Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis

Steve Pressé Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Physics

Education

Postdoctoral Fellow, Biophysics, University of California, San Francisco, CA

Ph.D. Chemical Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

B.Sc.Hon. Bio-organic Chemistry, McGill University, Montreal QC


Professional Affiliations

 American Chemical Society (ACS)

 American Physical Society (APS)

 Biophysical Society (BPS)

 Sigma Xi

Teaching Assignments

Physics 617 -- Graduate Statistical Physics

Recitation Physics 251 --  Heat, Electricity and Optics


We are looking for highly motivated undergraduate and graduate students.  If you are 1) interested in building models relevant to biological problems or doing biophysical experiments, 2) like math/programming, then please don't hesitate to send your CV regardless of your major. See our Lab webpage (statphysbio.physics.iupui.edu) for more details.

Current Research

Our work involves theoretical studies from the level of single molecule to the level of systems biology in collaboration with experiment. At the length scale and time scale relevant to biology, most events are random. That is, events are described using probabilistic models. Often models are necessary to make sense of the data. Yet data is limited and noisy while extracting probabilistic models from data is a challenging (inverse) problem. We develop the theoretical and numerical tools to tackle these problems using techniques motivated from statistical mechanics and stochastic processes. 

For instance, our experimental collaborators and our group work on a variety of problems which include protein diffusion as it undergoes catalytic reactions and the single molecule mechanics of protein translocation and degradation by molecular motors. We are also interested in understanding chemotaxis from the motor protein to the organismal level in the presence of little chemoattractant.  

On the pure theory side, we are interested in two problems primarily. 1) Developing information criteria for model discrimination specifically targeted at single molecule fluorescence and force spectroscopy experiments. 2) Developing an information theoretic basis for ubiquitous models in biophysics (say the Markov process as a simple example). The purpose would be to derive principled generalizations of these models broadly applicable to biophysical problems. For this last project, see our latest two articles in J. Chem. Phys.


Select Publications

All Available as pdfs on my website (http://statphysbio.physics.iupui.edu/):

S. Pressé, K. Ghosh, J. Lee, K. Dill, “Tsallis and other nonadditive entropies introduce biases not warranted by the data”, Physical Review Letters, accepted (2013)

M. Sen, R.A. Maillard, K. Nyquist, P. Rodriguez-Aliaga, S. Pressé, A. Martin, C. Bustamante, “The ClpXP protease functions as a motor with constant ‘rpm’ but different ‘gears’ ”, Cell, accepted (2013)

S. Pressé, J. Lee, K. Dill, “Extracting conformational memory from single-molecule kinetic data”, J. Phys. Chem. B, 117, 495 (2013)

S. Pressé, K. Ghosh, J. Lee, K. Dill, “Principles of maximum entropy and maximum caliber in statistical physics”, Rev. Mod. Phys., 85, 1115, (2013)

J. Lee, S. Pressé, “Microcanonical origin of the maximum entropy principle for open systems”, Phys. Rev. E, 86, 041126 (2012)

J. Lee, S. Pressé, “A derivation of the master equation from path entropy maximization”, J. Chem. Phys., 137, 074103 (2012)

G.J. Peterson, S. Pressé, K. Peterson, K.A. Dill, “Simulated evolution of protein-protein interaction networks with realistic topology”, PLoS ONE, 7, e39052 (2012)

Hao Ge, S. Pressé, K. Ghosh, K.A. Dill, “Markov processes follow from the principle of maximum caliber”, J. Chem. Phys., 136, 064108 (2012) – Selected by the Editors as a Research Highlight.

S. Pressé, K. Ghosh, K.A. Dill, “Modeling stochastic dynamics in biochemical systems with feedback using maximum caliber”, J. Phys. Chem. B, 115, 6202 (2011)

G. J. Peterson, S. Pressé, K.A. Dill, “Nonuniversal power law scaling in the probability distribution of scientific citations”, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sc., 107, 16023 (2010).

For full list of publications, see CV.

Awards & Honors

2008-2010     FQRNT Postdoctoral Fellowship 

2007-2008     FQRNT Doctoral Fellowship

2005-2007     NSERC Doctoral Fellowship

2003-2005     NSERC Master’s Fellowship

2004             Outstanding Teaching Award, MIT Chemistry Dept.

For full list of awards, see CV.