Seminars | This Week

CASB seminars

Date/Time: Thursday 14th December 2017 12:30

Location: Seminar Room 3.142, QBP Bldg 80, UQ St Lucia

Title of talk: Discoveries and evolutionary relationships in cyclotide biosynthesis
Speaker's name: Dr. Edward K. Gilding
Speaker's organisation: Institute for Molecular Bioscience, UQ
Talk abstract: For the better part of two decades research into the structure and production of cyclic peptides termed cyclotides has progressed always with an eye on their potential use as drugs or agrichemicals. Cyclotide biosynthesis requires two primary ingredients, a gene-encoded precursor sequence and an enzyme that circularises the precursor into the mature structure. Whilst we have gathered ever-larger amounts of data, namely sequence data of cyclotides, their precursors and the enzymes that appear to cyclize them, what could these datasets tell us about cyclotides when we look at it from the perspective of evolution and functions within the plant? In this talk I will focus on a plant-centric view of cyclotide production and evolution to encourage researchers to think more about their precursor sequence and structure and propose constraints that may affect the production of designer cyclotides in planta. First, I will explore the lack of evidence that supports a single origin of cyclotides in evolutionary history, yet curiously, sequences and biophysical properties are deployed in similar ways across unrelated plant families. Secondly, I will describe the curious and repeated recruitment of asparaginyl endopeptidases to serve as cyclization enzymes and the structural changes they acquire in plant species that naturally produce cyclotides.

Host name: Prof David Craik
Host email:

Seminars | This Week

QBI Seminar

Date/Time: Wednesday 20th December 2017 11:00

Location: QBI Auditorium

Title of talk: Haptics: Science, Technology, and Applications
Speaker's name: Professor Mandayam A. Srinivasan
Speaker's organisation: Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Talk abstract: Haptics is a rapidly emerging area concerned with computation, cognition, and communication underlying touch interactions in humans and machines. In this lecture, Professor Srinivasan will present the scientific and technological underpinnings of Haptics. He will also cover exciting applications of Haptics demonstrated by his group, such as virtual reality based simulators for training surgeons, real-time touch interactions between people across the internet and direct control of machines from brain neural signals. He will summarize more recent results that include haptic exploration and manipulation at micro/nano precision, C. elegans biomechanics of touch, autonomous robotic fingertips, and human - machine interactions in healthcare applications.

Host name: Deirdre Wilson
Host email: