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Lab news and updates:

Mar. 19, 2024 - The McKinnie lab is thrilled to welcome Jackson Calhoun as our newest PhD student! Jackson C brings a dynamic interdisciplinary background of assay development and chemical biology and has inspired many fun project directions! Huge welcome Jackson, we're happy to have you join us over the coming years!

Mar. 9, 2024 - Jenny travels to Ventura to attend the Marine Natural Products Gordon Research Seminar and give a talk on our collaborative project with the Watts lab! Then Shaun joins her the next day for the MNP Gordon Research Conference where he presents on some new vanadium enzymes! Phenomenal conference and amazing getting to reconnect with old friends and meet many new ones!

Feb. 12, 2024 - The lab is thrilled to welcome Dr. Jin Feng as our first postdoctoral scholar! Jin brings a wealth of expertise in natural product isolation, synthetic biology, natural product biosynthesis, and metabolic engineering - we're very thankful to have you on our team!

Jan. 20, 2024 - Jackson heads down to Ventura to present some of our vanadium enzymology work at the Metals in Biology Gordon Research Seminar and Conference! 

Jan. 16, 2024 - Huge welcome to Shevelle Brown (MCD track) for her third PBSE rotation! Excited to explore some neurotoxin enzymology and have you sample our lab!

Jan. 11, 2024 - It's a McKinnie lab doubleheader at UCSC SMComm with both Jackson and Jenny giving great presentations on VHPO structure/function and alkaloid biosynthesis!

Jan. 3, 2024 - Shaun talks about some vanadium enzymology at the 2024 Enzyme Mechanism Conference in Naples, Florida! Great seeing old friends and meeting new ones, huge thanks to Profs. Lamb and Moran and all other organizers for putting together this awesome conference!

Dec. 11, 2023 - Shaun pops up to Kingston Ontario to share some science at Queens University and be the external examiner for Dr. Manasa Ramachandra's excellent thesis defense! Huge congrats to the newly minted PhD and thanks Prof. Avena Ross for the invitation!

Dec. 4, 2023 - Huge congratulations to Austin Hopiavuori for his first first author paper out in ACS Chemical Biology today! Check it out on our publications page or open access at the ACS Chem Bio website

Dec. 4, 2023 - Gino gives an excellent rotation talk capping off the amazing amount of work he completed in Fall quarter! Great job Gino and thanks for your efforts understanding some unique actinobacterial metabolites!

Nov. 30, 2023 - Shaun gives a talk in the BME 280B seminar series on their new directed evolution screening platform! Thanks Andy Yeh for the invitation!

Nov. 28, 2023 - McKinnie lab is thrilled to welcome Anandi Radhakrishnan as our newest undergraduate researcher!

Nov. 16, 2023 - Huge congratulations to Gabe Lefebre for being awarded a Koret Undergraduate Scholarship for 2023 - 2024! Excited to continue capturing additional biosynthetic gene clusters together!

Nov. 15, 2023 - Alex and Melanie travel to Phoenix, Arizona for the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minoritized Scientists (ABRCMS) and give masterful poster presentations!

Nov. 14, 2023 - Jackson Calhoun gives an amazing seminar in the PBSE/CB3 rotation talks! Excellent job Jackson and thanks for all your hard work on some cool PLP enzymology and synthetic chemistry!

Nov. 9, 2023 - Shaun forces the lab up to San Jose to watch his beloved Edmonton Oilers lose to the Sharks. At least we had fun right?

Nov. 7, 2023 - Shaun gives a talk in the Microbiology and Environmental Toxicology (METX) seminar series on some unusual vanadium-dependent enzymology! Thanks Michael Patnode for the invitation and for the great feedback from the audience!


Nov. 3, 2023 - The McKinnie lab makes the trek up to UCSF to attend the 4th Bay Area Chemistry Symposium (BACS)! Phenomenal talks from Profs. John Hartwig, Kevan Shokat, and UCSC's very own Carrie Partch were capped off with some amazing posters from Jenny, Melanie and Alex! Thanks all for attending and organizing, looking forward to BACS 2024!

