Congratulations to Johnathan Guest for a Successful Dissertation Defense

Wed, Apr 6, 2022
Johnathan Guest

Please join us in congratulating Johnathan Guest for successfully defending his dissertation, “Strategies and Resources for Rational Vaccine Design and Antibody-Antigen Docking and Affinity Prediction,” on March 30, 2022. 

“For my dissertation, we used rational vaccine design to develop soluble, secreted, and antigenically native E1E2 as a hepatitis C virus vaccine candidate,” said Guest. “We also analyzed published datasets on antibody neutralization and mutagenesis data to predict hepatitis C virus sequence changes that impact antibody neutralization and E1E2 assembly, potentially providing insights into mechanisms of immune evasion. Finally, we assembled an antibody-antigen docking and affinity benchmark and curated a new dataset of antibody-antigen affinities and corresponding structures, helping to provide updated resources for future algorithm developments.”

Guest has completed his course of study in the University of Maryland’s Biological Sciences Graduate Program in Computational Biology, Bioinformatics, and Genomics (CBBG) and fulfilled all of the requirements for the doctoral degree.  His dissertation advisor was IBBR Fellow Brian Pierce (Assistant Professor, Department of Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics).

"John's impressive work has made an impact in two important and challenging fields: hepatitis C virus vaccine research and antibody-antigen complex modeling and design,” said Brian Pierce. “His results are being recognized and actively utilized by the research community."

In August, Dr. Guest will begin his postdoctoral work at AstraZeneca.  We look forward to following his continuing contributions to the field over the coming years.