Personal

2018-07-20 11.33.59
In Toronto discussing the Goldberg Variations with my friend Glenn (I was surprised to see him out at this hour of the day)

I’m currently in the Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology Department at UMass Medical School.  I’m a physical chemist who is interested in understanding the energy landscape of proteins, especially as it relates to human disease.  I started as a chemistry and physics major in college getting my first taste of research in gravitational physics (which involved a summer at Fermilab).  I went to grad school in physical chemistry, working with Dewey Holten at Washington University in St. Louis on the electronic structure of strongly coupled porphyrin pi systems.  The goal of the research was to understand these systems as models of the special pair in photosynthetic reaction centers.  The work involved femtosecond pump probe spectroscopy and theory.  After grad school I went to the James Franck Institute at The University of Chicago to work with Don Levy on high resolution laser induced fluorescence spectroscopy in the gas phase using supersonic jets.  I later joined Bob Matthews’ group at Penn State to study protein folding.  I’ve worked with Bob and Jill Zitzewitz for approximately two decades, embarking on many projects together both at Penn State and at UMass Med School.   The move to UMass allowed me to build what is commonly referred to as “the laserlab” with the purchase of the Ti:sapphire system and harmonic generation optics.  This led to our work in time-resolved fluorescence, trFRET, FCS and microfluidic microsecond mixing.  The laserlab has continued to grow and now houses a custom single-molecule microscope and a 2-photon microscope for long term live cell imaging.  My current efforts are focused on live-cell microscopy and in using electron microscopy to probe SOD1 oligomerization.

Contact information

Osman Bilsel, Ph.D.

Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Pharmacology
University of Massachusetts Medical School
364 Plantation St., LRB 919
Worcester, MA 01605
(774) 364-1305
osman.bilsel@umassmed.edu

Education

Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry, Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis, MO USA
Thesis Title: Electronic States and Dynamics of Porphyrin Sandwich Complexes
Advisor: Dr. Dewey Holten, Ph.D.
1991
B.A., Physics & Chemistry (with Distinction), University of Rochester, Rochester, NY USA 1986

Postdoctoral Training

Postdoctoral Research Scholar
Advisor: Dr. C. Robert Matthews, Ph.D.
Department of Chemistry, Penn State University, State College, PA
1994-1995
Postdoctoral Research Scholar
Advisor: Dr. Donald Levy, Ph.D.
James Franck Institute, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL
1992-1994
Postdoctoral Research Scholar
Advisor: Dr. Dewey Holten, Ph.D.
Department of Chemistry, Washington University in St. Louis, St. Louis, MO
1991-1992

Academic Appointments

Associate Professor
Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Pharmacology, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA
2017-present
Associate Professor
Department of Mechanical & Industrial Engineering, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA
2017-present
Research Associate Professor
Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Pharmacology, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA
2010-2017
Research Assistant Professor
Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Pharmacology, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA
2001-2010