Nov. 2, 2023 - Austin, Melanie, Alex and Robbie from Sanchez lab give a masterful and interdisciplinary tag-team research talk at UCSC SMComm on our new collaborative directed evolution screening method!

Oct. 26, 2023 - The McKinnie lab is well represented at the 2023 SACNAS NDiSTEM conference in Portland, Oregon! Congrats to Melanie, Crystal and Sage who all received Travel Awards to attend and give poster presentations!

Oct. 20, 2023 - McKinnie lab attends the second Crews Symposium and Melanie Jones wins a Crews undergraduate fellowship award! Huge congrats Melanie and thanks Sage for presenting some of her summer ACCESS work!

Oct. 2, 2023 - Huge welcome to Jackson Calhoun (CB3 track) and Gino Magalang (Chemistry track) who will be rotating with us for Fall quarter! Excited to work with you and have you sample our lab!

Sept. 19, 2023 - The McKinnie lab attends the annual UCSC Chemistry and Biochemistry Fall Conference! Austin gave a great short talk on kainoid synthase engineering, Jackson and Radcliff gave great lightning talks on VHPO structure function and neurotoxin pharmacology respectively, and Melanie and first time presenters Alex and Ari gave excellent posters!

Sept. 13, 2023 - Our proposal to the Pacific Northwest Cryo-EM Center (PNCC) was officially approved! Huge thanks to Vitor from our UCSC Cryo-EM facility for helping us navigate this new technology - excited to get some higher resolution structures!

Aug. 23, 2023 - Some of the lab crew rolls up to Oakland to catch the A's game with Sanchez and MacMillan labs!

Aug. 13, 2023 - The McKinnie lab does ACS Fall 2023! Jenny ran double duty while presiding over her and Austin's biocatalysis session (both gave excellent presentations), Jenny gave a great poster during the SciMix session, and Shaun talked about some vanadium enzymes in the Early Career BIOL Investigator talks!

Aug. 10, 2023 - Huge congratulations to both Crystal and Sage for giving excellent posters and presentations during the UCSC-HBCU and ACCESS wrap up - thank you both for all your hard work over your summer internships!

Aug. 3, 2023 - It was an absolute pleasure hosting Prof. Katherine Watts and her lab to visit UCSC and present at SMComm! There were two phenomenal undergraduate student team presentations on understanding antibiotic biosynthesis within actinobacteria and translating natural product molecular biology into undergrad CURE labs - thanks for coming up the coast and sharing your science with us Watts lab!

Aug. 1, 2023 - Shaun and Jackson fly to Minneapolis to attend the annual Society for Industrial Microbiology and Biotechnology (SIMB) 2023 meeting! Jackson gave an excellent poster presentation and short talk on vanadium enzymology, and Shaun talked about guanitoxin biosynthesis in the 'Enzymology in Natural Product Biosynthesis' session! Huge thanks to Dr. Kristy Hawkins and Prof. Yanran Li for the invitation and thanks to the SIMB community for being so welcoming - we'll definitely be back!

Jul. 11, 2023 - One out, one in! Peep Austin's newest pre-print exploring the chemodivergent radical chemistry catalyzed by algal kainoid synthases on non-native substrate analogs. Check it out on our publications page or on bioRxiv!

Jul. 11, 2023 - Huge congratulations to Jenny Cordoza for her first first author paper out in ACS Catalysis understanding the mechanism, structure, and function of the unusual PLP-dependent enzyme GntC! Lots of phenomenal collaborative efforts from our colleagues in the Moore, Fiore, and Chekan labs, and special shoutout to summer ACCESS undergraduate intern Linnea as third author! Check it out on our publications page or open access at ACS Catalysis!

Jul. 10, 2023 - Welcome to Alex Tabag, a post-baccalaureate researcher shared between our lab and Dr. Laura Sanchez to work on some substrate engineering and directed evolution!

