News and Events


Congratulations to Dr. William Pomerantz, who has been awarded the McKnight Presidential Fellowship! The McKnight Presidential Fellows Program is targeted at exceptional mid-career faculty to recognize their accomplishments and support their ongoing research and scholarship. The Fellowship is awarded to only five University professors annually. Dr. Pomerantz will be recognized by the University, along with other McKnight awardees, at a celebratory dinner on Tuesday, May 8th. 

Dr. Gunda Georg was interviewed for a recent segment on local news channel KARE 11 regarding the recent breakthroughs her laboratory has made into the development of a male birth control pill using the plant-derived compound ouabain. "Basically, when we gave this compound to rats and then looked at their sperm we found that the sperm motility was greatly reduced," Dr. Georg explained to reporter Chris Hepola.

Dr. Carrie Haskell-Luevano has been elected to serve on the Institute for Translational Neuroscience Steering Committee, which brings together neuroscience leaders from different departments and centers at the University of Minnesota. The Steering Committee is tasked with utilizing breakthrough neuro-related research to develop processes for improving clinical care and new treatments and therapies across the health sciences at the University.

Drs. Gunda Georg and Shameem Syeda have been featured on the front page of the Star Tribune's Science and Health section discussing the process of researching and developing a male birth control pill. While the article highlights the recent promising results from testing ouabain - a plant extract that has long been used by African hunters to create poison-tipped arrows - it also notes that, "Ouabain is just one of a handful of male contraceptive projects that Georg and Syeda are working on simultaneously.

Congratulations to Dr. Natalia Tretyakova, who has been selected as a 2018 Distinguished McKnight University Professor! The McKnight professorship honors and rewards the University of Minnesota's most distinguished and highest-achieving mid-career faculty who have recently attained full professor status, particularly those who have made significant advances in their careers at the University of Minnesota, whose work and reputation are identified with the University, and whose accomplishments have brought great renown and prestige to Minnesota. Dr.

Congratulations to Joseph Buonomo of the Aldrich lab, who has been selected to receive the 2018 Abul-Hajj/Hanna Exceptional Graduate Student Award in Medicinal Chemistry! This award is given each year based on a graduate students' quantity and quality of research accomplishments, the quality of the original research proposal for the oral exam, the quality of seminars and colloquia, the Graduate Course grade-point average since entering the program, and service and citizenship in departmental affairs.

Congratulations to Chris Richards, Pharmacology graduate student in the Harki laboratory, who has been selected to receive the 2018 Beatrice Z. Milne and Theodore Brandenburg Award! The award is granted to six or fewer graduate students on an annual basis and recognizes exceptional thesis research by a graduate student in the basic biomedical sciences. 

Dr. David Ferguson is quoted in the recent Arizona Daily Star article "Arizona Wildcats Star Allonzo Trier Faces 'Uphill Battle' in Eligibility Fight, Drug Experts Say" and in the Yahoo!

Dr. Gunda Georg's research on ouabain, a plant extract that shows promise as a potential male contraceptive agent, was featured in ACS in the News and the NY Daily News "Potential Male Birth Control Pill has Deadly Origins."  

Jenna Fernandez, a graduate student in the Tretyakova lab, will be giving a talk at the upcoming American Association for Cancer Research special conference in Atlanta, Georgia. The conference, which takes place March 1st-4th will focus on "Targeting DNA Methylation and Chromatin for Cancer Therapy" and highlight the progress made around the role of epigenetics in carcinogenesis in the past twenty years.