First published on August 26, 2021
We welcome Dr. Rebecca Berlow, who will be joining the Biochemistry and Biophysics department as an Assistant Professor on January 24, 2022. Dr. Berlow is a biophysicist and structural biologist whose research focuses on understanding the relationship between protein dynamics and biological function, with a particular interest in intrinsically disordered proteins and their diverse roles in biology and disease.
Dr. Berlow’s research is guided by the premise that most proteins adopt different structures to carry out their various biological functions. A better understanding of how protein conformational states interconvert in different biological contexts will inform new strategies for selectively targeting disease-associated proteins. The ultimate research goal of the Berlow lab will be to integrate information about the relationship between protein dynamics and functional outcomes obtained from biophysical and structural approaches to identify new therapeutic strategies for modulating the function and dysfunction of dynamic molecules in a wide range of diseases, including cancer.
Prior to joining the faculty at UNC, Dr. Berlow obtained her B.A. in Chemistry from Johns Hopkins University and her Ph.D. in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry from Yale University under the mentorship of Professor J. Patrick Loria. Most recently, Dr. Berlow has been working as a postdoctoral fellow and staff scientist at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, CA, where her research with Professor Peter Wright and Professor Jane Dyson has established new paradigms for describing the regulatory roles of intrinsically disordered proteins in cellular signaling processes and disease.
Dr. Berlow brings additional expertise in solution NMR spectroscopy to the department and her laboratory will utilize an interdisciplinary approach combining biophysics, structural biology, and complementary biological and chemical approaches to characterize disease-associated molecules that coordinate cellular responses to molecular and environmental stress. Dr. Berlow will also be a full member of the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and a member of the Molecular and Cellular Biophysics Training Program.