News and Events


Dr. Sana Bardaweel

Former graduate student from the Wagner lab Dr. Sanaa Bardaweel (2010) has been awarded the 2018 Samia Mango Award. This award is dedicated to recognizing distinguished female researchers in the health sciences fields. Dr. Bardaweel is now a Professor of Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Jordan where she focuses her research on anticancer drugs and cancer molecular biology. 

Congratulations to our former graduate student Dr. Cliff Csizmar (Wagner lab, 2018 Ph.D) who has been selected by the Medical School Honors and Awards Committee to receive the 2019 J. Jacob Kaplan Award! This award is presented to only three students annually for the most meritorious papers on clinical or basic medical research. Awardees will be recognized at the Dean’s Tribute to Excellence in Education at the McNamara Alumni Center on May 2nd, 2019. 

Congratulations to four of our graduate students who have been recognized by the National Science Foundation for their applications to the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program! Brandi McKnight (Doran lab) and Katherine Jones (Harki Lab, Chemistry) both received the 2019 GRFP award and Caroline Buchholz (Pomerantz lab) and Nicole Bentz (Wagner lab) received honorable mentions for their applications. 

Congratulations to Dr. Daniel Harki who was awarded a 2019 American Association for Cancer Research Bayer Innovation and Discovery Grant! This grant is aimed at providing new treatment options for cancers with high unmet medical needs, encouraging innovation into the development of novel drugs, and fostering collaborations between academic groups and the pharmaceutical industry. 

Congratulations to Drs. Philip Portoghese and Eyup Akgun, who were granted a patent in 2018 for their invention that provides analgesic conjugates useful for treating inflammatory pain associated with conditions like cancer, serious burns, and spinal injury.  Click here to view their patent, "Highly Potent Analgesics for Inflammatory Pain."

Congratulations to Jian Tang of the Harki Lab who received a Department of Defense Peer Reviewed Cancer Research Program (PRCRP) Horizon Award!  The award is a mentored training award for predoctoral trainees with a focus on promoting high-impact cancer research. The grant will fund Jian's research and supplies for his project “Targeting NF-kappaB-Inducing Kinase (NIK) for the Treatment of Hematologic Malignancies” for the next two years. 

An opinion piece written by Emeritus Dean Dr. Marilyn Speedie has been published in the Star Tribune contending that pharmacists are an underutilized resource in the fight against rising prescription drug costs. 

Congratulations to Dr. Michael Walters of the ITDD who was awarded a 5-year R01 grant from the National Institutes of Health with co-PI Dr. Karen Ashe (Neurology) for their project titled “Caspase-2 Probe Compounds.” 

A paper coauthored by Dr. Natalia Tretyakova on the potential for DNA damage caused by methylating agents was selected as a paper of the month by Environmental Factor, an NIEHS e-publication. Click here to read more about her paper "Histone tails decrease N7-methyl-2′-deoxyguanosine depurination and yield DNA–protein cross-links in nucleosome core particles and cells."

Congratulations to Dr. Todd Doran who is the recipient, along with Dr. Nam Chul Kim, of the 2019 Engebretson Drug Design and Discovery Grant! As awardees they will each receive $15,000 for their project "Development of PINK1 Kinase Inhibitors."