Spring '19 Department Seminars with Dr. Salih Özçubukçu

Title: Peptides: Swiss Army Knife of Chemistry

Speaker: Dr. Salih Özçubukçu

Department of Chemistry, Middle East Technical University

Ankara, Türkiye

Date: April 2, 2019, Tuesday

Time: 12:40

Place: Departmental Seminar Room (SB-Z14)


Peptides are versatile molecules which found great applications in various field of chemistry. Peptide based drugs, peptide materials, delivery systems, enzyme mimics are only few of their area of practice. There is also significant amount of marketed peptide drugs which make them also quite valuable for industrial size applications. In our research group, we use peptides as Swiss army knife. We synthesized various type of peptides for semi-conducting hydrogels, drug delivery systems, peptide based drugs, biosensors, cell adhesion systems etc. In this talk, a summary of our peptide research will be presented. Fullerenzyme, as a new enzyme mimic structure will be also introduced as a part of our most recent work.

Short Biography of the Speaker:

Dr. Ozcubukcu started his chemistry career as early as secondary school. He participated in International Chemistry Olympiad three times and got bronze, silver and gold medal. After graduation from METU Chemistry Department, in 2002, within the same year, he got his M.S degree. He moved to Germany in 2003 for Ph.D and worked on C-H activation, asymmetric catalysis and organosilanols. He got his Ph.D degree in 2007 and he went to ICIQ, Spain (Institute of Chemical Research of Catalonia) for postdoctoral work. He worked on Click catalysts and organocatalysis before moving to Chicago in 2008 for his second postdoctoral work. He shifted slightly to biochemistry and worked on protein engineering and chemical protein and peptide synthesis. Since May 2011, he is a faculty member of METU Chemistry Department and working on peptides for various applications. He is also giving an extraordinary course: Chem 495 Chemistry in Popular Culture, which is designed and created by him.