Debashish Sahu – NMR Research Scientist


 Director, Biomolecular NMR Research Lab
LSA/LSI Core Facility
University of Michigan
Chemistry Building Room # 4015
930 N University Ave, Ann Arbor MI 48109

Phone: 734-647-3872


I am a “Molecular Biophysicist” who likes to use NMR as well as other biophysical techniques to study protein function. Proteins are not static molecules, but rather move around quickly and efficiently to carry out their function. These inner working of enzymes, transcription factors and huge macromolecules are fascinating to me.

At present, I am working as the Director of the BioNMR Core facility at University of Michigan. We provide a wide variety of NMR services for studying biomolecules. In addition to providing access to the NMR machines, we train researchers to successfully carry out state of the art NMR experiments.

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Previously, I have worked in the laboratory of Dr. David Boehr (Penn State University) on implementing and developing latest methyl-detected NMR experiments for studying allosteric networks of RNA dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp).

At Penn State University I worked with Dr. Scott Showalter on various projects ranging from computational MD simulations on RNA, micro-RNA structure mapping, to NMR based protein structure determination of well folded proteins and intrinsically disordered proteins. I also helped develop the carbon-detect NMR experiments for quick and efficient assignments of proteins.

During my graduate work, I was introduced to my Ph.D. advisor Dr. Junji Iwahara (UTMB), an expert in the field of NMR spectroscopy. I learned the inner workings of NMR instruments and the principles of NMR from my mentor and pursued to write NMR pulse sequences. In addition to NMR, I learned various computational methods including MATLAB, molecular biology, protein expression & purification techniques and fluorescence based stopped flow kinetics. I had successfully applied these techniques, mainly NMR to study kinetics of processes involving DNA binding proteins.

I pursued my bachelors in Industrial Biotechnology at Anna University where I was exposed to various aspects of Biotechnology from Immunology, Bioprocess Engineering, Microbiology to Computational Biology. I was intrigued by proteins and bio-physical techniques to analyze them. I worked with Dr. Gautam Pennathur (Anna University) to work on Bio-fuel cells and with Dr. B. Jayaram (IIT Delhi) to work on ab-initio protein folding problem.


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