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Snapshot: Briana Konnick



Of Note

Paper from Griffin Lab Collaboration Tops Nature’s ‘Most-Read’ List

A paper from an international group of scientists, including Chair of the Department of Molecular Therapeutics Patrick Griffin and his colleagues Bruce Pascal and Graham West at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) Florida campus, rose to the top of the “most-read” list of the journal Nature.

The study, “Crystal Structure of Rhodopsin Bound to Arrestin by Femtosecond X-Ray Laser,” was published on July 22 and sheds new light on G protein-coupled receptors, which play a critical role in signaling in the cells of many organisms.

The new study is one of several collaborations from the Griffin lab, which is recognized for its expertise in structural proteomics, especially the application of hydrogen-deuterium exchange (HDX) mass spectrometry. HDX technology provides highly accurate analysis of protein dynamics, which is directly related to protein function, and it is a highly sensitive mapping technique that enables scientists to measure the impact of the interaction of various receptor proteins and their binding partners.

The Nature paper is available on the journal website, along with a commentary piece, “Structural biology: Arresting developments in receptor signalling.” For other recent findings from a Griffin lab collaboration, see Nature Communications paper “Conformational states of the full-length glucagon receptor.” 

Linda Sherman Named Finalist for ‘Woman of the Year’ Award

TSRI Professor Linda Sherman has been named a finalist for the 2015 Woman of the Year award presented by San Diego Magazine. The annual award honors San Diego women in far-ranging fields who are committed to creating positive change.

The Sherman lab examines the immune system's basic strategy of discriminating between "self" and "non-self" through T lymphocytes, seeking to augment their ability to respond to certain self-antigens on tumor cells and to diminish their aberrant destruction of self-tissue in autoimmune diseases.

The award selection is based on a candidate’s outstanding contributions to her company/organization and commitment to community service. Finalists must manage three or more part- or full-time employees and be active in their professions for more than five years.

In addition to Woman of the Year, two awards will be presented for public service and leadership. Winners will be announced at a ceremony and networking event on Tuesday, September 29, from 6 to 8:30 PM, at the Museum of Contemporary Art, 700 Prospect Place, La Jolla.

Joey Davis Wins Pathway to Independence Award

Joey Davis, research associate in the Williamson lab, has won a National Institutes of Health K99/R00 Pathway to Independence award. The prestigious award supports outstanding postdoctoral researchers as they transition to independent scientists.

A graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, with dual degrees in computer science and biological engineering, Davis’s research focuses on a process of protein and organelle degradation (autophagy) in aging cells. The work has the potential to uncover biochemical reactions that could lead to therapies for age-related diseases, including neurodegeneration, cardiomyopathy and cancer. 

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A paper that made it to the top of
Nature’s “Most Read” list capitalized on HDX technology from the laboratory of Patrick Griffin, chair of the Department of Molecular Therapeutics at Scripps Florida. 

Professor Linda Sherman is a finalist for San Diego Magazine’s 2015 Woman of the Year award.