1. Z-Genome Biosynthetic Pathway Discovery / 2. Regulating Cell Bioactivities for Wound Healing
Wednesday, May 26, 2021
9:00 AM-10:30 AM
BIOMED / Global Innovation Partnerships (GIP) Dual Seminar
1. Z-Genome Biosynthetic Pathway Discovery
2. Regulating Cell Bioactivities for Wound Healing Using Subcellular-sized, Crosslinkable Microfibers of Tunable Size, Stiffness, and Biochemical Properties
Suwen Zhao, PhD
School of Life Science and Technology
Li-Hsin (Leo) Han
Department of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics
College of Engineering
Z-Genome Biosynthetic Pathway Discovery – Suwen Zhao, PhD
We characterized a multi-enzyme system that supports the biosynthesis and incorporation of 2-aminoadenine (Z), an exotic base that completely replaces adenine and forms three hydrogen bonds with thymine in the genome of cyanophage S-2L. Based on the discovery, we identified hundreds of globally widespread phages harboring such enzymes, and we further verified the Z-genome in one of these phages, Acinetobacter phage SH-Ab 15497, by using liquid chromatography with ultraviolet and mass spectrometry. The Z-genome endows phages with evolutionary advantages for evading the attack of host restriction enzymes, and the characterization of its biosynthetic pathway enables Z-DNA production on a large scale for a diverse range of applications, including synthetic biology, phagotherapy, and DNA storage.
Regulating Cell Bioactivities for Wound Healing Using Subcellular-sized, Crosslinkable Microfibers of Tunable Size, Stiffness, and Biochemical Properties – Li-Hsin (Leo) Han, PhD
Microfabrication techniques are evolving to meet the advancement of Regenerative Medicine, which aims to restore irreversible wounds from trauma and diseases. Such technology aims to create micro-architectures that are both three-dimensional (3D) and subcellular-sized, mimicking the architectures of native extracellular matrices (ECM) of cells in our body. The size, shape, chemical and mechanical properties of these micro-architectures can interfere with how cells perform their bioactivities, such as cell proliferation, stem cell differentiation, ECM production, and thus the healing of wounds from trauma and diseases. My lab’s invention of subcellular-size, crosslinkable microfibers, “Fiber-Gel”, provides a simple, bottom-up approach to achieve such goals. This novel platform enables easily customizable matrix architectures, which regulates cells’ survival, proliferation, gene expression, as well as tissue production. In this talk, I will introduce the effects of using and tuning FiberGel on bone regeneration and articular cartilage repair.
Suwen Zhao, PhD, is an Assistant Professor at iHuman Institute/School of Life Science and Technology, ShanghaiTech University since 2014. She received her PhD in chemistry from Columbia University in 2009. Dr. Zhao's research focuses on developing and applying computational methods to facilitate the understanding of the protein sequence-structure-function relationship.
Li-Hsin (Leo) Han, PhD, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics in the College of Engineering at Drexel University. He received his BS and MS degrees in Mechanical Engineering from National Taiwan University, his PhD degree in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin, and a postdoctoral training from the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Stanford University School of Medicine. Dr. Han's research ranges over microfabrication for tissue engineering, biomaterials design and synthesis, polymeric micro-actuators and nano-photonics. He has produced more than 30 peer-reviewed journal articles, 3 licensed US Patents, 2 book chapter, and 25 conference talks. His research in regenerative medicine is supported by the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation, National Science Foundation, and National Institutes of Health.