Graduate Faculty Research Interests

Courtney Aldrich, PhD


Research interests: Antibiotics, tuberculosis, synthesis, enzymology

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Elizabeth A. Ambrose, PhD
Associate Professor


Research Interests: Biological and Chemical Warfare Agent Mitigation,BSL-2, BSL-3 and Select Agent Research, Homeland Security, High-Throughput and Fragment Screening, Lead Optimization, Psychiatric Pharmacy and Neuropharmacology

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Erin Carlson, PhD
Associate Professor

612 625-2580

Research Interests: Chemical biology, infectious disease, bacterial imaging, proteomics, inhibitor development, natural products

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Mark Distefano, PhD
Distinguished McKnight Professor & Merck Professor


Research interests: Bioorganic chemistry, enzymology, organic synthesis, protein prenylataion, sesquiterpene biosynthesis, rubber biosynthesis, protein labeling and immobilization, photoaffinity labeling, caged substrates.

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David Ferguson, PhD


Research interests: Quantum mechanics, molecular mechanics/dynamics, computer graphics techniques, molecular interactions, investigation of inter- and intramolecular interactions to gain insight for drug design and protein engineering

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Gunda Georg, PhD
Regents Professor


Research interests: Design, synthesis, and evaluation of synthetic and natural product-derived medicinal agents; drug discovery by HTS; new synthetic methods; combinatorial chemistry. Therapeutic areas: cancer, male contraception, Alzheimer's disease.

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Daniel Harki, PhD
Northrop Professor and Director of Graduate Studies


Research interests: Synthesis, biophysical characterization, and biological efficacy evaluation of novel small molecules that influence cellular function. Applications for these molecules range from anticancer drug discovery to new tools for modern biotechnology research.

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Carrie Haskell-Luevano, PhD
Professor & Philip S. Portoghese Endowed Chair in Chemical Neuroscience


Research interests: Peptide Chemistry, Medicinal Chemistry, G-protein Coupled Receptor (GPCR) Pharmacology, Human Receptor Polymorphisms, Neuroscience, Voluntary Exercise of Mice, Obesity, Diabetes, Feeding Behavior

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Stephen Hecht, PhD
Wallin Land Grant Professor of Cancer Prevention


Research interests: Mechanism by which carcinogens are metabolically activated and detoxified in humans, cancer prevention, nitosamines, aldehydes, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons

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Thomas Hoye, PhD
College of Science and Engineering Distinguished Professor, Distinguished University Teaching Professor


Research interests: Organic synthesis, natural products, analogs and prodrugs, symmetry concepts, organometallic chemistry,NMR spectroscopy

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Lisa Peterson, PhD


Research interests: Genotoxic and nongenotoxic mechanisms by which chemicals initiate cancer

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Valerie Pierre, PhD
Associate Professor


Research interests: Imaging; MRI; diagnostics; infectious diseases

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William Pomerantz, PhD
Associate Professor, McKnight Land Grant Professor, McKnight Presidential Fellow


Research interests: Inhibitor discovery; protein-protein interactions

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Philip Portoghese, PhD
Distinguished Professor


Research interests: G protein-coupled receptors; molecular recognition; opioid receptors; bivalent ligands; affinity labels

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Rory Remmel, PhD
Distinguished Teaching Professor


Research interests: Drug metabolism and disposition, evaluation of antiviral drug combinations, metabolic interactions of antiepileptic drugs in the elderly

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W. Thomas Shier, PhD


Research interests: Development of novel non-viral vector transfection agents for use in human gene therapy, strategies for eliminating carcinogenic and estrogenic mycotoxins from the human food supply, exploration of the drug potential of betulins and other natural products

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Natalia Tretyakova, PhD
Distinguished McKnight University Professor


Research interests: Structural basis for promutagenic and anticancer activity of DNA-modifying agents, DNA damage by tobacco carcinogens and lung cancer, DNA-DNA and DNA-protein cross-linking agents as carcinogens and drugs, DNA oxidation by endogenous reactive oxygen species

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Carston Wagner, PhD
Distinguished University Teaching Professor, Department Head, and Endowed Chair in Medicinal Chemistry


Research interests: Chemical Biology, design and development of targeted drug delivery approaches, design and study of chemical inducers of protein oligomerization, mechanistic and structural studies of biocatalyis and protein translation

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