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Department of Chemistry
Ball State University
Cooper Physical Science Building, room 305
Muncie, IN 47306
Nanobiotechnology Center, Markey Cancer Center, College of Pharmacy, University of Kentucky (2014)
Bowling Green State University Ph.D. (2012)
National University of Uzbekistan M.S. (2007
National University of Uzbekistan B.S. (2005)
Our laboratory is focused on RNA nanotechnology and involves the design, construction, and application of RNA based nanoparticles. RNA nanotechnology is a vigorous, and rapidly emerging with strong potential for application in diverse fields from nanoelectronics to nanomedicine. RNA molecules not only encode genetic information, but they actively participate in various intracellular functions including gene expression regulation through sophisticated mechanisms; thereby expanding its traditional role as a genetic messenger and revealing it as a functionally versatile molecule. Small interfering and microRNAs (siRNAs and miRNAs, respectively), ribozymes, rib switches, ribosomal RNA, transport RNA (tRNA) are only a few examples of non-coding RNA (ncRNA) elements that play diverse roles in mediating gene expression. To achieve their functions, RNAs fold into a complex three dimensional (3D) architectures. Inspired by these natural 3D RNA elements, the development of artificial or reengineered RNA nanoparticles that will efficiently function in variety of intracellular processes as “smart” nanodevises is our main research interest.
Our research projects are highly interdisciplinary and combine chemistry, biology, physics and material science. Our ultimate goal is the development of new strategies for controlled self-assembly of functional RNA nanoparticles with implications in areas as diverse as nanoelectronics, biosencing, and nanomedicine. Our projects provide students with extensive training in RNA 3D design and with various biochemical techniques including DNA/RNA labeling, PCR, RNA synthesis (in vitro transcription), gel electrophoresis, protein over expression and isolation, Fluorescent and UV- Vis spectroscopy, UV-melting, Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM), Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM).
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