Saturday, October 21, 2017

Research

Current exciting research projects going on in the department include:

1. Biological products

Extracting bioactive substances in Vietnamese herbals for usage in the treatment of tumor, antibacteria or antivirus ...

Extracting collagen from catfish byproducts for usage in cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.

Searching for materials, mainly polymers, used as ingredients for drug foumulations

2. Computer-aided drug design (CADD)

Computer-aided drug design uses computers to discover, enhance, or study drug candidates. Particularly, molecular docking can be used to predict whether a given molecule will bind to a certain diseased target and if so how strongly. Molecular dynamics are often used to predict the conformation of small molecules and to model conformational changes in the biological target that may occur when the small molecules bind to it. Pharmacophore modelling provides detailed protein-ligand interactions which are important for improving enrichment and effectively mining potential candidates

The computational method can predict the affinity before a compound is synthesized and thus CADD significantly reduces the number of compounds need to be synthesized for in vitro testing. Computational methods have accelerated drug discovery by reducing the number of iterations required and in addition have often provided more novel small molecule structures

3. Bio-physical and bio-analytical chemistry

Having an equal, if not to say more significance in bodily processes, membrane proteins act as biological catalysts, regulate transport processes, signal transduction and play a central role in intercellular communication. Besides, membrane proteins are increasingly becoming targets for most of the marketed drugs. Any interaction between drugs and lipid membranes where membrane proteins are located will influence the drugs’ bioavailability and even their modes of action.

Our research group uses linear (UV-Vis, FTIR, ATR-FTIR) and non-linear optical spectroscopic techniques such as Raman scattering, Second Harmonic Generation (SHG) and Sum Frequency Generation Vibrational Spectroscopy to study the conformation and dynamics of membrane proteins, interactions between model membranes and drug molecules in order to fully understand their diverse functions.

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4. Computational Chemistry

Modeling kinetics, thermodynamics and mechanisms of combustion of hydrocarbon and biologically-derived fuels (e.g., biodiesel)

Simulating combustion reactors and flame

Elucidating mechanism and catalysis for complex reactions

Developing new materials for catalysis and hydrogen storage

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