From the Department’s Molecular Instrumentation Center (MIC) to the set of user/core facilities at the California Nanosystems Institute (CNSI) to specialty assays, cleanrooms and high-throughput labs throughout the campus, UCLA provides the full spectrum of state-of-the-art instrumentation and one-of-a-kind high-tech measuring devices.
These instruments enable us to carry a high degree of Analytical chemistry research.
Our faculty are leaders in:
- single-molecule detection
- scanning probe and super-resolution microscopies
- NMR imaging, and
- bioanalytical mass spectroscopy
Moreover, we collaborate with colleagues throughout the university on developing and making available new generations of these technologies.
Faculty Research Summaries
Professor Anne M. Andrews
Professor Anne Andrews’s Lab seeks to understand how neurotransmitters, particularly serotonin, encode information related to anxiety, mood, and stress responsiveness. Nanoscale aptamer-field-effect transistor sensors, microelectrode voltammetry, and microdialysis methods are developed to probe neurochemical signaling at high spatial, temporal, and chemical resolution in vivo. Genetics, pharmacology, and developmental timing are used to investigate the etiology and treatment of anxiety and mood disorders and to advance personalized predictive medicine.
Professor Louis Bouchard
Professor Louis Bouchard and his group conduct experimental research in physical & analytical chemistry, materials science and bioengineering. The group has projects that deal with the development of novel materials, contrast agents & drug delivery systems for biomedical imaging, the study of flows in biological systems, high frequency electromagnetics, condensed matter and heterogeneous catalysis. His research group combines a range of laboratory and techniques from chemical synthesis to instrumentation development and various spectroscopies based on specific needs of the research. Projects are available for chemistry and engineering students.
Professor James U. Bowie
Professor James Bowie and his group are fascinated by protein structure, folding and stabilization. This interest has led them into three main areas: (1) learning how membrane proteins fold and how they can be stabilized; (2) the structures and biological functions of a biological polymer they discovered that is formed by a very common protein module called a SAM domain; and (3) developing and stabilizing enzyme pathways for the production of biofuels.
Professor Justin R. Caram
Professor Caram’s research leverages the detection, sorting, and timing of individual photons to unravel heterogeneity, complex chemical processes, and energy flow in nanomaterial and biological systems. He combines time correlated single photon counting (TCSPC) and path length interferometry to develop new spectroscopies that probe chemical systems across the visible and shortwave infrared. His group studies the influence of energetic disorder on optoelectronic materials and the complex chemistry of oxidative stress. His research has broad applications,from creating efficient light harvesting materials to understanding disease modalities.
Professor Xiangfeng Duan
Professor Xiangfeng Duan and his group’s interests include nanoscale materials, devices and their applications in future electronics, energy science and biomedical science.
Professor Miguel A. Garcia-Garibay
Research in the Garcia-Garibay group is based on a deep knowledge of molecular and supramolecular structure to addresses questions of chemical reactivity and molecular dynamics in the solid state. By controlling reactivity and motion, they are able to engineer reactions in crystals, develop green chemical processes, and, with fine-tuned amphidynamic crystals, advance the development of artificial molecular machines.
Professor James K. Gimzewski
Professor James Gimzewski focuses on nanoscale science and technology with an emphasis on mechanics on the nanoscale. His research consists of: (1) Nanomechanical dynamics and nanoarchitechtonics of living cells. This work is related to cancer, the action of drugs, environmental factors and other mutations in individual cells. The research pioneers the role of mechanics and cellular motion with the aim of developing new forms of medical diagnoses at the single cell level. (2) Use of biochemistry and AFM to gene profile DNA on the single molecule level. (3) Production of compact high energy beams of neutrons, photons, ions, and electrons using point source emitters coupled with piezoelectric and pyroelectric effects.
Professor Joseph A. Loo
The research interests of Professor Loo’s group include the development and application of bioanalytical methods for the structural characterization of proteins and post-translational modifications, proteomics-based research, and the elucidation of disease. The composition and structure of noncovalently-bound protein-protein and protein-ligand interactions are studied by electrospray ionization mass spectrometry and ion mobility.
Professor Heather D. Maynard
The Maynard group focuses on polymer chemistry and nano medicine. We design and synthesize polymeric mimics of natural molecules with the purpose of stabilizing proteins and siRNA. These materials are applied to wound healing, diabetes, and for the treatment of cancer. We also prepare polymers for conjugation of proteins to surfaces in specific orientations for diagnostics and biomaterials that control cell behavior.
Professor Ellen M. Sletten
The Sletten Group exploits the unique properties of fluorinated materials to develop diagnostic and therapeutic technologies. Research within the group encompasses an interdisciplinary mix of organic synthesis, fluorous chemistry, chemical biology, nanoscience, supramolecular chemistry, polymer synthesis, photophysics and pharmacology.
Professor Paul S. Weiss
Professor Paul Weiss leads an interdisciplinary research group which includes chemists, physicists, biologists, materials scientists, electrical and mechanical engineers, and computer scientists. Their work focuses on the atomic-scale chemical, physical, optical, mechanical and electronic properties of surfaces and supramolecular assemblies. He and his students have developed new techniques to expand the applicability and chemical specificity of scanning probe microscopies. They have applied these and other tools to the study of catalysis, self- and directed assembly, physical models of biological systems, and molecular and nano-scale electronics. They work to advance nanofabrication down to ever smaller scales and greater chemical specificity in order to connect, to operate, and to test molecular devices.
Professor Shimon Weiss
Professor Shimon Weiss and his group develop and apply ultrahigh-resolution, ultrahigh-sensitivity fluorescence imaging and spectroscopy tools to solving outstanding problems in chemistry & biology. Specifically, they utilize (i) single molecule spectroscopy to study conformational dynamics and transient interactions of proteins; (ii) superresolution and /or ultrasensitive imaging methods to watch life process in live cells on the molecular scale; (iii) activate and/or perturb physiological processes in live zebrafish on the single cell level; (iv) develop unique reagents and chemistries to carry out research topics mentioned.