Robert T. Clubb

Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry

UCLA-DOE Institute



Professor of Biochemistry

B.S., University of Wisconsin; Ph.D., University of Michigan; Leukemia Society of America Postdoctoral Fellow; Intramural National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellow; Member of the UCLA-DOE Institute for Genomics and Proteomics; Member of the Molecular Biology Institute

Clubb Lab 2015: Rob Clubb, Rob Peterson, Michele Kattke, Ye Kim, Megan Sjodt, Grace Huang, Brendan Amer, Xiyan Sun, Ramsay MacDonald, Scott McConnell [Click on the image for a larger version].

Phone: (310) 206-2334

Lab: (310) 206-3044

Fax: (310) 206-4779


UCLA Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
602 Boyer Hall
Box 157005 (post)
611 Charles E. Young Drive East (courier)
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1570

Research Overview

My laboratory investigates the molecular basis of bacterial pathogenesis. We study how microbes display and assemble cell wall attached surface proteins, and how they acquire essential nutrients from their host during infections. Inhibitors of these processes could function as potent antimicrobial agents as they would strip pathogens of their virulence properties. We are particularly interested in the virulence mechanisms used by Staphylococcus aureus as it is a leading cause of life-threatening hospital and community acquired infections in the United States (1-3). New drugs are needed to combat this microbe as highly virulent multi-drug methicillin-resistant strains of S. aureus (MRSA) are now endemic. We also are leveraging our knowledge of surface protein display to engineer microbes that can efficiently degrade plant biomass. These potent cellulolytic microorganisms could enable ethanol and other valuable biocommodities to be produced from sustainable biomass and thereby reduce the world’s dependency on fossil fuels. Our primary research tool is multi-dimensional heteronuclear nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, which is used to investigate the structure and dynamics of proteins and their complexes in solution. We also employ X-ray crystallography, high-throughput drug screening, cellular, biochemical and bioinformatic methods.

Three main research projects are ongoing. Click the following links to find out more:

Inhibitor Development and Mechanistic Studies of Sortase EnzymesInhibitor.html
Bacterial acquisition of heme-ironStructure.html
Engineering Microbial Surfaces to Produce BiofuelsBioengineering.html