Terry Oas (Primary)

Professor of Biochemistry
Duke Cancer Institute Member
Oas Lab, Primary Faculty
Research Interests: 

Bioinformatics, Computational Biology, Mass Spectrometry, NMR of Macromolecules, Physical Biochemistry, Protein Design, Protein Folding, Protein Structure, RNA Biochemistry, Structural Biology

Lab Location
Nanaline Duke Room 230 Durham, NC 27710
Office Location

Nanaline Duke Room 230C, Box 3711, Durham, NC 27710

(919) 684-4363

Our laboratory is primarily interested in the thermodynamics and kinetics of biomolecular conformational change reactions, ranging from local conformational heterogeneity to global protein folding reactions.  We study the mechanism by which these conformational reactions are controlled by ligand binding.  Systems of current interest include staphylococcal protein A, ribonuclease P, SPINACH-based ribosensors, and the unfolded state of bacteriophage λ repressor.  Our methods include NMR, circular dichroism, X-ray crystallography, small angle X-ray scattering, stopped-flow fluorescence and isothermal titration calorimetry.  We have developed approaches to fit our stopped-flow data to complex coupled binding/conformational reaction mechanisms.  These results allow us to describe a mechanism as an ensemble of pathways each of which has a fractional flux that determines its role in the overall reaction.  We have also developed a system to build structural models of flexible proteins base on continuous probability distributions of interdomain orientations.  Our data fitting is based on Bayesian Markov chain methods, which allow us to build informative models that are not over-parameterized.

Honors and Awards

PhD University of Oregon, 1986