September 5, 2012

Emmanuel Professor Awarded National Science Foundation Grant

National Science Foundation Logo

Assistant Professor of Physics Allen Price was recently awarded a National Science Foundation (NSF) Research in Undergraduate Institutions grant for his proposal "Developing models of facilitated diffusion for DNA-binding proteins." The proposal has been funded in full amount ($232,922), effective immediately, for a duration of three years.

This marks the first NSF grant awarded to Emmanuel College. Through the grant, Dr. Price will continue his work in determining how proteins that bind to specific sequences in DNA find their target sequences. He will continue to utilize two single molecule experimental techniques he has developed in order to detect and characterize facilitated diffusion of type II restriction endonucleases, enzymes that cleave double-stranded DNA. According to Dr. Price's project summary, the project will "produce more realistic models of in vitro-facilitated diffusion, which will assist in translating experimental results in these systems to biologically relevant conditions. Additionally, the project will contribute to the understanding of reaction-diffusion behavior in flow conditions encountered in microfluidic cells, a problem relevant to lab-on-a-chip applications."

As part of this research, Dr. Price will continue to train and employ undergraduate students in his lab, in addition to creating a summer workshop for local high school students and a professional development course for high school teachers.

The NSF Research in Undergraduate Institutions (RUI) activity supports research "by faculty members of predominantly undergraduate institutions through the funding of individual and collaborative research projects, the purchase of shared-use research instrumentation, and Research Opportunity Awards for work with NSF-supported investigators at other institutions."