Chris Snow

Chris Snow

Chris Snow

Associate Professor, Chemical and Biological Engineering

Dr. Snow applies atomic modeling, design, and simulation methods to engineer new enzymes and novel biomolecular crystalline materials.

Research Interests

  • Bioenergy
  • Bioinformatics
  • Computational Biology
  • Fermentation and Bioactive Compounds
  • Other
  • Protein Engineering
  • Protein Crystallography
  • Synthetic Biology


  • Ph D, 2006, Stanford University: Biophysics
  • BS, 2001, Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Chemistry

Awards & Honors

  • Nelson Family Faculty Excellence Award Nelson Family & the College of Engineering, 2019
  • Best Teacher Award CSU Alumni Association, 2019
  • George T Abell Outstanding Early Career Faculty Award College of Engineering, Colorado State University, 2015


  • Dos Santos Passos, Carolina; Choi, Yun; Snow, Chris; Yao, Tingting; Cohen, Robert. "Design of genetically-encoded sensors to detect nucleosome ubiquitination in live cells" Journal of Cell Biology, .
  • Kowalski, Ann; Johnson, Lucas; Dierl, Holland; Park, Sehoo; Huber, Thaddaus; Snow, Chris. "Porous protein crystals as scaffolds for enzyme immobilization" Biomaterials Science, vol. 7, no.5, 2019, pp. 1898-1904.
  • "Porous crystals as scaffolds for structural biology." Current opinion in structural biology, December, 2019.
  • Sun, Guotao; Tang, Jianguo; Snow, Chris; Li, Zhenhua; Zhang, Yu; Wang, Yao; Belfiore, Laurence. "Drug Sensing Protein Crystals Doped with Luminescent Lanthanide Complexes" Crystal Growth & Design, vol. 19, no.10, 2019, pp. 5658-5664.
  • Rossmassler, Karen; Snow, Chris; Taggart, Dora; Brown, Casey; De Long, Susan. "Advancing biomarkers for anaerobic o-xylene biodegradation via metagenomic analysis of a methanogenic consortium" Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, vol. 103, no.10, 2019, pp. 4177-4192.
  • Zhang, Yu; Zhang, Xiaoting; Tang, Jianguo; Snow, Chris; Sun, Guotao; Kowalski, Ann; Hartje, Luke; Zhao, Ning; Wang, Yao; Belfiore, Laurence. "Synthesis of Luminescent Lanthanide Complexes within Crosslinked Protein Crystal Matrices" CrystEngComm, vol. 20, 2018, pp. 2267-2277.
  • Hartje, Luke; Snow, Christopher. "Protein crystal based materials for nanoscale applications in medicine and biotechnology" WIREs Nanomedicine and Nanobiotechnology, vol. 11, no.4, 2018, pp. e1547.
  • Wang, Die; Shen, Wenfei; Tang, Jianguo; Wang, Yao; Liu, Jixian; Wang, Xinzhi; Yang, Renqiang; Snow, Chris; Huang, Linjun; Jiao, Jiqing; Wang, Yanxin; Wang, Wei; Belfiore, Laurence. "Enhancing the Power Conversion Efficiency for Polymer Solar Cells by Incorporating Luminescent Nanosolid Micelles as Light Converter" ACS Applied Energy Materials, vol. 1, no.4, 2018, pp. 1445-1454.
  • Kowalski, Ann; Nemeth, Richard; Zintgraff, Stacey; Sloan, Samantha; Huber, Thaddaus; Ciesielski, Peter; Ackerson, Chris; Snow, Chris. "Protein Crystals as Molds for Seeded Gold Nanorod Growth" ACS Nano, .
  • Hartje, Luke; Bui, Hieu; Andales, David; James, Susan; Huber, Thaddaus; Snow, Chris. "Characterizing the Cytocompatibility of Various Cross-Linking Chemistries for the Production of Biostable Large-Pore Protein Crystal Materials" ACS Biomaterials Science \& Engineering, 0, January (1st Quarter/Winter), 2018, pp. null.
  • Huber, Thaddaus; McPherson, E; Keating, C; Snow, Chris. "Installing Guest Molecules at Specific Sites within Scaffold Protein Crystals." Bioconjugate chemistry, vol. 29, no.1, 2017, pp. 17-22.
  • Hartje, Luke; Munsky, Brian; Ni, Thomas; Ackerson, Chris; Snow, Chris. "Adsorption-Coupled Diffusion of Gold Nanoclusters within a Large-Pore Protein Crystal Scaffold." The journal of physical chemistry. B, vol. 121, no.32, 2017, pp. 7652-7659.
