Adam Duerfeldt, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Medicinal Chemistry
Adam Duerfeldt


Office Phone
Office Address

455 717 Delaware St
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States


Associate Professor, Department of Medicinal Chemistry


PhD, University of Kansas, 2011

BS, Central College, 2006

Postdoc, The Scripps Research Institute, 2011-2014

Expand all



Broadly, our research focuses on 1) developing chemical tools that can be utilized to enhance our understanding of disease pathology and 2) developing new therapeutic leads that exploit novel targets for the treatment of bacterial infections and retinal diseases. More specifically, we have four major research interests: 1) determining the biological significance and therapeutic potential of enzyme/pathway activation in bacteria, 2) understanding physicochemical parameters that influence small molecule permeation and accumulation in Gram-negative bacteria, 3) revealing and exploiting novel therapeutic targets in C. difficile, and 4) developing non-invasive (to the eye) small-molecule treatments for retinal diseases. We integrate synthetic chemistry, chemical and structural biology, microbiology, and computational methods to drive our research.

Awards & Recognition

2020 – ACS MEDI Young Investigator
2017 – University of Oklahoma CBR Professor of the Year (student voted)
2017 – ACS Jack L. Beal Award
2015 – American Cancer Society Special Friend – Researcher Award
2011 – University of Kansas Irsay–Dahle Award


  • Agonists of Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor-Alpha and Methods of Use. Issued: September 20, 2022
  • Phenylquinoline Compositions for Treatment of Ocular Disorders and Conditions. Issued: May 24, 2022



  • Hu Z, Leus IV, Chandar B, Sherborne BS, Avila QP, Rybenkov VV, Zgurskaya HI, Duerfeldt AS. Structure-Uptake Relationship Studies of Oxazolidinones in Gram-Negative ESKAPE Pathogens. J Med Chem. 2022 Oct 27;65(20):14144-14179. doi: 10.1021/acs.jmedchem.2c01349. Epub 2022 Oct 18. PMID: 36257060; PMCID: PMC9942527.
  • Bishop CE, Shadid TM, Lavey NP, Kempher ML, Ballard JD, Duerfeldt AS. Identification of ClpP Dual Isoform Disruption as an Antisporulation Strategy for Clostridioides difficile. J Bacteriol. 2022 Feb 15;204(2):e0041121. doi: 10.1128/JB.00411-21. Epub 2021 Nov 22. PMID: 34807726; PMCID: PMC8846446.
  • Leus, I. V., Weeks, J. W., Bonifay, V., Shen, Y., Yang, L., Cooper, C. J., Nash, D., Duerfeldt, A. S., Smith, J. C., Parks, J. M., Rybenkov, V. V., & Zgurskaya, H. I. (2022). Property space mapping of Pseudomonas aeruginosa permeability to small molecules. Scientific reports, 12(1), 8220. PubMed Central ID Number: PMC9114115 doi: 10.1038/s41598-022-12376-1
  • Fortney, K. R., Smith, S. N., van Rensburg, J. J., Brothwell, J. A., Gardner, J. J., Katz, B. P., Ahsan, N., Duerfeldt, A. S., Mobley HLT, & Spinola, S. M. (2022). CpxA Phosphatase Inhibitor Activates CpxRA and Is a Potential Treatment for Uropathogenic Escherichia coli in a Murine Model of Infection. Microbiology spectrum, 10(2), e0243021