Faculty Portrait

Contact Information

Name: Linda Roberts

Title: Professor of Chemistry

Office Location: Sequoia 548C

Email: robertslm@csus.edu

Office Phone: 916.278.3892

Mailing Address: 6000 J street

Office Hours: Class and regular advising: M 11-12 pm, TW 10-11 am.

Office Hours: DEGREES and SEE advising: T 2-4 pm, F 9-10 am

Spring 2022 courses

Chem 164 Advanced Biochemistry Laboratory

Section 1/2: M 2-1:50, M 3-5:50, W 2-4:50 pm

 

Publications (+ denotes Master's student, * denotes undergraduate student author)

  1. Petrlova, J., +Duong, T., +Cochran, M., Axelsson, A., Morgelin, M., Roberts, L.M., Lagerstedt, J.O.  The Fibrillogenic L178H Variant of Apolipoprotein A-I Forms Helical Fibrils.  2012  J. Lipid Res. 53, 390-398.
  2. Lagerstedt, J.O., Cavigiolio, G., Roberts, L.M., Hong, H.S., Jin, L.W., Fitzgerald, P.G., Oda, M.N., Voss, J.C.  Mapping the Structural Transition in an Amyloidogenic Apolipoprotein A-I.  2007.  Biochemistry 46, 9693-9699.
  3. Roberts, L.M. Developing Experimental Design and Trouble-shooting Skills in an    Advanced Biochemistry Laboratory.  2001. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology    Education 29, 10-15.
  4. Rogers, D.P., Roberts, L.M., Lebowitz, J., Anantharamaiah, G.M., Engler, J.A., Brouillete, C.G.  The Lipid-Free Structure of Apolipoprotein A-I: Effects of Amino-Terminal Deletions. 1998. Biochemistry 37, 11714-11725 .
  5. Rogers, D.P., Roberts, L.M., Lebowitz, J., Engler, J.A., Brouillette, C.G.Structural Analysis of Apolipoprotein A-I: Effect of Amino- and Carboxyl-Terminal Deletions on the Lipid-Free Structure.  1998. Biochemistry 37, 945-955.
  6. Roberts, L.M., Ray, M.J.,Shih, T.-W., *Hayden, E., *Reader, M.M., Brouillette, C.G.  Structural Analysis of Apolipoprotein A-I: Limited Proteolysis of Methionine-Reduced and - Oxidized Lipid-Free and Lipid-Bound Human Apo A-I.  1997. Biochemistry 36, 7615- 7624.
  7. Rogers, D.P., Brouillette, C.G., Engler, J.A., Tendian, S.W., Roberts, L.M., Mishra, V., Anantharamaiah, G.M., Lund-Katz, S., Phillips, M.C., Ray, M.J.  Truncation of the Amino Terminus of Human Apolipoprotein A-I Substantially Alters Only the Lipid-Free Conformation.  1997. Biochemistry 36 , 288-300.
  8. Roberts, L.M., Dunker, A.K. Structural Changes Accompanying Chloroform-Induced Contraction of the Filamentous Phage fd.  1993. Biochemistry 32 , 10479-10488.
  9. Dunker, A.K., Ensign, L.D., Arnold, G.E., Roberts, L.M. A Model for fd Phage Penetration and Assembly.  1991. FEBS Letters 292, 271-274.
  10. Dunker, A.K., Ensign, L.D., Arnold, G.E., Roberts, L.M. Proposed Molten Globule Intermediate in fd Phage Penetration and Assembly. 1991. FEBS Letters 292, 275-278.

