Jolyn Duan

About Jolyn Duan

This author has not yet filled in any details.
So far Jolyn Duan has created 81 blog entries.

Dr. Greg Fairn wins the 2017 Walter A. Shaw Young Investigator Award!

Dr. Greg Fairn, St. Micahel’s Hospital and Assistant Professor in the Departments of Biochemistry and Surgery, has won the 2017 Walter A. Shaw Young Investigator Award in Lipid Research from the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Dr. Fairn is also the first Canadian to win this award.

The award recognizes outstanding research contributions in the area of lipids by young investigators who are an Assistant professor or […]

9 August 2016|

Seeing the first steps of DNA repair

The laboratories of John Rubinstein and Frank Sicheri (Biochemistry), and Dan Durocher (Molecular Genetics) have used electron cryomicroscopy (cryo-EM) to determine the structure of the DNA-damage recognizing protein 53BP1 bound to modified nucleosome core particles. The work, published in Nature (, was led by postdoctoral fellow Marcus Wilson and research associate Samir Benlekbir and provides the first structural insight into how dimethylation and ubiquitination of nucleosomes in […]

2 August 2016|

Undergraduate Summer Students Share their Research

Each summer, the competitive Biochemistry Summer Student Research Program provides outstanding students with the unique opportunity to engage in research throughout the department. On Thursday July 21, 2016 students were able to share their findings in an annual poster session, outlining the goals of their project and describing their results.

22 July 2016|

Andrews’ lab identifies potential new drug combinations for chronic lymphocytic leukemia

In a paper recently published in the journal Blood, Dr. David Andrews’ group used high-content screening to test 320 kinase inhibitors and identify ones that, when given in combination with venetoclax, can overcome resistance to the drug. Venetoclax inhibits the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 and received breakthrough status from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration this year. It is available in the U.S. to treat patients with chronic lymphocytic […]

8 July 2016|

When molecular chaperones misbehave

Walid Houry’s group together with Simon Sharpe’s group and others at the University of Toronto unexpectedly discovered that a bacterial chaperone forms amyloids under physiologically-relevant acidic conditions at elevated temperatures. The work has been accepted in Structure. Experimental and theoretical studies revealed that the folded core of one of the domains of the chaperones is amyloidogenic and is protected by its N-terminal loop. While molecular chaperones are […]

5 July 2016|

The 66th Annual Conference of the Canadian Society of Microbiologists – a huge success!

On June 12-15, the 66th annual Canadian Society of Microbiologists led by co-chairs Trevor Moraes and Alex Ensminger was held at the University of Toronto hosted for the first time in over 30 years. CSM2016 was a resounding success with over 525 registrants the most ever recorded at a CSM conference. The conference was held on campus with >45 talks in MSB and >300 posters in Hart […]

27 June 2016|

Kelley lab screened for new pathways involved in the maintenance of mitochondrial DNA

In a paper recently published in Nature Chemical Biology, Simon Wisnovsky in Kelley laboratory describes a high-throughput screening study that leverages small-molecule probes to look for new DNA repair and replication factors in human mitochondria.  The study uncovered a DNA polymerase that is essential for mitochondrial function that had never been observed in the organelle before.  Given the importance of mitochondria as cellular energy generators and trigger points […]

6 June 2016|

Howell lab develop novel ways to treat chronic bacterial infections

Bacterial biofilms represent a significant medical challenge due to the inability of therapeutics and the immune system to penetrate this protective coating. In a paper published online on May 20, 2016 in Science Advances, the Howell lab identified and produced two enzymes that the Gram-negative pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa use to synthesis two exopolysaccharides, to degrade this critical component of the biofilm. The enzymes, known as glycoside hydrolases, do […]

3 June 2016|

Understanding the Molecular Underpinnings of Cell Signaling through GPCRs

A class of receptors responsible for regulating neuronal function is part of the focus of a recent study by the Prosser and Ernst labs at UofT. Their paper, “Activation of the A2A adenosine G-protein-coupled receptor by conformational selection,” appears in the latest edition of the journal Nature

There is a great deal of interest in understanding this broad class of cell signaling receptors called GPCRs (G-Protein-coupled receptors), which are responsible for basic processes such […]

17 May 2016|

Strategic Networking for Graduate Students

Dr. Nana Lee’s article on networking was just published yesterday in University Affairs.

For those who have taken her course, hope this refreshes your notes. For future students, enjoy the strategies in advance.

19 April 2016|

BCH Alum Vincent Nadeau and GPD featured in U of T Magazine

The Spring issue of U of T Magazine features our own GPD course and alum Vincent Nadeau. Masha Cemma, also featured in the article, is a 2012 graduate of Dr. Nana Lee’s GPD class.

5 April 2016|

Rubinstein lab found one of the missing puzzle pieces in the structure of the vacuolar type ATPase

Vacuolar-type ATPases (V-ATPases) are ATP-powered proton pumps involved in numerous essential processes in the cell. The Rubinstein laboratory has recently used cryo-EM to determine 3D structures of the V-ATPase (Zhao et al. 2015, Nature) and the related mitochondrial ATP synthase (Zhou et al. 2015, eLife). These cryo-EM studies have also demonstrated remarkable conformational heterogeneity in the enzymes. While conformational heterogeneity is biologically interesting, it has limited the ability to get atomic resolution structures […]

1 April 2016|