Theoretical and Computational Biophysics Group

Beckman Institute

Room 3057

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

405 N. Mathews Ave., Urbana, IL 61801

Email Address:

Intrigued by the myriad of function protein can possess, Chang Sun pursued a PhD in biochemistry at UIUC. He has worked with a variety of bioenergetically important membrane proteins such as photosynthetic reaction center and bo3 ubiquinol oxidase during his graduate training by Colin A Wraight and Robert B Gennis. Specifically, he studied how the protein matrix can tune the property of protein intermediate states during catalytic cycle using pulsed electron magnetic resonance. As a result, he realized the important role of protein structures in dictating their corresponding biological functions. After receiving his doctoral degree in 2016, he became interested in the structure determination of membrane protein using cryoEM and started to collaborate with John Rubinstein's group in University of Toronto. In 2017, he joined Emad Tajkhorshid's research group and has been focusing on modeling atomic structure from the electron density map. He is also interested in using molecular dynamics simulation to better understand protein functions.


  • Ph.D, Biochemistry, 2016.
  • University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Advisor: Prof. Robert B. Gennis

  • B.S., Pharmacy, 2010.
  • Fudan University

Research Interests

  • Cryo-EM structural determination on membrane proteins
  • Gas permeation through membrane and channel
  • Optical and magnetic spectroscopy


  • X-ray transparent microfluidic chips for high-throughput screening and optimization of in meso membrane protein crystallization
  • Jeremy M Schieferstein, Ashtamurthy S Pawate, Chang Sun, Frank Wan, Paige N Sheraden, Jana Broecker, Oliver P Ernst, Robert B Gennis, Paul JA Kennis, Biomicrofluidics, 2017, 11(2), 024118
  • Q-band electron-nuclear double resonance reveals out-of-plane hydrogen bonds stabilize an anionic ubisemiquinone in cytochrome bo3 from Escherichia coli
  • Chang Sun, Alexander T Taguchi, Josh V Vermaas, Nathan J Beal, Patrick J OMalley, Emad Tajkhorshid, Robert B Gennis, Sergei A Dikanov, Biochemistry, 2016, 55(40), 5714-5725