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Jerzy Szablowski, Ph.D.

SemiOfficial jszab.jpg

I am currently a postdoctoral scholar in Shapiro Lab. I work on Acoustically Targeted chemogenetics, a method for noninvasive neuromodulation, combining Focused-Ultrasound BBB opening (FUS-BBBO), gene delivery and chemogenetic control of neural circuits.



California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA
05/2015, Ph.D. Bioengineering Option, Synthetic and Systems Biology track
Advisor: prof. Peter Dervan

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA Class: 2009, Science Bachelor in Biological Engineering, with minor in Biology and humanities concentration in Psychology.

27th Tadeusz Czacki high school, Warsaw, Poland Class: 2005, Profile: Math and Physics

• iGEM 2009, 3rd place/112 teams (synthetic standard prize), golden medal, finalist, best new applications area, best experimental measurement (2009)
• Henry and Grazyna Bauer Fellowship for graduate studies (2009)
• BE-BMES/Johnson & Johnson Prize for Excellence in Biomedical Research (2008)
• Physics Olympiad for secondary school students - finalist (2002).

Research experience

International Genetically Encoded Machine competition, IGEM Valencia team 2009, Spain
Engineering a cell-based computer monitor.
• Invented the cell-based computer monitor and took part in its development with a team of spanish scientists and students from UPV and Universidad de Valencia.
• Responsible for the design and construction an electrical stimulator and software.

Synthetic Neurobiology group (PI: Edward Boyden), MIT Media Lab, Cambridge, MA
Undergraduate research assistant

Engineering Light Activated G-protein coupled receptors
• Did preliminary research, developed assays and designed new protein chimeras.
• Mentored and trained two undergraduate researchers over the summer

Frances Arnold Research Group California Inst. of Tech, Pasadena, CA
Undergraduate research assistant (In collaboration with Langer Lab)
Evolution of highly sensitive MRI sensor for Dopamine
• Developed a directed evolution screen for selection of protein based contrast agents for MRI.
• Achieved thermal stabilization of contrast agents.
• Developed statistical analysis methods and models for the screen.

Langer Lab in collaboration with Jasanoff Lab, MIT, Cambridge, MA
Undergraduate research assistant
Functional MRI sensors for noninvasive imaging of Dopamine and kinase activity
• Helped engineering proteins for both sensors. Took part in mutagenesis, testing and design.

Department of molecular biology, Intl. Inst. For Molecular and Cell Bio., Warsaw, Poland,
Functional and structural differences between heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90) variants - Hsp90a and Hsp90b
• Performed molecular biology and tissue culture experiments.

"*" denotes equal contribution
1. Jerzy O Szablowski, Brian Lue, Audrey Lee-Gosselin, Dina Malounda, Mikhail G Shapiro, Acoustically Targeted Chemogenetics for Noninvasive Control of Neural Circuits, bioRxiv 241406; doi:
2. Dan I Piraner, Arash Farhadi, Hunter C Davis, Di Wu, David Maresca, Jerzy O Szablowski, Mikhail G Shapiro, Going Deeper: Biomolecular Tools for Acoustic and Magnetic Imaging and Control of Cellular Function, Biochemistry 56 (39), 5202-5209
3. Mysore VS, Szablowski JO, Dervan PB, Frost PJ, A DNA-binding molecule targeting the adaptive hypoxic response in multiple myeloma has potent in vivo and in vitro anti-tumor effects, Molecular Cancer Research (2016), Mol Cancer Res Published OnlineFirst January 22, 2016
Featured in highlights:
4. Szablowski, Jerzy O.; Raskatov Jevgenij A., Dervan, Peter B. "An HRE-binding Py-Im polyamide attenuates tumor growth and inhibits angiogenesis in vivo."; Molecular Cancer Therapeutics (2015), Mol Cancer Ther molcanther.0719.2015; Published OnlineFirst December 30, 2015
Featured in highlights:
5. Raskatov Jevgenij A.; Szablowski, Jerzy O.; Dervan, Peter B.; "Tumor Xenograft Uptake of a Py Im Polyamide Varies as a Function of Cell Line Grafted: a C-14 Study", Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 2014 57 (20), 8471-8476
6.Yang, Fei; Nickols, Nicholas; Li, Benjamin; Szablowski, Jerzy; Hamilton, Shari; Meier, Jordan; Wang, Chieh-Mei; Dervan, Peter, Animal toxicity of hairpin pyrrole-imidazole polyamides varies with the turn unit, Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 2013 56 (18), 7449-7457
7. Nicholas G. Nickols*, Jerzy O. Szablowski*, Amanda E. Hargrove, Benjamin C. Li, Jevgenij A. Raskatov, Activity of a Py-Im Polyamide Targeted to the Estrogen Response Element, Molecular Cancer Therapeutics 2013;12:675–84.. The article available for free on: , due to selection as a 'AACR's hot topic 2013'.
8. Cristina Vilanova, Ángeles Hueso, Carles Palanca, Guillem Marco,Miguel Pitarch, Eduardo Otero, Juny Crespo, Jerzy Szablowski, Sara Rivera,Laura Domínguez-Escribà, Emilio Navarro, Arnau Montagud, Pedro Fernández de Córdoba, Asier González, Joaquín Ariño,Andrés Moya, Javier Urchueguía & Manuel Porcar, "Aequorin-expressing yeast emits light under electric control" , J Biotechnol. 2011 Mar 20;152(3):93-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jbiotec.2011.01.005. Epub 2011 Feb 1. [[1]]
9. Shapiro MG*, Westmeyer GG*, Romero P, Szablowski JO, Küster B, Shah A, Otey CR, Langer R, Arnold FH, & Jasanoff AP, “Directed evolution of an MRI contrast agent for noninvasive imaging of dopamine. Nature Biotechnology. 28 February 2010. DOI: 10.1038/nbt.1609 [link]
10. Shapiro MG, Szablowski JO, Langer R, Jasanoff AP, Protein nanoparticles engineered to sense kinase activity in MRI, Journal of the American Chemical Society 2009 131 (7), 2484-2486 [link]

