The final arbiter of our knowledge about the activity of antimicrobial peptides or metal-based catalysts is our ability to establish and test a mechanism of action or a reaction mechanism. This presentation highlights the results of studies perform in my laboratories (http://angeles-boza.chemistry.uconn.edu/) showing 1) how 13C kinetic isotope effects allow the identification of the species involved in CO2 reduction catalysis; and 2) how Cu2+ and Zn2+ are important components on the activity of two antimicrobial peptides isolated from the tick Ixodes sinensis and the tunicate Styela clava.
Biographical outline: Dr. Angeles was born and raised in Peru. He obtained his undergraduate (B.S.) degree from the Catholic University in Lima. Before starting his Ph.D. studies, he was an Inorganic Chemistry Lecturer at the Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia and a research assistant with Prof. Tracy Hanna at Texas Christian University. Alfredo obtained his Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry from Texas A&M University in 2007 under the supervision of Prof. Kim Dunbar. After gaining some industry experience at Halliburton, he did postdoctoral work at Texas A&M University (Prof. Jean-Philippe Pellois) and Johns Hopkins University (Prof. Justine Roth). He joined the Department of Chemistry at The University of Connecticut in 2012, where he is an Associate Professor. His research interests are in synthetic, structural, and mechanistic inorganic and bioinorganic chemistry, including the development of new catalysts for the reduction of CO2 and the enhancement of antimicrobial activity of peptides. His research is funded by NSF (Division of Chemistry-CAREER Award, and the Division of Molecular & Cellular Biosciences), Lyme Disease Association and the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy.