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Copley, Shelley Professor

Positions

Research Areas research areas

Research

research overview

  • Research in the Copley lab centers on the molecular evolution of catalysts and metabolic pathways. Enzymes in metabolic pathways are superb catalysts, accelerating chemical reactions by up to 16 orders of magnitude. Many enzymes also catalyze adventitious secondary reactions, simply because active sites are loaded with highly reactive acids, bases, nucleophiles, metal ions, and cofactors. Although these “promiscuous” activities are inefficient, they provide a repertoire of activities that can be drawn upon if conditions change and catalysis of a secondary reaction becomes important for fitness. Projects in the lab seek to identify biochemical and physiological factors that influence the potential for evolution of novel activities from promiscuous enzymes. Other projects focus on the assembly of promiscuous activities into novel combinations that allow microbes to degrade a novel carbon source or bypass a metabolic block caused by a genetic lesion.

keywords

  • molecular evolution of enzymes and metabolic pathways, the evolutionary potential of promiscuous enzymes in the context of complex metabolic and regulatory networks, mechanistic enzymology

Publications

selected publications

Teaching

courses taught

  • MCDB 4310 Microbial Genetics and Physiology (Spring 2019)
  • MCDB 4990 Honors Thesis (Spring 2019)
  • MCDB 5310 Microbial Genetics and Physiology (Spring 2019)
  • MCDB 6000 Introduction to Laboratory Methods (Spring 2019)
  • MCDB 8990 Doctoral Dissertation (Spring 2019)
  • MCDB 2840 Lower-Division Independent Study (Fall 2018)
  • MCDB 4990 Honors Thesis (Fall 2018)
  • MCDB 6000 Introduction to Laboratory Methods (Fall 2018)
  • MCDB 8990 Doctoral Dissertation (Fall 2018)
  • MCDB 4310 Microbial Genetics and Physiology (Spring 2018)
  • MCDB 4840 Upper-Division Independent Study (Spring 2018)
  • MCDB 4990 Honors Thesis (Spring 2018)
  • MCDB 5310 Microbial Genetics and Physiology (Spring 2018)
  • MCDB 6000 Introduction to Laboratory Methods (Spring 2018)
  • MCDB 8990 Doctoral Dissertation (Spring 2018)

Background

International Activities

global connections related to teaching and scholarly work (in recent years)

Other Profiles