Good work: PhD student Serah Kimani won the best poster prize at the recent American Crystallographic Association meeting in Chicago.
Serah Kimani, a PhD student in the Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, won best poster prize at the recent American Crystallographic Association meeting, held in Chicago.
Her work is a study of the catalytic site of the amidases, a member of a family of important industrial enzymes that are also (in other contexts) potential drug targets.
Kimani's work was described as "exceptional", not only because of its volume - she has determined some 20 protein structures to high resolution - but also because of its innovative approach. She has captured a number of intermediate states of the enzyme by mutating key catalytic residues and then crystallising the enzyme after reaction with its substrate.
Kimani says she is positive about the future of structural biology in Africa.
"My work shows that, if given support, Africans can compete with the best in the world."
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