1. Veena S. Mysore, Nicholas G. Nickols, Jerzy Szablowski, Peter Dervan, Alan Lichtenstein, Patrick J. Frost, Targeting hypoxia-mediated gene transcription with a novel polyamide drug designed to disrupt the HIF1α/β heterodimer binding overcomes resistance to hypoxia in myeloma cell lines, AACR Annual Meeting 2014, San Diego, CA; April 5-9th, 2014
2. Hargrove, Amanda E.; Martinez, Thomas F.; Hare, Alissa A.; Szablowski, Jerzy O.; Brenner, J. Chad; Veeneman, Brendan; Sud, Sudha; Chinnaiyan, Arul M.; Pienta, Kenneth J.; Dervan, Peter B. "DNA-binding Py-Im polyamides targeted to the AR-ERG signaling axis in prostate cancer." poster presentation, Prostate Cancer Foundation Scientific Retreat, Washington, D.C., Oct. 24-26, 2013.
3. Hargrove, Amanda E.; Martinez, Thomas F.; Hare, Alissa A.; Szablowski, Jerzy O.; Sud, Sudha; Pienta, Kenneth J.; Dervan, Peter B. “DNA-binding polyamides as inhibitors of TMPRSS2-ERG activity in prostate cancer.” poster presentation, Gordon Research Conference on Bioorganic Chemistry, Andover, NH, Jun. 9-14, 2013
4. Nicholas George Nickols, Fei Yang, Benjamin C Li, Jerzy O Szablowski, Chieh-Mei Wang, Peter Brendan Dervan, A second-generation DNA-binding pyrrole-imidazole polyamide with antitumor activity, J Clin Oncol 31, 2013 (suppl; abstr e13588)
5. Jerzy Szablowski, Bioengineering and Biological Engineering,23.09.2010, 14th Science Festival in Warsaw [2]
6. Jerzy Szablowski, Protein Engineering or how to make your own enzymes, 23.09.2010, 14th Science Festival in Warsaw [3]
7. Westmeyer GG, Shapiro MG, Romero P, Szablowski JO, Otey C, Arnold FH, Jasanoff AP, Imaging Dopamine in the Brain With a Novel MRI Contrast Agent, World Molecular Imaging Congress, sept 24th, 2009 [link]
8. Mikhail G. Shapiro, Philip Romero, Jerzy Szablowski, Robert Langer, Frances H. Arnold, Alan Jasanoff, Development of Genetically Encoded Molecular Sensor for Non-Invasive Imaging of Dopamine Using MRI,(2006) The fifth Annual Meeting of the Society for Molecular Imaging.

Personal Interests

My photographs

Valencia, City of Arts and sciences
California Institute of Technology, Beckmann Auditorium
Edinburgh, UK
Boston, MIT crew on Charles River
Nahant, MA
California Institute of Technology
MIT building Nw35

mirror address