Arnaldo Serrano

Arnaldo Serrano

Nonlinear and Multidimensional Spectroscopy


2017 - present
Assistant Professor, University of Notre Dame
2013 - 2017
Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Wisconsin, Madison
Ph.D. in Chemistry, University of Pennsylvania
B.A. in Chemistry, Rutgers University

Selected Awards

CAREER Award, National Science Foundation
ACS PHYS Division Postdoctoral Research Award
Hans Neurath Outstanding Promise Award

Research Interests

Our overall research interest is in developing and applying optical methods that will ultimately allow us to take “images” of biological systems that can inform us of underlying chemical effects such as hydration, hydrogen bond fluctuations, and molecular structure. Our research program has grown to include several areas of biophysical chemistry through the application of two-dimensional infrared (2DIR) spectroscopy and related ultrafast optical techniques. These areas include 1. effects of divalent cations on the chemical structure and properties of peptide groups, 2. the observation that liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS) of biomolecules can drive peptide folding, and most recently, 3. that 2DIR can be used to detect and distinguish polymorphs of cross-α forming amyloid peptides, a recently discovered structural motif relevant to S. Aureus bacterial biofilms. We have also done work on 4. enhancing the spatial resolution of ultra-fast infrared imaging, and we are continuing this work in parallel with the fundamental biophysical work discussed above, with the ultimate goal of applying these imaging methods to study biomolecules in more complex and heterogeneous environments, such as tissues and cells.

Recent Publications

  • Cracchiolo, O. M.; Edun, D. N.; Betti, V. M.; Goldberg, J. M. and Serrano, A. L. "Cross-Alpha/Beta Polymorphism of PSM Alpha 3 Fibrils" 2022 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 119 (5), e2114923119. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2114923119.
  • Edun, D. N.; Cracchiolo, O. M. and Serrano, A. L. "A Theoretical Analysis of Coherent Cross-Peaks in Polarization Selective 2DIR for Detection of Cross-Alpha Fibrils" 2022 Journal of Chemical Physics, 156 (3), 035102. DOI: 10.1063/5.0070553.
  • Drexler, C. I.; Cracchiolo, O. M.; Myers, R. L.; Okur, H. I.; Serrano, A. L.; Corcelli, S. A. and Cremer, P. S. "Local Electric Fields in Aqueous Electrolytes" 2021 Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 125 (30), pp.8484-8493. DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpcb.1c03257.
  • Edun, D. N.; Flanagan, M. R. and Serrano, A. L. "Does Liquid-Liquid Phase Separation Drive Peptide Folding?" 2021 Chemical Science, 12 (7), pp.2474-2479. DOI: 10.1039/d0sc04993j.
  • Cracchiolo, O. M.; Geremia, D. K.; Corcelli, S. A. and Serrano, A. L. "Hydrogen Bond Exchange and Ca2+ Binding of Aqueous N-Methylacetamide Revealed by 2DIR Spectroscopy" 2020 Journal of Physical Chemistry B, 124 (32), pp.6947-6954. DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpcb.0c02444.
  • Edun, D. N.; Nelmark, C. E. and Serrano, A. L. "Resolution Enhancement in Wide-Field IR Imaging and Time-Domain Spectroscopy using Dielectric Microspheres" 2020 Journal of Physical Chemistry A, 124 (27), pp.5534-5541. DOI: 10.1021/acs.jpca.0c02418.


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