Howard University’s commitment to find innovative and effective approaches to the study of those diseases which disproportionately affect minority populations requires the utilization of molecular structural and imaging resources.The Howard University College of Medicine has ongoing activities in the areas of molecular structure and biomedical imaging that include molecular computations, bioinformatics, structural NMR, and imaging analyses. The current RCMI program builds on these resources by
1) expanding the molecular computations laboratory to include resource support for bioinformatics research and computational quantum chemistry in addition to molecular modeling and dynamics, and
2) combining existing NMR structural and imaging laboratories into a unified biomedical NMR facility with increased capacity to provide support for imaging and structural studies.
The bioimaging capabilities complement the molecular structure resources by providing in situ perspectives on biomolecules of interest. Most of the molecular structure activities at Howard are centered on gene and protein sequence analyses (bioinformatics), molecular structure determination and analyses (structural NMR, molecular modeling and dynamics), and small molecule structure analysis (computational quantum chemistry). The small molecule capability is important in providing an understanding of the monomeric components of macromolecules and in the design of small molecule ligands that interact in a predictable manner with macromolecular structures.
The capabilities of these facilities provide Howard University scientists with focused and strategic resources to support their research efforts. The resources of each core laboratory are used to support several investigator-initiated projects.