Colloquia Week

Every week, senior researchers in each department at ASDRP give public seminars presenting the current state of the field and disseminating how their research at ASDRP fits into the broader context of the frontiers of modern science and engineering. Colloquia are public events, and anyone can join. Click on the "Join the Colloquia" link to add the event to your calendar.

Summer 2021 Colloquia Schedule

Department of Biological, Human and Life Sciences

Tuesdays @ 8:00-9:00 PM PST

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

No Colloquia this week - please check back for more info

See you next week!

Join the Colloquia

Researcher: To Be Announced

Advisor: To Be Announced


Department of Chemistry, Biochemistry, and Physics

Fridays @ 8:00-9:00 PM PST

Friday, June 25, 2021


Informed synthetic design and mechanistic assaying of photoreleasable prodrugs and andrographolide analogs for enhanced therapeutic potential

Semisynthetic derivatives of natural products far outnumber the amount of actual natural products in clinical use. One such natural product is andrographolide, which has demonstrated diverse therapeutic potential such as anticancer, antifungal, and antioxidant properties, but may be further optimized for human use. Alongside enhancing the efficacy of therapeutic agents, it is equally important to find ways to minimize post-administration side effects, which is why various prodrugging tactics have been employed in the past two decades. Prodrugs are benign derivatives of active drugs, which may be activated under certain conditions like pH, light, hydrolysis, or enzymatic conversion. This presentation will cover the rational design and semisynthesis of a library of analogues derived from the natural product andrographolide to optimize its therapeutic potential, as well as discuss how substitutions on the photocleavable o-nitrobenzyl functional group may enhance targeted photorelease of the surrogate drug phenylacetic acid.

Join the Colloquia

Researchers: Alice Z., BASIS Independent Silicon Valley

Advisor: Njoo, Organic & Medicinal Chemistry

Keywords: Organic Synthesis | Chemical biology | Andrographolide | Prodrugs

Department of Computer Science and Engineering

Wednesdays @ 8:00-9:00 PM PST

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Using abnormalities in NASA's stellar radius measurements to predict the location of possible mini-black holes.

Black holes are mysterious phenomena that occur in space, and it has captivated astronomers for decades. The reason black holes are so mysterious is because they are unable to observed directly due to the fact that this region of spacetime's gravity consumes all light that travels toward it. This means that black holes have to be discovered indirectly in some way, and a way scientists have been doing so is by using the strange behavior of the celestial bodies that surround black holes. This research focuses on the discovery of mini-black holes, a category of black holes that are less massive than normal. This type of black hole exhibits the strange behavior of pulling on nearby stars, making them oblate. Here, data from the NASA Exoplanet Archive will be used to find stars possibly stretching in that way, which could give clues for a possible location of a mini-black hole.

Join the Colloquia

Researcher: Ishaan K., Milpitas High School

Advisor: Downing, Astrophysics

Keywords: Exoplanet Archive | Mini black holes | Data analysis