Yilin Liu, Ph.D.

Yilin Liu, Ph.D.

Title: Assistant Professor
Dept/Program: Chemistry
Office: KNCL 201
Phone: 330-972-5614
Email: yliu1@uakron.edu


Dr. Liu is an Assistant Professor in the department of Chemistry at The University of Akron. Her research group focuses on studying the structure and function relationships of heme proteins. Prior to joining the university, she was a research assistant professor at Marquette University. She obtained her Ph.D. from Marquette University, and her B.Sc. from Liaoning University in China.


In Liu’s group, we focus on the structural characterization of stable terminal states and unstable intermediates involved in the enzymatic reactions of heme proteins, including mammalian and bacteria cytochromes P450 and globins. These goals are principally achieved by resonance Raman (rR) spectroscopy, with the application of a genuinely innovative combination of “nano-disc” sampling methodology required for membrane-bound proteins, resonance Raman spectroscopy of isotopically labeled samples, and cryoradiolysis (77K) with a gamma ray source.


  1. Jing, Y., Usai, R., Kincaid, J. R., and Liu, Y.* (2023) Revealing Substrate-Induced Structural Changes in Active Site of Human CYP51A1 in the Presence of Its Physiological Substrates. J. Inorg. Biochem. 242, 112167. (* corresponding author)
  2. Liu, Y., Gregory, M. C. Denisov, I., Sligar, S., and Kincaid, J. R. (2022) Importance of Asparagine 202 in Manipulating Active Site Structure and Substrate Preference for Human CYP17A1, Biochemistry. 61 (7), 583-594
  3. Liu, Y., Denisov, I., Sligar, S., and Kincaid, J. R. (2021) Substrate-Specific Allosteric Effects on the Enhancement of CYP17A1 Lyase Efficiency by Cytochrome b(5), Journal of the American Chemical Society, 143, 3729-3733.
  4. Patterson, C. D., Liu, Y., Das, S., Yennawar, N., Armache, J., Kincaid, J. R and Weinert. E. E. (2021) Heme Edge Residues Modulate Signal Transduction Within a Bifunctional Homo-Dimeric Sensor Protein. Biochemistry, 60 (49), 3801-3812.
  5. Liu, Y., Grinkova, Y., Gregory, M. C. Denisov, I., Sligar, S., and Kincaid, J. R. (2021) Mechanism of the Clinically Relevant E305G Mutation in Human P450 CYP17A1, Biochemistry, 60, 43, 3262–3271.
  6. Liu, Y* and Kincaid, J. R. (2021) Resonance Raman studies of gas sensing heme proteins, Journal of Raman Spectroscopy, 52 (12), 2516-2535. (* corresponding author)
  7. Liu, Y., Denisov, I., Grinkova, Y., Sligar, S., and Kincaid, J. R. (2020) P450 CYP17A1 variant with a disordered proton shuttle assembly retains peroxo-mediated lyase efficiency, Chemistry – A European Journal, 26, 16846-16852.
  8. Liu, Y., Bacon, B. A., Kincaid, J. R., and Boon, E. M. (2018) Spectral Characterization of a Novel NO Sensing Protein in Bacteria: NosP, Biochemistry. 57, 6187-6200.
  9. Liu, Y., McLean, K. J., Munro, A. W., and Kincaid, J. R. (2018) Resonance Raman studies of Bacillus megaterium cytochrome P450 BM3 and biotechnologically important mutants, Journal of Raman Spectroscopy. 49, 287-297.


  • 2017 Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Biophysics, Marquette University
  • 2012 B.Sc. in analytical chemistry, Liaoning University