Cui laboratory at the Department of Biochemistry at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign is recruiting postdoctoral associate and graduate students to study the mechanism and regulation of human ribonucleotide reductase (RNR) in vitro and in vivo. RNR catalyzes the reduction of nucleotides to deoxynucleotides in almost all organisms to provide the building blocks for DNA synthesis and repair. The central role of RNR in nucleic acid metabolism makes it a promising target for cancer therapeutics and antimicrobial agents. Human RNR consists of α and β subunits which form dynamic complexes. Our laboratory aims to answer three major questions about human RNR and other homologs:
• Study Fe2-Y• cofactor assembly and repair
• Trap and characterize the active α/β complex
• Target the inactive state for RNR inhibitors
Training that Cui Lab can offer
Over 1/3 of proteins contain metal cofactors, therefore, it is essential to understand the diversity and complexity of metalloenzymes, whether you are a chemist or biologist. We will use a variety of spectroscopic, structural, and kinetic methods to characterize RNR and other regulatory proteins containing metal cofactors.
• Biophysical methods to characterize metalloenzymes
• Kinetic methods to study enzyme mechanism
• Genetic incorporation of unnatural amino acids
Chang obtained her B.S. from Peking University and Ph.D. at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and will return to her alma mater in November 2023 after postdoctoral training at MIT and Harvard University.
The candidates should have experience in chemistry, biochemistry, or cell biology. We ask the applicants to include an updated CV and a one-page summary of their previous research and skills.Prospective graduate students should apply to the graduate program at the School of Molecular & Cellular Biology at UIUC.