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McKelvey School of Engineering

Brown School

BME Seminar: Felipe Quiroz, PhD

Thursday, December 7, 2023 | 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

Uncas A. Whitaker Hall, 218
6760 Forest Park Pkwy, St. Louis, MO 63105, USA

Presenting on “Programming and probing the self-assembly of intrinsically-disordered proteins”.

Felipe Quiroz, PhD, assistant professor of biomedical engineering at Georgia Tech, will speak on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023 at 10 a.m. CST in Whitaker Hall, room 218.

Abstract: Intrinsically-disordered proteins (IDPs) recently emerged as major drivers of self-assembly in nature. Mechanistically, their stimuli-responsive solubility in aqueous solutions is governed by liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS) dynamics. Intracellularly, for example, phase-separated IDP-assemblies orchestrate wide-ranging cellular mechanisms, from genome organization to cell division. These bioinspired insights suggest that IDPs are outstanding building blocks for cellular engineering and for the design of self-assembling “smart” materials. In this talk, I will present our progress toward programming and probing the LLPS behaviors of intrinsically-disordered proteins (IDPs), demonstrating their utility as self-assembling nanomaterials and as scaffolds for engineered organelles. I will highlight our two main approaches: (1) the engineering of lower and upper critical solution temperature LLPS behavior in IDP polymers; and (2) the development of genetically encoded sensors to probe the properties and functionality of intracellular IDP-assemblies and related biomolecular condensates. Dwelling in materials engineering, I will discuss how the syntax and architecture of IDP polymers control their ability to access novel LLPS behaviors, enabling the engineering of IDPs that form highly stable nanoparticles. Finally, I will discuss LLPS-inspired cellular engineering approaches for biomedical applications. Overall, my goal is to demonstrate the sequence-level control of IDP self-assembly as a powerful approach for biomedical engineering innovation.

Registration is required to attend virtually. Please register.

Event Type



McKelvey School of Engineering


Science & Technology, Medicine & Health

Biomedical Engineering


Event Contact

Mimi Hilburg

Speaker Information

Felipe G. Quiroz is Assistant Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University. Dr. Quiroz and his team mine protein self-assembly in engineered and biological material systems. He is a recipient of the NIH Director’s New Innovator Award and holds a Career Award at the Scientific Interface from Burroughs Wellcome Fund.

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