Welcome! The Backus Lab is a young chemical biology research group at UCLA. We investigate how protein function and cellular fate can be studied and manipulated by chemical probes. By developing new methods that combine chemical biology, genomics, and proteomics, we aim to identify functional, disease-linked, and probe-accessible pockets in human proteins. Current applications of our methods include: (i) the production of probes to alter protein interactions, (ii) precision anti-cancer probes, and (iii) probes that enhance T cell proliferation.
11/23 Contras to Alex on the Audree Fowler Award!
11/23 Well to rotation student Matt!
11/23 Congrats to Ashley and Flow on the preprint!
10/23 Congrats to Jose on the preprint!
10/23 Congrats to Sunny on the preprint!
10/23 Welcome to rotation students Dani and Nitesh!
09/23 Welcome to postdocs Lara and Katrina!
09/23 Congrats to Dr. Heta Desai the lab's 3rd PhD and first Molecular Biology PhD!
09/23 Congrats to Nik on the JACS publication!
09/23 Congrats to Eli on the MBI poster prize!
08/23 Welcome to rotation students Shareen and Katarina!
08/23 Tomoyuki joins us as a visiting student. Welcome!
08/23 Congrats to Heta on the Multi-omic Preprint!
07/23 Keri receives a 2023 Ono Initiative Award!
07/23 Chau joins the team as a UCLA Chemistry and Biochemistry Teacher Scholar. Welcome!
07/23 Congrats to Sunny and team on the new publication in Cell Chemical Biology!
06/23 Eli is selected for the UCLA CBI Training Grant!
06/23 Nik, Ashley, and Lisa are awarded Dissertation Year Fellowships!
06/23 Congrats to Sunny on completing your PhD and graduating with a doctorate of Chemistry! Good luck in your new position at Kumquat Bio!
06/23 Congratulations to Cindy (UCLA Computer Science class of 2023)
06/23 Andrew, Nik, Sunny, and Emil all receive awards from the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry!
06/23 Keri wins an Undergraduate Research Week Faculty Mentor award!
06/23 Keri, Andrew, Nik, and Ashley go to the Bioorganic GRC in New Hampshire.
06/23 Keri, Miranda, Alex and Flow go to ASMS in Houston.
5/23 Alex knocks her oral qualifying exam out of the park!
05/23 Congrats to Lisa and team on the new publication in Cell Chemical Biology!
5/23 NSF GRFP Honorable Mention to Alex!
04/23 Welcome to our new undergraduate researchers, Charlotte, Brianna, Elsie, Evan, Haley, Joelle, Moses, and Allison.
03/23 Congrats to Jose on receiving a Poster Prize at the UC Drug Development meeting.
02/23 Keri, Lisa, Sunny, and Heta go to US Hupo in Chicago!
02/23 Congrats to Nik and team on the new ChemRxiv preprint!
02/23 Congrats to Sunny and team on the new BioRxiv preprint!
01/23 Welcome back Eli, who is officially joining the lab from the Chemistry and Biochemistry graduate program.
12/22 Congrats to Maria on a successful oral defense.
11/15/22 Welcome to rotation student Jingmei!
10/22 Welcome to Rotation students Devon and Eli!
10/22 Congratulations to Ashley on the Audree Fowler Award!
10/22 Congrats to Lisa on the ChemRxiv Preprint.
08/22 Welcome to rotation students Lilith and Daniel!
06/22 Welcome to Emil Dominguez who joins us for the summer!
06/22 The lab is excited to welcome Alex back to start her PhD!
04/22 Congrats to Miranda for receiving NSF Honorable mention!
02/22 SP3-Rox manuscript published in MCP. Congrats Heta!
02/22 Click Fragments manuscript published in Analytical Chemistry. Congrats to Sunny!
01/22 Welcome to BMSB student Alex who joins the lab for a winter rotation
01/22 TARE Lysine and Cysteine manuscripts are published.
10/21 Sho joins the lab as a new postdoc!
10/21 Welcome to our first fall rotation students, Helen, Prairie, and Jeffrey.
10/21 Congrats to Sunny and Andrew on the new preprint describing the gas phase fragmentation of chemoproteomics samples.
10/21 Keri is awarded the NIH New Innovator Award.
09/21 Congrats to Nik and Phillip on publication of the photocrosslinker Review.
08/21 Sam joins the lab as a new postdoc!
08/21 Welcome to our summer rotation students, Jeremy and Casey!
06/21 The lab is excited to welcome Miranda back to start her PhD
04/21 Welcome back Flow. We're excited to have you join us for your PhD.
