Director - Dr. Glen Kellogg
The ISBDDD contains a University Core Facility in Molecular Modeling directed by Dr. Kellogg, assisted by Drs. J. Neel Scarsdale and Philip Mosier. It is part of the Structural Biology Core of the NCI Massey Cancer Center (MCC) grant. The Molecular Modeling facility offers modeling software and hardware resources to VCU researchers, regardless of their membership in the MCC, but the majority of users do have an affiliation with the MCC. The facility maintains an extensive library of commercial and academic modeling software with multi-user licenses for a number of key programs such as the Tripos suite (Sybyl, Unity, Surflex Dock, etc.). Other NMR, crystallography, and modeling software, e.g., CCP4, DOCK, HINT, Molconn-Z, ZAP, SCWRL, GRID, AutoDock, etc., are available on the ISBDD servers. At present, the modeling facility has 18 workstations (Apple MacPro and Linux) and over 30 TB of disk storage controlled by a Linux server with a tape robot backup system. Many of the workstations are networked through gigabit ethernet to facilitate internal data transfers. The modeling facility offers one or two academic courses as a part of the Department of Medicinal Chemistry (MEDC 541 and MEDC 670) graduate program. A large number of VCU graduate students have received training in molecular modeling through this offering. Students enrolling in these courses come from over a dozen VCU departments on both the Monroe Park and Medical Center campuses.
Director - Dr. Umesh Desai
The biophysical techniques facility consists of multiple instruments available to study macromolecule – ligand interactions, which form a key element of the drug discovery and development operation. Among the biophysics-based instruments available for this purpose include PTI and ISS spectrofluorometers, Beckman PACE Capillary Electrophoresis system, Reichert Surface Plasmon Resonance, Waters UPLC coupled to TQD-ESI-MS, and Beckman ultracentrifuge. These instruments have been used by multiple investigators from the Departments of Chemistry, Biochemistry, and Medicinal Chemistry to deduce information on the interaction of ligands with their protein counterparts.
Director - Dr. Martin Safo
The crystallography facility consists of Raxis IV++ image plate, a 8KW Micromax generator, Xstream for cold nitrogen gas stream, Varimax HR optics, a desktop computer, a Haskris water chiller and a large collection of crystallographic software programs. The facility is used to collect X-ray diffraction data from macromolecule crystals and the data is subsequently used for structure elucidation. This instrument has been used by investigators from the Departments of Chemistry, Biochemistry, Physiology and Biophysics, Medicinal Chemistry and other units to deduce the structure of proteins and their complexes with drug like molecules.
Director - Dr. Darrell Peterson
The Institute has incubator shakers for growing bacteria or yeast in up to 12 l scale at any temperature from 4 C-37 C or above. In addition the Institute houses a 35 l sterilizable in place New Brunswick 510 capable of growing bacteria or yeast under conditions of controlled temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen and volume, and the ability to collect the culture through a Beckman flow centrifuge in less than 2 hours.