Dr. Kristin Dittenhafer-Reed

Assistant Professor of Chemistry
Profile photo of Dr. Kristin Dittenhafer-Reed

Dr. Kristin Dittenhafer-Reed is an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. She joined the Hope faculty in 2016. Kristin’s main research and teaching focus is biochemistry.

See Dr. Dittenhafer-Reed's current research 


  • Understanding mitochondrial function in human health and disease
  • Mechanisms of control of mitochondrial DNA transcription
  • Characterization of mtDNA nucleoid proteins in genome maintenance and transcriptional regulation

Work in Kristin’s lab combines biochemistry, systems biology and chemistry approaches to study the basic biochemical mechanisms governing mitochondrial function and metabolism to allow for a deeper understanding of these diseases.

While core components of mitochondrial transcription initiation are known, a detailed understanding of transcriptional control is lacking. A goal of the research in the Dittenhafer-Reed lab is to uncover biochemical mechanisms that govern mitochondrial gene expression and mtDNA stability.

To understand the maintenance and gene expression of human mtDNA, the Dittenhafer-Reed lab will use biochemical approaches to analyze nucleoid protein structure, post-translational modification and function.


  • Postdoctoral fellow, Center for Cancer and Cell Biology, Van Andel Research Institute, 2014–2016
  • Ph.D. biochemistry, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2014
  • B.S. chemistry, Hope College, 2009


  • Denton Teaching Award, UW-Madison Integrated Program in Biochemistry, 2014
  • National Institutes of Health Biotechnology Training Program Trainee, 2012–2014
  • National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, 2009–2012

Published Works

For a complete list of Dr. Dittenhafer-Reed’s published works, click here.

Outside the College

When Kristin is not working at Hope, she enjoys spending time with her husband and family, traveling, cooking and running.

Profile photo of Dr. Kristin Dittenhafer-Reed
Dr. Kristin Dittenhafer-Reed

Phone Number616.395.6818

A. Paul Schaap Science Center 35 East 12th Street Holland, MI 49423
A map showing the location for Dr. Kristin Dittenhafer-Reed A. Paul Schaap Science Center 35 East 12th Street Holland MI 49423