• Training Period: 2016-19, Undergraduate student
  • Prior Institution: University of Virginia
  • Prior Degree: BSc (2019)
  • Project Title: Dihydroorotase as a potential drug target to inhibit pyrimidine biosynthesis in pathogens
  • Current Position: MD candidate, Eastern Virginia Medical School, USA

Education:
  • James Madison High School, Vienna, VA (2015)
  • B.Sc. in Chemistry with Specialization in Biochemistry with University Distinction and ACS Certification, University of Virginia (2019)
Research Interest:
  • Dihydroorotase as a potential drug target to inhibit pyrimidine biosynthesis in pathogens
  • Tyrosine biosynthesis in bacteria and mechanisms of prephenate dehydrogenase inhibition
  • Actin-binding protein involved with neuronal morphogenesis in humans
  • Protein structure determination and refinement
Projects:
  • One of my projects includes the protein, dihydroorotase (DHO), which is necessary for de novo pyrimidine biosynthesis. Because this pathway is essential for pathogenic proliferation, DHO serves as an attractive drug target for the development of novel antimicrobial agents through inhibition. My goal is to contribute to the inventory of and classify all known DHO structures, as well as characterize all bound DHO ligands reported in the context of DrugBank. Examination of the similarities and differences between DHO from various species is thought to be an essential step in fighting the rise of antimicrobial resistance.
  • Another project of mine focuses on obtaining structural data for proteins with unknown functions studied by the Center for Structural Genomics of Infectious Diseases (CSGID). This requires optimizing crystallization conditions to generate previously unknown protein models. The overarching goal is to provide a novel understanding of how allosteric regulators, cofactors, and substrates affect protein conformation and function in different pathogenic organisms to assist in drug discovery and disease prevention.
CV:
  • Chemistry Departmental Award for Excellence, University of Virginia (2019)
  • Phi Beta Kappa (2018)
  • Intermediate Honors, University of Virginia (2017)
  • George Washington University School of Engineering and Applied Science Award (2014)

Publication with the Minor Lab

  1. Lipowska J, Miks CD, Kwon K, Shuvalova L, Zheng H, LewiƄski K, Cooper DR, Shabalin IG, Minor W (2019)
    Pyrimidine biosynthesis in pathogens - Structures and analysis of dihydroorotases from Yersinia pestis and Vibrio cholerae.
    Int. J. Biol. Macromol. 136: 1176-1187 [Pub Med ID: 31207330] [Pub Med Central ID: PMC6686667]

Structures with the Minor Lab