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Kramer, Jessica

Jessica Kramer

University of Utah

Date: Monday, June 13, 2022
Talk Time: 11:10 am - 11:35 am
Talk Title: Synthetic Mucins by NCA Polymerization

Dr. Kramer joined the Department of Bioengineering at the University of Utah in January, 2017. Dr. Kramer obtained an Honors B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Utah, where she performed undergraduate research in the lab of Prof. C. Dale Poulter. She then worked in industry for Echelon Biosciences Inc. synthesizing phosphoinositide and isoprenoid compounds and related assay products. Dr. Kramer began graduate studies in the lab of Prof. Tim Deming in UCLA's Chemistry Department and obtained her Ph.D. in 2012. Her studies were partially funded by an NSF training grant. In 2013, Dr. Kramer joined the lab of Prof. Carolyn Bertozzi at UC Berkeley and Stanford as an NIH Postdoctoral Fellow and a UC Chancellor's Postdoctoral Fellow.

Dr. Kramer's research efforts have been recognized with numerous awards including an NSF CAREER award, the international Dream Chemistry Award, the Henkel Award for Outstanding Graduate Research in Polymer Chemistry, Norma Stoddart Prize, Saul and Sylvia Winstein Dissertation Award, Excellence in Graduate Polymer Research Award, and even presented an experiment for former Utah Governor and US presidential candidate John M. Huntsman.

Mucin glycoproteins are the major component of mucus. Mucus is essential for life, and serves as a physical barrier to hydrate, lubricate, and protect tissues. There are over twenty mucin genes with variable expression patterns, splicing, and post-translational glycosylation, which result in structures with discrete biochemical functions. Such diversity has challenged the study of structure-function relationships, while mucins play roles in infection, immunity, inflammation and cancer.

The Kramer lab is developing scalable methods, based on polymerization of amino acid N-carboxyanhydrides, to synthesize glycoproteins that capture the chemical and physical properties of native mucins. We are utilizing these synthetic mucins to engineer the glycocalyx of live cells to shed light on the role of glycans in health and disease. Areas of focus for our lab are progression of epithelial cancers, and infection processes in cystic fibrosis and COVID-19.

Jessica Kramer, talk image 2

Jessica Kramer
Jessica Kramer, talk image 1
Jessica Kramer, talk image 3