Barry Isralewitz comes to software development as a simulation scientist who appreciates the power of a good tool. When he was a biochemistry undergraduate at Cornell University with an interest in programming, he worked on bioinformatics software for automating design and construction of multiple generations of recombinant DNA clones. Isralewitz set to switching fields to biophysics when he encountered computer simulations used to explore protein dynamics, a path which eventually led to graduate work in the TCB group studying large-scale protein motions with molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. In his doctoral work Isralewitz performed some of the earliest Steered Molecular Dynamics simulations, developing simulation protocols and additions to the TCB group's parallel-MD software NAMD needed for his studies, including titin extension and ATP synthase stalk rotation. Along the way to receiving his Ph. D. in 2007, Isralewitz also released software tools for VMD, the TCB group's molecular visualization software. Isralewitz's current software focus is Timeline, an analysis and graphing VMD plug-in for identifying events that take place during large MD simulations. Timeline displays temporally-changing attributes of a molecular structure as a 2-D box-plot linked to 3D structure display, with attribute values for each residue of a modeled system, or for other sets of system elements, plotted against time. Starting from an overview of all events for the entire structure, a user can zoom in to display the details of a few key residues over a brief time span. Once identified, notable events can be further explored with additional analysis methods and — particularly useful during coarse, initial examination of extermely large trajectories — by loading additional structure/trajectory detail around events and involved structures.
Barry Isralewitz


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