03/21 NSF GSRFP Honorable Mentions for Lisa and Ashley! Congratulations!
02/21 Mapping paper published in Molecular Systems Biology! Check out the CpDAA App that reports the predictions of pathogenicity and known Clinvar variants for >4000 chemoproteomic detected residues.
01/21 RNA Review published in Current Opinion in Chemical Biology!
01/21 Suzuki paper published in Analytical Chemistry!
01/21 SP3 paper published in ChemBioChem!
12/20 SP3 preprint posted to ChemRxiv. Congrats Sunny!
12/20 The lab is excited to welcome Andrew back to start his PhD
11/20 Welcome to rotation students Noelle, Rita, Caitlyn, and Jessie
10/20 Keri is selected as a Packard Fellow. Thanks to the Packard Foundation for supporting our research!
10/20 Alex joins the lab as a visiting scholar.
9/20 Welcome to Andrew and Ellie for the first fall chemistry rotation.
8/20 Welcome to Flow and Miranda. We're excited to have you join us for summer rotations.
8/20 Heta, Ernest, and Sunny all pass their Qualifying Exams in flying colors. Congratulations!
7/20 Mapping Preprint posted to bioRxiv. Congrats to Maria!
6/20 Congratulations to graduates Jeremy, Ky, Annie, and Jamel (UCLA class of 2020)
6/20 Amazing month for fellowships for the lab. Congrats to Sunny, Jian, Nik, Lisa, Jose, and Ashley on all receiving fellowships!
5/20 The lab is excited to officially welcome Ashley back to start her PhD as our second BMSB student.
5/20 Linwei is awarded a 2020 Department of Energy Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship to support her summer research at UCLA!
4/20 Welcome to Quincy for a spring virtual rotation, and welcome back to Evan, who joins the lab as our first BMSB graduate student.
4/20 First ChemRxiv Preprint!
3/20 Lab is temporarily shut, due to COVID-19. Stay safe everyone.
2/20 Keri receives an endowed chair. Thanks to the Kolin family for supporting our work.
2/20 The lab welcomes Lisa back to start her PhD.
1/20 Thanks to the V Foundation for supporting our work!
1/20 Caspase-8 story is published in ACS Chem Bio!
1/2/2020 For the lab's second birthday, we welcome Edgar, Holly, and Ashley for rotations and Nik back to start his PhD.
11/2019 Excited to welcome Nik and Baldwin for the second fall rotation!
09/2019 Kelly, Evan, and Becky join us for the first fall rotation. Welcome!
08/2019 Welcome to Billy, Michael, and Lisa, our three summer rotation students.
08/2019 First BioRxiv Preprint!
07/2019 First lab PhD candidate! Jose passes his qualifying exam.
07/2019 The lab bids farewell to Brie. Best of luck with the move back East!
07/2019 Keri is selected for the DARPA Young Faculty Award. Thanks to DARPA and the DOD for funding our work!
07/2019 The lab welcomes CSST student, DeRui, for the summer.
06/2019 Congrats to Sean on the new position. We wish you the best of luck at Ampac Fine Chemicals.
06/2019 Ernest is selected for the CMB training grant. Congrats!
06/2019 The lab is excited to welcome Heta back to start her PhD.
06/2019 Marina graduates with honors.
06/2019 The lab's first review article on covalent immunomodulators is published.
05/2019 Keri is selected as a Beckman Young Investigator. Thanks to the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Foundation for supporting our work!
03/2019 Welcome to Stephanie and Annie, our two new undergraduate researchers.
03/2019 Ernest, Neil, and Sunny join the lab as our first Chem grad students!
02/2019 Congrats to Ernest on the Stone Fellow award!
01/2019 Welcome to Heta and Cindy, our winter BBSB rotation students!
12/2019 The lab is excited to receive seed grant funding for our proteogenomic studies. Thanks to the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center for the support!
11/2018 Welcome to George, Sunny, and Ernest, our second group of chemistry rotation students.
10/2018 Welcome to Neil, Danielle, and Chloe, our first chemistry rotation students.
08/2018 Sean joins the lab as Postdoc #2!
07/2018 Taylor joins us for the summer.
06/2018 Jian joins the lab as our first Postdoc! Welcome to LA!
06/2018 Maria is selected for the CBI training grant. Congrats!
06/2018 The lab is excited to welcome Maria back to start her PhD!
03/2018 Jose joins the lab as our first graduate student.
01/2018 Backus Lab established! Brie and Sam join as our founding members.