  • Hartje, Luke; Munsky, Brian; Ni, Thomas; Ackerson, Chris; Snow, Chris. "Adsorption-Coupled Diffusion of Gold Nanoclusters within a Large-Pore Protein Crystal Scaffold." The journal of physical chemistry. B, vol. 121, no.32, 2017, pp. 7652-7659.
  • Lunt, Mark; Snow, Chris. "A Structure-Based Design Protocol for Optimizing Combinatorial Protein Libraries" Methods in Molecular Biology (Clifton, N.J.), vol. 1414, 2016, pp. 99–138.
  • Huber, Thaddaus; Hartje, Luke; McPherson, Eli; Kowalski, Ann; Snow, Chris. "Programmed Assembly of Host–Guest Protein Crystals" Small, December, 2016, pp. n/a–n/a.
  • Johnson, Lucas; Park, Sehoo; Gintner, Lucas; Snow, Chris. "Characterization of supercharged cellulase activity and stability in ionic liquids" Journal of Molecular Catalysis B: Enzymatic, vol. 132, October (4th Quarter/Autumn), 2016, pp. 84–90.
  • Reynolds, Evan; McHenry, Matthew; Cannac, Fabien; Gober, Joshua; Snow, Chris; Brustad, Eric. "An Evolved Orthogonal Enzyme/Cofactor Pair" Journal of the American Chemical Society, vol. 138, no.38, 2016, pp. 12451–12458.
  • Bennett, Jeffrey; Snow, Chris. "Optimizing Shape Complementarity Scoring Parameters for Recognition of Authentic Protein Crystal Packing Arrangements" Crystal Growth & Design, vol. 16, no.9, 2016, pp. 5579–5583.
  • Johnson, Lucas; Snow, Chris. "Molecular dynamics simulations of cellulase homologs in aqueous 1-ethyl-3-methylimidazolium chloride" Journal of Biomolecular Structure & Dynamics, July (3rd Quarter/Summer), 2016, pp. 1–13.
  • Kowalski, Ann; Huber, Thaddaus; Ni, Thomas; Hartje, Luke; Appel, K; Yost, J; Ackerson, Chris; Snow, Chris. "Gold nanoparticle capture within protein crystal scaffolds." Nanoscale, vol. 8, no.25, 2016, pp. 12693-6.
  • Meyers, J.; Gray, Meg; Kuklinski, W.; Beck-Johnson, Lindsay; Snow, Chris; Black IV, William; Partin, K.; Foy, Brian. "Characterization of the target of ivermectic, the glutamate-gated chloride channel, from Anopheles gambiae" Journal of Ex. Biology, 2015.
  • Havird, Justin; Whitehill, Nicholas; Snow, Chris; Sloan, Dan. "Conservative and compensatory evolution in oxidative phosphorylation complexes of angiosperms with highly divergent rates of mitochondrial genome evolution" Evolution, vol. 69, no.12, 2015, pp. 3069–3081.
  • Johnson, L; Gintner, L; Park, S; Snow, Chris. "Discriminating between stabilizing and destabilizing protein design mutations via recombination and simulation." Protein engineering, design & selection : PEDS, vol. 28, no.8, 2015, pp. 259-67.
  • Foy, Brian; Gray, Meg; Kuklinski, Wojtek; Johnson, Lucas; Snow, Chris; Black IV, William; Partin, Kathryn; Foy, Brian. "Characterization of the target of ivermectin, the glutamate-gated chloride channel, from Anopheles gambiae" The Journal of Experimental Biology, vol. 218, May, 2015, pp. 1478-86.
  • Meyers, J; Gray, Michael; Kuklinski, W; Johnson, L; Snow, Chris; Black, 4th, W; Partin, K; Foy, Brian. "Characterization of the target of ivermectin, the glutamate-gated chloride channel, from Anopheles gambiae." The Journal of experimental biology, vol. 218, Pt 10, 2015, pp. 1478-86.
  • Johnson, Lucas; Huber, Thaddaus; Snow, Chris. "Methods for library-scale computational protein design" Methods in Molecular Biology (Clifton, N.J.), vol. 1216, 2014, pp. 129–159.
  • Brinkmann-Chen, Sabine; Flock, Tilman; Cahn, Jackson; Snow, Chris; Brustad, Eric; McIntosh, John; Meinhold, Peter; Zhang, Liang; Arnold, Frances. "General approach to reversing ketol-acid reductoisomerase cofactor dependence from NADPH to NADH" Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 110, no.27, 2013, pp. 10946–10951.
  • Chen, Mike M. Y., ; Snow, Chris; Vizcarra, Christina; Mayo, Stephen; Arnold, Frances. "Comparison of random mutagenesis and semi-rational designed libraries for improved cytochrome P450 BM3-catalyzed hydroxylation of small alkanes" PROTEIN ENGINEERING DESIGN & SELECTION, vol. 25, no.4, 2012, pp. 171-178.