Jul. 6, 2023 - Welcome to visiting UCLA undergraduate summer student Arianna (Ari) Kessler who will be helping us purify some unique non-canonical amino acids!

Jun. 30, 2023 - With an incredibly heavy heart, the McKinnie lab bids goodbye to our phenomenal junior specialist Manasi. However we are thrilled that she will be attending graduate school at USC in the Pharmaceutical Sciences MS program! We are so proud of you Manasi, don't be a stranger!


Jun. 23, 2023 - Jenny and Manasi head down to Thousand Oaks, CA to attend the Empowering Women in Organic Chemistry 2023 (EWOC 2023) conference! Special congratulations to Manasi for her first poster presentation and academic conference!

Jun. 20, 2023 - Huge welcome to Crystal Nowell (North Carolina Central University) and Sage Welch (Cabrillo College) who will be interning in our lab this summer through the UCSC-HBCU and ACCESS programs respectively! We're thrilled to have you join us for the next eight weeks!

Jun. 8, 2023 - Huge congratulations to Radcliff Huffman for passing his CB3 Qualifying Exam!

Jun. 8, 2023 - After significant COVID and green card-related delays, Shaun (finally) returns to his home and native land and gives a talk at the Canadian Chemistry Conference and Exhibition (CSC 2023) in Vancouver in the Natural Products session! Huge thanks to Profs. Roger Linington and Emily Mevers for the invitation!

Jun. 2, 2023 - Melanie gives a great poster presentation at the 2022-2023 Koret Research Slam! Amazing job Melanie and special thanks to Austin for being a pivotal member of the mentorship team!

Jun. 1, 2023 - Manasi represents the lab expertly at our special undergraduate research-focused UCSC SMComm!

May 1, 2023 - Jenny gives a masterful Third Year Talk and becomes the third ever McKinnie lab PhD candidate! Congratulations Jenny!

Apr. 29, 2023 - Shaun pops up to UC Berkeley to attend the Chemical Biology in the Bay Area symposium, judge some excellent posters, and hear some phenomenal science including keynote lectures from Carolyn Bertozzi and David Liu! 

Apr. 26, 2023 - Let's talk toxins! Shaun gives a Science on Tap talk hosted by UCSC WiSE (Women in Science and Engineering) in Downtown Santa Cruz - huge thanks for the invitation and great engagement!

Apr. 23, 2023 - Melanie is also awarded a Bunnett Undergraduate Research Award at the Bunnett Lecture series - huge congratulations!

Apr. 17, 2023 - Melanie presents their research at the UC LEADS conference in sunny San Diego and wins an honorable mention for their poster presentation!

Apr. 15, 2023 - Shaun attends the UC Chemistry Conference on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion on UCSC campus. Huge thanks to the Department and Prof. Seth Rubin for helping to organize this forum to discuss many important issues.

Apr. 10, 2023 - Shaun is thrilled to have Prof. Wenjun Zhang (UC Berkeley) visit for our Chemistry and Biochemistry Departmental seminar series!

Apr. 5, 2023 - We are thrilled to get a notice of award for a collaborative NSF CBET proposal with Prof. Katherine Watts and Prof. Ashley McDonald (Cal Poly SLO) and Co-I Prof. Laura Sanchez (UCSC)! This Facilitating Research at a Primarily Undergraduate Institution (RUI) mechanism strengthens bridges between our campuses and integrates strong undergraduate and graduate research efforts, mentoring, and communication! Plus we get to explore some fun amino acid and complex polyketide antibiotic biosynthesis!

Mar. 22, 2023 - The McKinnie lab's first pre-print is up on bioRxiv! Jenny, Linnea, and our Moore lab, Chekan lab, and Fiore lab friends help understand mechanistic and structural details about the unusual PLP-dependent enzyme GntC! Check it out on our publications page or the bioRxiv website!

Mar. 16, 2023 - The McKinnie lab is incredibly excited to welcome Lia Lozano Salazar as our newest PhD student! Lia brings a unique interdisciplinary background in natural product isolation, structure elucidation, and peptide synthesis! We're thrilled to learn from her over the coming years and explore some new projects together - huge welcome Lia!

