Graduate Students

Graduate Students

Kyle Colston (B.S., Chemistry Butler University) 

Kyle ColstonKyle is a PhD student whose work expands over a broad range of fields and methods. As a synthetic chemist, Kyle has worked to synthesize and characterize various metallodithiolene complexes involving Mo, Cu, Zn, Fe, and Co metal centers. Currently, he is working on the design and synthesis of the molybdopterin ligand (MPT) which could be utilized for the first ever total synthesis and isolation of molydenum cofactor (Moco).  As a theoretical chemist, Kyle employs the use of programs such as Gaussian16 and ORCA to elucidate the electronic structure of the compounds he synthesizes. Additionally, enjoys mentoring his undergraduate students.

When he isn’t in the lab, Kyle enjoys going on walks with his dog Toblerone, throwing frisbees, and playing basketball.

Mikayla Metzger (B.S., Biology Grace College; M.S., Biology IUPUI)

Mikayla Metzger

Mikayla is a PhD student who is working on understanding kinetic properties of NapA. She works to mutate different residues that coordinate with substrate transformation. Her previous biological studies provide a deeper understanding of DNA and protein that can be applied to her current biochemical work. In a typical week Mikayla will do PCR, grow cell cultures, run FPLC, and perform enzyme assays.

When Mikayla‘s not at school she enjoys competitive weight lifting, streaming video games, and drawing on her iPad. She also has 4 precious kitties named Nala, Tot, Soifon, and Nidalee.

Carlos Quinones (B.S., Chemistry Purdue Northwest)

Carlos Quinones

Carlos is a MS student who is currently working to activate alkyne bonds via Sonogashira coupling to produce new metallodithiolene complexes. This work includes synthesizing the “Lead Glow” ligand, but can also includes synthesizing precursors to model Molybdenum cofactor compoounds.


Outside of the lab, Carlos enjoys listening to music and lifting heavy weights.