  • Smith, Margie; Rentmeister, A; Snow, Chris; Wu, T; Farrow, M; Mingardon, F; Arnold, F. "A diverse set of family 48 bacterial glycoside hydrolase cellulases created by structure-guided recombination." The FEBS journal, vol. 279, no.24, 2012, pp. 4453-65.
  • Liu, Xiang; Bastian, Sabine; Snow, Chris; Brustad, Eric; Saleski, Tatyana; Xu, Jian-He; Meinhold, Peter; Arnold, Frances. "Structure-guided engineering of Lactococcus lactis alcohol dehydrogenase LlAdhA for improved conversion of isobutyraldehyde to isobutanol" Journal of biotechnology, September, 2012.
  • Brustad, E; Lelyveld, V; Snow, Chris; Crook, N; Jung, S; Martinez, F; Scholl, T; Jasanoff, A; Arnold, F. "Structure-guided directed evolution of highly selective p450-based magnetic resonance imaging sensors for dopamine and serotonin." Journal of molecular biology, vol. 422, no.2, 2012, pp. 245-62.
  • Rentmeister, Andrea; Brown, Tristan; Snow, Chris; Carbone, Martina; Arnold, Frances. "Engineered Bacterial Mimics of Human Drug Metabolizing Enzyme CYP2C9" ChemCatChem, vol. 3, no.6, 2011, pp. 1065-1071.
  • Bastian, Sabine; Liu, Xiang; Meyerowitz, Joseph; Snow, Chris; Chen, Mike; Arnold, Frances. "Engineered ketol-acid reductoisomerase and alcohol dehydrogenase enable anaerobic 2-methylpropan-1-ol production at theoretical yield in Escherichia coli" Metabolic Engineering, vol. 13, no.3, 2011, pp. 345–352.
  • Ng, Albert; Snow, Chris. "Polarizable protein packing" Journal of Computational Chemistry, vol. 32, no.7, 2011, pp. 1334–1344.
  • Lewis, Jared; Mantovani, Simone; Fu, Yu; Snow, Chris; Komor, Russell; Wong, Chi-Huey; Arnold, Frances. "Combinatorial alanine substitution enables rapid optimization of cytochrome P450BM3 for selective hydroxylation of large substrates" Chembiochem: A European Journal of Chemical Biology, vol. 11, no.18, 2010, pp. 2502–2505.
  • Lucent, Del; Snow, Chris; Aitken, Colin; Pande, Vijay. "Non-bulk-like solvent behavior in the ribosome exit tunnel" PLoS Computational Biology, vol. 6, no.10, 2010, pp. e1000963.
  • Heinzelman, P; Komor, R; Kanaan, A; Romero, P; Yu, X; Mohler, S; Snow, Chris; Arnold, F. "Efficient screening of fungal cellobiohydrolase class I enzymes for thermostabilizing sequence blocks by SCHEMA structure-guided recombination." Protein engineering, design & selection : PEDS, vol. 23, no.11, 2010, pp. 871-80.
  • Heinzelman, Pete; Snow, Chris; Smith, Matthew; Yu, Xinlin; Kannan, Arvind; Boulware, Kevin; Villalobos, Alan; Govindarajan, Sridhar; Minshull, Jeremy; Arnold, Frances. "SCHEMA recombination of a fungal cellulase uncovers a single mutation that contributes markedly to stability" The Journal of Biological Chemistry, vol. 284, no.39, 2009, pp. 26229–26233.
  • Heinzelman, Pete; Snow, Chris; Wu, Indira; Nguyen, Catherine; Villalobos, Alan; Govindarajan, Sridhar; Minshull, Jeremy; Arnold, Frances. "A family of thermostable fungal cellulases created by structure-guided recombination" Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 106, no.14, 2009, pp. 5610–5615.
  • Loksha, Ilya; Maiolo, 3rd, James R; Hong, Cheng; Ng, Albert; Snow, Chris. "SHARPEN-systematic hierarchical algorithms for rotamers and proteins on an extended network" Journal of Computational Chemistry, vol. 30, no.6, 2009, pp. 999–1005.
  • Fasan, Rudi; Meharenna, Yergalem; Snow, Chris; Poulos, Thomas; Arnold, Frances. "Evolutionary history of a specialized p450 propane monooxygenase" Journal of Molecular Biology, vol. 383, no.5, 2008, pp. 1069–1080.
  • Petrone, Paula; Snow, Chris; Lucent, Del; Pande, Vijay. "Side-chain recognition and gating in the ribosome exit tunnel" Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 105, no.43, 2008, pp. 16549–16554.
