Fifth-year graduate student Jacob Holmes has won the 2022 Chemistry Department Alumni Award. This $1,000 award recognizes outstanding Chemistry graduate students based on their research creativity, publication record, and other aspects of professional development.
Jacob came to UCR in 2017 after completing his B.S. degree at Cal State University San Bernardino. He has been performing research in solid state nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) under the guidance of Professor Leonard Mueller. He combines NMR data with X-ray crystallography and computational chemistry to elucidate detailed, 3-dimensional models of various intermediates and other substrates bound within the active site of tryptophan synthase. Professor Mueller notes that the new NMR-assisted crystallography techniques Jacob has developed have enabled him to answer decades-old questions about the inhibition of tryptophan synthase. Jacob has published three papers at UCR, including two papers in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences this year. He has also presented his research at four conferences. Jacob intends to pursue postdoctoral research after graduation.