Lab Members

PhD Students

2000px-Stick_Figure.svg Michael Coste
Research: My research focuses on the design and synthesis of nucleoside analogues and nucleoside analogue ProTides that targets the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase of ZIKV and SARS-CoV-2 in order to gain a greater understanding of SAR and develop a lead compound to treat these diseases.
Background: BS in Chemistry from UC Merced, 2010. Undergrad research Professor Tao Ye. From Danville, CA
Interests: Motorcycles, fire poi, surfing, camping, music, dancing
2000px-Stick_Figure.svg M. Benjamin Turner
Research: I study the biophysical and photophysical properties of fluorescent nucleoside analogues. This includes measuring the insertion kinetics and fidelity that DNA polymerases exhibit when incorporating the analogues into DNA, labeling the DNA or RNA or living cells, and studying how structural features of duplex nucleic acids influence the fluorescent properties of the different analogues.
Background: BS in Molecular Biology from SDSU, 2015. Originally from San Diego
Interests: weight lifting, swimming, cosmology, cooking
2000px-Stick_Figure.svg George Samaan
Research: My research focuses on the design and synthesis of nucleoside analogues used against highly resistant bacteria. I am also developing fluorescent nucleosides to study biological systems and molecules. In addition, I am working on the development of a novel synthetic reaction to construct C-nucleosides.
Background: from Cairo, Egypt, 10 min from the Pyramids
Interests: soccer, reading, music, cooking

MS Students

2000px-Stick_Figure.svg Ani Shalamberidze
Research: My research is focused on the design and synthesis of fluorescent nucleoside analogues with enhanced properties and photophysical studies of these molecules.
Background: from Tbilisi, Georgia
Interests: traveling, TV shows
2000px-Stick_Figure.svg Jesús Ceja
Research: Currently specializing in organic synthesis of new fluorescent nucleosides & photophysical properties of fluorescent nucleosides in duplex form (DNA-DNA & DNA-RNA).
Background: B.S. in Chemistry from UC Santa Cruz / US Navy Veteran / originally from Los Angeles, CA
Interests: gym, classic rock & hanging out with my dogs
2000px-Stick_Figure.svg Dana Rosansky
Research: I am interested in exploring structure-photophysics relationships of fluorescent nucleoside analogues in addition to utilizing fluorescent probes to investigate viral nucleic acids.
Background: BA in biochemistry from the University of San Diego, originally from Pasadena, CA

Undergraduate Researchers

2000px-Stick_Figure.svg Mckenzie Wyllie
solvatochromic nucleoside analogues
2000px-Stick_Figure.svg Grace Kim
Research: My work in the Purse Lab entails organic synthesis and biochemistry to study spectroscopic properties of nucleoside analogue 8-DEA-tC, unique for its high turn-on effect when paired in double-stranded DNA.
Background: from Torrance, CA
Interests: backpacking, running, and Korean dramas!
2000px-Stick_Figure.svg Julian Cizmic
Research: My research is focused on the synthesis and photophysics of a new fluorescent nucleoside analogue.
Background: from Hillcrest, San Diego
Interests: making kombucha, zines, typography
2000px-Stick_Figure.svg Casey Heaney
Research: I am contributing to the development of a fluorogenic cytidine analogue; this oxygen-containing analogue is projected to increase understanding of the structural-photophysical relationship of fluorescence turn-on for this class of compounds.
Background: from Mountain View, CA
Interests: reading, yoga, travel

Purse Lab Graduate Alumni

Dillon Burns    MS 2018 Lab Manager at Infinite Chemical Analysis Labs, CA
Raymond Lee    MS 2016 Associate Scientist I at Illumina, CA
Sadie Martin    MS 2016 Production Technical Writer at PolyPeptide Laboratories, CA
Jason Lundy    MS 2016 Medical Student at Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine, AL
Jennifer Chapin PhD 2014 Adjunct Instructor in Chemistry at Lincoln University, PA
Brittney Rodgers PhD 2014 Adjunct Instructor in Chemistry at Red Rocks Community College, CO
Nada Elsharif MS 2013 Assistant Lecturer, Department of Chemistry, University of Benghazi, Libya

Purse Lab Undergraduate Alumni

Katrina Ngo    BS 2018 Medical Student at Western University of Health Sciences, CA