The Thompson Lab


Gingerbread House!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
02 December 2023

It’s the gingerbread house competition season again. Who’s excited?

Alexander's quals!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
01 December 2023

Our lab hosted Dr. Seth Rubin from UC Santa Cruz today for both a very exciting seminar talk on CDKs and Alexander’s quals. Alexander successfully defended his project in front of his advisory committee members and advanced to candidacy. Good job, Alexander. We’re so proud of you.

New preprint!

Michael Thompson
02 November 2023

Check out this new exciting pre-print published from our lab today. It is accessible in BioRXive:

This was our collaboration with Roberto Chica’s lab from the University of Ottawa, and it was Behnoush’s first paper in the Thompson lab. Congratulations Behnoush and Josh.

Happy Halloween!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
27 October 2023

Our lab’s Halloween party this year was so spooky! Held at Mike’s place, the party brought together the Thompsons, the Sukeniks and the Liwangs for a spooktacular night of fun. Shahar’s adorable baby girls presented the “best costume award” to Zahra from Pati Liwang’s lab. Eduardo and David from the Sukenik’s lab and Alec had a marvelous Halloween-special rock music performance with a special appearance by the talented guitarist, Dr. Shahar Sukenik.

Behnoush gave a talk at CCBM!

Michael Thompson
22 September 2023

Today Behnoush presented her research through both a talk and a poster presentation at the CCBM EAB meeting in the UC Merced conference center. She was so happy to be able to share her research on using X-ray crystallography ensemble refinement to improve enzyme design methods, and she did a great job with it.

Happy Birthday, Leila!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
11 September 2023

Our other September birthday was our new rotation student, Leila’s. We celebrated her birthday with a chocolate cake. Happy Birthday, Leila!

Happy Birthday, Behnoush!

Michael Thompson
08 September 2023

Today at the journal club we celebrated Behnoush’s birthday with a cake and our famous hooray topper:D. Best wishes for your birthday, Behnoush.

New Graduate Student, Leila!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
01 September 2023

Thompson lab is welcoming its new rotation graduate student, Leila Mahrokh. She will continue Alex’s work on SLO. She will be with us this fall semester. Hope she enjoys the research in our lab. Welcome, Leila.

Behnoush passed her quals!

Michael Thompson
25 August 2023

We have a new Ph.D. candidate in our lab!

Behnoush successfully passed her qualification exam today. She presented her thesis project on studying structural changes of three classes of homologous enzymes in the course of their enzymatic activity to her committee members. Congrats, Behnoush.

Geyselle finished her summer internship!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
03 August 2023

Geyselle presented the research that she did with our lab this summer through a poster presentation at the BioXFEL end-of-the-summer-program poster presentation held at the UC Merced Conference Center. We were so happy to have her with us this summer. She collaborated with Luisa on CLK kinases and made a lot of progress in the project.

Our lab's Yosemite trip!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
28 July 2023

Our lab members had a fun one-day trip to Yosemite this Friday. It was a nice time of quality and bonding among colleagues.

Our new rotation student, Alex!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
26 June 2023

Our Lab is welcoming a new rotation student, Alex Hernandez. Alex is an incoming PhD student in the Chemistry & Biochemistry department and will be with us for the summer. During his rotation, Alex will be working with the protein Soybean Lipoxygenase (SLO), a model system for studying hydrogen tunneling within enzymes. Welcome, Alex!

Andree presented her research today!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
23 June 2023

Andree presented a poster on her research on Cyclin-dependent kinase 2 at the UC Merced CBC poster session this morning. She was so excited to share her research with the others in our Department.

Happy Birthday, Alexander!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
14 June 2023

Happy Birthday, Alexander! We wish you all the best.

Our Summer Interns

Behnoush Seifinoferest
12 June 2023

This summer, we have three talented interns assisting us with our research. Andree is focusing on CDK2 (Cyclin-dependent kinase 2) as a BioXFEL scholar. Asini is our other BioXFEL scholar collaborating with Behnoush on BH32.14, a designed protein for catalyzing the Morita-Bayliss-Hillman reaction. Gyssele is working alongside Luisa on temperature-sensing kinases. We’re delighted to have them all on board for a productive summer of research!

So proud of you, Luisa!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
16 May 2023

We are so happy and proud to announce that Luisa from our lab has received the Miguel Velez Scholarship for her research for the upcoming Fall and Spring semesters. Luisa is thrilled that she can focus more on her research on temperature-sensing kinases thanks to this support. We wish her the best.

Well done Andree, Dondis, and Vincent!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
13 May 2023

This Friday in the UC Merced Commencement ceremony, Thompson lab had three undergrads graduating. Andree, Dondis, and Vincent all graduated and went on with the rest of their academic journey. Vincent is going to Stanford to pursue his grad studies, Dondis will continue her studies at UCSF, and Andree will stay with us to complete her research as an assistant researcher in the Thompson lab. We’re so proud of all of them.

Behnoush and Luisa presented their research at the CBC weekly seminars!

Michael Thompson
12 May 2023

At this week’s seminar, Behnoush and Luisa presented at the CBC department’s weekly seminar. They got amazing feedback on their research which will definitely help them in progressing their research going forward.

Celebrating our Undergrads!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
07 May 2023

We had a lab barbeque at Mike’s place this week to celebrate the graduation of our undergrads, Andree, Dondis, and Vincent. We wish them all the best in their future.

