Current Lab Members

 

Paul Thompson, PhD

Principal Investigator
Professor and Director of Chemical Biology 

LRB 825
Tel: 508-856-8492

Dr. Paul Thompson received his BSc and PhD degrees from McMaster University in Canada before moving to the US to take a postdoctoral position with Philip Cole at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine.  Paul then moved to the University of South Carolina to begin his independent career before moving to the Department of Chemistry at The Scripps Research Institute, Scripps Florida, in May 2010.  Paul subsequently moved to UMASS Med in Aug 2014.  Paul has published more than 95 articles in major scientific journals including Nature, Cell, Nature Structural and Molecular Biology, and the Journal of the American Chemical Society.  Paul has also won a number of awards including a Canadian Institutes of Health Research Postdoctoral Fellowship and a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award.

   

Heather Loring

Graduate Student

LRB 860C
 
Heather’s research is focused on characterizing the enzymatic mechanism and structure of SARM1, a novel NAD glycohydrolase that plays an important role in neuronal cell death and peripheral neuropathy. The development of inhibitors targeting this enzyme will provide therapeutic benefit for a range of diseases.

   

Santanu Mondal, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

LRB 860C
 
Santanu is currently working on the design, synthesis and biological evaluation of inhibitors targeting the PAD family of enzymes. His work also focuses on the development of isozyme-selective inhibitors and probes for the PADs.

   

Mitesh Nagar, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

LRB 860C
Tel: 508-856-8874
 
Mitesh’s research is focused on identifying “Readers” of citrullination as well as a putative decitrullinase. This effort uses a combination of chemical biology tools and proteomics to identify these interpreters of citrullination.

    

Padmavathy Nandha Premnath, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

LRB 860C
 
Padma is currently working on the design, synthesis and biological evaluation of inhibitors targeting the PAD family of enzymes. Her research is specifically focused on the development of a PAD3 specific inhibitor and using this compound to decipher the biology of this poorly characterized PAD isozyme. 

   

Venkatesh Nemmara, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

LRB 860C
 
Venky’s research is focused on using proteomic approaches to uncover the targets and off targets of our PAD selective inhibitors as well as using proteomic methods to identify the citrullinated biomarkers associated with rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and breast cancer. 

   

Son Nguyen, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

LRB 860C
 
Son is currently focused on identifying citrullinated biomarkers associated with Rheumatoid Arthritis and lupus.  In addition, Son is adapting a quantitative proteomics platform for use with our glyoxals based probes.

   

Sangram Parelkar, PhD

Sr. Research Scientist
Manager of of Small Molecule Screening Facility 

LRB 860D
 
Using High Throughput and High Content based biochemical and cellular approaches, Sangram is working towards discovering novel small molecule therapeutic candidates for various biological processes.
More info about SMSF: 
http://www.umassmed.edu/smsf/

   

Ari Salinger, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

LRB 860C
 
Ari is currently focused on using chemoproteomic methods to identify citrullinated proteins and disease associated biomarkers.  This work is being performed jointly with the Weerapana group at Boston College.

   

Sudeshna Sen, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

LRB 860C
 
Sudeshna’s current research is focused on characterizing the catalytic mechanism and developing activity based probes forNNMT, a nicotinamide methyltransferase whose activity is aberrantly upregulated in cancer and other diseases. Inhibitors targeting NNMT represent promising anti-cancer therapeutics.

   

Ronak Tilvawala, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

LRB 860C
 
Ronak is currently focused on identifying citrullinated biomarkers associated with Rheumatoid Arthritis and breast cancer.  In addition, Ronak is studying the functional impact of these citrullination events on protein function, enzymatic activity and the generation of antibodies targeting citrullinated proteins.

   

Li Zheng, PhD

Postdoctoral Associate

LRB 860C
Tel: 508-856-8872
 
Li’s research is focused on identifying the factors that modulate the calcium dependence of the PADs using a combination of chemical proteomics to identify candidate interacting proteins mutagenesis of known post-translational modifications sites.

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