Grants and Awards

  • CSUS Incentive for Developing External Awards Grant (2021): "NSF-MRI Acquisition of SEC-MALS for Teaching and Research at CSUS"
  • CSUPERB Covid Recovery Microgrant (2020)
  • Fulbright Scholar Award, Sweden (2019): "Mechanism of Amyloid Formation in Apolipoprotein A-I"
  • CSUS Faculty Research Incentive Grant (2018): “Structural Analysis of Apolipoprotein A-I Aggregates Using HDX and Limited Proteolysis"
  • Science Educational Equity Outstanding Research Mentor (2017)
  • Pedagogy Enhancement Award (2016-2017): "Peer-Assisted Learning in a One-semester General, Organic, Biochemistry Course"
  • CSU Chancellor's Office Award for Promising Practices Course Redesign (2014-2015) (with Dr. Jeff Mack) $13,000
  • CSUPERB Award (2012-2014): "Influence of amphiphiles on fibril formation in apolipoprotein A-I" $15,000
  • Outstanding Teacher Award, College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, 2009-2010
  • CSUPERB Award (2007-2008): "Crystallographic analysis of substrate binding determinants in yeast and human kynureninase" (with Dr. Cindy Kellen-Yuen) $15,000
  • CSUS Research and Creative Activity Award (2008-2006, 2003, 2002-1999, 1997, 1996)
  • CSUS Instructionally Related Activities Award (2007-2011): "Research Experiences in the Physical Sciences" $29,000
  • Sacramento City-County Office of Metropolitan Water Planning, Water Forum  Award (2005): "Biochemistry of Reproduction in Salmon and Salmon Eggs in the American River" (co- PI with Ronald Coleman, lead PI, in the Dept. of Biological Sciences)
  • Pedagogy Enhancement Award (2003-2004): "Program Development in Chemistry: Establishing BS and MS Concentration Degrees in Biochemistry "
  • NIH AREA Grant (2003-2006): “Analysis of a Conformational Switch” $100,000
  • Instructionally Related Activities Award (2002-2006): “Summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates in Chemistry and Physics” ($10,000-$12,000)
  • NSF-CCLI Award (2001-2003): “Undergraduate Interdisciplinary Molecular Biology Training Facility” (Co-PI) ($200,000)
  • Science Educational Equity Outstanding Faculty Award (2001)
  • Research Corporation Award (1999-2002): “Investigation of a Conformational Switch: Characterization of the Amino-terminus of Human Apolipoprotein A-I” ($33,000)

Current Research Students

Research students mentored in the Roberts lab to date: 107

Roman Ishchuk (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration)
  • Roman Ishchuk (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration). Roman was studying the effect of detergents on fibril formation in Apo A-I before he passed away in a tragic accident. He worked for Agrinos, a plant biotechnology company in their research division. He was an extraordinarily kind and generous person and we will miss him tremendously.
  • Thao Tran (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration) Thao is examining the effect of different pH's on the stability of amyloidogenic apoA-I.
  • Tim Lee (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration)  Tim is comparing amyloid formation in canine versus human apoA-I.
  • Sabina Gurung (BS Biochemsitry)  Sabina is studying the properties of sea otter apoA-I.

Recent Former Students (Degree path in parentheses)