Mar. 8, 2023 - Robbie and Lia give excellent rotation talks on their projects - great work all!


Mar. 2, 2023 - Jenny gives a great UCSC SMComm talk on cyclic arginine biosynthesis and mechanistic PLP enzymology!

Feb. 22, 2023 - The McKinnie lab welcomes Meron Mesgun to the lab as an undergraduate researcher!

Feb. 1, 2023 - The McKinnie lab welcomes Gabriel Lefebre to the lab as an undergraduate researcher!

Jan. 9, 2023 - The McKinnie lab welcomes two Chemistry rotation students Lia Lozano Salazar and Robbie Shepherd for Winter quarter! Excited to work with you all!

Jan. 8, 2023 - Shaun pops down to sunny San Diego to attend the 4th International Conference on Natural Product Discovery and Development in the Genomic Era!

Dec. 19, 2022 - NOA day! Thrilled that our collaborative R21 project with Dr. Laura Sanchez's lab was funded by NIGMS! Excited to continue evolving some enzymes and test out some new analytical tools!

Dec. 5, 2022 - Bittersweet moment as the group celebrates the graduation of our incredibly talented undergraduate researcher Amelia Smyth! We're incredibly proud of you and are excited to see you succeed in medical school at Tufts!

Dec. 2, 2022 - Shaun travels down to beautiful San Luis Obispo to talk about some vanadium enzymology to Cal Poly SLO! Huge thanks Prof. Katie Watts for the invitation and great to see former alumnus Linnea! 

Nov. 18, 2022 - Huge congratulations to Mel for being awarded a 2022-2023 Koret Undergraduate Research Scholarship! Excited to keep evolving some enzymes together!

Nov. 10, 2022 - A good chunk of the lab goes up to the Bay Area Chemistry Symposium (BACS) at UC Berkeley to connect with our greater Bay Area academic and industry chemists! Austin did a phenomenal job representing the lab during his talk about substrate-dependent reactivity of dioxygenase enzymes! 

Nov. 8, 2022 - Adam and Olivia give great presentations in their PBSE rotation talks - great work all! 

Oct. 14, 2022 - Huge congratulations to Amelia for her Fink symposium undergraduate research award! 

Oct. 13, 2022 - The McKinnie lab welcomes Lukas Varga to the lab as an undergraduate researcher!

Sept. 30, 2022 - The McKinnie lab wishes Karina the best of luck at her new position at Gilead! Thanks for all your hard work Karina and don't be a stranger!

Sept. 26, 2022 - The McKinnie lab welcomes two PBSE rotation students - Adam Lentz (METX track), and Olivia Matsumoto-Elliott (CB3 track)! Excited to work with you all for the next seven weeks!

Sept. 12, 2022 - Back to back welcome conferences with Shaun helping to organize the 2022 PBSE Fall Research Conference at Roaring Camp in Felton! Jenny and Jackson gave great posters and Prof. Lara Mahal gave a remarkable keynote presentation about glycobiology, microRNAs, and their impact on disease!

Sept. 9, 2022 - The lab helps welcome the incoming UCSC chemistry PhD and MSc students at the Fall Conference! Austin and Jenny both gave great talks on understanding and applying neurotoxin enzymology and Radcliff gave an excellent poster on some paired 'omics data in actinobacteria!

Sept. 2, 2022 - Shaun travels up to CSU Chico to meet the awesome faculty and students and talk about guanitoxin biosynthesis discovery and enzymatic applications!

Aug. 26, 2022 - Mel gives a great presentation on their summer undergraduate research project at the UCSC STEM Diversity poster session! Incredibly excited to continue evolving some enzymes throughout the academic year! 

Aug. 15, 2022 - Huge welcome to Manasi Natu who officially joins our lab as a junior specialist for the upcoming year! Welcome aboard Manasi!

Aug. 11, 2022 - Alondra gives an excellent presentation and poster at the UCSC ACCESS program Symposium! Huge congrats Alondra on all your hard work this summer!

