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The Kwan Lab

Centre for Structural and Functional Genomics


7141 Rue Sherbrooke Ouest

Montréal, Quebec H4B 1R6


Our lab is focused on the function and engineering of enzymes and proteins. We carry out research crossing the disciplines of Biology and Chemistry, under the umbrella of Synthetic Biology.


Our research goals include:

  • Developing and applying high-throughput techniques for the discovery and directed evolution of enzyme biocatalysts for green chemistry

  • Rational engineering of protein function

  • Chemoenzymatic synthesis of biomolecules and cell-free synthetic biology

  • Targeting enzymes within pathogens and cancer to develop therapeutics


June 30, 2020

Dr. Kwan and Ifthiha to present at Glyconet Webinar Series 2

Dr. David Kwan will be giving a talk on July 29, 2020, 11 a.m.-12:00 p.m. MT titled "A set of chemical biology tools to probe and inhibit cellular glycosyltransferases". Graduate student from our lab F. Ifthiha Mohideen will also be presenting seminar on August 12, 2020, 11:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. MT titled "An engineered in vitro enzymatic pathway for the anticancer anthracycline deoxysugars: TDP-L-acosamine and TDP-L-daunosamine". Please register here.


April 30, 2020

New Students join the lab!

Kwan lab welcomes Ruben Warkentin who joined as a Master's student. Welcome! Gabriel Aguiar-Tawil and Amirhossein Rajabi Vajargah, who will be joining us for a summer project as part of Concordia Undergraduate Student Research Award. (CUSRA)

November 28, 2019

Congratulations Ifthiha for passing Ph.D. qualifying exam!

Ms Fatima Ifthiha Mohideen is now a PhD candidate in Kwan lab.  Her research focusses on  High-value chemotherapeutic agent through enzyme engineering.

September 4, 2019

Dr. Kwan receives the Petro-Canada Young Innovator Award

David Kwan's research focuses on using techniques in Synthetic Biology as a means of exploiting enzymes and developing them as tools in industrial biocatalysis, as well as targeting them within pathogenic microbes to disable them with specific inhibitor drugs to treat infectious diseases.


Petro-Canada Young Innovator Award recipients David Kwan (centre) and Tsz-Ho Kwok (right) with Christophe Guy.


September 3, 2019

Succesful summer research internship in Japan

Ms Trisha Ghosh, master's student at Kwan lab spent three months at University of Tsukuba, Japan. She received Gloablink Mitacs Graduate Research Scholarship that facilitated the research on “Selection of binding/inhibiting ligands against UDP-Galactopyranose mutase (UGM)” under the supervision of Dr. Christopher Hipolito at the Experimental Pathology and Cancer Signaling lab, University of Tsukuba, Japan. 

August 22, 2019

Trisha receives PROTEO Graduate Scholarship

Ms Trisha Ghosh is currently a master's student at Kwan lab. She received Quebec Network for Research on Protein Function, Engineering, and Applications (PROTEO) Graduate Research award to continue her research on "Peptide-based Drug Discovery for Mycobacterium tuberculosis"

August 1, 2019

New student joins the lab

Welcome! Ms Bo Yi Han joined Kwan lab to pursue her undergraduate project for the course BIOL490.

July 25, 2019

Congratulations Mohamed for passing Ph.D. qualifying exam!

Mr Mohamed Nasr is now a PhD candidate in Kwan lab .  His research focusses on Designer Biosensors for Engineered Metabolic Pathway Optimization. This project is co-supervised by Dr. Vincent Martin, Concordia University.


May 26, 2019

Dr. Kwan conducted a workshop at Synthetic Biology Symposium 4.0

Dr. David Kwan conducted a workshop at Synthetic Biology Symposium 4.0 held at University of Waterloo, Canada. His workshop introduced protein engineering tools used in Synthetic Biology.


Excellent candidates will be considered for graduate studies. Interested students, please send a brief email detailing your relevant experience, along with a copy of your CV, to Dr. Kwan.

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