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Seminar Friday, December 7, 2018

Gregory Wiedman, PhD
Assistant Professor

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Seton Hall University

Biochemistry and Biophysics of the Cell Membrane and Consequences for Drug Delivery

The cell membrane is essential for cellular based life. The chemical and physical properties of the cell membrane determine whether molecules can get into the cell. Understanding these properties can lead to breakthroughs in treating all kinds of disease, from metastatic cancers to antimicrobial resistant microorganisms. This presentation will first describe the important physical-chemical properties of the cell membrane as it relates to small molecule (peptide)-membrane interactions. We'll then talk about the importance of therapeutic drug monitoring to treating diseases with small molecule drugs.  Finally, we will discuss potential new mechanisms to modulate the cell membrane composition and the consequences for drug delivery.

Dr. Gregory Wiedman is an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Seton Hall University.  He's fascinated by the cell membrane and by how important it is for life on this planet.  For this reason, he created the 3B (Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Biomaterials) Lab and uses every tool he can to create new molecules to probe this important cellular structure. 

Dr. Wiedman received his undergraduate degree at the University of Pennsylvania where he worked as an undergraduate researcher in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics as well as spending time working in the Bioengineering, Immunology, and Nuclear Medicine Departments.  He then pursued graduate work at The Johns Hopkins University.  At Hopkins, Dr. Wiedman developed methods of improving drug delivery using membrane active peptides.  As a postdoctoral researcher, Dr. Wiedman joined the lab of Dr. David S. Perlin at the Public Health Research Institute (PHRI) at Rutgers University.  In his time at PHRI, Dr. Wiedman worked in microbiology.  Now, as a professor at Seton Hall, Dr. Wiedman hopes to use his broad background to oversee interdisciplinary projects that span the areas of Biochemistry, Biophysics, and Biomaterials Engineering.

Dr. Wiedman’s laboratory, The 3B Lab studies the cell membrane and molecules that interact with cells/cell membranes using techniques from Analytical Chemistry (HPLC, Mass Spec, Impedance Spectroscopy, Circular Dichroism, and more!)   3B is also invested in the development of new molecules using both combinatorial approaches (using Peptide Screens, SELEX) as well as rational design (using crystal structural analysis, NMR, modeling). Furthermore The 3B Lab is actively training students and members in cell culture techniques (fungal, bacteria, mammalian) to help facilitate interdisciplinary work.