July 11, 2022 - The McKinnie lab gets a notice of award for their NIGMS R35 grant on identifying, characterizing, and applying bacterial site-specific vanadium dependent haloperoxidase enzymes! Thrilled for the financial support to continue investigating these cool enzymes!

July 1, 2022 - The McKinnie lab welcomes undergraduate student Mel Jones to the lab as a part of the UC LEADS program sponsored by the UCSC STEM Diversity programs! Incredibly excited to work with them and play around with some enzyme evolution!

June 20, 2022 - The McKinnie lab welcomes Hartnell College undergraduate student Alondra Maranon Rodriguez for the next seven weeks thanks to the UCSC ACCESS program!

June 14, 2022 - Shaun is honored to receive one of the inaugural Koret Scholar Mentoring Awards - huge thanks Amelia for the nomination, it's been an absolute pleasure to work with you over the past year!

June 2, 2022 - Jenny and Austin give an awesome tag-team toxin talk on our recent guanitoxin biosynthesis paper at our cyanobacterial-themed UCSC SMComm

June 1, 2022 - Karina gives an awesome MSc capstone seminar on enzymatic bioremediation of PET plastics

May 27, 2022 - Amelia gives an excellent poster presentation on her latest work at the Koret Undergraduate Research Scholar Symposium

May 25, 2022 - Austin completes his third year talk and becomes our second ever PhD candidate - congratulations Austin!

May 23, 2022 - Jackson completes his third year talk and becomes the McKinnie lab's first ever PhD candidate! Great job Jackson!

May 18, 2022 - The McKinnie lab is thrilled to be a part of an international collaboration with the Fiore (University of São Paulo, Brazil), and Moore (UCSD) labs and fully elucidate the biosynthesis of the potent freshwater cyanobacterial neurotoxin guanitoxin! Find it on our publications page or on the JACS website!

May 14, 2022 - The McKinnie lab migrates up the coast to attend the Chemical Biology in the Bay Area Day at UCSF! Jackson gave an excellent presentation on the chemical ecology of some new vanadium enzymes, and Jenny won a poster prize! Great outing and amazing to connect with our regional chemical biology community!

May 9, 2022 - Jenny crushes her second year qualifying exam!

Apr. 5, 2022 - Shaun drags everyone up to San Jose to watch the lab's first Oilers hockey game! 

March 19, 2022 - A good chunk of the McKinnie lab roadtrips down to San Diego for the American Chemical Society spring conference! Jenny presented an awesome seminar in the Biocatalysis and Biologically related processes division, and Austin and Jackson gave enthusiastic poster presentations!

March 17, 2022 - We are incredibly excited to welcome Radcliff Huffman to the McKinnie lab! Radcliff has a strong background in  neuroscience and animal behavior in response to chemical cues, and is looking to complement these skill sets with some chemical and biochemical techniques! Huge welcome Radcliff!

March 6, 2022 - Jackson and Shaun head down the coast to Ventura to attend the Marine Natural Products Gordon Research Conference! So rewarding to attend in person conferences again and reconnect with our global natural products community! 

March 3, 2022 - The UC Santa Cruz Specialized Metabolite Community holds its first seminar! UCSC SMComm is focused on connecting our local natural products community and hearing from current trainees, visiting researchers, PIs and any other natural product aficionados. Jackson gave an excellent seminar to help kick off this inaugural event!

Jan. 3, 2022 - Welcome to Winter quarter Chemistry rotation students Addis Getahun, Sarah Levy, and Leila Parker!

Jan. 2, 2022 - Shaun heads to the 2022 Enzyme Mechanism Conference in Tucson, Arizona to talk about some neurotoxin enzymology! Awesome first conference as an independent PI - huge thanks to Prof. van der Donk and all other organizers for putting together this event!

Dec. 7, 2021 - Huge congratulations to Amelia for being selected as a 2021-2022 Koret Scholar! Amazing job Amelia, we're all super proud of you and excited for what you'll discover this year! 

