Loyola University Chicago

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry


The Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry welcomes two new tenure-track faculty members!

Associate Professor Joerg Zimmermann comes to Loyola from The Scripps Research Institute, where he studied the molecular mechanisms of antibody affinity maturation with Floyd E. Romesberg.  He was a postdoc at UC-Berkeley in Prof. Graham Fleming’s group and received his PhD from Humboldt University in Berlin.  His research uses a multidisciplinary approach including femtosecond laser spectroscopy, molecular biology, and biophysical chemistry. At Loyola, he will continue this work and apply the knowledge gained to improve the efficacy of antibody-based therapeutics, a fast-growing therapeutic platform for use in a diverse array of diseases such as cancer or autoimmune disease. In addition to his immunological work, he will be using time-resolved infrared spectroscopy to study structure-dynamics-function relationships in proteins as well as chemical reaction dynamics.

Assistant Professor Pengfei Li completed a postdoc at Yale University in Prof. Sharon Hammes-Schiffer’s research group and received his PhD from Michigan State with Prof. Kenneth Merz.  Dr. Li’s research focuses on theoretical and computational studies to develop predictive models of metal ion-containing systems for use in different applications, and to investigate fundamental mechanisms of key metalloproteins.  In his first semester at Loyola, Dr. Li is teaching physical biochemistry for the biological sciences and he has also begun to instruct graduate and undergraduate students in his research group.