H. Tonie Wright, PhD

Structural Biology

  • A.B., 1963, Princeton University
  • Ph.D., 1968, Chemistry, University of California San Diego

  • 1968-1969, University of California San Diego (NIH Fellow)
  • 1969-1971, MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, England (NIH Fellow)


We study the interactions of biological macromolecules and enzymatic mechanisms at the atomic level and correlate this information with cellular level phenomena. Our approaches utilize x-ray crystallography, recombinant DNA methods, molecular model building, in vitro physical and biochemical methods and cell-based assays. We collaborate closely with other research groups that have complementary research approaches and mutual interests.

We are studying the interactions of the Alzheimer’s amyloid peptide Aβ in its different forms with inflammatory proteins and the effects of these interactions on reactive oxygen release from activated rat microglia (from Carmen Sato-Bigbee). These phenomena are implicated in the etiology of Alzheimer’s disease. We are also working with Darrell Peterson to apply high resolution structural methods to the different forms of Aβ.

In collaboration with Umesh Desai’s group in the Dept. of Medicinal Chemistry we are studying the interactions of synthetic polyanionic molecules with proteins of the thrombosis/fibrinolysis pathway as possible replacement anticoagulants for heparin. We are also collaborating with Dr. J. P. Lewis of the Dept. of Oral and Craniofacial Surgery in the Philips Institute of the School of Dentistry in structural studies of transcriptional regulators of oxidative stress response genes in bacteria.

View Dr. Wright's Publications via the National Library of Medicine's PubMed.
H. Tonie Wright, PhD
Dept. of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
Virginia Commonwealth University
VCU Massey Cancer Center
Biotech Park, Suite 212
Richmond, VA 23298

  •      804-828-6139
  •      xrdproc@vcu.edu