30 November 2022

Weria Pezeshkian receives Sapere Aude Grant

Weria Pezeshkian

Novo Nordisk Foundation Assistant Professor Weria Pezeshkian has been awarded a Sapere Aude Starting Grant from Denmark's Independent Research Fund for his project titled “Coupling Architectures of the Cellular Powerhouse to Energy Production States Using Computational Microscopy.”

Mitochondria, the powerhouse of the cell, produce cellular energy parcels from food. These microfactories possess an astonishing and intricate internal architecture that dynamically changes to adapt, for example, to cellular energy demands and metabolic changes. How biomolecules come together and form such dynamical architecture is still a mystery. In this project, we will exploit atomistic simulations to capture molecular dynamics at increasing levels of realism and provide dynamic views of molecule movements unmatched by any experimental technique. Finally, we develop mesoscopic simulations to connect molecular behaviors to macroscopic forms and predict how magnificent mitochondrial shapes emerge from molecular activities.

The grant of over 6 million DKK will allow Weria to hire two PhD students and a post-doctoral researcher who will work under his guidance over the next four years.