March Research Round-Up

Congratulations to our amazing research teams here in the Department of Chemistry for their publications this month!

Bowman Group

Nandi, A., Qu, C., & Bowman, J. M. (2019). Using Gradients in Permutationally Invariant Polynomial Potential fitting: A Demonstration for CH4 Using as Few as 100 ConfigurationsJournal of chemical theory and computation.

Davies Group

Davies, H.M.L., Chennamadhavuni, S., Martin, T.J., Childers, S.R. (2019). U.S. Patent Application No. 15 /145,323

Evangelista Group

Li, C., & Evangelista, F. A. (2019). Multireference Theories of Electron Correlation Based on the Driven Similarity Renormalization GroupAnnual review of physical chemistry70.

Hill Group

Kaledin, A. L., Hill, C. L., Lian, T., & Musaev, D. G. (2019). Modulating electronic coupling at the quantum dot/molecule interface by wavefunction engineeringThe Journal of Chemical Physics150(12), 124704.

Lian Group

Li, Q., Liu, Q., Schaller, R. D., & Lian, T. (2019). Reducing Optical Gain Threshold in Two-Dimensional CdSe Nanoplatelets by Giant Oscillator Strength Transition EffectThe journal of physical chemistry letters.

Kaledin, A. L., Hill, C. L., Lian, T., & Musaev, D. G. (2019). Modulating electronic coupling at the quantum dot/molecule interface by wavefunction engineeringThe Journal of Chemical Physics150(12), 124704.

Lynn Group

Taran, O., Patel, V., & Lynn, D. (2019). Small Molecules Reaction Network That Models ROS Dynamic of the RhizosphereChemical Communications.

Musaev Group

Kaledin, A. L., Hill, C. L., Lian, T., & Musaev, D. G. (2019). Modulating electronic coupling at the quantum dot/molecule interface by wavefunction engineeringThe Journal of Chemical Physics150(12), 124704.

Salaita Group

Sylber, C., Petree, J., Baker, N., Salaita, K., & Wongtrakool, C. (2019). 3582 Scavenger Receptor Expression is Differentially Affected by DNAzyme-Gold Nanoparticle ConjugatesJournal of Clinical and Translational Science3(s1), 20-21.

Wuest Group

Scharnow, A. M., Solinski, A. E., & Wuest, W. M. (2019). Targeting S. mutans biofilms: a perspective on preventing dental cariesMedChemComm.

Post, S., Shapiro, J., & Wuest, W. (2019). Connecting iron acquisition and biofilm formation in the ESKAPE pathogens as a strategy for combatting antibiotic resistanceMedChemComm.

November Research Round-Up

Congratulations to our amazing research teams here in the Department of Chemistry for their publications this month!

Bowman Group:

Chen, Q., & Bowman, J. M. (2018). Quantum approaches to vibrational dynamics and spectroscopy: is ease of interpretation sacrificed as rigor increases?Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics.

Yang, B., Zhang, P., Chen, Q., Stancil, P., Bowman, J. M., Naduvalath, B., & Forrey, R. C. (2018). Inelastic Vibrational Dynamics of CS in Collision with H2 Using a Full-dimensional Potential Energy SurfacePhysical Chemistry Chemical Physics.

Dunham Group:

Hong, S., Sunita, S., Maehigashi, T., Hoffer, E. D., Dunkle, J. A., & Dunham, C. M. (2018). Mechanism of tRNA-mediated+ 1 ribosomal frameshiftingProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences115(44), 11226-11231.

Rivera, S., Young, P. G., Hoffer, E. D., Vansuch, G. E., Metzler, C. L., Dunham, C. M., & Weinert, E. E. (2018). Structural Insights into Oxygen-Dependent Signal Transduction within Globin Coupled SensorsInorganic chemistry.

Hoffer, E. D., Maehigashi, T., Fredrick, K., & Dunham, C. M. (2018). Ribosomal ambiguity (ram) mutations promote the open (off) to closed (on) transition and thereby increase miscodingNucleic Acids Research.

Hill Group:

Sullivan, K. P., Wieliczko, M., Kim, M., Yin, Q., Collins-Wildman, D. L., Mehta, A. K., … & Hill, C. L. (2018). Speciation and Dynamics in the [Co4V2W18O68] 10-/Co (II) aq/CoOx Catalytic Water Oxidation SystemACS Catalysis.

Kaledin, A. L., Troya, D., Karwacki, C. J., Balboa, A., Gordon, W. O., Morris, J. R., … & Musaev, D. G. (2018). Key Mechanistic Details of Paraoxon Decomposition by Polyoxometalates: Critical Role of Para-Nitro SubstitutionChemical Physics.

