Kwang Hun Lim

Biophysical Chemistry

Office: SZ 574
Phone: 252-328-9805

  • Visiting Investigator, Molecular Microscopy Consortium, NIEHS, 2020 – present
  • Visiting Professor, MIT, 2019 – 2020
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, UC-Berkeley, 2000-2003
  • PhD Chemistry, SUNY-Stony Brook, 1999
  • MS Chemistry, POSTECH, Korea, 1995
  • BS Chemistry, POSTECH, Korea, 1992

Research Overview

My research program is focused on understanding molecular mechanism of protein misfolding and aggregation associated with numerous neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, and ATTR amyloidosis. Protein misfolding and aggregation involves structural changes from native polypeptides to oligomers and fibrillar aggregates. Structural characterization of oligomers and fibrils is critical to elucidating the molecular basis of their cytotoxic properties. Of particular importance is the small oligomeric species because of their more prominent roles in cellular dysfunction.

Main goals of this research program are to investigate structural characteristics of diverse in vitro and ex vivo misfolded oligomers extracted from brain and heart tissues, and to examine correlation between structural characteristics of the oligomers and their cytotoxicity. For the structural studies, we employ integrated approaches with solution- and solid-state NMR, and cryo-EM. The comprehensive structural studies have been carried out on a-synuclein and transthyretin associated with Parkinson’s diseases and ATTR amyloidosis, respectively. Click here for more information.

Selected Publications

  1. A.K.R. Dasari, S. Yi, M.F. Coats, S. Wi, K.H. Lim*, “Toxic Misfolded Transthyretin Oligomers with Different Molecular Conformations Formed through Distinct Oligomerization Pathways”, Biochemistry. 2022, in press

  2. A.K.R. Dasari, L. Dillard, S. Yi, E. Viverette, A. Hojjatian, U. Sengupta, R. Kayed, K.A. Taylor, M.J. Borgnia, K.H. Lim*, “Untwisted α-Synuclein Filaments Formed in the Presence of Lipid Vesicles.”, Biochemistry, 2022, 61, 1766-1773.
  3. K. R. Dasari and K. H. Lim*, “CD and solid-state NMR studies of low-order oligomers of transthyretin. Methods Mol. Biol., 2021, (invited, in press).

  4. Hojjatian, A. K. R. Dasari, U. Sengupta, D. Taylor, N. Daneshparvar, F. A. Yeganeh, L. Dillard, B. Michael, R. G. Griffin, M. J. Borgnia, R. Kayed, K. A. Taylor, K. H. Lim. Tau induces formation of α-synuclein filaments with distinct molecular conformations. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 2021, 554, 145-150.
  5. L. Norris, T. Patel, A. K. R. Dasari, T. A. Cope, K. H. Lim, and R. M. Hughes, “Covalent and non-covalent strategies for the immobilization of Tobacco Etch Virus protease (TEVp) on superparamagnetic nanoparticles”, J. Biotechnol., 2020, 322, 1-9.
  6. K. R. Dasari, I. Hung, B. Michael, Z. Gan, J. W. Kelly, L. H. Connors, R. G. Griffin, and K. H. Lim*, “Structural Characterization of Cardiac Ex Vivo Transthyretin Amyloid: Insight into the Transthyretin Misfolding Pathway In Vivo”, Biochemistry, 2020, 59, 1800-1803.
  7. K. R. Dasari, J. Arreola, B. Michael, R. G. Griffin, J. W. Kelly, and K. H. Lim*, “Disruption of the CD Loop by Enzymatic Cleavage Promotes the Formation of Toxic Transthyretin Oligomers through a Common Transthyretin Misfolding Pathway”, Biochemistry, 2020, 59, 2319-2327.
  8. H. Lim*, “Diverse Misfolded Conformational Strains and Cross-seeding of Misfolded Proteins Implicated in Neurodegenerative Diseases”, Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience, 2019, 12, 158.
  9. K. R. Dasari, R. Kayed, S. Wi, K. H. Lim*, “Tau interacts with the C-terminal region of a-synuclein, promoting formation of toxic aggregates with distinct molecular conformations”, Biochemistry, 2019, 58, 2814-2821.
  10. Park, S. Yoo, K. H. Lim, M. Hubbe, J. Park, O. Rojas, and S. K. Park, “Impact of Oxidative Carbonization on Structure Development of Loblolly Pine-derived Biochar Investigated by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy and X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy”, Diamond and Related Materials, 2019, 96, 140-147.
  11. K. R. Dasari, R. M. Hughes, S. Wi, I. Hung, Z. Gan, J. W. Kelly, and K. H. Lim*, “Transthyretin Aggregation Pathway toward the Formation of Distinct Cytotoxic Oligomers”, Scientific Reports, 2019, 9, 33.
  12. K. R. Dasari, I. Hung, Z. Gan, and K. H. Lim*, “Two Distinct Aggregation Pathways in Transthyretin Misfolding and Amyloid Formation”, BBA Proteins and Proteomics, 2019, 1867, 344-349.