Corbett, KarenKaren Corbett

Molecular Biophysics Graduate Student
Major Professor: Dr. Wei Yang

Lab: 418 KLB (Kasha Laboratory Building)




My research area of interest involves the development of sampling algorithms for quantitative simulations of biomolecules. Specifically, my research goal is to efficiently and accurately simulate high-frequency, high-barrier biomolecular events such as enzymatic reactions.

Utilizing computer simulations to understand how biomolecules such as enzymes work has long been a goal of computational biophysics. One of the challenges to completing this goal lies in the notorious timescale problem, the gap between the timescales feasible by regular molecular dynamics with current computational power and the timescales of many biologically relevant events. The orthogonal space random walk and the on-the-path random walk sampling strategies, previously developed in Dr. Wei Yang’s laboratory, have enabled physically robust simulations of biomolecular systems and have been able to overcome the aforementioned timescale problem. I will develop new simulation methods for enzymatic reactions using these sampling schemes as the framework.



Light, T. P.; Corbett, K. M.; Metrick, M. A.; MacDonald, G.Hofmeister Ion-Induced Changes in Water Structure Correlate with Changes in Solvation of an Aggregated Protein Complex. Langmuir, 2016, 32, 1360-1369.
Li, X.; Lv, C.; Corbett, K.; Zheng, L.; Wu, D.; Yang, W. Free energy landscape of a minimalist salt bridge model. Protein Sci. 2016, 25, 270-276.


B.S. Chemistry, James Madison University (2013)


American Heart Association Predoctoral Fellowship (2017-2019)
Donald L. D. Caspar Fellow (2013-2018)
Barry M. Goldwater Scholar (2012)