Topic, "Inorganic Biochemical Lessons from Nature"

At 7PM on Wednesday 7 July, at Taste, in College Park, we'll have a fascinating discussion for you from Robert Igarashi.

Nature's biological systems are probably the best empirical experimenters, because they have the luxury of conducting iterative trials that span immense time frames. They have, with exquisite chemical precision, evolved sophisticated solutions to some of nature's most complex problems.

In human endeavor, much of how our chemical sciences have impacted human life has been in the field of organic chemistry, a carbon-based chemistry, which ranges in applications from petroleum based polymers to pharmaceuticals. These organic-based applications have been largely beneficial, but humankind still faces numerous challenges.

Also inside biological systems, inorganic processes perform some of the most complex and difficult chemistry in nature. Through scientists' study of them, those inorganic processes potentially hold solutions to many of the problems and challenges that we currently face or will encounter in the next century.

We will discuss lessons bioinorganic chemists have learned and how those lessons affect how we will deal with energy, medicine, agriculture, and the environment.

Robert Y. Igarashi is currently an Assistant Professor since 2007 in the Department of Chemistry and also holds a joint appointment in the Burnett School of Biomedical Sciences at UCF. Igarashi earned a BS degree in Biochemistry and MS degree in Chemistry from California State University Fullerton. He earned a PhD in Biochemistry from Utah State University under the tutelage of Prof. Lance C. Seefeldt where he elucidated the reaction mechanisms in the enzyme nitrognese. He then studied the enzymatic assembly of complex biological iron-sulfur clusters at University of California Berkeley under the guidance of Prof. Paul Ludden. Dr. Igarashi's current research at UCF investigates the enzymatic mechanisms of iron-sulfur utilizing proteins that perform some of nature's most complex reactions.


717 W. Smith Street
Orlando, United States

Taste is near the corner of Princeton Street (really Smith Street after the fork) and Edgewater Drive, so about 2 minutes from I-4 to parking. One can park on the street or in the parking lot behind Taste.

From I-4, drive a few blocks to Edgewater Drive. At the intersection, you should see a orange building ahead of you, labeled "Taste". Park on the street or behind Taste.