MRI: Acquisition of Equipment to Study Biological Interactions

  • Gindt, Yvonne (PI)
  • Husic, H. David H.D. (CoPI)
  • Miles, William W.H. (CoPI)
  • Rutherford, Jennifer J.L. (CoPI)

Project Details


With this award from the Major Research Instrumentation (MRI) program, Yvonne M. Gindt and her colleagues H. David Husic, William H. Miles and Jennifer L. Rutherford at Lafayette College will acquire an isothermal titration calorimeter (ITC) and a stopped flow mixer and spectrometer. They will be used in a variety of projects including: 1) mapping the binding of UV-damaged DNA to photolyase and VcCry1, enzymes that repair DNA using blue-light; 2) measuring the kinetics of DNA binding to photolyase; 3) studies of carbonic anhydrase, an enzyme which enhances the efficiency for carbon dioxide utilization for photosynthesis; 4) measurement of the kinetics of the ring-chain tautomerism of gamma-hydroxybutenolides; and 5) measurement of the kinetics of two industrially important reactions, non-cryogenic lithiations and palladium-catalyzed cross-coupling reactions, to elucidate mechanistic details of the reactions.

Isothermal titration calorimetry is used to determine thermodynamic properties of chemical reactions, or of the binding of small molecules to other species by measuring temperature changes when substances are mixed (titrated). A stopped-flow apparatus is similarly used for rapid mixing and monitoring of subsequent changes using spectroscopic techniques to observe the progress of a reaction. These changes provide insight on the underlying microscopic processes that are occurring, such as the energy released in a reaction or the strength of the binding between two species or the speed of a reaction. The instruments will be used in research and laboratory classes by undergraduate students. The equipment will also strengthen existing collaborations between Lafayette College and Montclair State University with a substantial enrollment of underrepresented students.

Effective start/end date9/1/098/31/12


  • National Science Foundation: $199,666.00


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