Seminar Schedule


Upcoming Seminar

Pei-Yong Shi

Pei-Yong Shi, PhD
I.H. Kempner Professor of Human Genetics
Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
The University of Texas Medical Branch
Galveston - TX

Wednesday, April 19, 2017 -
10:30am to 11:30am
Location: 2-690 Moos Tower

The Shi lab integrates both academic and industrial expertise for basic and translational research. Our research focuses on flaviviruses that cause significant human diseases, such as dengue, Zika, West Nile, and Japanese encephalitis viruses. Despite their global public health burden, there is no clinically approved therapy for flavivirus infection. To address this huge unmet medical need, they take a multidisciplinary approach (i) to study the molecular mechanism of viral replication and (ii) to translate the knowledge into antiviral, vaccine, and diagnostic products.

Future Seminars

Ravit Boger

Ravit Boger, MD
Associate Professor
Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

Wednesday, May 17, 2017 -
10:30am to 11:30am
Location: 2-520 Moos Tower

Dr. Ravit Boger is an associate professor of pediatrics and oncology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Her area of clinical expertise is pediatric infectious diseases. She is known for her research on congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection. Her lab was among the first in this country to characterize CMV genes, and they recently identified a protein that regulates the body’s immune response to CMV.

Paul Thompson

Paul Thompson, PhD
Professor and Director of Chemical Biology
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology
UMASS Medical School
Worcester, MA 01605

Tuesday, May 23, 2017 -
10:30am to 11:30am
Location: 2-690 Moos Tower

The major focus of prof. Thompson's group is the target-based design of novel anti-cancer and anti-rheumatoid arthritis chemotherapeutics.  Currently they are focusing their efforts on the development of potent and selective inhibitors of enzymes whose activities are involved in modulating chromatin structure.

David Yu

David S. Yu, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Radiation Oncology 
Emory University School and Winship Cancer Institute

Thursday, July 20, 2017 -
10:30am to 11:30am
Location: 2-690 Moos Tower

Dr. Yu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Emory University School of Medicine. He received his MD from the University of Texas at Southwestern Medical School and PhD from the University of Cambridge prior to completing residency training in Radiation Oncology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He graduated with honors from Stanford University with a BS in Biology.

Past Seminars

Past Seminars

christopher mccurdy

Christopher R. McCurdy, PhD, FAAPS
Professor of Medicinal Chemistry
Professor of Pharmacology
Department of BioMolecular Sciences
The University of Mississippi
University, MS 38677

Wednesday, September 16, 2015 - 10:30am
Location: TBA

Title: Sigma Receptor Antagonists in Peripheral Pain
Dr. McCurdy is interested in the design and synthesis of Nociceptin/Orphanin FQ (N/OFQ) non-peptide ligands based on receptor modeling studies and the molecular modeling of the NOP (nociceptin opioid receptor) receptor and other opioid receptors to distinguish non-peptide binding modes as well as to determine selectivity. He also studies the design and synthesis of Neuropeptide FF (NPFF) non-peptide ligands based on the active neuropeptide sequence.

Yihong Ye, PhD
Section Chief
Protein Stability and Quality Control Section
Laboratory of Molecular Biology
The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)

Wednesday, October 21, 2015 - 10:30am
Location: 1-451 Moos Tower

Title: Protein Quality Control and Cancer Therapy
To safeguard proteomic integrity, eukaryotic cells rely on the ubiquitin proteasome system to degrade aberrant polypeptides and the autophagy pathway to eliminate protein aggregates. Inhibition of these protein quality control (PQC) systems in cells leads to unbalanced protein homeostasis (proteostasis) network, which culminates in cell death.  Many types of cancer cells are particularly sensitive to perturbed proteostasis network given their strong reliance on protein synthesis for growth.  As a result, targeting PQC pathways has been demonstrated to be an effective therapeutics for certain types of cancer.  The presentation will discuss the mechanism of endoplasmic reticulum-associated degradation (ERAD), a PQC mechanism that degrades misfolded ER proteins, and the possibility of targeting key ERAD regulators in cancer therapy.  A novel PQC pathway that might be a potential anti-cancer target will also be discussed.

Michael W. Crowder, PhD
Professor and Department Chair
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Miami University
Oxford, Ohio

Wednesday, November 18, 2015 - 10:30am
Location: Mayo Building Rm 3-125

Title: 'Probing the Reaction Mechanism of Metallo-b-lactamases'
Prof. Crowder’s research involves the study of two medically-important enzymes, metallo-b-lactamases (MBLs) and matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). His lab utilizes pre-steady state kinetic studies to probe the kinetic mechanisms of these enzymes and spectroscopic and crystallographic studies to probe the structures of these enzymes. They utilize rapid freeze quench methods to trap reaction intermediates and EPR/EXAFS spectroscopies to characterize these intermediates.

Gary A. Molander, PhD
Roy and Diana Vagelos Laboratories
Department of Chemistry
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA

Wednesday, December 16, 2015 -
10:15am to 11:15pm
Location: Moos 1-450

Title: Single Electron Transformations to Enable Cross-Couplings
The central theme of the Molander group's research is the development of new synthetic methods and their application to the synthesis of organic molecules. The group's focus is to expand and improve the Suzuki coupling reaction for organoboron compounds. Robust, air- and water-stable potassium organotrifluoroborates (R-BF3K), are employed to carry out couplings under relatively mild conditions using non-toxic components.