Alexander presented at the CBC weekly seminars!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
26 April 2023

Alexander presented at the CBC department’s weekly seminars this week. He gave a great summary of the research that he has been doing on the chaperone TRAP1 proteins. He will conclude this project in a manuscript soon and will continue his work on CDK2 proteins, and their effect on the cell cycle after this.

Behnoush, Josh, and Nat's talk at the CCBM meeting!

Michael Thompson
30 January 2023

Behnoush, Josh, and Nat presented a collaborative talk on “methods to characterize the structure and folding of a designed protein” in the CCBM Thrust 1 meeting this week. Their talks were respectively focused on protein engineering, X-ray crystallography, and enzyme kinetics. It was a nice presentation and an instructive experience for them.

Happy Birthday, Luisa!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
16 December 2022

This week Thompson lab and some other graduate students from the Chemistry Department gathered together to celebrate Luisa’s birthday. It was a fun night of hanging out. Happy Birthday, Luisa. Wish you all the happiness, love, and grace you deserve.

We won!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
10 December 2022

Thompson lab got second place in the CBC department’s gingerbread house competition. we tried to be creative and carved the Thompson lab and its equipment out of the bread. With this, we are officially starting the winter break, Happy holidays everyone.

Welcome, Alec!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
08 November 2022

This week Thompson lab welcomed a new member. Alec is going to be our new lab manager. Welcome, Alec! hope to do a lot of good research together!

Happy Birthday, Dondis!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
05 November 2022

Happy Birthday, Dondis! 21 is an interesting age, enjoy every piece of it :)

Vista Ranch!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
28 October 2022

For another fun happy hour, we went to visit the Pumpkin Patch on Merced’s nice winery “Vista Ranch”. Happy Halloween everyone!

We had three birthdays this week!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
30 September 2022

This week our happy hour was eventful. We celebrated Mike, Josh, and Andree’s Birthdays together with cake and beer. We wish them all a very happy birthday.

Josh passed Quals!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
20 September 2022

Josh is now officially the first person in our lab who passed quals. The lab members, along with Karina, and Kara from Sukenik’s lab celebrated his success with a small gathering and a chocolate cake in the kitchen area of BSP.

Behnoush's Birthday!

Michael Thompson
02 September 2022

Happy Birthday to Behnoush. We wish you all the best for today and this year.

Happy Birthday Vincent!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
12 August 2022

Happy Birthday, Vincent! Wish you the best in this new year of your life.

We finally moved to Campus!!!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
09 August 2022

The Thompson lab has done a lot of work in the UC Merced Castle Facility in Atwater, but it’s time for us to move to UC Merced’s main campus. We moved our lab to Biomedical Sciences and Physics (BSP) building, Room 292. Contact us there ;).

We are proud of our undergrads!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
02 August 2022

Our undergrads’ summer fellowships in the Thompson lab were concluded this August. Andree, Dondis, and Vincent all did a great job this summer in the lab.

They presented a summary of their work over the summer as posters and talks this week. Andree and Dondis both had a poster and a presentation at the BioXFEL conference, and Vincent presented his work at the UC Merced UROC conference. These events were a really good opportunity for them to share their research with others in their field.

Protein Society 36th Symposium in San Fransisco

Behnoush Seifinoferest
21 July 2022

From July 6th to 10th the Thompson lab traveled to San Fransisco to attend the 36th Annual Symposium of the Protein Society. Our lab presented three posters. Alex, Behnoush, and Josh presented their work with posters, and Behnoush gave a short flash talk. The lab members had a lot of fun exploring the beautiful city of San Fransisco together, along with great opportunities to learn and communicate with experts in the field of protein science.

CBC Department Poster Session

Behnoush Seifinoferest
24 June 2022

On Friday, June 24, UC Merced’s deparment of Chemistry and Biochemistry (CBC) held a poster session for first-year graduate students to share their research. Behnoush and Luisa from our lab presented their respective posters on “Using Crystallographic Ensemble Refinement for Computational Design of Highly-Active De Novo Enzymes” and “Exploring the Molecular Mechanisms of Temeperature Sensitivity in Thermosensory Kinases”.

Destini's Graduation!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
16 May 2022

Our first lab member to graduate, Destini Nguyen, is graduating this Spring to start her journey as a young doctor in the Medical schoolof the American University of the Caribbean. On behalf of the Thompson lab, we would like to congratulate her and wish her a happy and successful life ahead.


Behnoush Seifinoferest
10 May 2022

Thompson lab members celebrated Destini’s graduation with a barbeque party, trying to make a memorable night for Destini before she leaves Merced. We wish her luck in the Medical School of the American University of the Caribbean.

Diversity Grant!

Behnoush Seifinoferest
06 May 2022

We are happy to announce that Behnoush Seifinoferest from our lab has recently received the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Travel Award from the Protein Society, for the 36th annual symposium of the Protein Society held in San Francisco, CA. Congratulations to her! Behnoush is also chosen to present a poster and give a flash talk about her project on “Using Crystallographic Ensemble Refinement for Computational Design of Highly Active De Novo Enzymes”. Thompson lab Ph.D. student Joshua Rodriguez and the lab’s senior researcher Alexander Wolf are also going to present posters at this event.

Welcome to the Thompson Lab website!

Mike Thompson
04 May 2020

The Thompson Lab will open it’s doors at UC Merced in the Fall of 2020!

Check back soon for more updates…