Tatum Prosswimmer


As a graduate student in bioengineering professor Valerie Daggett’s lab, Tatum is studying self-aggregating proteins known as amyloids. Amyloid proteins are a hallmark of disease in mammalian systems, but are also used by bacteria as part of an extracellular scaffold known as a biofilm. She is targeting functional bacterial amyloid in biofilms by engineering peptides that interfere with amyloid aggregation. By preventing continued aggregation of alpha sheet oligomers through specific binding to alpha sheet peptides, bacterial biofilms cannot form efficiently, effectively increasing their susceptibility to common antibiotics. Tatum received the 2018 College of Engineering Dean’s Fellowship. She holds a B.S. in Bioengineering and a minor in Chemistry from Santa Clara University.