Paul Jaschke

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Paul Jaschke



I am currently a post-doc in Drew Endy's lab at Stanford University. The focus of my project is to redesign phage using both rational and combinatorial methods in order to finish the genetics of a simple system.

I started off my science career at the University of Alberta (Canada), working in the Casey and Michalak labs. Summer student work in the Casey Lab on the human sodium-bicarbonate co-transporter protein resulted in an authorship in a peer-reviewed publication. My honors project in the Michalak Lab had me determining the role of calcium signalling and calreticulin on murine embryonic stem cell differentiation. After achieving a B.Sc. (Honors) in Biochemistry in 2003 I went to the Beatty Lab at the University of British Columbia to start my Ph.D. While at UBC I discovered that a photosynthetic organism called Rhodobacter sphaeroides was capable of re-routing its chlorophyll biosynthetic machinery around a blockage to generate a new type of chlorophyll. November 2010 I was conferred a Ph.D in Microbiology and Immunology from UBC.

Badge graphic for SB5.0 representing my refactoring phage project

Contact Info

Table of contents picture for Biochemistry paper. Shows the change in the central metal bacteriochlorophyll from Mg to Zn, and changes to photosystem proteins in the bchD (Mg-chelatase) mutant.

I work in the Endy Lab in the Department of Bioengineering


2010 Ph.D. Microbiology and Immunology, University of British Columbia, Canada

2003 B.Sc. Honors Biochemistry, University of Alberta, Canada


Jaschke PR, Hardjasa A, Digby E, Hunter CN, Beatty JT. (2011). A bchD (Mg-chelatase) mutant of Rhodobacter sphaeroides synthesizes zinc-bacteriochlorophyll through a novel zinc-containing intermediates. J. Biol. Chem. Jun 10;286(23):20313-22. . Abstract PDF

My cover illustration submission for JBC paper. A novel Zn-bacteriochlorophyll pathway operates in a Mg-chelatase mutant of Rhodobacter sphaeroides. The bchD mutant cannot chelate Mg2+ into protoporphyrin IX, which instead, has both both Fe2+ (red sphere) and Zn2+ (green sphere) inserted by ferrochelatase. Zn-protoporphyrin IX joins the bacteriochlorophyll pathway and is converted to Zn-bacteriochlorophyll.

Jaschke PR, Saer RG, Noll S, Beatty JT. (2011). Modification of the genome of Rhodobacter sphaeroides and construction of synthetic operons. Methods in Enzymol. 497:519-38. Abstract pdf

Our solution for French Presses that leak.

Jaschke PR, Drake I, Beatty JT. (2009). Modification of a French pressure cell to improve microbial cell disruption. Photosynth Res. 102(1): 95-7. Abstract PDF

Jaschke PR. (2010). Discovery and characterization of a new zinc-bacteriochlorophyll biosynthetic pathway and photosystem in a magnesium-chelatase mutant. PhD Thesis. University of British Columbia. Abstract PDF

Lin S,Jaschke PR, Wang H, Paddock M, Tufts A, Allen JP, Rosell FI, Mauk GA, Woodbury NW, Beatty JT. (2009). Electron transfer in the Rhodobacter sphaeroides reaction center assembled with zinc bacteriochlorophyll. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA.106(21): 8537-42. Abstract PDF

Jaschke PR, LeBlanc HN, Lang AS, Beatty JT. (2008). The PucC protein of Rhodobacter capsulatus mitigates an inhibitory effect of light-harvesting 2 alpha and beta proteins on light-harvesting complex 1. Photosynth Res. 95(2-3): 279-84. Abstract PDF

Jaschke PR, Beatty JT. (2007). The photosystem of Rhodobacter sphaeroides assembles with zinc bacteriochlorophyll in a bchD (magnesium chelatase) mutant. Biochemistry. 46(43): 12491-500. Abstract PDF

Loiselle FB, Jaschke P, Casey JR. (2003). Structural and functional characterization of the human NBC3 sodium/bicarbonate co-transporter carboxyl-terminal cytoplasmic domain. Mol Membr Biol. 20(4): 307-17. Abstract PDF


Jaschke PR and Beatty JT. (2010). Out of the Blue. In a mutant lacking the magnesium-chelatase complex, we find zinc-bacteriochlorophyll incorporated into the photosystem and a new way to make bacteriochlorophyll. PDF

Jaschke PR and Beatty JT. (2007). Discovery of zinc-bacteriochlorophyll in Rhodobacter sphaeroides. PDF

Professional Activities

Graduate Student Advisor to University of British Columbia iGEM Team. Press: Students build tiny E.coli ‘traffic light’ (see pg.9)

Useful links

Mendeley Profile

LinkedIn Profile

Rhodobacter sphaeroides on Wikipedia



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