Julie Maupin-Furlow, Ph.D.

Professor of Microbiology and Cell Science

Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences

2010 Awardee

Julie Maupin-Furlow, Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Cell Science, has an internationally recognized and independent research program that addresses both fundamental and applied processes of archaea using multidisciplinary approaches that incorporate genetics, proteomics, and biochemistry. Most recently, her lab group is examining how the proteasome-ubiquitin system functions in protein quality control and regulation of cellular processes in archaeal cells. She is also working on the metabolic engineering of archaea to produce useful chemicals and fuels from renewable resources including the metabolism of biodiesel waste and lignocellulosics, as well as the biochemistry and synthesis of industrially relevant enzymes such as alpha-keto acid decarboxylases and multicopper oxidases. These studies are funded through NIH and DOE research grants awarded to Maupin-Furlow.

Maupin-Furlow was co-Chair of the 2009 Gordon Research Conference Archaea: Ecology, Metabolism & Molecular Biology and is a member of the UF Florida Center for Renewable Chemicals and Fuels, Genetics Institute, Center for Structural Biology, Mass Spectrometry Users Group, Signaling, Apoptosis, and Cancer Program, and Science for Life Howard Hughes Medical Institute Team.

Maupin-Furlow is involved in independent and collaborative research focused on microbial cells and the structure and function of their enzymes. Grants and contracts from NIH and DOE awarded to Maupin-Furlow over the last five years total over $3 million and provide support for her work. Maupin-Furlow has also served as a member of review panels including those for NSF, DOE, NIH, NASA, and USDA NRI and has served as panel manager for the USDA NRI, Biobased Products, and Bioenergy Production Research Program 71.2 (2007 and 2008).

She has reviewed manuscripts for 29 research journals and now serves as member of the editorial boards for the Journal of Bacteriology and Saline Systems, as well as guest editor for a special issue of Archaea focused on “Archaeal Proteins: Biogenesis, Post-translational Modification and Degradation.” She is recognized for her outstanding mentorship of undergraduate and graduate students including Dr. Aaron Kirkland and Dr. Matthew Humbard’s receipt of the IFAS Award of Excellence for Best Doctoral Dissertation (2007 and 2009). Maupin-Furlow has 45 peer-reviewed publications, 87 research abstracts, 41 invited lectures and 2 patents (one issued and one pending) on microbial biochemistry and physiology. Her recent discovery of small archaeal protein modifiers (SAMPs) of the ubiquitin/beta-grasp fold superfamily that was published in Nature provides new insight into the origins of ubiquitin-conjugation systems and their association with proteasomes.