Theoretical and computational approaches to investigate underlying molecular processes in macromolecular systems and in nanomedicine.
Our group is interested in developing and applying theoretical and computational approaches to investigate underlying molecular processes in macromolecular systems and in nanomedicine. Over the years, we became involved in several different projects. Below gives a short summary of each project on how we began and what we have achieved and what we are currently focusing on.
Plasmonic Properties of Metallic Colloidal Particles
Metallic colloidal nanoparticles such as gold or silver have very interesting plasmonic properties and have many interesting applications such as sensing or imaging. We became involved in this area of study mostly because of Dr. Xiaohua Huang who joined us here as a faculty member at Memphis. Dr. Huang worked with Prof. Mostafa El-Sayed during her Ph.D. training at Georgia Tech and she developed bioconjugated gold nanorods to kill cancer cells with photothermal therapy. Research activities in her group focus on the use of these novel metallic nanoparticles in biomedical applications, and we are intriqued in understanding the plasmonic properties of these metallic nanoparticles. Together, we hope to establish a better structure-property relationship of these metallic colloidal nanoparticles, particuarly those anistropic core-shell structured nanoparticles.
Polymer Based Gene delivery
Polymer are often used as delivery vehicles in gene and drug delivery systems since polymer chemists are capable of synthesizing and tailoring their srucutres in many different ways. When gene therapy became possible since early 1990's, polymer was sought after as a substitute of viral-based delivery vector since viral based delivery vector poses unknown immune responses. The strucutral aspect of how cationic polymers complex with nucleic acids and how these polymer cations assist in the successful gene delivery is what we aim to get a fuller understanding. We have been working in this area since 2008. Learn more about what we have achieved so far in this project by following the link.
A) NSF Tennessee solar conversion and storage using outreach, research and education (TN-SCORE), NSF Epscor award (1004083), UT is the leading Institute, amount award to UM is $1.2 million for a total of five years (UM team members: Wang, Fujiwara, Zhao, Laradji, Mishra). 8/31/2010-7/31/2015, role: senior investigator. 1.0 person-months per year
B) Multiscale molecular modeling of polymer based gene delivery vector. NIGMS/NIH, $314,493, 06/01/2013-05/31/2016, role: PI, 1.2 person-months per year
C) Capture and Detection of Circulating Tumor Cells in Whole Blood Using Hybrid Nanoparticles and Microfluidic Devices, FedEx Institute of Technology Innovation Fund, role: co-PI (Huang is the PI), $122,919; 02/01/2014-6/30/2015; 0.5 person-months per year
1. Interplay of Coil-Globule Transition and Surface Adsorption of a Lattice HP Protein Model, Meng-bo Luo, Jesse D. Ziebarth, Yongmei Wang, J. Phys. Chem. B, 118, 14913-14921 (2014) (doi:10.1021/jp506126d)
2. Impact of Core Dielectric Properties on the Localized Surface Plasmonic Spectra of Gold-Coated Magnetic Core-Shell Nanoparticles. Chaffin EA, Bhana S, O'Connor RT, Huang X, Wang Y. J Phys Chem B. 118, 14076-14084 (2014). doi:10.1021/jp505202k.
3. Comparison of monovalent and divalent ion distributions around a DNA duplex with molecular dynamics simulation and a Poisson-Botlzmann approach, Timothy J. Robbins, Jesse D. Ziebarth, Yongmei Wang, Biopolymer, 101, 834-848 (2014) (doi:10.1002/bip.22461)
4. Capture and detection of cancer cells in whole blood with magnetic-optical nanoovals, Saheel Bhana, Elise A. Chaffin, Yongmei Wang, Sanjay R. Mishra, and Xiaohua Huang, Nanomedicine, 9, 593-606 (2014) (doi:10.2217/nnm.13.77)
5. HPLC characterization of hydrogenous polystyrene-b-deuterated polystyrene using isotope effect, Sanghoon Lee, Hyojoon Lee, Lam Thieu, Youncheol Jeong, Taihyun Chang, Chao Fu, Yutian Zhu, Yongmei Wang, Macromolecules, 46, 9114-9121 (2013) (doi:10.1021/ma4018247)