Lian Group:

Clark, M. L., Ge, A., Videla, P. E., Rudshteyn, B., Miller, C. J., Song, J., … & Kubiak, C. P. (2018). CO2 Reduction Catalysts on Gold Electrode Surfaces Influenced by Large Electric FieldsJournal of the American Chemical Society.

Lutz Group:

Williams, E., Jung, S. M., Coffman, J. L., & Lutz, S. (2018). Pore engineering for enhanced mass transport in encapsulin nano-compartmentsACS synthetic biology.

Musaev Group:

Kaledin, A. L., Troya, D., Karwacki, C. J., Balboa, A., Gordon, W. O., Morris, J. R., … & Musaev, D. G. (2018). Key Mechanistic Details of Paraoxon Decomposition by Polyoxometalates: Critical Role of Para-Nitro Substitution. Chemical Physics.

Salaita Group:

Hong, J., Ge, C., Jothikumar, P., Yuan, Z., Liu, B., Bai, K., … & Palin, A. (2018). A TCR mechanotransduction signaling loop induces negative selection in the thymusNature Immunology, 1.

Weinert Group

Rivera, S., Young, P. G., Hoffer, E. D., Vansuch, G. E., Metzler, C. L., Dunham, C. M., & Weinert, E. E. (2018). Structural Insights into Oxygen-Dependent Signal Transduction within Globin Coupled SensorsInorganic chemistry.

Fontaine, B. M., Duggal, Y., & Weinert, E. E. (2018). Exploring the Links Between Nucleotide Signaling and Quorum Sensing Pathways in Regulating Bacterial VirulenceACS infectious diseases.

Wuest Group:

Kontos, R. C., Schallenhammer, S. A., Bentley, B. S., Morrison, K. R., Feliciano, J. A., Tasca, J. A., … & Minbiole, K. P. (2018). An Investigation Into Rigidity‐Activity Relationships in bisQAC Amphiphilic AntisepticsChemMedChem.

Shapiro, J. A., Varga, J. J., Parsonage, D., Walton, W., Redinbo, M. R., Ross, L. J., … & Goldberg, J. B. (2018). Identification of Specific and Non‐specific Inhibitors of Bacillus anthracis Type III Pantothenate Kinase (PanK)ChemMedChem.

Kilgore, M. B., Morrison, K. R., Wuest, W. M., & Chandler, J. D. (2018). Influence of pH on the reactions of heme peroxidase-derived oxidants with R19SFree Radical Biology and Medicine128, S101-S102.

October Research Round-Up

Congratulations to our amazing research teams here in the Department of Chemistry for their publications this month!

Bowman Group:

Nandi, A., Qu, C., & Bowman, J. M. (2018). Diffusion Monte Carlo Calculations of Zero‐Point Energies of Methanol and Deuterated Methanol. Journal of computational chemistry.

Davies Group:

Davies, H. M., Itami, K., & Stoltz, B. M. (2018). New directions in natural product synthesisChemical Society Reviews.

Evangelista Group:

Huang, Y., Xu, Z., Jin, S., Li, C., Warncke, K., Evangelista, F. A., … & Egap, E. (2018). Conjugated Oligomers with Stable Radical Substituents: Synthesis, Single Crystal Structures, Electronic Structure and Excited State DynamicsChemistry of Materials.

Heaven Group

Torbin, A., Pershin, A., Zagidullin, M., Heaven, M., Mebel, A., & Azyazov, V. (2018). Ozone recovery in the presence of CO and N2O. In MATEC Web of Conferences(Vol. 209, p. 00016). EDP Sciences.

Tolstov, G. I., Zagidullin, M. V., Khvatov, N. A., Medvedkov, I. A., Mebel, A. M., Heaven, M. C., & Azyazov, V. N. (2018). Measurements of rate constants of O2 (b) quenching by CH4, NO, N2O at temperatures 300-800 K. In MATEC Web of Conferences(Vol. 209, p. 00006). EDP Sciences.

Heaven, M. C. (2018, October). Optically pumped rare gas lasers (Conference Presentation). In High-Power Lasers: Technology and Systems, Platforms, and Effects II(Vol. 10798, p. 1079806). International Society for Optics and Photonics.

Heemstra Group

Wilson, C. J., Bommarius, A. S., Champion, J. A., Chernoff, Y. O., Lynn, D. G., Paravastu, A. K., … & Heemstra, J. M. (2018). Biomolecular Assemblies: Moving from Observation to Predictive DesignChemical reviews.

