Scholar Profile

Ronald T. Raines

Firmenich Professor of Chemistry
Department of Chemistry
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
77 Massachusetts Avenue, 18-498
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
Email: rtraines@mit.edu
Personal Homepage
1990 Searle Scholar

Research Interests

The Raines Lab is working to reveal how biological phenomena can be explained with the principles of chemistry. Their focus is on proteins, and their work uses ideas and techniques from diverse disciplines, ranging from synthetic organic chemistry and biophysics to cell biology and genetics. With this integrative approach, the Raines Lab has discovered an RNA-cleaving enzyme that is in a multi-site human clinical trial as an anti-cancer agent; revealed that unappreciated forces — the n–to–pi* interaction and C5 hydrogen bond — stabilize all proteins; created hyperstable and human-scale synthetic collagens; and developed processes to synthesize proteins, catalyze their folding, and facilitate their entry into human cells, and to convert crude biomass into useful fuels and chemicals.