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College of Engineering and Computing

Faculty and Staff

Melissa Ann Moss

Title: Department Chair of Chemical Engineering
Department: Chemical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering
College of Engineering and Computing
Phone: 803-777-5604
Fax: 803-777-8265

301 Main Street
Room 3C15
Columbia, SC 29208

Resources: My CV [pdf]
Headshot of Professor Melissa A. Moss

Experience and Education

  • Program Director, Biomedical Engineering, 2014-Present
  • Professor, Chemical Engineering, University of South Carolina, 2016-Present
  • Associate Professor, Chemical Engineering, University of South Carolina, 2010-Present
  • Assistant Professor, Chemical Engineering, University of South Carolina, 2004-2010
  • Postdoctoral Associate, Mayo Clinic School of Medicine, 2000-2004
  • Ph.D., Chemical Engineering, University of Kentucky, 2000
  • B.S., Chemical Engineering, University of Kentucky, 1995


Professor Moss’s research focuses on the involvement of protein aggregation in Alzheimer’s disease. One hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease is the senile plaques that accumulate in the brain where they are associated with neuronal loss and in the cerebrovasculature where they may perpetuate stoke. These plaques are composed primarily of the amyloid β-protein (Aβ). Aβ aggregates into fibrils that deposit to yield plaques. Consequently, inhibition of Aβ aggregation has emerged as one therapeutic approach for Alzheimer’s disease.

The focus of our research is to understand this aggregation process and to identify and characterize inhibitors that attenuate Aβ aggregation. We utilize a myriad of biophysical techniques including chromatography, fluorescence spectroscopy, static and dynamic light scattering, Western blotting, dot blotting, electron microscopy, and atomic force microscopy. Furthermore, we seek to determine how various Aβ aggregation products affect both neuronal and vascular cells. In particular, we are interested in Ab stimulation of neuronal apoptosis and endothelial inflammatory responses, including NF-kB activation. Correlating changes in Ab aggregation with cellular effects will assist research efforts to design effective therapeutic agents for Alzheimer’s disease therapy.

Selected Publications

A. Kumar, K. Pate, M. Moss, D. Dean, and V. Rangachari (2014) Self-propagative replication of Ab oligomers suggests potential transmissibility in Alzheimer’s disease.  PLOS ONE, In press.

N. E. Pryor, M. A. Moss, and C. E. Hestekin (2014) Capillary electrophoresis for the analysis of the effect of sample preparation on early stages of Ab1-40 aggregation.  Electrophoresis, In eprint: DOI: 10.1002/elps.201400012n.

J. P. Turner, T. Lutz-Rechtin, K. A. Moore, L. Rogers, O. Bhave, M. A. Moss, and S. L. Servoss (2014) Rationally designed peptoids prevent aggregation of amyloid-beta 40.  ACS Chemical Neuroscience, In eprint: DOI: 10.1021/cn400221u.

N. E. Prior, M. A. Moss, and C. N. Hestekin (2012) Unraveling the early events of amyloid-b protein (Ab) aggregation: Techniques for the determination of Ab aggregate size. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 13: 3038-3072.

D. D. Soto-Ortega, B. P. Murphy, F. J. Gonzalez-Velasquez, K. A. Wilson, F. Xie, Q. Wang, and M. A. Moss  (2011) Inhibition of amyloid-b aggregation by coumarin analogs can be manipulated by functionalization of the aromatic center.  Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry, 19: 2596-2602.


BMEN 391 – Kinetics in Biomolecular Systems
BMEN 354 – Biotransport
BMEN 392 – Fundamentals of Biochemical Engineering
BMEN 720 – Biological Transport Phenomena
BMEN 303 – Professional Development and Ethics III

Honors and Awards

Biedenbach Service Award, College of Engineering and Computing, 2013
Governor’s Young Scientist Award for Excellence in Scientific Research, South Carolina Academy of Science, 2012
Distinguished Undergraduate Research Mentor Award, 2011
Rising Star Award, 2010
Excellence in Teaching Award, University of South Carolina Mortar Board Society, 2007

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.