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Frontiers in Chemical Biology Seminar

Friday, February 14, 2020
4:00pm to 5:00pm
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Noyes 153 (J. Holmes Sturdivant Lecture Hall)
Chemistry Matched with Mechanical and Computational Machines for Rapid Synthesis and Delivery of Proteins
Bradley Pentelute, Associate Professor of Chemistry, Division of Chemistry, Massachusetts Institute of Technology,

Biopolymers serve as a foundation of modern therapeutics for the treatment of diseases ranging from cancer to diabetes. The discovery, manufacturing, and delivery of these biomolecules is challenging and limits their rapid translation to the clinic. To address some of these challenges, I describe our findings on the use of cysteine arylation chemistry to synthesize cancer-targeting antibody-drug conjugates. Further, I show that combining chemistry with machine learning leads to the discovery of biopolymers that cross the plasma membrane and blood-brain barrier. Manufacturing our new cell-penetrating variants is hindered by the rate at which we synthesize them, which is far slower than Nature's production pace of seconds. To accelerate the pace of research, we have built tabletop mechanical machines that use human-made chemistry to synthesize peptides in minutes and proteins in hours.

For more information, please contact Annette Luymes by phone at x6016 or by email at [email protected].