Morris, F. D., Peterson, E. M., Heemstra, J. M., & Harris, J. M. (2018). Single-Molecule Kinetic Investigation of Cocaine-Dependent Split-Aptamer AssemblyAnalytical chemistry.

Hill Group

Kaledin, A. L., Hill, C. L., Lian, T., & Musaev, D. G. (2018). A bulk adjusted linear combination of atomic orbitals (BA‐LCAO) approach for nanoparticlesJournal of computational chemistry.

Ke Group

Wang, P., & Ke, Y. (2018). Attack on the Cell Membrane: The Pointy Ends of DNA Nanostructures Lead the Way.

Wang, D., Song, J., Wang, P., Pan, V., Zhang, Y., Cui, D., & Ke, Y. (2018). Design and operation of reconfigurable two-dimensional DNA molecular arraysNature protocols, 1.

Kindt Group

Patel, L. A., & Kindt, J. T. (2018). Simulations of NaCl Aggregation from Solution: Solvent Determines Topography of Free Energy LandscapeJournal of computational chemistry.

Guo, Z., & Kindt, J. T. (2018). Partitioning of Size-mismatched Impurities to Grain Boundaries in 2-d Solid Hard Sphere MonolayersLangmuir.

Lian Group

Kaledin, A. L., Hill, C. L., Lian, T., & Musaev, D. G. (2018). A bulk adjusted linear combination of atomic orbitals (BA‐LCAO) approach for nanoparticlesJournal of computational chemistry.

Huang, Y., Xu, Z., Jin, S., Li, C., Warncke, K., Evangelista, F. A., … & Egap, E. (2018). Conjugated Oligomers with Stable Radical Substituents: Synthesis, Single Crystal Structures, Electronic Structure and Excited State DynamicsChemistry of Materials.

Lynn Group

Wilson, C. J., Bommarius, A. S., Champion, J. A., Chernoff, Y. O., Lynn, D. G., Paravastu, A. K., … & Heemstra, J. M. (2018). Biomolecular Assemblies: Moving from Observation to Predictive DesignChemical reviews.

Musaev Group

Kaledin, A. L., Hill, C. L., Lian, T., & Musaev, D. G. (2018). A bulk adjusted linear combination of atomic orbitals (BA‐LCAO) approach for nanoparticles. Journal of computational chemistry.

Haines, B. E., Nelson, B. M., Grandner, J. M., Kim, J., Houk, K. N., Movassaghi, M., & Musaev, D. G. (2018). Mechanism of Permanganate-Promoted Dihydroxylation of Complex Diketopiperazines: Critical Roles of Counter-cation and Ion-PairingJournal of the American Chemical Society.

Wuest Group

Ernouf, G., Wilt, I., Zahim, S., & Wuest, W. M. (2018). Epoxy isonitriles, a unique class of antibiotics–Synthesis of their metabolites and biological investigationsChemBioChem.

 

Jen Heemstra and Bill Wuest Named Scialog Fellows

Bill Wuest. Photo by Jessica Lily Photography for Work+Play.
Jen Heemstra. Photo by Jessica Lily Photography for Work+Play.

Associate Professors Dr. Jen Heemstra and Dr. Bill Wuest have both been named Scialog Fellows for the Chemical Machinery of the Cell. Scialog, supported by the Research Corporation for Scientific Advancement and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation,  aims to advance human knowledge by supporting and empowering early career scientists. Fellows work in community with other scientists in their theme area to learn and discover through the give-and-take of community building among multidisciplinary teams.

The Scialog on the Chemical Machinery of the Cell is based on the conviction that the time is right to bring together chemists and biologists to spark collaborations and develop interdisciplinary

Bill Wuest. Photo by Jessica Lily Photography for Work+Play.
Bill Wuest. Photo by Jessica Lily Photography for Work+Play.

projects that will catapult us to a deeper understanding of chemical machinery and reactions in the intact cell. The group will explore questions such as “How does the cell organize reactions in functionally distinct compartments that are not bound by membranes?” and “What combination of new chemical tools including chemical probes, optical techniques, and quantum methods can bring about molecular resolution of the chemical machinery in intact, living cells?”

Jen and Bill will have the opportunity to engage with other Chemical Machinery of the Cell fellows at the upcoming Scialog conference in Tucson, Arizona.

Congratulations, Jen and Bill!

 

Applying to Graduate School 101: An Interview with a Faculty Admissions Representative

Students pictured at work in the Wuest Lab in Emory's Atwood Hall.
Students pictured at work in the Wuest Lab in Emory’s Atwood Hall.

