After Science, There’s Laundry

November 19, 2013
Judith Klinman

Judith Klinman, professor of the graduate school and chancellor’s professor at the University of California, Berkeley, is presenting two lectures on Wednesday, Nov. 20:

Scholars’ Convocation:  noon in Rosenfield Center Room 101.

Chemistry Lecture: 4:15 p.m. in Noyce 2022.

Both events are free and open to the public.

In her convocation lecture, Klinman will describe “a personal and scientific odyssey,” exploring her family background and how enzymes work generally. She will also talk about women in academics and science, and how women can balance bread, family relationships, and research.  Although her focus will be mainly on women in academics and science, says Elizabeth Trimmer, associate professor of chemistry, “I hope that men would also be interested in attending.”

In her second lecture, Klinman will discuss her research into enzymes that use copper to catalyze their reactions, including one that catalyzes the conversion of dopamine to norepinephrine, a very important reaction in neurotransmitter biosynthesis. 

A chemistry professor of the Graduate School Division of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Structural Biology at the University of California, Berkeley, Klinman studies proteins and enzymes, looking for the fundamental properties that underlie reactions in the human body. Her current research in enzyme catalysis with her research group focuses on hydrogen tunneling, methyl transfer, and protein dynamics, protein- and peptide-derived cofactors, and oxygen activation.

In 1978, Klinman became the first woman professor in the chemistry department of the University of California, Berkeley. She was elected to the National Academy of Sciences and is the former president of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

Klinman is 2013 Danforth Lecturer at Grinnell. The Danforth lectureship was established in honor of Professor Joe Danforth, who taught chemistry at Grinnell from 1947 to 1979.Traditionally, the Danforth lecturer has given two presentations, a departmental talk and a general interest lecture. The speaker also interacts significantly with our biological chemistry and chemistry majors.

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