Han Research Group - Members

  • Graduate Student Researcher

Ryan's research focuses on the interface between proteins and the surrounding hydration water in order to better understand how hydration water modifies the protein function. By quantifying the motion of the protein as well as the motion of the water, he aims to address the energetic coupling between a protein and its solvating hydration water.

 

  • (805) 893-2792
  • PSBN 4623D
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Jessica's research focuses on high field electron paramagnetic resonance for the study of biological systems. This research helps build a better understanding of the processes that are important for the systems of spins at high field, aiming to develop new methods for styding biological systems. Jessica is currently developing a new tool for measuring distances in membrane proteins that will enhance their study of protein structure and dynamics. Under Mark Sherwin's guidance, she also helped develop the UCSB electron free laser as a tool for high field EPR.

 

  • Jointly advised by Mark Sherwin (Physics)
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Neil focuses on tau protein which aggregates to form long fibers inside neurons in the brain. He works on understanding the early structural mechanism of the tau aggregation pathway. Tau aggregation is known to be associated with several neurodegenerative diseases known as Tauopathies which also include Alzheimer’s disease. By using double electron electron resonance (DEER), Neil is able to look at conformational changes both before and after inducing aggregation. Through tracking and characterizing specific conformational intermediates, it could be possible to locate structurally distinct targets for the treatment of tau related diseases.

 
  • (805) 893-2792
  • PSBN 4650C
  • Postdoctoral Researcher

Yann's research focuses on protein aggregation which is involved in many diseases, such as Alzheimer's Disease, Parkinson's Disease, and others. His aim is to understand why proteins aggregate and to explain how the complex process of aggregation takes place. Yann is particularly interested in the earliest stages of aggregation.

  • PSBN 4623B
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Julia works with the light-activated protein, proteorhodopsin, which pumps protons upon activation. She focuses on incorporating active proteorhodopsin into a nanostructured silica host. Her goal is to harness the proton-pumping function of proteorhodopsin for solar to electrochemical energy conversion within a device.

  • Jointly advised by Bradley Chmelka (Chem E)
Chung-Ta Han
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Chung-Ta focuses on how different environmental factors affect transmembrante protein function. He is working on the development of a distance measuring tool between protein helices that will allow him and his team to study how protein functions are modulated through the approach of protein structure dynamics.

  • Postdoctoral Researcher

Sheetal's research focuses on the methods, development, and applications of DNP and NMR. His doctoral focus was in solid-state NMR, and now he has been working with pulsed DNP methods to improve the technique he used during his doctoral program. Presently, he is involved primarily in projects related to the instumentation and applications of DNP and NMR. 

  • Postdoctoral Researcher

Ilia's main project involves technique development for high field EPR and DNP (at 7T). Presently, Ilia and his team are developing new approaches for more efficient DNP using unique capabilities of their spectrometer capable of generating arbitrary shaped pulses at 200 GHz. 

The second project Ilia works on is part of large multidisciplinary collaboration dedicated to development of underwater adhesives based on mimicking the adhesives used by mussels in the ocean. They employ a range of techniques such as confocal microscopy, microrheology, EPR and Overhauser DNP to characterize the material and molecular properties of recently discovered adhesive coacervate phases.

  • (805) 893-2792
  • PSBN 4623D
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Tim's aim is to use recently developed arbitrarily waveform generators to improve the current pulsed EPR experiments such as DEER, DQC, and SIFTER. He also aims to make potentially more effective experiments possible. The primary application of his work is to look at distances across proteins particularly for aggregating systems. He is trying to improve the study of distances on aggregating systems, especially on the model system of tau protein.

  • (805) 893-2792
  • PSBN 4623B
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Alisa’s research focuses on the interface of EPR, NMR, and dynamic nuclear polarization (DNP). She is working on hardware development for static DNP at high magnetic fields as well as doing mechanistic studies to better understand how static DNP is influenced by the electron environment and experimental conditions. These findings can then be used to optimize nuclear signals for materials and biological studies.

 

 
  • (805) 893-2792
  • PSBN 4623C
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Yanxian currently focuses on the complex coacervation of intrinsically disordered protein (IDP) and RNA. He applies three different methods to his research including magnetic resonance-based techniques to probe conformation and dynamics of IDP and RNA, polymer and colloid characterization approaches on the properties of complex coacervate, and bioinformatic approaches on predicting complex coacervation.

 

 
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Nikki works on characterizing pharmaceutically relevant membrane protein complexes to link changes in structure and dynamics to function. Namely, she works with a G protein-coupled receptor called the adenosine A2a receptor to elucidate structural details and functional consequences of homo-dimerization. The A2a receptor regulates cardiac function and several processes within the central nervous system; the outcome of this research will facilitate improved rational drug design to target A2a receptor oligomers in the treatment of disorders such as inflammation, fibrosis, schizophrenia and Parkinson's disease.

  • (805) 893-3993
  • Jointly advised by Michelle O'Malley (Chem E)
  • ENGR II 3311 and Chem 3118
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Alex's research focuses on hydration on a molecular level. The question he is most concerned with is how and why are hydrophilic surfaces hydrated in both biological systems as well as non-biological or inorganic systems? He is working on solving this mystery by performing DNP measurements and surface force measurements. Apart from this, he works on the correlattion of measurements of water diffusivity with surface forces specifically for hydrated hydrophilic surfaces.

  • (805) 893-5268
  • Jointly advised by Jacob Israelachvili (Chem E)
  • 1300 Building 570
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Alicia’s research focuses on instrument design and pushing the technique of NMR, DNP and EPR, with a specific focus designing an MAS-NMR probe that has DNP and EPR capabilities at temperatures below 90 K. Encompassed in this probe design research are fundamental studies on quantifying absolute enhancement factors from various nitroxide radicals and how the electron spin dynamics affect the DNP mechanism, particularly under magic angle spinning NMR. This work also involves applications to heterogeneous catalytic materials, where surface enhanced NMR through DNP can help differentiate the surface species from the bulk of a material.

  • (805) 893-2792
  • PSBN 4623C
Tarnuma Tabassum
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Tarnuma works on synthesis and characterization of heterogeneous catalytic systems using EPR techniques. Using a highly sensitive technique like EPR may allow better understanding of some of the more elusive mechanisms involved in these systems. This information can be applied to improve factors such as catalytic activity, efficiency, and selectivity. She is currently focusing on understanding supported vanadium- and rhenium-based systems which are widely used in olefin metathesis/polymerization reactions.

  • Jointly advised by Susannah Scott (Chem E)
  • PSBN 4623
Blake Wilson
  • Graduate Student Researcher

Blake's focus is to work on developing high field EPR methods and performing high field EPR on systems to learn about the behavior of materials in a high field. By doing this, he helps build a better understanding of the processes that are important for the systems of spins at high field, aiming to develop new methods for studying biological systems. Under Mark Sherwin's guidance, Blake has also helped develop the UCSB electron-free laser as a tool for high field EPR.

 

  • Jointly advised by Mark Sherwin (Physics)