Email Address
Taylor Science Center 1063
On Leave/Away
Fall ’24, Spring ’25, Fall ’25

Adam W. Van Wynsberghe joined Hamilton College in 2009 after two years at the University of California, San Diego, where he was a National Institutes of Health National Research Service Award postdoctoral fellow. He was a National Science Foundation predoctoral fellow at the University of Wisconsin - Madison, where he completed his doctorate in biophysics. Van Wynsberghe's research interests center around the use of theoretical and computational techniques to study biophysical problems from both basic and applied perspectives. Currently, he is investigating the nature of protein-protein and protein-ligand interactions, the origins and roles of conformational changes and dynamics in biomolecular systems and the dynamical aspects of enzyme catalysis.

Recent Courses Taught

Physical Chemistry: Quantum Mechanics
Physical Chemistry: Statistical and Classical Thermodynamics and Kinetics
Principles of Chemistry
Biological Chemistry Laboratory
Physical Chemistry Laboratory
Principles of Chemistry Laboratory

Research Interests

View the Van Wynsberghe Research Lab website



  • Class of 1966 Career Development Award, 2015
  • John R. Hatch, Class of 1925, Excellence in Teaching Award, 2014
  • National Biomedical Computational Resource Summer Institute Scholarship, 2012
  • National Institutes of Health (National Institute of General Medical Sciences) Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award postdoctoral fellowship, 2008-09
  • National Science Foundation predoctoral fellowship, 2003-05
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison WARF Prize Fellowship, 2001-02


  • XSEDE Allocation: TG-MCB130192, 100,000 Service Units, 2013-2014, PI, A Study of Sialic Acid-Neuraminidase Binding Events through MM/PBSA Free-Energy Calculations.  Co-Pi was Hamilton undergraduate Leah Krause '14
  • National Science Foundation: Major Research Instrumentation, $200,000, 2012-2015, Co-PI, MRI: Acquisition of a High Performance Computer for the Molecular Education and Research Consortium in Undergraduate computational chemistry (MERCURY)
  • Research Corporation: Cottrell College Science Award, $35,000 plus $30,000 Hamilton College match, 2010-2012, PI, Accurate Evaluation of Association Rate Constants of Influenza Neuraminidase Inhibitors.
  • National Science Foundation: Major Research Instrumentation, $177,950, 2010-2012, PI, MRI-R2: Acquisition of a High Performance Computing cluster with a fast interconnect to enable shared-use, college-wide computational investigations at Hamilton College.
  • TeraGrid Allocation: TG-MCB090196, 200,000 Service Units, 2009-2010, PI, Investigations of Ribonuclease A Catalysis.

Selected Publications

  • O'Grady, C.E.*, P. Talpey*, T. E. Elgren, and A. W. Van Wynsberghe, 2014. The development and implementation of a bio-molecular docking exercise for the general chemistry laboratory. In Annual Reports in Computational Chemistry, Vol. 10. Ralph Wheeler, editor. Elsevier, United Kingdom, pp. 167-187.
  • Kinnel, R. B., A. W. Van Wynsberghe, I. J. Rosenstein, K. S. Brewer, M. Cotten, G. C. Shields, C. J. Borton, S. Z. Senior, G. S. Rahn, and T. E. Elgren, 2013. A Departmental Focus on High Impact Undergraduate Research Experiences. In Developing and Maintaining a Successful Undergraduate Research Program. T. W. Chapp and M. A. Benvenuto, editors. ACS Symposium Series; American Chemical Society: Washington, D.C., vol. 1156:5-22.
  • Tsutakawa, S. E., A. W. Van Wynsberghe, B. D. Freudenthal, C. P. Weinacht, L. Gakhar, M. T. Washington, Z. Zhuang, J. A. Tainer, and I. Ivanov, 2011. Solution X-ray scattering combined with computational modeling reveals multiple conformations of covalently-bound ubiquitin on PCNA. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 108(43):17672-17677.
  • Sinko, W., C. de Oliveira, S. Williams, A. Van Wynsberghe, J. Durrant, R. Cao, E. Oldfield, and J. A. McCammon, 2011. "Applying Molecular Dynamics Simulations to Identify Rarely Sampled Ligand bound Conformational States of Undecaprenyl Pyrophosphate Synthase, an Antibacterial Target." Chem. Biol. Drug Des. 77(6):412-420.
  • Van Wynsberghe, A. W. and Q. Cui, 2010. "Conservation and Variation of Structural Flexibility in Protein Families." Structure. 18:281-283. (Corresponding author.)
  • Sung, J. C.*, A. W. Van Wynsberghe, R. E. Amaro, W. W. Li, and J. A. McCammon, 2010. "The role of secondary sialic acid binding sites in influenza N1 neuraminidase." J. Amer. Chem. Soc. 132(9):2883-2885. (Corresponding author.)
  • Van Wynsberghe, A. W., L. Ma, X. Chen, and Q. Cui, 2008. Functional Motions in Biomolecules: Insights from Computational Studies at Multiple Scales. In Computational Structural Biology. T. Schwede and M. Peitsch, editors. World Scientific Publishing.
  • Kondrashov, D., A. Van Wynsberghe, R. M. Bannen, Q. Cui, and G. N. Phillips, Jr., 2007. "Protein Structural Variation in Computational Models and Crystallographic Data." Structure. 15:169-177.
  • Van Wynsberghe, A., and Q. Cui, 2006. "Interpreting correlated motions using normal mode analysis." Structure. 14:1647-1653.
  • Li, G., A. Van Wynsberghe, O. N. A. Demerdash, and Q. Cui. 2005. Normal Mode Analysis of Macromolecules: From Enzyme Active Sites to Molecular Machines. In Normal Mode Analysis: Theory and Applications to Biological and Chemical Systems. Q. Cui and I. Bahar, editors. CRC Press, Boca Raton.
  • Van Wynsberghe, A. W., and Q. Cui. 2005. "Comparison of mode analyses at different resolutions applied to nucleic acid systems." Biophys. J. 89:2939-2949. (Cover article.)
  • Felitsky, D. J., J. G. Cannon, M. W. Capp, J. Hong, A. W. Van Wynsberghe, C. F. Anderson, and M. T. Record. 2004. "The exclusion of glycine betaine from anionic biopolymer surface: Why glycine betaine is an effective osmoprotectant but also a compatible solute." Biochem. 43:14732-14743.
  • Van Wynsberghe, A., G. H. Li, and Q. Cui. 2004. "Normal-mode analysis suggests protein flexibility modulation throughout RNA polymerase’s functional cycle." Biochem. 43:13083-13096. (Corresponding author.)
  • Van Wynsberghe, A. W.*, S. A. Peebles, R. A. Peebles, and R. L. Kuczkowski. 2000. Rotational spectrum and structure of 1,2-dichloro-3,3,4,4-tetrafluorocyclobutene: Comparison of spectroscopy, di raction, and ab initio results. J. Phys. Chem. A 104:8702-8708.

College Service

President, Hamilton College chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, 2012-14
Vice-President, Hamilton College chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, 2010-12
Planning Committee, 2015-present
Coordinator, Clare Boothe Luce Program, Hamilton College, 2014-15
Director, Chemical Physics Program, 2014-present
Chemical Physics Program Committee, 2009-present
Scientific Misconduct Review Board, 2010-present
High Performance Computing Advisory Group, 2009-present


Professional Affiliations

Sigma Xi
Biophysical Society
American Chemical Society

Appointed to the Faculty


Educational Background

Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison
B.A., Ohio Wesleyan University

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