HHMI Awards Gilliam Fellowships

The Howard Hughes Medical Institute has selected 39 new Gilliam fellows, and among them is our very own Vayu! Recipients are exceptional doctoral students with the potential to be leaders in their fields, and the desire to advance diversity and inclusion in the sciences. This unique award also includes mentoring development training for advisors. Congratulations Vayu!

Colibactin's Cyclopropane Moiety Derived from SAM

Our recent Nature Chemical Biology paper reports an exciting new use for the versatile cofactor S-adenosylmethionine (SAM)! We have identified an unusual nonribosomal peptide synthetase that utilizes SAM for amide bond formation and subsequent cyclopropanation, revealing a novel biosynthetic route to the functional group that likely mediates colibactin's genotoxicity. Congratulations to Li, Yindi, and Matt; and thank you to our collaborators Matthew Henke and Neil Kelleher!

A New Strategy for Enzyme Discovery in Microbiomes

Our recent Science paper reports the development of chemically guided functional profiling and the discovery of a new glycyl radical enzyme in human gut microbes that metabolizes a host-derived amino acid. Congratulations to Ben, Yolanda, Spencer, Ana, and Jonathan, and thank you to our wonderful collaborators Yifeng Wei (MIT), Eric Franzosa, and Curtis Huttenhower (Harvard School of Public Health, Broad Institute)!