Jeff Vieregg

Institute for Molecular Engineering
Jones 222, University of Chicago
5757 South Ellis Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637 USA



I am a senior research scientist at the Institute for Molecular Enginnering at the University of Chicago. I did my graduate work at the University of California, Berkeley in the labs of Ignacio Tinoco, Jr. and Carlos Bustamante, then a postdoc at Caltech in Niles Pierce's lab.

My research interests revolve around the question of how the sequence of a nucleic acid encodes its structure, function, interactions, and fate, and how we can use our knowledge of these to do useful things. In addition to being fascinating physical systems, RNA and DNA play many vital roles in building and maintaining life, from information transfer to regulation of gene expression to catalysis of chemical reactions. Learning how they function (and malfunction) is essential for understanding how cells work and may provide new ways to intervene when things go wrong.

Nucleic acid biophysics and biochemistry is a complex topic that requires techniques from a variety of disciplines to be applied at many scales. I've gotten the chance to use tools from fields ranging from non-equilibrium statistical physics and optical trapping through organic chemistry to human tissue culture and studied systems as small as single molecules and as large as whole vertebrate embryos. It's been tremendous fun (and very hard work), and I'm grateful to the amazing people I've met along the way.

Please follow the links on this page if you'd like to learn more about my research interests and background.