Sara C. Massey

Expertise

Physical Chemistry, Biophysical Chemistry, Spectroscopy, Collaborative Learning

Sara Massey earned her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 2019 and her B.S. and B.A. from The University of Texas at Austin in 2010. She worked as an analytical chemist at Signature Science LLC from 2010-2012 and as a drug metabolism/pharmacokinetics research associate at Peloton Therapeutics Inc from 2012-2013 before beginning her graduate studies.

  • Sara Massey earned her Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 2019 and her B.S. and B.A. from The University of Texas at Austin in 2010. She worked as an analytical chemist at Signature Science LLC from 2010-2012 and as a drug metabolism/pharmacokinetics research associate at Peloton Therapeutics Inc from 2012-2013 before beginning her graduate studies.

  • Dr. Massey’s research focuses on how energy transfer dynamics in photosynthetic organisms are uniquely tuned to the organism’s environment. We integrate physical chemistry, analytical chemistry, biophysics, and biology to characterize diatoms, a group of photosynthetic algae. We use steady-start and time-resolved spectroscopies and microscopy to understand how native environmental effects and external stressors influence pigment composition, pigment arrangement, and light harvesting efficiency.

    1. Massey, S.C., Ting, P-C., Yeh, S-H., Dahlberg, P.D., Sohail, S.H., Allodi, M.A., Martin, E.C., Kais, S., Hunter, C.N., and Engel, G.S. Orientational Dynamics of Transition Dipoles and Exciton Relaxation in LH2 from Ultrafast Two-Dimensional Anisotropy. Phys. Chem. Lett., 10, 270-277 (2019) DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpclett.8b03223.
    2. Allodi, M.A., Otto, J.P., Sohail, S.H., Saer, R.G., Wood, R.E., Rolczynski, B.S., Massey, S.C., Ting, P-C., Blankenship, R.E., and Engel, G.S. Redox Conditions Affect Ultrafast Exciton Transport in Photosynthetic Pigment-Protein Complexes. Phys. Chem. Lett., 9, 89-95 (2018) DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpclett.7b02883.
    3. Dahlberg, P.D., Ting, P-C., Massey, S.C., Allodi, M.A., Martin, E.C., Hunter, C.N., and Engel, G.S. Mapping the Ultrafast Flow of Harvested Solar Energy in Living Photosynthetic Cells. Commun., 8, 988 (2017) DOI: 10.1038/s41467-017-01124-z.
    4. Sohail, S.H., Dahlberg, P.D., Allodi, M.A., Massey, S.C., Ting, P-C., Martin, E.C., Hunter, C.N., and Engel, G.S. Broad Manifold of Excitonic States in Light-Harvesting Complex 1 Promotes Efficient Unidirectional Energy Transfer in vivo. Chem. Phys., 147, 131101 (2017) DOI: 10.1063/1.4999057.
    5. Dahlberg, P.D., Ting, P-C., Massey, S.C., Martin, E.C., Hunter, C.N., and Engel, G.S. Electronic Structure and Dynamics of Higher-Lying Excited States in Light Harvesting Complex 1 from Rhodobacter sphaeroides. Phys. Chem. A, 120, 4124-4130 (2016) DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpca.6b04146.
    6. Flanagan, M.L., Long, P.D., Dahlberg, P.D., Rolczynski, B.S., Massey, S.C., and Engel, G.S. Mutations to sphaeroidesReaction Center Perturb Energy Levels and Vibronic Coupling but Not Observed Energy Transfer Rates. J. Phys. Chem. A, 120, 1479-1487 (2016) DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpca.5b08366.
    7. Chipuk, J., Mazzitelli, C., Kendall, J., Straight, S., Reaves, M., and Chamberlin, S. Tunable, Self-curing Polymers for the Forensic Collection of Latent Signatures from Within Porous Materials. Homeland Security Affairs, Supplement 5, Article 5 (2012) DOI: 10.1109/THS.2011.6107885.
  • Energy Migration Through Cyanobacterial Photosystems by Two-Dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy. Poster, 44thMidwest/Southeast Photosynthesis Conference, Turkey Run State Park, Marshall, IN, October 26-28, 2018.

    Ultrafast Energy Transfer Dynamics in Light-Harvesting Bacteria. Southwestern University, Georgetown, TX, October 23, 2018.

    Following Excitonic Pathways in Cyanobacteria by 2D Electronic Spectroscopy. Poster, 256thACS National Meeting, Boston, MA, August 19-23, 2018.

    Probing Dynamics of Delocalization and Energy Transfer in Rhodobacter sphaeroides Using Two-Dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy. Oral, 252ndACS National Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, August 21-25, 2016.

    Two-Dimensional Electronic Spectroscopy Reveals Ultrafast Dynamics in Photosynthetic Bacteria. Oral, 252ndACS National Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, August 21-25, 2016.

    Determination of Domain Size and Light Harvesting Complex Connectivity in Rhodobacter sphaeroides.  Oral, 252ndACS National Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, August 21-25, 2016.

    Delocalization and Energy Transfer Dynamics in Rhodobacter sphaeroides from Two-Dimensional Anisotropy Spectroscopy. Oral, The 17thInternational Photosynthesis Congress on Photosynthesis Research, Maastricht, The Netherlands, August 7-12, 2016.

    Delocalization and Energy Transfer Dynamics from Two-Dimensional Anisotropy Spectroscopy of LH2 in Rhodobacter sphaeroides. Poster, Light Harvesting Satellite Meeting of The 17thInternational Congress on Photosynthesis Research, Egmond aan Zee, The Netherlands, August 4-7, 2016.

    Investigating LH2 Dynamics in Detergent and Chromatophores from Rhodobacter sphaeroides. Oral, 41stMidwest/Southeast Photosynthesis Conference, Turkey Run State Park, Marshall, IN, October 23-25, 2015.

    Investigating LH2 Dynamics in Detergent and Chromatophores from Rhodobacter sphaeroides. Poster, Photosynthesis Gordon Research Conference and Seminar, Bentley University, Waltham, MA, June 27-July 3, 2015.

    Investigating Changes in Energy Transfer Pathways in LH2 Due to a Carotenoid Switch. Poster, 40thMidwest/Southeast Photosynthesis Conference, Turkey Run State Park, Marshall, IN, October 24-26, 2014.