• rRNA modification by the thiostrepton-resistance methyltransferase (Tsr)

  • Molecular mechanisms of RNA-mediated regulation of OAS1

  • Structural studies of aminoglycoside-resistance rRNA methyltransferases


Graeme L. Conn, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Biochemistry
O. Wayne Rollins Rsch. Center
1510 Clifton Rd. NE
Atlanta, GA 30322

4135 Office
4178 Lab
404.727.5965 (Office tel.)
404.712.0058 (Lab tel.)
404.727.2738 (Fax)

Research Gate


We use modern biochemical and biophysical methods to study the structures, interactions and biological functions of biomedically important RNA and protein molecules. Current topics include mechanisms of bacterial antibiotic resistance that arise through ribosomal RNA modification and non-coding RNA-mediated pathogen evasion of host cell innate immune responses.

Interested in joining the Conn Lab? Graduate students in the Conn lab are typically enrolled in the BCDB and MMG Programs. Prospective applicants may contact Dr. Conn but should apply directly to the programs for admission.  Interested postdocs, undergraduates, volunteers and other visitors should see here for current openings and how to apply.


Our research is currently funded by NIH/NIAID grant R01-AI088025 and an award from the Emory University Research Council (URC).

Research Highlights

Samantha award

Congratulations to BCDB graduate student Sam Schwartz who received a 3-year Achievement Reward for College Students (ARCS) Award in 2017. Sam is pictured at a recent ARCS Foundation event with her sponsor Mrs. Leslie Petter.

Zane Laughlin

Congratulations to BCDB graduate students Zane Laughlin (above) and Sam Schwartz on their successful poster presentations at the 2018 Emory Division Student Advisory Council (DSAC) symposium.

Latest News

  • December 2016, Moving On: Dr. Emily Kuiper leaves the lab to start her postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Wayne A. Marasco’s group at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Good luck Emily!
  • February 2017, Paper Published: A paper on the Mycobacterium tuberculosis methyltransferase TlyA by former lab members and co-first authors Emily Kuiper and Marta Witek is published in the J. Biol. Chem. RNA.
  • March 2017, Exam Success: BCDB student Sam Schwartz passes her BCDB Part 2 Qualification Exam. Congratulations Sam!!
  • April 2017, Paper Published: Brenda Calderon’s paper on the human non-coding RNA 886 (nc886) and PKR is published in the April issue of RNA. Congrats Brenda!
  • April 2017, Funding News: The lab is awarded an Emory University Research (URC) grant to continue their work on RNA regulation of 2’,5’-oligoadenylate synthetase 1 (OAS1).
  • May 2017, New Lab Member: Postdoc Meisam Nosrati joins the lab – welcome Meisam!
  • May 2017, Presentations: Brenda Calderon presents her work on the cellular non-coding RNA nc886 at the ASBMB meeting in Chicago, in both the post and oral sessions.
  • May 2017, Paper Published: Kellie Vinal's paper on the molecular mechanism of 30S recognition by the pathogen-associated aminoglycoside-resistance methyltransferase NpmA is published in Antimicrob Agents Chemother. Congrats Kellie!
  • May 2017, New Lab Member: BCDB graduate student Zane Laughlin joins the lab for his thesis research – welcome (back) Zane!
  • May 2017, New Lab Member: Undergraduate Esther Park (Biochemistry major at Syracuse University) joins the lab for some summer research working with graduate student Sam Schwartz. Welcome Esther!
  • June 2017, Fellowship Success: Sam Schwartz is awarded Ruth L. Kirschstein NRSA Fellowship (F31) from NIH/NIAID for her project on dsRNA regulation of OAS1. Way to go Sam!