Headshot portrait of Jacob Horne - Bio-X Bowes Fellow
Bio-X Graduate Student Fellow

Awarded in 2022
Home Department: Chemical Engineering
Faculty Advisors: Jian Qin (Chemical Engineering) and Daniel Jarosz (Chemical & Systems Biology and Developmental Biology)

Research Title: Unraveling the Molecular Drivers Behind LLPS and Coarsening of Biocondensates

Research Description: Polyelectrolyte complexation (PEC) is a mechanism by which cellular systems control their internal function. This process rapidly forms membrane-less organelles, intracellular bodies that contain elevated or depleted levels of key biomolecules. Recent theoretical advancements have enabled a better understanding of the driving forces for PEC in model experimental systems. However, these theories have not been applied to systems of biological relevance. Jacob proposes to extend recent theories to describe these more complex systems. Then, he will systematically apply this new theory to study PEC in model biological systems. This work will elucidate the factors controlling PEC in living cells.