Seminar Series

IDP Conversations

Date and Time

11 May 2022
11 AM (EDT) / 5 PM (CEST)

Session Link

The seminar series may be recorded and shared for later viewing.

Past Sessions

New Equilibrium presents IDP Conversations, a monthly seminar series focused on intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs). Our goal is to foster a multi-perspective discussion on modeling and targeting IDPs. Each seminar, featuring speakers across academia and industry, includes a 40-minute presentation followed by a conversation.

How Do Small Molecule Drugs Bind Intrinsically Disordered Proteins?

Intrinsically disordered proteins (IDPs), which represent ~40% of the human proteome, play crucial roles in a variety of biological pathways and biomolecular assemblies and have been implicated in many human diseases. IDPs do not fold into a well-defined three-dimensional structure under physiological conditions. Instead, they populate a dynamic conformational ensemble of rapidly interconverting structures. As a result, IDPs are extremely difficult to experimentally characterize in atomic detail and are currently considered “undruggable” by conventional structure-based drug design methods. Here, we describe recent progress in our efforts to integrate all-atom molecular dynamics (MD) computer simulations with biophysical experiments to characterize the interactions of IDPs with small molecule drugs and design more potent IDP inhibitors.

Speaker: Paul Robustelli, Ph.D.

Paul Robustelli, PhD. is an assistant professor of chemistry at Dartmouth College, where his research focuses on the integration of computational and experimental methods to study dynamic and disordered proteins. Dr. Robustelli utilizes computer simulations and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to model the conformational ensembles of intrinsically disordered proteins at atomic resolution to understand how small molecule drugs bind and inhibit disordered proteins and rationally design novel disordered protein inhibitors. Dr. Robustelli has made contributions to the development of physical models (“force fields”) that enable accurate simulations of disordered proteins and computational methods to integrate NMR data as restraints in molecular simulations.

Dr. Robustelli earned his B.A. in chemistry from Pomona College and his Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Cambridge. Before joining the chemistry faculty at Dartmouth, Paul worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Columbia University and a scientist at D.E. Shaw Research.

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