Within specific protein sites, exceptionally intense electric fields can be found, reaching magnitudes as high as 100 MV/cm, or 10 V/nm. These remarkable electric fields are produced by charges and dipoles held by amino acid residues, peptide backbones, and metal ions. Once the electric fields are projected onto a chemical bond undergoing a reaction, its transition state can be substantially stabilized, leading to rate acceleration by several orders of magnitude.
The Ji lab aims to leverage the power of protein electrostatics to activate chemical bonds that are believed inert and to drive chemical reactions that are often sluggish. We are especially interested in the chemical bonds and the reactions at the interface of chemistry and biology. By combining synthetic chemistry, molecular biology, enzymology, and spectroscopy, we aim to develop novel biocatalysts, medicines, and diagnostics that improve human health.
季者，2014年本科毕业于清华大学化学系，师从石高全教授。2014至2019年在美国加州大学伯克利分校化学系Omar M. Yaghi教授课题组开展博士研究。2020年至2023年在美国斯坦福大学化学系Steven G. Boxer课题组从事博士后研究。研究成果以第一作者、共同第一作者、和通讯作者身份发表于Science, Nat. Chem., J. Am. Chem. Soc., PNAS, Angew. Chem., Adv. Mater. 等学术期刊。
1. C. Zheng#,Z. Ji#, I. I. Mathews, S. G. Boxer, Enhanced active-site electric field accelerates enzyme catalysis. Nat. Chem., 2023, DOI: 10.1038/s41557-023-01287-x.
2. Z. Ji*, S. G. Boxer*, β-Lactamases evolve against antibiotics by acquiring large active-site electric fields. J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2022, 144, 22289-22294.
3. Z. Ji, J. Kozuch, I. I. Mathews, C. S. Diercks, Y. Shamsudin, M. A. Schultz, S. G. Boxer, Protein electric fields enable faster and longer-lasting covalent inhibition of β-lactamases. J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2022, 144, 20947-20954.
4. N. A. Danaf, W. Schrimpf, P. Hirschle, D. C. Lamb, Z. Ji*, S. Wuttke*, Linker exchange via migration along the backbone in metal-organic frameworks. J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2021, 143, 10541-10546.
5. Z. Ji, T. Li, O. M. Yaghi, Sequencing of metals in multivariate metal-organic frameworks. Science, 2020, 369, 674-680.
6. Z. Ji#, H. Zhang#, H. Liu, O. M. Yaghi, P. Yang, Cytoprotective metal-organic frameworks for anaerobic bacteria. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A., 2018, 115, 10582-10587.
7. Z. Ji, C. A. Trickett, X. Pei, O. M. Yaghi, Linking molybdenum-sulfur clusters for electrocatalytic hydrogen evolution. J. Am. Chem. Soc., 2018, 140, 13618-13622.