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Bacteria, insects and fish that thrive at subfreezing temperatures produce proteins that bind to ice and manage its formation and growth.

Molecular recognition of ice by proteins: from ice nucleation to antifreeze

A public talk in the annual Spinks Lecture Series

Event

Date: Thursday, March 7
Time:
7 pm
Location:
St. Thomas More College Auditorium, 1437 College Dr., Saskatoon

Free and open to the public | Reception to follow

About this event

This talk by Dr. Valeria Molinero (PhD) is accessible to a general audience.

Molecular recognition of ice by proteins: from ice nucleation to antifreeze

Bacteria, insects and fish that thrive at subfreezing temperatures produce proteins that bind to ice and manage its formation and growth. Ice binding proteins include antifreeze proteins, that stop the formation of ice, and ice-nucleating proteins, that promote it. This presentation will discuss what makes proteins so outstanding at recognizing and binding ice, what distinguishes ice nucleating and antifreeze proteins, and how the size and aggregation of the proteins impact their function and efficiency.

Valeria Molinero is the Jack and Peg Simons Endowed Professor of Theoretical Chemistry and Distinguished Professor at The University of Utah, where she leads the Henry Eyring Center for Theoretical Chemistry. A physical chemist by passion and training, Molinero received her undergraduate degree in Chemistry (1994) and a PhD in Physical Chemistry (1999) from the University of Buenos Aires, before moving to the United States to pursue postdoctoral research at Caltech. Molinero joined the faculty at The University of Utah in 2006, where she has developed a computational and theoretical research program on the interplay between structure, phase transformation and dynamics in materials. A large part of her focus has been on investigating the behavior of water, silica and materials for energy. Molinero has been recognized with multiple awards, including the Helmholtz Award from the International Association of the Properties of Water and Steam, the Beckman Young Investigator Award, the Camille Dreyfus Teacher Scholar Award, the Cozzarelli Prize on Physical and Mathematical Sciences of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a Doctor Honoris Causa from the University of Buenos Aires, and the Irving Langmuir Award in Chemical Physics. Molinero is an elected member of the Utah Academy of Engineering and Science, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the National Academy of Sciences of the United States.

The J. W. T. Spinks Lecture Series is hosted annually by the University of Saskatchewan Department of Chemistry.


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