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The latest news

Updated May 10, 2021

  • Steve Bonilla has been named an HHMI Hannah Gray Fellow. Congratulations!
  • Quentin Vicens is co-PI on an awarded NIH R21 grant. Congratulations!
  • Matt Szucs was named an RNA BioScience Initiative Scholar and has been awarded an NIH F31 fellowship. Congratulations!
  • Anna-Lena Steckelberg has departed and is starting her own lab at Columbia University as an Asst. Professor. Good luck!
  • Zoe O'Donoghue will be an AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow, starting this fall. She will be working in USAID's Global Health Security Program, Office of Infectious Disease, Division of Emerging Threats. Congratulations!
  • Ben Akiyama has accepted a position at Meso Scale Discovery in Rockville, MD and will start there in a few months. Congratulations!
  • Conner Langeberg won the Best Poster Award at the 2021 Structural Biology and Biochemistry minisymposium. Congratulations!

​Coming up

Updated May 10, 2021


  • May 14, 11 am: Dept. Friday Research talk (Quentin Vicens: "Z-steps in RNA: Revealing the RNA Underworld")
  • May 17, 10 am: Microbiology Program end-of rotation talks (Elizabeth Spear)
  • May 18, 3 pm: Colorado RNA Club presentation (Rachel Jones: "Repeating History: New sequences and tertiary interactions create the same important 3-D features in divergent flavivirus xrRNAs")
  • May 25 - June 5: RNA Society - several Kieft Lab posters and presentations!


Hot off the press (or soon to be)

Updated May 10, 2021

Peer Reviewed:

*Steckelberg, A.-L., *Vicens, Q., Costantino, D.A., Nix, J.C., Kieft, J.S. (2020) The crystal structure of a Polerovirus exoribonuclease-resistant RNA shows how diverse sequences are integrated into a conserved fold. RNA 26, 1767-1776.  *These authors contributed equally

Szucs, M.J., Jones, R.A., Vicens, Q., Kieft, J.S. (2020) A new subclass of exoribonuclease resistant RNA found in multiple Flaviviridae genera. mBio, 11(5):e02352-20. doi: 10.1128/mBio.02352-20.

Sherlock, M.E., Hartwick, E.W., Kieft, J.S. (2021) Structural diversity and phylogenetic distribution of valyl tRNA-like structures in viruses. RNA 27, 27-39.

Jones, R.A., Steckelberg, A.-L., Szucs, M.J., Akiyama, B.M., Vicens, Q., & Kieft, J.S. (2021) Different tertiary interactions create the same important 3-D features in divergent flavivirus xrRNAs. RNA 27, 54-65.

Nichols, P.J., Bevers, S., Henen, M., Kieft, J.S., *Vicens, Q., *Vogeli, B. (2021) Recognition of non-CpG repeats in Alu and ribosomal RNAs by the Z-RNA binding domain of ADAR1 induces AZ junctions. Nature Communications 12, 793-  *Joint corresponding authors

Langeberg, C.J., Sherlock, M.E., MacFadden, A., Kieft, J.S. An expanded class of histidine-accepting viral rRNA-like structures. RNA  (in press) - Available online: Here.

Akiyama, B.M., Graham, M.E. O'Donoghue, Z., Beckham, J.D., Kieft, J.S. Three-dimensional structure of a flavivirus dumbbell RNA revelas molecular details of an RNA regulator of replication. (in press)

Preprints (in review/revision):

Eiler, D.R., Wimberly, B.T., Bilodeau, D.Y., Rissland, O.R., Kieft, J.S. The Giardia lamblia ribosome structure reveals divergences in translation and  quality control pathways. bioRxiv 2020.09.30.321331; doi: 

Bonilla, S., Sherlock, M.E., MacFadden, A. Kieft, J.S. A structured viral RNA uses molecular mimicry and conformational dynamics to coordinate multiple functions. bioRxiv 2020.09.18.302638; doi: