Seminars

The MRSEC holds seminars presenting research at the frontier of Bioinspired Soft Materials. The seminars are targeted towards grad students and other researchers in the field, although everyone is invited to attend. As the topic is highly interdisciplinary, seminars are designed to be accessible to a wide range of backgrounds. 

MRSEC Seminars Organizers:
John Berezney (Dogic/Fraden Lab Postdoc)

Thursday, May 16, 2019
Rebecca Menapace and Bozhanka Vitanova, Brandeis Innovation Center
Title: An Introduction to the I-Corps Program for the MRSEC
The Brandeis Innovation Center will present an overview of the NSF-funded i-Corps Program and showcase how MRSEC research could have applications beyond campus. Attendees will get a sense of what it takes to connect their academic insights to industry applications and even create a new enterprise. If you've ever wondered how Bio-Inspired research could lead to innovation, this session is for you!
Abelson 229, 4PM

Thursday, May 23, 2019
Nathan Derr, Smith College
Title: Investigating cytoskeletal motor mechanisms and (bio)physical force integration using DNA origami
Abstract: Cytoplasmic dynein and kinesin-1 are opposite polarity microtubule-based motor proteins that contribute to essential aspects of eukaryotic cell biology, including mitosis and intracellular cargo transport. In vivo studies indicate that these motors often team-up in small ensembles to achieve their diverse tasks. Yet, how the myriad biochemical and biophysical properties of individual motors, and their cargos, contribute to the emergent motile properties of ensemble transport remains elusive. To investigate these aspects of multiple-motor driven cargo transport, we employ the molecular construction techniques of DNA origami to create well-defined systems of motor ensembles on customizable cargos. This approach enables us to both control and investigate how individual aspects of the motors and their cargo affect the ensemble’s motility. Our work focuses on how cargo shape, size, and rigidity interact with motor type and copy number to determine overall motility.  Our research trajectory has led us recently to design 1) spherical DNA origami structures for investigating the role of cargo geometry in ensemble transport, and 2) modular DNA origami structures for studying the (bio)physics of nano-scale force integration among teams of dynein motors.
Abelson 229, 4PM

Thursday, June 6, 2019
Ethan Levien, Postdoc Brandeis/Harvard
Abelson 229, 4PM

Thursday, June 20, 2019
Tim Fessenden, MIT Biology
Abelson 333, 4PM


 See past events.