  • Nancy Nguyen (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration)  Nancy completed her thesis "Effect of pro-inflammatory conditions on aggregation in amyloidogenic apolipoproteinA-I" in Fall, 2021.  She is currently working as a protein production manager at Encodia in San Diego, CA.
  • Tiglath Moradkhan (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration)  Tig completed his thesis "Insight Into the Lipid-Free and Lipid-Bound States of Marine Mammal Apolipoprotein A-I Using Homology Modeling" in Fall, 2021.  He is currently working as a data analyst and database develepor for the California Department of Pesticide Regulation.
  • Gloria Anyanwu (BS, Cell and Molecular Biology)  Gloria completed her Bachelor's degree in Fall 2020.  She worked for two biotech companies in the SF Bay Area and is entering the Stem Cell Master's program at San Francisco State University in Fall 2022.
  • Nazareth Talamantes (BS Biochemistry)  Nazareth completed her Bachelor's degree in Fall 2020.  She is currently working for a Sacramento area company.
  • Sarah Kamau (BS, Biochemistry)  Sarah graduated with the BS Biochemistry degree in Fall 2021.  She is currently working for Sutter hospital in Sacramento.
  • Simon Mentukh (BS Biological Sciences, Biomedical Science concentration)  Simon received his degree in spring 2019 and is applying to medical school.
  • Chau Nguyen (BS Biological Sciences, Biomedical Sciences concentration) Chau is applying to medical school.
  • Roman Demchuk (BS Biological Sciences, Clinical lab sciences concentration) Roman is applying to medical school.
  • Eric Herrera (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration. Eric completed his thesis "Using case studies to improve student learning in a prerequisite nursing chemistry course : an action research study in Fall 2017.  He is currently teaching at area community colleges.
  • Aurelia Leyva Castro (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration, summer 2016).Aurelia completed her thesis describing properties of lipid-bound amyloid apoA-I and she is now working for a local biotechnology company.
  • Sami Haddad (BA Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration, Spring 2017) Sami worked on the kinetics of acid-induced aggregation of amyloidogenic ApoA-I. He is in his first year of medical school.
  • Stephen Ng (BS, Biological Sciences, Microbiology concentration, Spring 2016). Stephen worked on the stability of amyloidogenic apoA-I at different pH's. He is currently working for a Bay area biotechnology company.
  • Carmina Gutierrez (BS, Biological Sciences, Biomedical sciences concentration) Carmina completing her degree and planning to go to medical school after she graduates.
  • Arthemon Rutaganira (BS Biochemistry, S2014) Arthemon is working for a local technology company.
  • Sammy Villa (BS, Biological Sciences, Cell and Molecular concentration, F2015) Sammy is planning to enter a PhD program.
  • Irina Yakimchuk (BS Biochemistry, S2015). Irina is working for Ampac Fine Chemicals in Rancho Cordova.
  • Sonia Hawkins (BS Biological Sciences) Sonia is working in a research lab in Portland, Oregon.
  • Hang Truong (BS Biochemistry, S2014) Hang is planning to go to pharmacy school.
  • Megan Cochran (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration S2013). Megan is currently an account manager and analytical chemist at Phigenics, a water management and testing company in Chicago.
  • Trang Duong (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration S2013). Trang is working in the local biotechnology industry.
  • Yadwinder Bal (BS, Biochemistry S2013) Yadwinder is planning to pursue a PhD in bioinformatics.
  • Holly Nguyen (BS, Biochemistry S2013) Holly is planning to pursue a degree in pharmacy.
  • Valerie Yamamoto (BS, Biochemistry S2013) Valerie is pursuing a degree in pharmacy and also works as technical support staff for Biology course prep at Sacramento City College.
  • Alisha Knudsen (BS, Biochemistry S2013) Alisha is completing a master's degree in the CSUS Biological Sciences Stem Cell professional master's program.
  • William McCray (BS, Biochemistry S2013) William is working at Amgen in Rancho Cordova while continuing to develop his career as a professional dancer.
  • Codey Kongpanickul (BS, Biochemistry S2013) Codey is working in protein production at Genentech in Vacaville.
  • Mai Thao (MS Chemistry, Biochemistry concentration). Mai is working on a PhD in Biochemistry at Northern Illinois University.
  • Angela Monterrubio (BS, Biochemistry). Angela is working on a PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at UC Davis.
  • Mustafa Safi (BS, Biochemistry). Mustafa joined the lab as first-year college student and has been admitted to medical school starting F2014.
  • Silvia Hilt (BA, Biochemistry concentration; BS Biology). Silvia works as a cardiac intensive care nurse on weekends and is a PhD student in the laboratory of Dr. John Voss at UC Davis, where she still works on apolipoproteins.
  • Joe Case (BA, Biochemistry concentration). Joe completed his bachelor's in Chemistry and is working in Mesa, AZ.
  • Toribio Postiglione (BS, Biology). Toribio completed his degree and is completing a master's in nursing.
  • Adam Floyd (BA, Biochemistry concentration). Adam is working as an analytical chemist for Vermicrop Organics in Rocklin, CA.

Lab Photos

sabina1.jpg

Sabina in the lab on an (endless) protein expression day, April 2022.

spring-2020-group-photo-small.png

The lab in Spring 2020 - right before the pandemic!

Nancy-lightning-talk-cropped.jpg

Nancy giving a Lightning Talk at the 2019 CSUPERB meeting

Sarah setting up amyloid assays

Sarah setting up amyloid assays

Thao-and-LMR.png

Thao and Dr. Roberts at the 2019 CSUPERB meeting

Nancy, Chau, and Tim at 2017 CSUPERB meeting

Aurelia in the lab

Hang Truong at the 2013 NSM Summer Research Symposium

Arthemon with his poster at the 2013 NSM Summer Research Symposium

Sammy and Carmina explaining the effect of lysophosphatidylcholine on aggregation of L178H apoA-I at the 2015 CSUPERB meeting.

Roman pointing out the differential effects of detergents on aggregation in G26R apoA-I at the 2015 CSUPERB meeting.

Group photo at 2015 CSUPERB meeting.

Celebrating the graduating seniors!

Meeting presentations (since 2010)

*Denotes CSUS undergraduate authors, +denotes master's students

2022

  • Amyloidogenic potential of canine apolipoprotein A-I amyloidosis. +Lee T.K., Roberts, L.M.  2022 Annual CSUPERB meeting.

