Students are invited to join Professor Ruben Gonzalez from the Columbia University Chemistry Department.
"Faculty in Conversation” is an event series moderated by James Colgrove, Dean of the Postbaccalaureate Premedical Program.
Ruben Gonzalez graduated cum laude from Florida International University (FIU) with a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry and Biochemistry in 1995. While at FIU, Ruben researched the thermodynamics and kinetics of protein and carcinogen binding to unusual DNA structures.
Ruben next moved to the Department of Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley to pursue doctoral research on the structure and thermodynamics of a specific RNA structure, known as an RNA pseudoknot, which is involved in the translational control of gene expression in many viruses.
Upon obtaining his Ph.D. in Chemistry in 2000, Ruben moved to Stanford University where completed postdoctoral research as an American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellow in the laboratories in the Department of Physics and Applied Physics. While at Stanford, Ruben helped pioneer the first single-molecule fluorescence investigations of the ribosome, the universally-conserved RNA-based molecular machine responsible for protein synthesis in all living cells.
Ruben joined the Department of Chemistry at Columbia University as an Assistant Professor in 2006 and was promoted to Associate Professor without Tenure in 2011, to Associate Professor with Tenure in 2012, and to Full Professor in 2015. Research in his laboratory focuses on the biophysical chemistry and biochemistry of Nature's RNA-based molecular machines, with a current emphasis on the mechanism and regulation of protein synthesis by the ribosome. Research in Ruben's laboratory has been recognized with numerous awards, including a Burroughs Wellcome Fund Career Award in the Biomedical Sciences, a National Science Foundation CAREER Award, an American Cancer Society Research Scholar Award, a Columbia University RISE Award, a Distinguished Columbia Faculty Award, a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, and most recently, Ruben has been selected as a Finalist for a Blavatnick National Award for Young Scientists.