Alexandrova, Anastassia N.

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Associate Professor
Structural Biology

Contact Information

607 Charles E Young Dr East / Young Hall 2077B UCLA, Los Angeles, CA 90095
(310) 825-3769
Student Office: Young Hall 3051
(310) 206-3215

Short Biography

Dr. Alexandrova obtained a B.S./M.S. Diploma in chemistry from Saratov University, Russia. Then, she briefly was a researcher at Vernadskii Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences in Moscow, Russia. She obtained her Ph.D. in theoretical physical chemistry from Utah State University with Professor Alexander Boldyrev. Her doctoral work was on novel small inorganic clusters and development of general theory of chemical bonding. She was a Postdoctoral Associate in computational biochemistry at Yale University, with Professor William Jorgensen, and then an American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellow in biophysics with Professor John Tully, also at Yale. She joined the UCLA faculty in 2009. The focus of her laboratory is computational and theoretical design and multi-scale description of new materials.

Research Interest

The principal effort of our research program is on computational design and multi-scale description of new materials, starting from the electronic structure, and building up to the molecular and nano-levels. Specifically, we have two major focuses: novel artificial metallo-enzymes and metallo-cluster-enzymes based on physiological and non-physiological transition metals and main group elements; and bio-mimetic doped catalytic surfaces. This ambitious pursuit requires simulations of systems in their entirety, and we develop the necessary methodology and algorithms. On the macro-scale, modeling entails mixed quantum mechanical (QM) and molecular mechanical (MM) treatments, sometimes in conjunction with statistically averaged, ensemble descriptions. On the atomic scale, the interplay between molecular structure and underlying electronic structure is in question, further calling for advancements in the general theory of chemical bonding, and tools for the unbiased search for the most stable structural forms and transition states. We collaborate with experimental laboratories in molecular biology, surface science, and spectroscopy. Ideologically, this research program is directed toward solving medicinal and energy-related problems facing humankind, and it is facilitated by these outlined methodological and fundamental advancements.

Honors & Awards

2016 Fulbright Fellow
2015 Rising Star Award of the WCC American Chemical Society
2014 NSF Career Award
2013 Sloan Research Fellowship
2011 DARPA Young Investigator Award
2011 American Chemical Society YCC Leadership Development Award
2008-2010 American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellowship
2005 Utah State University Robins Award: Graduate Research Assistant of the Year
2005 The Excellence Award of the Chemical Computing Group of the American Chemical Society
2004-2005 USU School of Graduate Studies Dissertation Fellowship
2004-2005 Claude E. ZoBell Scholarship
2000 M.S. Honor Diploma (Summa cum laude)
2000 Winner of the Russian Regional Student Olympiad in Chemistry
1997-1999 The Scholarship of the Government of Russian Federation for outstanding scientific and academic achievements


[ Selected Recent Publications ]

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