Our Faculty

Faina Ryvkin

Associate Dean of Natural Sciences; Professor of Chemistry, Department of Chemistry & Physics

Contact Information


Office Hours

Office: Wilkens Science Center, Room 309-C

Office hours: Monday, 2:30 p.m.- 3:30 p.m.; Tuesday and Thursday, 3:30 p.m.- 4:30 p.m.; Friday, 4:30 p.m.- 5:30 p.m.; by appointment also


Ph.D., M.A., Clark University; M.S., B.S., Pedagogical University, Moscow


Professional Affiliations

  • Member of American Chemistry Society
  • Member of Molecular Modeling Society
  • Member of the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR), COF liaison officer
  • Member of Sigma Xi Society, Delta chapter

Professional Reviewing

  • S. Bell "Forensic Chemistry", chapters 6-9, 1st ed., INSB131478354, Prentice Hall, 2006.
  • Journal of Chemical Education, 2009 - present

Courses I Teach

  • CHEM 1102 - Principles of Chemistry II
  • CHEM 1103 - Chemical Perspectives
  • CHEM 1107 - Forensic Chemistry
  • CHEM 1111/1112 - Chemistry: A World of Choices
  • CHEM 2113 - Chemistry of Boston Waterways (Service Learning Course)
  • CHEM 3105 - Physical Chemistry I
  • CHEM 3106 - Physical Chemistry II
  • CHEM 3121 - Introduction to Molecular Modeling
  • CHEM 3116 - Introduction to Research Methods
  • CHEM 3211 - Experiential Internship in Natural Sciences
  • CHEM 4160 - Senior Seminar in Chemistry
  • CHEM 4194/4195 - Research Internship in Natural Sciences
  • Workshops for high school science teachers: "Forensic and Environmental Chemistry"

Publications + Presentations

The Extracellular Matrix: an Overview

Chapter in the Research Volume: "The Extracellular Matrix: An Overview", Springer, ISBN 978-3-642-16555-9, 2011 This chapter reviews structural and catalytic properties as well as the roles in biology of these amine oxidases and presents a computer-generated predicted 3D protein structure of LOX.

Recent Publications

  • Faina Ryvkin and Frederick T. Greenaway "Modeling Cu(II) Binding to Peptides Using the Extensible Systematic Force Field", Bioinorganic Chemistry and Applications, 2010, Article ID 724210
  • F. Ryvkin "Investigation into the role of copper in lysyl oxidase: evidence and model", Gordon Research Conference "Metals in Medicine", June, 2008
  • Mark A. Brockman, Arne Schneidewind, Matthew Lahaie, Aaron Schmidt*, Toshiyuki Miura, Ivna DeSouza, Faina Ryvkin, Cynthia A. Derdeyn, Susan Allen, Eric Hunter, Joseph Mulenga, Paul A. Goepfert, Bruce D. Walker, and Todd M. Allen, Escape and Compensation from Early HLA-B57-Mediated Cytotoxic T-Lymphocyte Pressure on Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Gag Alter Capsid Interactions with Cyclophilin AJournal of Virology, November 2007, v. 81,p. 12608-12618
  • Recent publication M. Lynch* and F. Ryvkin “Investigation into Structural Changes of the Copper Binding Site in Lysyl Oxidase upon Substrate and Inhibitor Docking”, ISRN Inorganic Chemistry, 2013, Article ID 971764, pp. 1-6.
  • M. Lynch* and F. Ryvkin "Investigation into Structural Changes of the Copper Binding Site in Lysyl Oxidase upon Substrate and Inhibitor Docking",   ISRN Inorganic Chemistry, 2013, Article ID 971764, pp. 1-6.

Recent Presentations
(* - denotes undergraduate student)

  • T. Rietz*, M. Lynch*, D. Turman*, F. Ryvkin "Molecular modeling of lysyl oxidase interactions with its substrates and amine inhibitors", 2ACS National Meeting, INDOR187, Anaheim, CA, March 2010.
  • A. Clark*, S. Nugent*, V. Nguyen*, F. Ryvkin "Investigation into the role of copper in catalytic mechanism of lysyl oxidase", Washington DC "Posters on the Hill" April, 2010.
  • S. Nugent*, V. Nguyen*, D. Turman*, M. Lynch*, Faina Ryvkin 'Study of conformational changes of LOX structure upon tryptophan residue modification", NEACS conference, Boston University, April, 2010.
  • K. Kirschning*, J. Biagioli*, L. Gendron*, S. Ferguson*, and P. Sheldon* "Analysis of heavy metals in Muddy River water samples", Muddy River COF Research Symposium presentation, Wheelock College, April, 2010 - best poster award.
  • V. Nguyen*, A. Clark*, S. Nugent*, F. Ryvkin ,"Effects of the tryptophan residues modifications on the structure and activity of copper-containing enzyme lysyl oxidase", ACS National Meeting, INDOR98, San Francisco, CA, March 2010.
  • F. Ryvkin and A. Harbottle*, " Forensic drug testing: false identity", ACS National Meeting, INDOR19799 , San Francisco, CA , March 2010.
  • F. Ryvkin and A. Schmidt “Characterization of lysyl oxidase protein interaction networks using molecular modeling approach”, Gordon Research Conference “Regulated Proteolysis of Cell Surface Proteins”, March, 2014.

Professional Reviewing

  • Reviewer for the Journal of Chemical Education 2010 – present

Grants + Recognition

  • Faculty Excellence Award, Emmanuel College, 2007.
  • Marion and Jasper Whiting Foundation, 2014

Research Focus

My field of research interest is a fast developing filed of bioinorganic chemistry, an interface of chemical, physical and computational methods applied to structural and functional properties of metal-containing proteins and enzymes. My work for past few years focused primarily on characterization of copper-containing enzyme lysyl oxidase and on understanding a role that copper ion may have in this system. Little is known about the role of copper in the catalytic mechanism of this enzyme, and it has been debated whether its function is catalytic or structural. There is essentially no information available concerning specific amino acids residues which might function in lysyl oxidase catalysis and inhibition. We are currently rigorously characterize the copper- binding site of this intruguing enzyme by kinetic, spectroscopic, and structural methods in order to elucidate its properties. I believe that the ability to work individually with students on a research project is an invaluable part of undergraduate science education, and I am especially proud to have all this accomplished when working with Emmanuel College students who have undying enthusiasm and dedication for these challenging projects and always go far beyond what you might expect from undergraduate students.