2020

  • Identifying the role of proteolytic cleavage in apolipoprotein A-I amyloidosis. *Talamantes N., Kamau S., Roberts L.M.  2020 CSUS Natural Sciences and Mathematics Research Symposium, Sacramento, CA.

2019

  • Limited Proteolysis of the Amyloidogenic L178H Variant of Human Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Anyanwu G., Roberts, L.M.  2019 Northen California Undergraduate ACS Meeting, Santa Clara, CA.
  • Differential Effect of Acidic pH on Stability and Amyloid Formation in Wild-type and G26R Apolipoprotein A-I.  +Tran, T.T., Roberts, L.M.  2019 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Anaheim CA.
  • Assessing the Effect of Heparin on Acid-induced Aggregation in Apolipoprotein A-I Variants.  +Nguyen, N., Roberts, L.M.  2019 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Anaheim, CA.

2018

  • Stability of the Amyloidogenic Apolipoprotein A-I G26R Variant.  +Tran, T.T., Roberts, L.M.  2018 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Santa Clara, CA.
  • Analysis of Amyloid Formation in G26R and Wild-type ApoA-I at Acidic and Neutral pH.  *Mentukh, S., Roberts, L.M.  2018 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting, Oakland, CA.

2017

  • Acidic pH Promotes Amyloid Formation in Full-Length Aplipoprotein A-I and its Amyloidogenic Mutants.  +Lee, T., +Nguyen, N., Roberts, L.M.  2017 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Santa Clara, CA.
  • Reversibility and Nucleation Potential of Acid-induced Aggregation in Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Nguyen, C., Roberts, L.M.  2017 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Santa Clara, CA.
  • Reversibility and Nucleation Potential of Acid-induced Aggregation in Wild-Type Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Nguyen, C., Roberts, L.M.  2017 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting, San Jose, CA.
  • Reversibility and Nucleation Potential of Acid-induced Aggregation in Amyloidogenic G26R Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Boneck, J., Roberts, L.M.  2017 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting, San Jose, CA.

2016

  • Acidic pH Induces Oligomerization of the Fibrillogenic G26R Mutant of Human Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Villa, S., *Ng, S., +Rutaganira, A., Roberts, L.M.  2016 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Anaheim, CA.
  • Similar Effect of Acidic pH on Aggregation of Human Apolipoprotein A-I and Two of its Fibrillogenic Variants.  +Nguyen, K., *Demchuk, R., *Haddad, S., Roberts, L.M.  2016 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Anaheim, CA
  • Effect of Acidic pH on Amyloid Formation in Human Apolipoprotein A-I and two of its Fibrillogenic Variants.  *Haddad, S., *Demchuk, R., +Nguyen, K., Roberts, L.M.  2017 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting, Moraga, CA.

2015

  • Lysophosphatidylcholine Stimulates Aggregation in Amyloidogenic L178H Human Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Bhakta, M., *Villa, S., *Villarruel, S., *Gutierrez, C., Roberts, L.M.  2015 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Santa Clara, CA.
  • Analysis of Lipid-Bound Amyloidogenic G26R Human Apolipoprotein A-I.  +Sundar, P., Roberts, L.M.  2015 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Santa Clara, CA.
  • Influence of Amphiphiles on Fibril Formation in Amyloidogenic G26R Variant of Human Apolipoprotein A-I.  +Ishchuk, R., Roberts, L.M.  2015 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Santa Clara, CA.
  • Detection of Wild-Type & G26R Apolipoprotein Amyloid Formation when Exposed to Oxidation and Heat.  *Yakimchuk, I., Roberts, L.M.  2015 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting.
  • Differential pH effects on aggregation of WT and G26R Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Baadkar, S.S., Roberts, L.M.   2015 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting.

2014

  • Assessing the Effect of Neutral Phospholipid on Fibril Formation in L178H Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Truong, H., Roberts, L.M.  2014 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Santa Clara, CA.
  • Construction and expression of a fibril-forming mutant of Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Rutaganira, A., Roberts, L.M.  2014 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting.
  • Lysophosphatidylcholine stimulates aggregation in fibrillogenic L178H Apolipoprotein A-I. *Bhakta, M., *Villa, S., *Villarruel, S., *Gutierrez, C., Roberts, L.M.  2014 NSM Summer Research Symposium.
  • Lysophosphatidycholine does not influence aggregation of wild-type apolipoprotein A-I.  *Yakimchuk, I., *Nguyen, K., *Liang, R., *Baadkar, S., Roberts, L.M.  2014 NSM Summer Research Symposium.
  • Analysis of Lipid-Bound Amyloidogenic G26R Apolipoprotein A-I.  +Sundar, P., Roberts, L.M.  2014 Provost Research Symposium.

