The focus of my research project is the development of new solid-state Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) methodologies that allow the determination of the structure of solid or semi-solid samples. Materials of this type are central to many interesting biophysical questions but, because they are typically insoluble and non-crystalline, they are not amenable to structure determination by traditional biophysical techniques such as solution-state NMR or single-crystal X-ray diffraction. They may also have complicated intermolecular interactions that are not easily probed by single-molecule studies. Solid-state NMR may prove particularly informative for the study of these systems because of its inherent atomic resolution and its requirement for only local order. I plan to develop new NMR methods, based on Switched Angle Spinning, to study these kinds of materials. The group of Prof. M. H. Levitt at the University of Southampton is highly recognized in the scientific community for the development of a theory that allows NMR experiments useful to specific purposes, as structure determination, to be designed using symmetry principles. Taking advantage of the knowledge of the host organization, I plan to apply this approach to the development of new experiments allowing the measurements of either homonuclear and heteronuclear dipolar couplings for selected couples of nuclei, giving access to very detailed structural details.
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeMC-IEF - Intra-European Fellowships (IEF)