Xiang-qiang Chu

Xiang-qiang Chu

Assistant Professor



 Physics Research Building, Room 212

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Xiang-qiang Chu

 Dr. Xiang-qiang Chu received her Ph.D. degree in Nuclear Science and Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and her B.S. and M.S. degrees in Physics from Peking University in China. After two years of postdoctoral research at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), she joined Department of Physics and Astronomy at Wayne State University as an Assistant Professor in August 2012. Her research interests focus on probing the dynamics and conformational changes of biomolecules, nano-materials and their hydration water or surface water through neutron and X-ray scattering spectroscopy and computational simulations.

Research Interest/Area of Expertise

  • Neutron and X-ray Scattering; Protein dynamics; Membrane proteins (GPCR) dynamics; Protein-water interactions; Dynamics of liquids on biological and nano-scale material surfaces

Education – Degrees, Licenses, Certifications

  • Ph.D., Nuclear Science and Engineering, MIT, 2010
  • M.S., Nuclear Physics, Peking University, 2005
  • B.S., Nuclear Physics, Peking University, 2002

Awards and Grants

  • NSF Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences (MCB), “Investigation of Protein Dynamics on Multiple Timescales by Neutron Scattering and Molecular Dynamics Simulations”, $428,271, 07/01/2016 – 06/30/2019 (PI);

  • Successful Research Proposals as Principal Investigator, 2012 – present (Overall instrument time estimated worth over $2,500,000):
     -55 days of beam-time at Spallation Neutron Source, Oak Ridge National Lab (ORNL);
     -43 days of beam-time at NIST Center for Neutron Research;
     -19 days of beam-time at Advance Photon Source, Argonne National Lab (ANL);
     -4 days of beam-time at Brookhaven National Lab (BNL);
     -11 days of beam-time at Institut Laue Langevin (ILL), France.

  •  Research Cluster Grant for a High-performance computer cluster from Silicon Mechanics, $190,000 value, 2014 (co-PI);

  •  Biophysical Society CPOW Travel Award, 2015.

Selected Publications

 (*Corresponding Author)
1. U. R Shrestha, D. Bhowmik, K. W. Van Delinder, E. Mamontov, H. M. O'Neill, Q. Zhang, A. Alatas, and X.-Q. Chu*, “Collective Excitations in Protein as a Measure of Balance Between Its Softness and Rigidity”, J. Phys. Chem. B, DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpcb.6b10245 (2017).

2. Utsab R Shrestha, Suchithranga MDC Perera, Debsindhu Bhowmik, Udeep Chawla, Eugene Mamontov, Michael F Brown, X.-Q. Chu*, “Quasi-elastic neutron scattering reveals ligand-induced protein dynamics of a G-protein-coupled receptor”, J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 7, 4130-4136 (2016).

3. G.K. Dhindsa, D. Bhowmik, M. Goswami, H.M. O'Neill, E. Mamontov, B.G. Sumpter, L. Hong, P. Ganesh, and X.-Q. Chu*, “Enhanced Dynamics of Hydrated tRNA on Nanodiamond Surfaces: A Combined Neutron Scattering and MD Simulation Study”, J. Phys. Chem. B, 120, 10059 (2016).

4. U. R. Shrestha, D. Bhowmik, J. R. D. Copley, M.S. Tyagi, J. B. Leão, and X.-Q. Chu*, “The Effects of Pressure on the Dynamics of an Oligomeric Protein from Deep-sea Hyperthermophile”, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.(PNAS), 112 (45) 13886-13891 (2015).

5. G. Dhindsa, M. S. Tyagi, and X.-Q. Chu*, “Temperature-dependent Dynamics of Dry and Hydrated β-Casein Studied by Quasielastic Neutron Scattering”, J. Phys. Chem. B 118, 10821-10829 (2014).

6. X.-Q. Chu*, E. Mamontov, H. O’Neill, and Q. Zhang, “Temperature Dependence of Logarithmic-like Relaxational Dynamics of Hydrated tRNA”, J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 4, 936-942 (2013).

7. X.-Q. Chu, M. Gajapathy, K. L. Weiss, E. Mamontov, J. D. Ng and L. Coates, “Dynamic behavior of oligomeric inorganic pyrophosphatase explored by quasielastic neutron scattering”, J. Phys. Chem. B 116, 9917-9921 (2012).

8. E. Mamontov and X.-Q. Chu, “New opportunities for probing protein dynamics in aqueous solutions at low to physiological temperatures”, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 14, 11573 (2012). (Perspective Article)

9. X.-Q. Chu, E. Mamontov, H. O’Neill, and Q. Zhang, “Apparent decoupling of the dynamics of a protein from the dynamics of its aqueous solvent”, J. Phys. Chem. Lett. 3, 380-385 (2012).

10. X.-Q. Chu, G. Ehlers, E. Mamontov, A. Podlesnyak, W. Wang, and D. J. Wesolowski, “Diffusion Processes in Water on Oxide Surfaces: Quasielastic Neutron Scattering Study of Hydration Water in Rutile Nano-Powder”, Phys. Rev. E 84, 031505 (2011).


Currently Teaching

  •  PHY 6780, Research Methods in Biomedial Physics, 3 credit hours

Courses taught

PHY 5750, Biological Physics, Fall 2016, 4 credit hours
PHY 2130, General Physics, Fall 2012-2015, 4 credit hours

Citation Index

  •  13