Research Seminars @ Illinois

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Tailored for undergraduate researchers, this calendar is a curated list of research seminars at the University of Illinois. Explore the diverse world of research and expand your knowledge through engaging sessions designed to inspire and enlighten.

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Dean's Distinguished Lecture Series

Event Type
College of Liberal Arts & Sciences at Illinois
Illini Union Ballroom
wifi event
Mar 6, 2024   4:00 pm  
Prof. Zaida (Zan) Luthey-Schulten, Murchison-Mallory Endowed Chair in Chemistry
Originating Calendar
Chemistry - Public Events

Bringing a cell to life on a computer and in Minecraft

Presented by Zaida Luthey-Schulten, Professor in the Department of Chemistry  

Professor Zaida (Zan) Luthey-Schulten will describe her pioneering research into constructing 4D models of a living minimal cell. The 4D simulations integrate data from -omics, cryo-electron tomograms, DNA maps, fluorescent imaging, and kinetic experiments to initialize a realistic cell state as well as validate the states as they progress in time. Fundamental behaviors emerge from these simulations that reveal how the cell balances the demands of its metabolism, genetic information processes, and growth, offering insight into the principles of life. Validation by coarse-grained atomistic molecular dynamics simulations and experiments are critical steps in building functioning models for bacterial and eukaryotic cells.  As part of the Science and Technology Center’s education and knowledge transfer goals, Professor Luthey-Schulten’s team plans to bring these simulations to Minecraft, enabling players to explore a full living cell in this immersive 3D environment. 

About Professor Zaida Luthey-Schulten 

Zaida (Zan) Luthey-Schulten is the Murchison-Mallory Endowed Chair in Chemistry and director of the National Science Foundation’s Science and Technology Center for Quantitative Cell Biology (STC_QCB), which includes faculty from six disciplines as well as industry partners from Abberior Instruments, the J. Craig Venter Institute, and NVIDIA and collaborators from Germany, the Netherlands, and Sweden. In addition, she is an affiliate professor in the Department of Physics, the Beckman Institute, and the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology and a fellow of both the Biophysical and Physics societies. She received her PhD from Harvard University and came to the University of Illinois from the Technical University of Munich. Her research team is well-known for using their GPU-based software, Lattice Microbes, to create simulations in 4D (three dimensions in space + time) of a living minimal bacterial cell over its life cycle. 

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