Dagmar Ringe, PhD's research interests range from structural studies of enzyme mechanisms to the basis of molecular recognition to the biochemistry of neurodegenerative diseases. She has also made important contributions in the areas of bioinformatics and rational drug design. Her approach is to bring the perspective of a physical organic chemist to problems in biochemistry, cell biolog, and human health. Her primary research tools are: protein X-ray crystallography, computational biophysics, site-directed mutagenesis, organic synthesis and enzyme kinetics.
Dr. Ringe received her bachelor's degree in chemistry from Barnard and her PhD from Boston University, where she worked on protease mechanisms. After postdoctoral training with Hans Zachau in Munch, where she worked on tRNA synthetases, she switched to part-time research and teaching appointments for almost fifteen years while she raised two children. This period included important synthetic organic chemistry work with Professor John Sheehan at MIT. For a number of years she was an instructor in the Chemistry Department at MIT, where she ran the undergraduate teaching labs; during this time she decided to return to biochemical research and began to learn protein crystallography.
Her first regular faculty appointment, in 1990, was as a tenured associated professor at Brandeis University; she was promoted to full professor and given the Lucille P. Markey chair in 1995. Prof. Ringe is the first person in Brandeis history to hold appointments in both the Department of Chemistry and the Department of Biochemistry. She has received numerous awards, including the first Margaret Oakley Dayhoff Award of the Biophysical Society, and a Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship. In 2004 she shared an award from the McKnight Endowment for Neuroscience with her Brandeis colleague, Professor Gregory Petsko.
Dr. Ringe is a co-founder of ArQule, Inc. of Woburn Massachusetts, one of the world's leading companies in combinatorial chemistry, and serves on the boards of several other biotechnology companies, including Thrassos and Locus Discovery, Inc. She is on the Board of Directors of the Gordon Research Conferences. She is also on the Board of Directors of the Boston Biomedical Research Foundation and was one of the first women elected to the Botolph Club of Boston. She invented the method of solvent mapping of protein binding surfaces; it has been widely adopted in the pharmaceutical industry. She is a member of the editorial board of The Biophysical Journal. In 2004 she was elected Chair of the Brandeis Faculty Senate. In 2005 she was elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.