Dr. John Chaput

Professor, University of California, Irvine

John Chaput is Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Chemistry, and Molecular Biology and Biochemistry at the University of California, Irvine. He earned his Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of California, Riverside under the mentorship of Prof. Chris Switzer, studying the molecular recognition properties of unnatural nucleic acid polymers (called XNAs). He then was an HHMI Post-Doctoral Fellow in Jack Szostak's lab at Harvard Medical School, where he developed early methods for synthesizing artificial genetic polymers using commercial polymerases. He began his independent academic career as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Arizona State University before being promoted to Associate in 2011 and then Full Professor in 2014. He moved his lab to UCI in 2015, where he has developed enzymes that can manipulate XNAs in a manner analogous to natural enzymes. His main research goal is to develop the next generation of diagnostic and therapeutic agents using XNAs.