2013

  • The cationic detergent DTAC does not influence fibril formation in fibrillogenic human apolipoprotein A-I.  *Hawkins, S., *Knudsen, A., Roberts, L.M.  2013 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Anaheim, CA.
  • Analysis of a lipid-bound fibrillogenic variant of human apolipoprotein A-I.  +Leyva-Castro, A., Roberts, L.M.  2013 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Anaheim, CA.
  • Optimizing the yield of human Apolipoprotein A-I from a bacterial expression system.  *Kongipanickul, C., Roberts, L.M.  2013 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting.
  • Cholate inhibits fibril formation in ApoA-I.  *McCray, W., *Truong, H., Roberts, L.M.  2013 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting.
  • The Effect of DTAC on WT and L178H Apolipoprotein A-I Fibril Formation.  *Knudsen, A., *Hawkins, S., Roberts, L.M.   2013 Northern California Undergraduate ACS Meeting.

2012

  • Differential effect of detergent suggests different aggregated structures in wild-type vs amyloid Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Bal, Y., *Ngyuen, H, Roberts, L.M.  2012 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Oakland, CA.
  • Decreased stability in the amyloidogenic L178H variant of human apolipoprotein A-I.  +Duong, T., Lagerstedt, J.O., Roberts, L.M.  2012 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Oakland, CA.
  • Decreased pH and Elevated Temperature Cause Greater Aggregation of the L178H Amyloidogenic Variant Compared to WT Apolipoprotein A-I.  *Bustamante-Hawkins, S., *Musgrove, L., Roberts, L.M.  2012 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Oakland, CA.

2011

  • The amyloidogenic L178H mutation in apolipoprotein A-I decreases the protein stability.  +Duong, T., Roberts, L.M. 2011 Annual CSUPERB meeting, Anaheim, CA.

2010

  • Structural properties of amyloidogenic apoA-I mutant L178H.  Annika Axelsson, +Megan Cochran, +Trang Duong, Miral Chokshi, John C Voss, Linda M Roberts, Jens O Lagerstedt.   FEBS Letters Volume 277,  Supplement 1, A3.63.
  • The amyloid apolipoprotein variant L178H does not bind the amyloid-detecting dye ThT.  *Angela Monterrubio and Linda M. Roberts.  2010 Northern California Undergraduate ACS meeting.
  • Analysis of the formation of insoluble aggregates by the amyloid apolipoprotein variant L178H and WT. * Mustafa Safi, +Mai Thao and Linda M. Roberts.  2010 Northern California Undergraduate ACS meeting.
  • Limited proteolysis of the amyloid apolipoprotein variant L178H in the lipid-bound state.  *Adam Floyd and Linda Roberts.  2010 Northern California Undergraduate ACS meeting.

Research Projects/Interests

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the number one cause of death in American men and women.  One of the major factors in heart disease is blood cholesterol, which is carried by lipoproteins. One of the most commonly used risk factors for heart disease is the serum level of HDL (high density lipoprotein) and LDL (low density lipoprotein). High HDL and low LDL levels are correlated with reduced risk for heart disease. HDL lowers the risk for CVD because it elicits the removal of cholesterol from cells in peripheral tissues. This process is facilitated by the major protein in HDL, apolipoprotein A-I (apo A-I). Our lab explores the structure-function relationships of apo A-I in humans and in other organisms.

More recently, and in collaboration with several apolipoprotein A-I researchers, we have been exploring the properties of amyloid-forming variants of apoA-I. A large number of Sac State students (more than 80) have worked on apo A-I in my laboratory. Most of these students have gone on to PhD programs, jobs in industry, or medical or other professional schools. Students interested in participating in this research should contact me in person (check my current office hours). I welcome master's students as well as undergraduates at all levels. I also work with students from both the Chemistry and Biological Sciences departments. Since the training students receive in my lab requires a lot of my time, I also require a one-year commitment so that sufficient progress can be made for a research presentation at a regional or national meeting.

For more information about our research, please make an appointment to come and see me or contact me at robertslm@csus.edu.