James Link, assistant professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering, received a National Science Foundation (NSF) award given through its Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program.

Link’s received the award based on a research project titled “Probing the Limits of Affinity and Specificity in Apoptotic Proteins Interactions.” This work examines proteins and cell death, thus potentially impacting developments in fields such as protein engineering, protein-protein interactions and organic chemistry, and possibly altering approaches to the treatment of various diseases, including cancer.

The NSF is an independent federal agency that serves as a funding source for research in the sciences conducted at U.S. colleges and universities. As posted on the NSF Web site, CAREER is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the NSF’s “most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.”

Link’s interdisciplinary research laboratory, which includes both undergraduate and graduate students, is highly interdisciplinary and focuses on protein engineering and chemical biology. The goal of the research team is to develop proteins of medical and therapeutic importance using protein engineering techniques and high-throughput screening.

Link received a B.S.E. in chemical engineering from Princeton in 2000. This was followed by a Ph.D. in the same major from the Caltech in 2005. He joined the Princeton faculty in July 2007.