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Graduate Research Assistant

Office: A127B Chemical and Life Sciences Lab (CLSL)
Phone: (217) 244-1583

E-mail: aojoawo2@illinois.edu



B.A. Chemistry, Saint Catherine University (2015)

research interests

I was born and raised in Nigeria, then came to the United States for my undergraduate studies at Saint Catherine University (SCU) in Minnesota where I majored in Chemistry with a minor in Mathematics. After obtaining my bachelor’s degree in Chemistry in 2015, I worked as a junior scientist at the Center for Mass Spectrometry and Proteomics (CMSP) at the University of Minnesota for about a year. I’m currently a Biochemistry PhD student in the graduate school of Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB) at UIUC. My undergraduate research experience exposed me to solution-state NMR spectroscopy and fostered my interest in learning more about biomolecular NMR in graduate school. For my graduate studies, I am interested in studying protein-lipid interactions using solid-state NMR. My current project aims to understand structure and dynamics of anionic lipids in the presence of ligands such as calcium using solid-state NMR. My project plans also include introducing lipid-binding proteins such as alpha-synuclein, membrane tissue factor into the lipid bilayer to study changes in the structure and dynamics of the protein-lipid complexes.


Selected honors and awards

  • Earle Smith Award for Outstanding senior in Chemistry, Saint Catherine University, 2015
  • Lillehei Heart Institute (LHI) Summer Research fellowship, University of Minnesota, 2014
  • Mayo Innovation Scholar, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, 2013-2014
  • Pi Mu Epsilon inductee – National Honors Society in Mathematics, Saint Catherine University, 2015
  • Iota Sigma Pi inductee – National Honors Society for Women in Chemistry, Saint Catherine University, 2014
  • Bonnie Hyland Umeh Excellence in Leadership Scholarship, Saint Catherine University, (2013-2015)
  • Sr. Mary Thompson Scholarship, Saint Catherine University, 2014-2015
  • Multiple Jordan H. Steinfort Scholarship, Saint Catherine University, 2012-2015