Nov. 15, 2021 - Welcome to CB3 rotation student Casey Heaney who will rotate with us for the next seven weeks!

Sept. 25, 2021 - The McKinnie lab welcomes CB3 rotation student Radcliff Huffman for the next seven weeks!

Sept. 22, 2021 - Welcome to Chemistry rotation student Allyson McAtamney who will work with us for Fall quarter!

Sept. 9, 2021 - Jenny gives an excellent talk on some mechanistic enzymology at the Specialized Metabolite Community (SMComm)!

Aug. 24, 2021 - First fully independent McKinnie lab publication! Huge congratulations to Jackson for his mSystems commentary describing our past and future plans to understand the role of bacterial vanadium-dependent haloperoxidase enzymology in natural product biosynthesis and chemical ecology! Find it on our publications page or open access on the ASM website!

Aug. 12, 2021 - Linnea gives an excellent presentation summarizing all her hard work characterizing the mechanism of a unique neurotoxin enzyme at the UCSC ACCESS program Symposium! Great work Linnea!

July 5, 2021 - The McKinnie lab welcomes UC Los Angeles undergraduate student Hanna Fleming to the lab for the summer! Thrilled to have her investigate some vanadium enzymes with us!

June 22, 2021 - The McKinnie lab welcomes Cabrillo College undergraduate student Linnea Blaustein for the next seven weeks thanks to the UCSC ACCESS program!

June 21, 2021 - Great job to Austin for passing his second year qualifying exam - Congratulations!

May 17, 2021 - Huge congratulations to Jackson for passing his second year qualifying exam - and on his birthday no less! Great job Jackson!

March 25, 2021 - The McKinnie lab is thrilled to welcome Jennifer Cordoza to the team! Jenny brings a strong background in natural product isolation from the Maloney lab at PLNU and has already made some great advances investigating some unique PLP enzymology! Welcome Jenny!

February 4, 2021 - Austin gives a great seminar on algal neurotoxin enzymology at the Specialized Metabolite Community (SMComm)!

February 1, 2021 - The McKinnie lab welcomes CB3 rotation student Panpan Zhang for the next seven weeks!


January 15, 2021 - Shaun (virtually) travels to Montreal to give a talk at the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Concordia University! Thanks to Dr. Brandon Findlay for the invitation, it was great meeting your lab and colleagues!

January 4, 2021 - Huge congratulations to Josh Marquez for his recent highlight in the UCSC Chemistry and Biochemistry department Undergraduate Student Spotlight! You can find his interview here! Great job Josh, we're all incredibly proud of you!

December 14, 2020 - The McKinnie lab welcomes chemistry rotation student Zhilian Liu for the next two months!

November 23, 2020 - The McKinnie lab welcomes CB3 rotation students Jennifer Cordoza and Cristobal Morfin for the next seven weeks!

November 11, 2020 - The McKinnie lab takes a quick virtual trip overseas to give a talk at Queen's University Belfast! Huge thanks to Dr. Stephen Cochrane for the invitation and hopefully we'll get to have an in person visit in the future!

September 25, 2020 - Jackson gives an excellent talk during the 2020 Chemistry Department Fall Conference and even got a nice shout-out from keynote speaker Dr. Andy Borovik!

September 18, 2020 - The McKinnie lab gives its first (virtual) invited research talk at the University of North Carolina Greensboro! Huge thanks to Dr. Jon Chekan for the invitation, and Dr. Shabnam Hematian for the great conversations! I'm looking forward to visiting UNCG in person in the future!

September 10, 2020 - Austin gives a great virtual poster during the online PBSE research conference!

September 1, 2020 - The McKinnie lab turns 1 and gets a great present from UCSC and local firefighters and first responders - re-entry back onto campus and into the lab! HUGE thank you for keeping us all safe! 

August 19, 2020 - It is with a heavy heart that the McKinnie lab shuts down and evacuates Santa Cruz due to the nearby CZU lightning complex wildfires. We thoroughly appreciate the heroic efforts of all the firefighters and first responders that are keeping UCSC and Santa Cruz safe from danger. Stay safe and healthy everyone!

