Kristen Andersen

Kristen Andersen
Kohler Fellow

Years at WID

2013 - present2015


Beyond the research lab, Kristen enjoys connecting with the community through science. For several years, she has worked with elementary students at the local Boys & Girls Club with the SCI ENCountErs program, and has taught high school students biology basics through the lens of forensic crime scene investigation in the Pre-College Enrichment Opportunity Program for Learning Excellent (PEOPLE). Kristen is also an avid runner, triathlete and rock climbing enthusiast.


  • B.S., Biochemistry, University of Wisconsin–Madison
  • B.S., Chemistry, University of Wisconsin–Madison
  • Molecular & Cellular Pharmacology Graduate Training Program (in process)

Research Description

Kristen Andersen’s dissertation focuses on the development of new chemical tools for use in biological applications. Her work seeks to address a range of biological problems where traditional tools fall short. This has included the development of a novel protein folding catalyst, capable of reshuffling disulfide bonds in denatured proteins, thereby increasing the yields of therapeutically relevant recombinant proteins. Additionally, Kristen has established multiple methods of bioreversible protein labeling that facilitate cellular entry of protein therapeutics. Other projects she is currently working on include the development of a novel bioorthogonal probe to study the cellular metabolism of glycans and the establishment of a semisynthetic route to generating particular ubiquitin chains using a combination of cutting-edge techniques.


  • Molecular & Cellular Pharmacology Ph.D. Program
  • Biochemistry Department
  • Wisconsin Institute for Discovery


  • 2014       Excellence in Engaged Scholarship Graduate Award, Honorable Mention
  • 2013–15 Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of American (PhRMA) Foundation Pre-Doctoral Fellowship
  • 2013–15 Marie Christine Kohler Fellowship
  • 2012       National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Honorable Mention
  • 2010       Biological Science Award

Selected Publications

  • K.A. Andersen. “Improving the Prospects.” Science. 2012, 337, 648
  • K.A. Andersen, J.C. Lukesh III, K.K. Wallin, R.T. Raines. Organocatalysts of Oxidative Protein Folding Inspired by Protein Disulfide Isomerase. Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry2014. 12, 8598­–8602.
  • K.A. Andersen, N.A. McGrath, A.M.F. Davis, R.T. Raines. Diazo-Compounds for Catalyst-Free Esterification in Water. Chemical Science20156, 752–755.
  • K.A. AndersenL.J. Martin, J. Prince, and R.T. Raines. Intrinsic Site-Selectivity of Ubiquitin Dimer Formation. Protein Science, DOI: 10.1002/pro.2603
  • K.A. Andersen and Ronald T. Raines. Creating Site-Specific Isopeptide Linkages Between Proteins with the Traceless Staudinger Ligation. Methods in Molecular Biology: Peptide Libraries. 2015. In Press.