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Desamero, Ruel

Desamero, Ruel
Areas of Expertise:
  • Protein Biochemistry
  • Vibrational Spectroscopy
  • Time-resolved Studies
  • Temperature-jump Relaxation Techniques

My research is centered on investigating the structural and dynamical aspects of protein-small molecule interactions using techniques such as vibrational spectroscopy and T-jump relaxation. One aspect of the work is to understand enzyme-substrate interactions which have long been recognized as representing an extreme expression of structural complementarities in biological chemistry. Basic research geared towards understanding the inner workings of an enzyme system is important if cures for the diseases caused by a malfunctioning or deficient enzyme are to be found. Our group is investigating the hydride transfer mechanism involved in the enzyme dihydropteridine reductase. DHPR is important in the normal cycling of tetrahydrobiopterin, an essential cofactor in the synthesis of serotonin and cathecholamine precursors. Regulation of DHPR became of interest with the discovery of atypical phenylketonuria, a neurological disorder associated with a defect in tetrahydrobiopterin recycling.

Degree Institution Field Dates
PhD  University of Connecticut  Chemistry  1998