B.A. Physics Yale College 1982
M.A. History of Science University of California, Berkeley 1989
Ph.D. Biophysics University of California, San Francisco 1996
Post-doctoral Molecular and Cell Biology University of California, Berkeley 2002
Area(s) of Expertise
Our lab studies the structure and function of carbon fixing enzymes. Our goal is to engineer these enzymes to capture atmospheric CO2, the most abundant greenhouse gas. Currently we are studying the multi-domain biotin-dependent carboxylase complexes. These enzymes include pyruvate carboxylase and acetyl-CoA carboxylase which play essential roles in central metabolism and fat biosynthesis. We are studying the assembly of a unique thermophilic member of this family, Oxoglutarate Carboxylase (OGC), that carboxylase 2-oxogluatrate. Structural comparisons and the temperature-dependence of the enzyme kinetics provide insights into the rate-determining steps of the enzyme. Our goal is to identify mutations in the enzyme that optimize its activity at mesophilic temperatures. This will allow OGC to be added to a synthetic carbon fixation cycle designed to enhance the growth rate of plants utilized as feedstock for biofuels.
Buhrman G, Enríquez P, Dillard L, Baer H, Truong V, Grunden AM, Rose RB. Structure, Function, and Thermal Adaptation of the Biotin Carboxylase Domain Dimer from Hydrogenobacter thermophilus 2-Oxoglutarate Carboxylase. Biochemistry. 2021 Feb 2;60(4):324-345