David N. Beratan, R.J. Reynolds Professor of Chemistry and Professor of Physics and Faculty Network Member of Energy Initiative  

David N. Beratan

Office Location: 5311 French Family Science Center, Durham, NC 27708
Office Phone: (919) 660-1526
Email Address: david.beratan@duke.edu
Web Page: http://www.chem.duke.edu/~beratan/

Specialties:
Physical
Theory and Modeling
Biomolecular Structure and Function
Nanoscience and Materials

Education:
Ph.D., California Institute of Technology, 1985
B.S., Duke University, 1980

Research Description: Dr. Beratan is developing theoretical approaches to understand the function of complex molecular and macromolecular systems, including: the molecular underpinnings of energy harvesting and charge transport in biology; the mechanism of solar energy capture and conversion in man-made structures; the nature of charge conductivity in naturally occurring nucleic acids and in synthetic constructs, including the photochemical repair of damaged DNA in extremophiles; CH bond activation by copper oxygenase enzymes; the flow of charge in bacterial appendages on the micrometer length scale; the theoretical foundations for inverse molecular design - the property driven discovery of chemical structures with optimal properties; the exploitation of molecular diversity in the mapping of molecular and materials "space"; the use of infra-red excitation to manipulate electron transport through molecules; the optical signatures of molecular chirality and the influence of chirality on charge transport. Prof. Beratan is affiliated with the Departments of Chemistry, Biochemistry, Physics, as well as Duke's programs in Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, Structural Biology and Biophysics, Nanosciences, and Phononics.

Teaching (Spring 2016):

  • Chem 302.01, Biophysical chemistry Synopsis
    French sci 2231, TuTh 10:05 AM-11:20 AM
  • Chem 590.01, Special topics in chemistry Synopsis
    French sci 2237, MW 10:05 AM-11:20 AM

Recent Publications   (More Publications)

  1. P Antoniou, Z Ma, P Zhang, DN Beratan and SS Skourtis, Vibrational control of electron-transfer reactions: a feasibility study for the fast coherent transfer regime., Physical chemistry chemical physics : PCCP, vol. 17 no. 46 (November, 2015), pp. 30854-30866 [doi]  [abs].
  2. NF Polizzi, A Migliore, MJ Therien and DN Beratan, Defusing redox bombs?, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 112 no. 35 (September, 2015), pp. 10821-10822 [doi] .
  3. Y Zhang, RM Young, AK Thazhathveetil, AP Singh, C Liu, YA Berlin, FC Grozema, FD Lewis, MA Ratner, N Renaud, K Siriwong, AA Voityuk, MR Wasielewski and DN Beratan, Conformationally Gated Charge Transfer in DNA Three-Way Junctions., The journal of physical chemistry letters, vol. 6 no. 13 (August, 2015), pp. 2434-2438 [doi]  [abs].
  4. Correction for Migliore et al., Sensing of molecules using quantum dynamics, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, vol. 112 no. 25 (June, 2015), pp. E3310-E3310 [doi] .
  5. J Lin, D Balamurugan, P Zhang, SS Skourtis and DN Beratan, Two-Electron Transfer Pathways., The journal of physical chemistry. B, vol. 119 no. 24 (June, 2015), pp. 7589-7597 [doi]  [abs].

Highlight:
Dr. Beratan is developing theoretical approaches to understand the function of complex molecular and macromolecular systems, including: the molecular underpinnings of energy harvesting and charge transport in biology; the mechanism of solar energy capture and conversion in man-made structures; the nature of charge conductivity in naturally occurring nucleic acids and in synthetic constructs, including the photochemical repair of damaged DNA in extremophiles; CH bond activation by copper oxygenase enzymes; the flow of charge in bacterial appendages on the micrometer length scale; the theoretical foundations for inverse molecular design - the property driven discovery of chemical structures with optimal properties; the exploitation of molecular diversity in the mapping of molecular and materials "space"; the use of infra-red excitation to manipulate electron transport through molecules; the optical signatures of molecular chirality and the influence of chirality on charge transport. Prof. Beratan is affiliated with the Departments of Chemistry, Biochemistry, Physics, as well as Duke's programs in Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, Structural Biology and Biophysics, Nanosciences, and Phononics.  

Current Ph.D. Students   (Former Students)

  • Goke Ojewole  
  • Zheng Ma  
  • Chaoren Liu  
  • Chetan Rupakheti  
  • Ruibin Liu  
  • Gary Zhang  
  • Jiaxing Lin  
  • Nicholas Polizzi  
  • Yves Wang  
  • Nan Jiang  
Postdocs Mentored

  • Agostino Migliore (2013/01-present)  
  • Shoresh Shafai (2013/01-present)  
  • David Minh (2011 - 2013)  
  • Julia Contreras-Garcia (2009 - 2011)  
  • Aaron Virshup (2009/12-present)  
  • Aleksey Kuznetsov (2009-2013)  
  • Christopher Rinderspacher (2007 - 2009)  
  • Elizabeth Hatcher (2006-2007)  
  • Balamurugan Desinghu (2006 - 2010)  
  • Ravindra Venkatramani (2006-2012)  
  • Xiangqian Hu (2005-2011)  
  • Alexander Balaeff (2005-2012)  
  • Gerard Zuber (2004 - 2008)  
  • Shahar Keinan (2004 - 2011)  
  • Ilya Balabin (2004 - 2009)