  • "Hunting for predictive computational drug-discovery models" Expert Review of Anti-Infective Therapy, vol. 6, no.3, 2008, pp. 291–293.
  • Ben-Hur, Asa; Draper, Bruce; Anderson, Chuck; Snow, Chris; others, . "Large margin methods for partner specific prediction of interfaces in protein complexes" Colorado State University. Libraries, 2007.
  • Li, Yougen; Drummond, D; Sawayama, Andrew; Snow, Chris; Bloom, Jesse; Arnold, Frances. "A diverse family of thermostable cytochrome P450s created by recombination of stabilizing fragments" Nature Biotechnology, vol. 25, no.9, 2007, pp. 1051–1056.
  • Suydam, Ian; Snow, Chris; Pande, Vijay; Boxer, Steven. "Electric fields at the active site of an enzyme: direct comparison of experiment with theory" Science (New York, N.Y.), vol. 313, no.5784, 2006, pp. 200–204.
  • Snow, Chris; Rhee, Young; Pande, Vijay. "Kinetic definition of protein folding transition state ensembles and reaction coordinates" Biophysical Journal, vol. 91, no.1, 2006, pp. 14–24.
  • Snow, Chris; Sorin, Eric; Rhee, Young; Pande, Vijay. "How well can simulation predict protein folding kinetics and thermodynamics?" Annual Review of Biophysics and Biomolecular Structure, vol. 34, 2005, pp. 43–69.
  • Fujitani, Hideaki; Tanida, Yoshiaki; Ito, Masakatsu; Jayachandran, Guha; Snow, Chris; Shirts, Michael; Sorin, Eric; Pande, Vijay. "Direct calculation of the binding free energies of FKBP ligands" The Journal of Chemical Physics, vol. 123, no.8, 2005, pp. 084108.
  • Chong, Lillian; Snow, Chris; Rhee, Young; Pande, Vijay. "Dimerization of the p53 oligomerization domain: identification of a folding nucleus by molecular dynamics simulations" Journal of Molecular Biology, vol. 345, no.4, 2005, pp. 869–878.
  • Singhal, Nina; Snow, Chris; Pande, Vijay. "Using path sampling to build better Markovian state models: predicting the folding rate and mechanism of a tryptophan zipper beta hairpin" The Journal of Chemical Physics, vol. 121, no.1, 2004, pp. 415–425.
  • Snow, Chris; Qiu, Linlin; Du, Deguo; Gai, Feng; Hagen, Stephen; Pande, Vijay. "Trp zipper folding kinetics by molecular dynamics and temperature-jump spectroscopy" Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 101, no.12, 2004, pp. 4077–4082.
  • Luisi, Donna; Snow, Chris; Lin, Jo-Jin; Hendsch, Zachary; Tidor, Bruce; Raleigh, Daniel. "Surface salt bridges, double-mutant cycles, and protein stability: an experimental and computational analysis of the interaction of the Asp 23 side chain with the N-terminus of the N-terminal domain of the ribosomal protein l9" Biochemistry, vol. 42, no.23, 2003, pp. 7050–7060.
  • Pande, Vijay; Baker, Ian; Chapman, Jarrod; Elmer, Sidney; Khaliq, Siraj; Larson, Stefan; Rhee, Young; Shirts, Michael; Snow, Chris; Sorin, Eric; Zagrovic, Bojan. "Atomistic protein folding simulations on the submillisecond time scale using worldwide distributed computing" Biopolymers, vol. 68, no.1, 2003, pp. 91–109.
  • Snow, Chris; Zagrovic, Bojan; Pande, Vijay. "The Trp cage: folding kinetics and unfolded state topology via molecular dynamics simulations" Journal of the American Chemical Society, vol. 124, no.49, 2002, pp. 14548–14549.
  • Snow, Chris; Nguyen, Houbi; Pande, Vijay; Gruebele, Martin. "Absolute comparison of simulated and experimental protein-folding dynamics" Nature, vol. 420, no.6911, 2002, pp. 102–106.
  • Zagrovic, Bojan; Snow, Chris; Shirts, Michael; Pande, Vijay. "Simulation of folding of a small alpha-helical protein in atomistic detail using worldwide-distributed computing" Journal of Molecular Biology, vol. 323, no.5, 2002, pp. 927–937.
  • Zagrovic, Bojan; Snow, Chris; Khaliq, Siraj; Shirts, Michael; Pande, Vijay. "Native-like mean structure in the unfolded ensemble of small proteins" Journal of Molecular Biology, vol. 323, no.1, 2002, pp. 153–164.