Aaron Leconte
Assistant Professor of Chemistry
Email: aleconte@kecksci.claremont.edu
Office: Keck Science 211
Phone: 909-607-9353
Office Hours: T 9-10; W 5:30-6:30; Th 9-10:30 / 4:30-6; by appt
Web Site: http://faculty.kecksci.claremont.edu/aleconte/
Educational Background:
B.A., Chemistry, Carleton College (2000-2004)
Research advisor: David G. Alberg

Ph.D., Chemical Biology, The Scripps Research Institute (2004-2009)
Research advisor: Floyd E. Romesberg

NIH Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard University (2009-2012)
Research advisor: David R. Liu

Courses Taught:
BIO/CHEM177: Biochemistry (F12, F13, F14, S15)
CHEM14: Basic Principles of Chemistry (Lab section only; F12, F13)
CHEM127: Advanced Laboratory II (S13, S14, S15)
CHEM180: Applied Biomolecular Evolution (S14)
CHEM29: Accelerated General Chemistry (F14)

Research Interests:
Protein engineering. Biotechnology. Biomolecular evolution. DNA polymerases.
My group is interested in using biochemistry to understand the molecular basis of the evolution of new function. In doing so, we hope to better understand evolution and how to apply it more effectively to the creation of useful medicines and materials. Students interested in research opportunities should contact Aaron directly (using the email address above).

Thesis Topics:
Selected Publications List: Click to open new window.
1.   A. M. Leconte, B. C. Dickinson, D. D. Yang, I. A. Chen, B. Allen, D. R. Liu . (2013). A Population-Based Experimental Model for Protein Evolution: Effects of Mutation Rate and Selection Stringency on Evolutionary Outcomes. Biochemistry   52: 1490. Abstract Article
2.   Bryan C. Dickinson , Aaron M. Leconte, Benjamin Allen, Kevin M. Esvelt, and David R. Liu . (2013). Experimental interrogation of the path dependence and stochasticity of protein evolution using phage-assisted continuous evolution. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci.   110: 9007. Abstract Article
3.   M. H. Duyzend, C. T. Clark, S. L. Simmons, W. B. Johnson, A. M. Larson, A. M. Leconte, A. W. Willis, M. Ginder-Vogel, A. K. Wilhelm, J. A. Czechowicz, and D. G. Alberg . (2012). Synthesis and evaluation of substrate analogue inhibitors of trypanothione reductase. J. Enzyme Inhib. Med. Chem.   27: 784. Abstract Article
4.   C. E. Dumelin, Y. Chen; A. M. Leconte, Y. G. Chen, D. R. Liu . (2012). Discovery and Biological Characterization of Geranylated RNA in Bacteria. Nature Chemical Biology   8: 913. Abstract Article
5.   A. M. Leconte, M. P. Patel, L. E. Sass, P. McInerney, M. Jarosz, L. Kung, J. L. Bowers, P. R. Buzby, J. W. Efcavitch, and F. E. Romesberg . (2010). Directed evolution of DNA polymerases for next generation sequencing. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed.   34: 5921.
6.   A. M. Leconte and F. E. Romesberg . (2009). Development of Unnatural DNA Base Pair Systems. (invited book chapter) Protein Engineering  Springer : .
7.   Y. Hari, G. T. Hwang, A. M. Leconte, N. Joubert, M. Hocek and F. E. Romesberg . (2008). Optimization of the pyridyl nucleobase scaffold for polymerase recognition and unnatural base pair replication. Chembiochem   9: 2796.
8.   A. M. Leconte, G. T. Hwang, S. Matsuda, P. Capek, Y. Hari, and F. E. Romesberg . (2008). Discovery, Characterization, and Optimization of an Unnatural Base Pair for Expansion of the Genetic Alphabet. J. Am. Chem. Soc.   130: 2336.
9.   G. T. Hwang, A. M. Leconte, and F. E. Romesberg . (2007). Polymerase Recognition and Stability of Fluoro-Substituted Pyridone Nucleobase Analogues. Chembiochem   8: 1606.
10.   S. Matsuda, A. M. Leconte, and F. E. Romesberg . (2007). Minor Groove Hydrogen Bonds and the Replication of Unnatural Base Pairs. J. Am. Chem. Soc.   129: 5551.
11.   A. M. Leconte and F. E. Romesberg . (2006). Chemical biology: a broader take on DNA. (invited commentary) Nature   444: 553.
12.   A. M. Leconte and F. E. Romesberg . (2006). Amplify this! DNA and RNA get a third base pair. (invited commentary) Nature Methods   3: 667.
13.   A. M. Leconte, S. Matsuda, G. Hwang, and F. E. Romesberg . (2006). Efforts toward Expansion of the Genetic Alphabet: Methyl Pyridone and Pyridone Nucleobases. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed.   45: 4326.
14.   Y. Kim, A. M. Leconte, Y. Hari, and F. E. Romesberg . (2006). Stability and Polymerase Recognition of Pyridine Nucleobase Analogs. Angew. Chem. Int. Ed.   45: 7809.
15.   A. M. Leconte, S. Matsuda, and F. E. Romesberg . (2006). An Efficiently Extended Class of Unnatural Base Pairs. J. Am. Chem. Soc.   128: 6780.
16.   A. M. Leconte, L. Chen, and F. E. Romesberg . (2005). Polymerase Evolution: Efforts toward Expansion of the Genetic Code. J. Am. Chem. Soc.   127: 12470.