MSI PI Mikael Elias (assistant professor, Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, and Biophysics) has recently published research that describes using engineered enzymes to break down organophosphorous (OP) compounds, which are used as fertilizers. Although they are excellent at helping farmers improve crop yields, they are also implicated in forms of cancer and some neurological problems. Professor Elias’s enzyme can break down OPs into harmless substances.
An article about this research can be found on the College of Biological Sciences website: Harmful Turned Harmless in a Snap.
Professor Elias uses MSI resources for a project studying biochemical signaling with a goal to using this basic knowledge to fight antibiotic resistance in microbes.