The Lu group’s interests lie at the interface between chemistry and biology. We are developing innovative chemical approaches to provide deeper insight into biological structures and functions. We are also taking advantage of recently developed biological tools to advance many areas in chemistry, such as inorganic chemistry, chemical biology, analytical chemistry, and materials chemistry. We strive to make significant contributions in several areas of research:

1. Biosynthetic Inorganic Chemistry

Computational design and directed evolution of artificial metalloenzymes as environmentally benign biocatalysts for renewable energy generation and pharmaceutical drug syntheses.

2. Biocatalysis and Synthetic Biology

Engineer biocatalysts to address challenges in synthetic organic chemistry and applications of novel biocatalysts in synthetic biology for biomass conversion and valuable products generation in high yield and good selectivity.

3. Bioanalytical Chemistry

Design and selection of sensors and imaging agents for metal ions, metabolites and glycoRNAs to advance metallomics, metabolomics and glycomics for medical diagnosis, imaging and therapy in neurodegenerative and infectious diseases and cancers.

4. Functional DNA Nanotechnology

Using DNA for encoded synthesis and directed assembly of nanomaterials, as well as the applications of these nanomaterials as theranostic agents for early detection of diseases such as cancers and targeted drug delivery.

5. Gene Editing/Therapy

Developing novel gene-editing methods to improve sequence fidelity and gene target accessibility.