Annual Symposium

Once again the IDP Subgroup’s Symposium was highly successful with an overcapacity audience. This year the Subgroup jointly hosted two keynote speakers with the newly formed Biopolymers in Vivo Subgroup. The first keynote lecture was given by Christopher Dobson, University of Cambridge, who discussed the intrinsic properties of proteins to misfold and to form aggregates. In his lecture, Dobson described the mechanism of aggregate nucleation and their inhibition, from both the experimental and theoretical perspectives. The second keynote lecture was given by Peter Wolynes, University of California, San Diego, who discussed how water molecules could be directly involved in supporting protein folding and association. In particular, water-mediated interactions between polar and charged residues are likely to be common in IDPs that are rich with charged residues.

Collin Stultz, MIT, followed the joint keynotes with a description of work in his laboratory on the use of Bayesian statistics to describe IDPs in solution. Rahul Das, Washington University, gave a Postdoctoral Research Award presentation on the intrinsic alpha-helicity observed in disordered basic regions of bZIP transcription factors. This was followed by Elizabeth Rhoades, Yale, who talked about her work on evidence of allosteric control of interactions between alphasynuclein and membranes. Joan-Emma Shea, University of California, San Diego, ended this session with a discussion of the aggregation properties of IAPP, an IDP implicated in type II diabetes.

After a short break, Trevor Creamer, University of Kentucky, described his work on the disordered regulatory domain of calcineurin and how this folds when calmodulin binds. This was followed by Terry Oas, Duke University, who discussed his studies of the induced folding of RnaseP, including the application of his fl x-based analysis to understand coupled folding and binding mechanisms. Loren Hough, Rockefeller University, gave the second Postdoctoral Research Award presentation on the intrinsically disordered FG Nups found in nuclear pore complexes. Gerhard Hummer, NIDDK/NIH, described work from his laboratory on computer simulations of IDPs. Elizabeth Komives, University of California, San Diego, finished the Symposium with a description of her work on intrinsic disorder in NFkB-IkB interactions and how it impacts function.

The subgroup officers would like to thank all of the speakers and the Co-Chairs for making the 2011 IDP subgroup symposium a big success. The detailed program can be found at the Subgroup website.

Subgroup Award Winners

The Subgroup is proud to announce the following winners of the Postdoctoral Travel Awards: Vladimir Bamm, University of Guelph; Rahul Das, Washington University; Allan Ferreon, The Scripps Research Institute; and Loren Hough, Rockefeller University.

The SRAA Poster Award winners from the Subgroup include William Elam,Johns Hopkins University; Albert Mao, Washington University; Elizabeth Middleton,Yale University; Natasha Pirman, University of Florida; and Davit Potoyan, University of Maryland.

New Subgroup Officers

David Eliezer and Gary Daughdrill completed their terms as Subgroup Chair and Secretary-Treasurer, and the Subgroup offers its thanks for their efforts during the past year. Elisar Barbar and Jianhan Chen took over as Subgroup Chair and Secretary-Treasurer. The Subgroup also elected Doug Barrick and Steven Metallo as the next Chair and Secretary-Treasurer. Tanja Mittag and Ashok Deniz were elected as Co-Chairs for the 2012 IDP Subgroup Symposium. The new Council members include Sarah Bondos and Alla Kostyukova. The Subgroup is particularly excited about two junior officers, Lisette Fred from Georgetown University as the Graduate Student Representative and Ryan Hoffman from University of California, San Diego as the Postdoctoral Representative.

Jianhan Chen, IDP Secretary-Treasurer


First BIV Symposium Packed!

The inaugural symposium for the Biopolymer Biophysics in Vivo Subgroup (now officially named Biopolymers in Vivo or BIV) at the Baltimore Annual meeting in March was a great success. The room was overfull for the talks by the two keynote speakers we shared with IDP, Chris Dobson and Peter Wolynes, as well as for the subgroup’s own following session. In the evening, we had a lively dinner party where student awards were handed out to Antonios Samiotakis, Ankur Jian, Alexander Christiansen, and honorable mention undergraduate Megan Scoppa.

At the 2011 business meeting the following officers were elected: Subgroup Chair (2011-2012), Margaret Cheung, University of Houston; Subgroup Chair-Elect (2011-2012), becomes Chair in 2012-2013), Pernilla Wittung-Stafshede, Umeå University; Treasury-Secretary (2011-2013), Michael Feig, Michigan State University; two Program Chairs (2011-2012): Gary Pielak, University of North Carolina and Huan-Xiang Zhou, Florida State University; three-year member-at-large (2011-2014), Joan Shea, University of California, Santa Barbara; two-year member-at-large (2011-2013), Gerhard Grobner, Umeå University; and oneyear member-at-large (2011-2012), Michael Raghunath, National University of Singapore.

We thank speakers, officers, members, and everyone involved. Please, tell your friends to become members. Next year, our goal is to have a new stellar symposium!

Margaret Cheung, Subgroup Chair and Pernilla Wittung-Stafshede, Treasury-Secretary

May 2011 Table of Contents