1. K-State home
  2. »Biochemistry & Molecular Biophysics
  3. »Department
  4. »News
  5. »Achievements

Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics

Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biophysics
141 Chalmers Hall
1711 Claflin Rd.
Manhattan, KS 66506
785-532-7278 fax

Biotechnology Core Facility
206 Burt Hall
785-532-6297 fax

Biomolecular NMR Facility
37 Chalmers Hall

Recent Department Achievements

Faculty Achievements

  • Michael Kanost's NIH grant was renewed for years 27-31: Proteinase systems in insect hemolymph. NIH GM041247, 4/1/16 - 3/31/21, $1,875,000.
  • Lawrence Davis is part of an international consortium that received a $300,000 grant from NATO for a project entitled “New Phytotechnology for Cleaning Contaminated Military Sites.”
  • Saurav Misra received a core utilization grant from the University of Kansas COBRE-PSF for "Interaction mapping to understand how Bag2 protects oncogenic p53 mutants" ($2,700).
  • Jianhan Chen’s lab received a grant from NIH: 1/01/16 – 12/31/20, NIH R01 GM114300-01A1 (PI: Chen), “Multi-scale enhanced sampling of disordered proteins” $1,443,750 (total cost) (Co-Is: Michal Zolkiewski and Om Prakash)
  • John Tomich received a grant from SmartVet Holdings in Olathe, KS for “Surface absorption of BAPCs in Porcine Model.” (December 2015)
  • Maureen Gorman received a University Small Research Grant for "Pilot studies of iron uptake mechanisms in insects," $2,147, November 2015.
  • Saurav Misra was awarded an Innovative Research Award from the Johnson Cancer Center (March 2016).
  • John Tomich was a finalist for the U.S. State Department Jefferson Fellowship (December 2015).
  • Michael Kanost received the John V. Osmun Alumni Professional Achievement Award in Entomology, Purdue University (November 2015).
  • Michael Kanost was named a Fellow of the Entomological Society of America at an awards ceremony at the Annual Meeting of the society in Minneapolis, 11/15/15.
  • Anna Zolkiewska was invited to serve as a permanent member of an NIH study section (Molecular Oncogenesis) for the 2016-2022 term (Sept 2015).
  • Lawrence Davis served with Larry Erickson as the program committee for the 12th International Conference of the International Phytotechnologies Society in Manhattan, KS, Sept 27-30. More than 200 people, representing over 25 countries were in attendance. About 80 posters and more than 150 oral presentations were made. 
  • Tim Durrett chaired the session on "Genetic Modification Studies" at the 12th International Phyotechnologies Conference (Sept 27-30, Manhattan, KS).
  • Anna Zolkiewska became a member of the Faculty Senate for the 2015-2018 term (Sept 2015).
  • Michael Kanost was selected as a Fellow of the Entomological Society of America. (August 2015)

Student Awards and Scholarships

  • Samuel Broll (undergrad) was inducted into the Phi Beta Kappa academic honor society (May 2016).
  • Samuel Broll (undergrad) received two scholarships through the K-State Office of International Programs to study abroad in Costa Rica (May 2016).
  • Adam Schieferecke (undergrad) was awarded the 2016 Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship (April 2016).
  • Alyssa Belford (undergrad) received an Undergraduate Research Award from the K-State Office of Undergraduate Research & Creative Inquiry to work with Saurav Misra this summer (March 2016).
  • Rachel Proteau (undergrad) received the Big 12 Conference's highest academic honor for student athletes, the Dr. Gerald Lage Academic Achievement Award (March 2016).
  • Jordan Strickler (undergrad) was selected as a member of the Mortar Board Senior Honor Society at K-State (March 2016).
  • Bailey Porter (undergrad) was selected as a member of Chimes, K-State's junior honorary (March 2016).
  • Ann McLean and Sarah Plum (undergrads) were selected as members of Silver Key, K-State's sophomore leadership honorary (March 2016).
  • Muriel Eaton and Adam Schieferecke (undergrads) were nominated for the 2016 Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship (February 2016).
Fall 2015 Undergraduate Cancer Research Awardees
  • Will Smith—Mentor: John Tomich—Designing a second generation of peptide nano-capsules for intra-cellular release of encapsulated cargo
  • Emily Wedeman—Mentor: John Tomich—Development of an in-gel digestion standard for the protein interactome
  • Kayla Wilkinson—Mentor: John Tomich—Preparation of peptide nanotubes using Double Stranded Oligo-Nucleotides as Template
  • Molly Zych—Mentor: Erika Geisbrecht—Dissecting the subcellular localization and function of the evolutionarily conserved Drosophila Importin-7 (Dim7) protein


  • Timothy Durrett gave a seminar at the World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology (April 17-20, San Diego) entitled, "Targeted metabolic engineering of Camelina sativa to synthesize high levels of acetyl-TAG oils with reduced viscosity and crystallization temperature."
  • Jose Aznar-Moreno (postdoc, Durrett) gave a seminar at the American Society for Plant Biologists’ southern section meeting (April 2-4, Denton, TX) entitled, "Using genome editing to alter oil production in Camelina sativa."
  • Jianhan Chen gave an invited talk at the 251st ACS National Meeting in San Diego, "Multi-scale modeling of IDP structure and interaction."
  • Tim Durrett gave a seminar for the Department of Biochemistry, Biophysics, & Molecular Biology at Iowa State University on March 24 entitled "Exploring MBOAT Substrate Specificity to Increase Production of Low Viscosity Oil."
  • Cathernie Kornacki (grad, Durrett) gave a presentation about her research entitled “Biofuels! The Power of Plants” at "Science on Tap" on Feb 24, 2016 at the Tallgrass Tap House. The event was co-hosted by the College of Arts and Sciences and the Sunset Zoo.

Research and Exhibitions

  • Nicole Green (grad, E. Geisbrecht) presented two posters at The Allied Genetics Conference (July 12-17, Orlando, FL) entitled "Drosophila Fondue is a critical extracellular matrix organizer during muscle attachment and coagulation" and "'Moving' AP Biology forward: Using Drosophila-optimized wrMTrck to examine muscle mutants."
  • Saurav Misra presented a poster entitled “Structure-Function Analysis of the N-terminal Inhibitory Domain of the Cochaperone Bag2” at the 2016 Meeting on Protein Homeostasis in Health and Disease, Cold Spring Harbor, New York, Apr. 18-22, 2016.