June 30, 2020 - A comprehensive and collaborative Natural Product Reports review between the McKinnie, George (University of Adelaide) and Moore (UCSD) labs summarizes the isolation, structure elucidation, biological activity, biosynthesis, and chemical and enzymatic syntheses of an entire family of meroterpenoids! Find it here.

June 29, 2020 - Small peptide, big activity! A cryptic tripeptide in yellow scorpion toxin is shown to activate various beneficial cardiovascular signalling pathways in a recent Journal of Proteome Research article! Congratulations to the Pimenta and Verano-Braga labs and thanks for including our contribution from Shaun's PhD work! Find the article here.

June 16, 2020 - The McKinnie lab opens up again in accordance with all COVID-19 restrictions and guidelines.

June 2, 2020 - All about Nocardia! A collaborative paper with the Zeimert and Kaysser labs (University of Tubingen) and Moore lab (UCSD) that connects genomics to metabolomics in this pathogenic actinobacterial genus appears in mSystems! Find it here.

June 1, 2020 - The UCSC Committee on Research generously approved the McKinnie lab's Faculty Research Grant! Time to buy some HILIC columns!

May 26, 2020 - Old fold, new tricks! Our paper on the X-ray crystal structure of DabA, the N-prenyltransferase involved in domoic acid biosynthesis that possesses a terpene cyclase-like fold, appears in PNAS! Find it here.

Mar. 20, 2020 - A collaborative paper describing the nonlinear biosynthesis of alpiniamide from an unusual NRPS-PKS system appears in ACS Chemical Biology! Find it here.

Mar. 16, 2020 - Unfortunately due to COVID-19, the McKinnie lab will be working from home for the foreseeable future. Our work is not immediately essential to society right now, but staying safe and healthy definitely is.

Mar. 16, 2020 - The McKinnie lab is thrilled to welcome Jackson Baumgartner and Austin Hopiavuori as its inaugural PhD students! Honored to have the opportunity to mentor, collaborate, and make exciting new discoveries with them over the next few years!

Feb. 6, 2020 - McKinnie lab is fully cleared by EH&S to start work!


Jan. 27, 2020 - Welcome CB3 rotation students Jackson Baumgartner and Austin Hopiavuori for the next seven weeks!

Jan. 15, 2020 - Goodbye anatoxin-a(s) and hello guanitoxin! Our new perspective article explaining why this potent cyanobacterial neurotoxin needs a new name appears in Harmful Algae! Find it here.


Jan. 6, 2020 - A fun interdisciplinary study about antibiotics produced by cavity-causing Streptococcus bacteria is out in ACS Infectious Diseases! Find it here.

Jan. 1, 2020 - The McKinnie lab is beyond honored to receive a 2020 Thieme Chemistry Journals Award as selected by the editorial boards of Synthesis, Synlett and Synfacts! This award is presented to early-stage independent career investigators as a 'sign of recognition and career encouragement.' The full list of all awardees can be found here.

Dec. 10, 2019 - The UCSC Committee on Research generously approved the McKinnie lab's New Faculty Research Grant! Time to buy some bacterial strains!

Nov. 15, 2019 - Shaun gives an ACCESS program-sponsored seminar on his postdoc work at Cabrillo College (Aptos, CA)!

Nov. 7, 2019 - First McKinnie lab group meeting!

Sept. & Oct. 2019 - Welcome to five talented undergraduate students: Elise, Ethan, Griffin, Josh, and Mano! Excited to get the lab set up and do some great science with this team!

Sept. 16, 2019 - A collaborative paper between the Qian (Hong Kong University of Science and Technology), Zhang (UC Berkeley), and Moore (UCSD) labs describing a novel bioactive colibactin derivative that causes copper-dependent double stranded DNA breaks is out in Nature Chemistry! Find it here.

Sept. 1, 2019 - The McKinnie lab at UC Santa Cruz is founded!!

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