Dr. Jon Clardy

Dr. Clardy is a professor of biomedical, biochemical, and natural product chemistry at Harvard University. Dr. Clardy received his B.Sc. from Yale University and his Ph.D. from Harvard University. With an overall goal of understanding how small molecules control biological processes, the Clardy laboratory focuses on biologically active small molecules, especially those known as natural products, and their interactions with larger molecules. His research projects can be categorized into four areas: environmental DNA, isolation and structure of natural products, protein structure and enzymology, and infectious diseases.

Professor of Biomedical, Biochemical, and Natural Product Chemistry
Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School
Harvard University
Broad Insititue


Presentation Abstract

Eavesdropping on Bacteria

All eukaryotic organisms, including humans, have spent their entire evolutionary history in close association with bacteria, and the two forms of life have been competing, cooperating and coexisting for almost 3 billion years. As bacteria sense and respond to the world with molecules, eavesdropping on these messages – intercepting, analyzing, and interpreting the molecules that carry them – is a very active research field at the intersection of chemistry an biology. This lecture will focus on choanoflagellates, single-celled eukaryotes that are the ‘last living relatively of animals’, and the bacteria that surround them. It highlights the importance of interdisciplinary research and following up on unexpected observations.