This Fall, we are publishing a special series of blog posts about applying to graduate school–at Emory and in general. Our goal is to demystify the application process and help applicants feel confident as they seek a home for their graduate studies. This post is the third in the series, an interview with Bill Wuest, Acting Associate Professor of Chemistry, Georgia Research Alliance Distinguished Investigator, and current faculty member of the Emory Chemistry Graduate Committee that reads and responds to applications.

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Bill Wuest. Photo by Jessica Lily Photography for Work+Play.
Bill Wuest. Photo by Jessica Lily Photography for Work+Play.

Q. What made you decide to apply to graduate school?

I was fortunate to have laboratory experience both as an undergraduate and during my summer internships at a pharmaceutical company where I interacted with both graduate students and research scientists. My first hand knowledge of what graduate school was about and the need for such a degree to get the job that I wanted drove me to apply.

Q. How did you choose where to go?

I remember sitting down with my undergraduate advisor during the Fall of my senior year and picking 8-10 schools that fit my interests. He pushed me toward some and away from others. I then visited some of the schools that I was accepted to (I regret not visiting all!) and based on those two trips I was able to make an obvious choice.

Q. When you’re reviewing applications now as a faculty member, what makes an applicant stand out?

First and foremost is research experience, especially those that have actively sought summer research experiences or other labs to expand their skill set. I also like to see some diversity in the applicant’s interests – did they play sports, do outreach, participate in clubs? Work-life balance and time management are critical to success in graduate school and showing that attribute in the personal statement is important.

Q. How much do you care about metrics like the GRE score and GPA?

They typically do not factor into my decision unless they are extraordinary (in either direction). I pay more attention to what classes the student has taken and how well have they done in courses that directly relate to the program they applied for (organic, physical, etc).

Q. What makes for a successful personal statement?

The best statements are those that are well-organized, well-written, and tell a unique story. Stick to the experiences that were transformational in your career and tell them in necessary detail. I love to hear about the book or class that challenged your perception or the experiment that wouldn’t work at first but you “tweaked it” and it transformed a project. The latter I find most important as >90% of graduate school is overcoming problems and persevering.

Q. What is the best way for applicants to share previous research experience? Can someone succeed in grad school if they don’t have much of a research background?

Use the personal statement to explain not only what you did in the lab but why you chose that area! Explain what you learned and also how you would either like to expand on it or change direction completely. Anyone can succeed in grad school even if they’re fairly new to research; however, if you can find research opportunities, it is worth pursuing them. That might mean looking for summer opportunities or internships or taking a gap year to work in a lab. These are all aspects of your application that will make you stand out!

Q. Are there common mistakes you see students make on graduate applications?

Try and tailor your application to the school you are applying to. Mention who you would like to work with, why you might want to be in that particular area, share any ties you might have to the department. Too many applications are boring – that is, generic and cookie cutter. Try and make yours stand out!

Q. How do you go about reviewing an application?

I typically look for any overlap to my research and network first. Do I know any of your advisors, letter writers, former students from your program? Any way I can obtain an extra data point to calibrate me to your file. If not, I will review your research history, transcript and personal statement to see how you would fit into the dynamic we have at Emory.

Q. What advice do you have for applicants?

This might get me in trouble with my colleagues but do not be afraid to contact the faculty you are interested in! Let them know about your application and your interest in their research. Your enthusiasm for the program will improve your application!

Q. What qualities make for a successful graduate student? 

Perseverance, work ethic, and open mindedness are the 3 most important skills in my opinion. Intelligence and experience come with the territory and are easily taught, the others are not.

Q. Many chemistry departments invite admitted students to a recruitment weekend. How can prospective students make the most of this experience?

Go to as many of these events as you can! Each department is different and you will learn a lot about the “personality” of each at the visit. During the weekend try and talk to as many people as possible. Find the student in the shadows who looks disgruntled, talk to faculty outside your research area, ask people what is their least favorite thing is, find out what the average time to graduation is, do the students go to conferences, where do they work afterward, etc.

Q. What advice would you offer to a student who is trying to decide if grad school is the right path for them?/What should students ask themselves before applying?

Again, talk to as many people as possible. Work with your advisor and ask if they can put you in touch with alumni who have gone in different directions. Grad school is a significant time investment during an important part of your life, I would strongly discourage people from applying if they think its just “the next thing to do.” You need to be invested and excited about the opportunity, not just lukewarm.

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Ready to apply? Visit chemistry.emory.edu/apply. Applications are due by December 1st, 2018 for entry in Fall 2019.

Want to learn more about chemistry @ Emory? Fill out an inquiry form and join our mailing list!

Dr. Wuest is accepting students for Fall 2019. For a list of all faculty accepting students, check out our Research page.