins (and regulation of their expression) are highly conserved from yeast to man, and thus our study has potentially broad implications for all eukaryotes. Currently, only a few studies exist which have characterized autophagy in fungi. To further this understanding, we employed proteomic analysis, a systems biology tool which provides a panoptic, large-scale profiling of protein expression level changes. Our broad goal here was to utilize proteomic analysis to develop a better fundamental understanding of protein expression associated with autophagy in filamentous fungi. When fully developed, this understanding may allow us to intelligently manipulate fungi at the molecular level to harness increased benefit from fungi used in the bioprocess industry and diminish detriment from pathogenic fungi.

We began by establishing one of the first, published A. nidulans proteome maps. We did this while studying osmoadaptation, which has been tied to autophagy and is a relatively well understood stress response. This study also served to validate our proteomic experimental approach. Our analysis identified a number of novel proteins that were, for the first time, linked with osmoadaptation. Next, we studied differences in protein expression patterns when A. nidulans is grown in the presence of two known inducers of autophagy, carbon starvation and rapamycin treatment. Our data suggest that some downstream effectors are shared between the rapamycin-regulated pathways and carbon-starvation regulated pathways (e.g. polar growth, cell wall degradation), that the mechanism by which they are regulated are seemingly different (e.g. 14-3-3 ArtA involved in regulating polar growth during carbon-starvation but not during rapamycin treatment), and that there are other effectors which are distinct between the two inducers (e.g. reduced amino acid biosynthesis only observed in carbon-starvation). Our final study builds on this theme by reporting the time-dependent response of an autophagy-impaired mutant (ΔAtg8) exposed to rapamycin. Our proteomic data suggest that A. nidulans, when challenged with rapamycin, upregulates gluconeogenesis, the pentose phosphate pathway, amino acid biosynthesis, secretory pathway, polarized growth, and ribosome turnover even without a fully functioning autophagy pathway. Taken together, these data imply that rapamycin-mediated effectors are distinct from those of autophagy.


October 17, 2008

Congratulations to Bhargavi Kondragunta, New PDA Fellow

Bhargavi1.jpgBhargavi Kondragunta, a third year Ph.D. student in Chemical & Biochemical Engineering, was selected to receive the Parenteral Drug Association (PDA) Pre-Doctoral Fellowship. This award is selected through a national competition each year. Bhargavi works with Dr’s Antonio Moreira and Govind Rao. Bhargavi’s project title: Quality by design using high throughput bioreactors with feed-back control (HTCB) to predict multivariable relationships. Bhargavi will use time course analysis with DNA micro arrays to establish comparability of HTCBs to bench scale during fed-batch bioreactor runs. Obtain design space variables, as well as multivariable equations between input process variables and output product attributes using statistical experimental design. Bhargavi earned a B.S. in Chemical Engineering at the Osmania University, Hyderabad, India in 1995 and an M.S. in Chemical Engineering at Drexel University, Philadelphia. Bhargavi has also held several bioprocess engineering and scientist positions in Upstream Process Development and Technology Transfer for the past 9 year in biopharmaceutical companies in the US.

The Parenteral Drug Association (PDA) founded in 1946 is the leading global provider of science, technology and regulatory information and education for the pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical community. Its mission is to develop scientifically sound, practical technical information and resources for the pharmaceutical industry through the expertise of its global membership. In addition to facilitating development, testing and qualification of new technologies, sponsoring educational conferences and training courses, PDA publishes the PDA Journal of Pharmaceutical Science and Technology and the PDA Letter, which focuses on current industry and regulatory news. It continues to be a leading and influential contributor of information for the global regulatory and harmonization processes.

In recognition of the research efforts and influence of students impacting the pharmaceutical/biopharmaceutical industry, PDA and the PDA Journal of Pharmaceutical Science and Technology have established Pre-Doctoral Fellowship Program and the Annual Graduate Research Symposium. These programs were developed to promote applied research in areas of study relevant to the scientific foundations of pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical product development, drug manufacturing and quality assurance technologies.