February 6, 2003
Director of Media Relations
AMHERST, Mass.—Jane S. Richardson, the James B. Duke Professor of Biochemistry at Duke University, will present a free public lecture called "Bioinformatics in 3-D" on Monday, Feb. 24, at 4:30 p.m. in Merrill Science Lecture Room 4 in Amherst College. A reception at 4 p.m. in Room 428 of the Life Sciences Building will precede her talk, which is sponsored by the Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar Program, the Phi Beta Kappa Beta Chapter of Massachusetts, Amherst Women in Science and the departments of biology and chemistry at Amherst College.
Richardson researches the three-dimensional structure and means of formation of proteins. She was a pioneer in the fields of protein crystallography and protein de novo design, and helped develop the molecular graphics system of "kinemages."
Her methods include comparing the structures of known proteins, especially the de novo design of new model proteins and their synthesis and characterization. Richardson pioneered ribbon drawings for representing protein structures. She first described many of the common features of overall folds and their local motifs -- Greek key beta barrels, right-handed crossovers, helix caps, cis Pro touch-turns—and has been active in spreading molecular 3-D literacy.
Richardson earned a B.A. degree in philosophy from Swarthmore College and, without the benefit of a Ph.D., has become a biophysicist, MacArthur fellow and member of the National Academy of Sciences. She and her husband, David C. Richardson, maintain the Richardson Laboratory at Duke University (http://ives.biochem.duke.edu/Richardson/richardson.html).