Ozlem Demir is an Associate Project Scientist II in the Amaro Lab. She earned a PhD from the University of Florida's Department of Chemistry, and worked as a postdoctoral scholar in the Amaro Lab, initially at UC Irvine and now at UC San Diego. Ozlem has been working on various projects at molecular dynamics and quantum mechanics levels to aid drug discovery efforts for various diseases including cancer, African sleeping sickness, Chagas disease, and HIV. In these projects, she incorporates flexibility of active sites simulated by molecular dynamics into drug discovery efforts for biological targets working closely with various experimental collaborators. Outside work, Ozlem likes reading, listening to music, and hiking.
Daniel grew up near Chicago and was an undergraduate chemistry major at Hamilton College, in upstate New York. After college, he spent a year playing with mice in a lab at Columbia University before heading off to grad school in the University of Iowa’s Department of Chemistry. At Iowa Daniel worked in Amnon Kohen’s lab, where he measured enzyme kinetics—particularly isotope effects—as a probe for conformational dynamics during catalysis. During grad school he took an opportunity to visit Dan Major’s lab at Bar-Ilan University, in Israel, where he began to use molecular dynamics simulations to study enzymes. This led him to a post-doc in Qiang Cui’s lab at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he used hybrid quantum/classical simulations to study enzyme chemistry. Now that Daniel is at UCSD he is working with the Center for Aerosol Impacts on Chemistry of the Environment (CAICE) to determine if and how biomolecules that get incorporated into atmospheric aerosols affect the behavior of those aerosols. If he’s not simulating things, Daniel is probably playing rugby.