iCER Research Video Highlights - Alex Dickson

  • Oct 14, 2016
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iCER Research Video Highlights - Alex Dickson

In my lab I use computational techniques such as molecular dynamics to simulate the motions of biomolecules (protein, RNA, and DNA). These numerical experiments extend our knowledge beyond the “snapshots” provided by x-ray crystallography and NMR, and provide the entire landscape of conformations accessible to a molecular system. My goal is to use this technique to gain a deep understanding of the binding of small molecule drugs, which will be used to design small molecule therapeutics.

I also use larger-scale network models of biological processes to gain an understanding of processes that involve many diff erent molecular species, such as chaperone action in the cell. This allows a much broader reach, and can synthesize fi ndings from simulation and experiment into a coherent biological model. Working in both worlds simultaneously allows for a multiscale disease-targeting strategy that is detailed enough to capture atomic-level perturbations, and broad enough to capture the cell-level consequences of disease.