Welcome to the Heffern Lab!

The Heffern lab is a young, multidisciplinary team of researchers, seeking to solve problems at the interface of bioinorganic chemistry and hormone biology.  Stay tuned to our fun adventures in the lab’s early years!

Latest News

June 7, 2021 Huge congratulations to Marie for being awarded the Paul Saltman Young Investigators Award by the Metals in Biology Gordon Research Conference which recognizes outstanding junior faculty!

June 4, 2021 Congratulations to Nate for receiving the Raymond M. Keefer fellowship and to Jess for being recognized with an Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award during our annual departmental awards ceremony!

March 5, 2021 Jess presented a great 3rd year seminar to the department!

February 26, 2021 Congratulations to Jess for winning a Best Graduate Student Posters Award at this years R. Bryan Miller Symposium!

January 1, 2021 We are excited to welcome our new graduate students, Amanda and Estely! Estely is joint advised by Professor Dylan Murray. Welcome!

December 18, 2020 Congratulations to undergrad, Hannah Lee, on graduating with a B.S. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology!

November 8, 2020 We are proud to earn the Lab Safety Award for the College of Letters and Science! Take a look at our highlight here.

August 25, 2020 Congratulations to Nate for his first author publication in Nutrients! Read it here.

August 11, 2020 Diversity and inclusion are important topics of discussion in our lab. Check out some of Marie’s contributions in this editorial.

August 10, 2020 Check out JJ and Nate’s “News and Views” in Nature Biomedical Engineering here.

July 31, 2020 The lab turns 3 years old today!

July 17, 2020 Today was officially the last day for our postdoc, Michael. We appreciate all he has done for the lab and will miss him greatly, but we are excited to see the incredible things he does at The University of San Francisco. Check out the Stevenson lab here!

July 1, 2020 Huge congratulations to Marie for a Graduate Program Advising and Mentoring Award from UC Davis Graduate Studies! The lab greatly appreciates all that Marie does for the lab, department, and school communities.

June 22, 2020 Congratulations to Skyler for earning the Robert K. Brinton Graduate Award in Chemistry!

June 11, 2020 Congratulations to our graduating seniors, Ian, Ryan, Wayne, Adam, and Joey!

June 8, 2020 Check out our research article in Inorganic Chemistry! Congratulations to Michael, Sam, Wayne, and Ryan for identifying the C-peptide copper binding site and studying the complex’s activity. Check it out here!

May 30, 2020 Congratulations to Joey AbouAyash, an undergrad in the lab, for receiving the College of Biological Sciences Distinguished Scholar Award which acknowledges students for their academic excellence and research contributions!

May 15, 2020 Congratulations to Nate for presenting a great 3rd year seminar!

April 17, 2020 Sam presented a fantastic 3rd year seminar!

April 3, 2020 JJ and Vanessa presented the lab’s first departmental 3rd year seminars! Great job to both!

See more of our news and updates!

Stay Updated!

When Bree of Tarth meets Stella Bella...grateful for the doggie playdate in beautiful Point Isabel with my colleague @rdavbritt!


Our own Prof. William Jackson has been awarded with the outstanding honor of the NSB Public Service Award. Thank you for your immense contributions to the scientific community. See more details in this article: https://www.ucdavis.edu/news/national-science-board-honors-chemistry-professor-william-jackson-public-service #proudofourfaculty https://twitter.com/NSF_NSB/status/1387350376928538626

National Science Board@NSF_NSB

William Jackson has been named winner of a 2021 NSB Public Service Award. “Three generations of minority scientific professionals and students are indebted to the efforts of this man.” See the full release: https://www.nsf.gov/nsb/news/news_summ.jsp?cntn_id=302602&org=NSB&from=news

Check out our collaborative paper with @LinTianLab describing psychLight—a genetically encoded biosensor for determining hallucinogenic potential. First authors @JasonCDong1, @Calvin47068916, and @LeeDunl49298493 put a ton of work into this one!


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