Kathlynn Brown, PhD
Program Director of Functional Peptide Development
SRI International
Harrisonburg, VA

Wednesday, February 17, 2016 - 10:30am
Location: TBA

Title: The Hunt for Cancer Targeting Peptides: New Ligands for Precision Therapy of Lung Cancer
Dr. Brown's research team is developing peptides that target tumors for use as delivery vehicles for drugs, nanoparticles, and toxins. They are also utilizing the peptides to develop novel immunotherapies to fight cancer. Additionally, the peptides are being utilized as molecular imaging agents for diagnosis and classification of cancers.

Stephen J. Lippard, PhD
Arthur Amos Noyes Professor
Department of Chemistry
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Cambridge, MA

Tuesday, April 19, 2016 - 10:30am
Location: TBA

Research in Professor Lippard's laboratory involves bioinorganic chemistry. The core activities include both structural and mechanistic studies of macromolecules as well as synthetic inorganic chemistry. The focus is on the synthesis, reactions, physical and structural properties of metal complexes as models for the active sites of metalloproteins and as anti-cancer drugs. Also included is extensive structural and mechanistic work on the natural systems themselves. A program in metalloneurochemistry is also in place.

Erin E. Carlson, PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Chemistry
University of Minnesota

Wednesday, May 18, 2016 - 10:30am
Location: Moos 2-690

Title: Chemical Probes for Histidine Kinase Protein Profiling and Inhibitor Discovery
The Carlson Group unites tools from chemistry and biology to promote the development and application of technologies that will contribute to the understanding of new strategies for treatment of bacterial infections and the discovery of efficacious compounds. Three complementary research directions are being pursued: (i) Protein Function – design and application of chemical probes for characterization of bacterial cell wall biosynthesis (ii) Target Exploration – generation of methods for the investigation and inhibition of histidine kinases (iii) Molecule Discovery – development of strategies to dramatically expand our ability to explore natural product chemical space.

William Frey

William H. Frey II, PhD
Department of Neurology, Pharmaceutics, and Oral Biology
University of Minnesota

Wednesday, October 19, 2016 -
10:30am to 11:30am
Location: 2-520 Moos Tower

Dr. William H. Frey II is the Founder and Co-Director of the Alzheimer's Research Center at Regions Hospital, Professor of Pharmaceutics and faculty member in Neurology, Oral Biology and Neuroscience at the University of Minnesota and consultant to the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry. The intranasal insulin treatment he developed for Alzheimer’s disease has been shown in multiple clinical trials to improve memory in both Alzheimer’s patients and normal adults. The intranasal therapeutic (stem) cell treatment he discovered has been shown to bypass the blood-brain barrier to treat Parkinson's, stroke, neonatal ischemia, multiple sclerosis and subarachnoid hemorrhage in animal models of these disorders.

Read a recent Neurology Reviews cover story written by their editor entitled: Intranasal Drug Delivery Bypasses the Blood-Brain Barrier which describes intranasal treatments based on Dr. Frey's discoveries using drugs, peptides, biologics and therapeutic stem cells for Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, MS, brain tumors, stroke, traumatic brain injury and other brain disorders: PDF icon Click Here

Sid Das

Siddhartha Das, PhD
Department of Biological Sciences
Director, Infectious Disease and Immunology Cluster
The Border Biomedical Research Center
University of Texas at El Paso

Wednesday, November 16, 2016 -
10:30am to 11:30am
Location: 2-520 Moos Tower

Title: Encystation by Giardia: stories told by sphingolipids and lipid rafts

Dr. Das' laboratory investigates the lipid metabolism and lipid signaling in parasitic protozoan, Giardia lamblia. He is also interested in identifying the role of arachidonic acid (present in high fat diet) in inducing inflammatory reactions in breast cancer. Currently, he is the director of Immunology and Infectious Disease Cluster of the Border Biomedical Research Center (BBRC) at the University of Texas at El Paso, which is supported by a grant from the NIH.

Jan-Jun 2015 Seminars

Jan-Jun 2015 Seminars

Adegboyega K. Oyelere, PhD

Adegboyega K. Oyelere, PhD
Associate Professor
School of Chemistry & Biochemistry
Georgia Institute of Technology

January 21, 2015

Location: 2-650 Moos Towers

The overarching research objective of Prof Oyelere's laboratory is to delineate the chemical basis of the molecular recognition events employed by biomolecules to drive important biological processes. They are interested in how perturbation of molecular recognition, by natural and synthetic ligands, can be used to understand the molecular basis of biological processes. Read More

Adam Zlotnik, PhD

Adam Zlotnik, PhD 
Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry Department
Indiana University

February 24, 2015
Daniel Zurawski, PhD

Daniel Zurawski, PhD 
Senior Scientist/Principal Investigator
Cell and Molecular Biology
Walter Reed Army Institute of Research

April 15, 2015
Susan Mooberry, PhD

Susan Mooberry, PhD 
Professor of Pharmacology and Co-leader of Experimental & Developmental Therapeutics
Cancer Therapy & Research Center
The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

May 20, 2015

2014 Seminars

2014 Seminars

 Susan Horowitz, PhD

May 21, 2014, Moos 2-530Susan Horowitz, PhD
Distinguished Professor & Co-Chair, Dept of Molecular Pharmacology
Rose C. Falkenstein Chair in Cancer Research, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, New York
Title: Taxol®, Tubulin and Tumors: A Fascinating Story of Drug Development

 Barbara A. Gilchrest, MD

Apr 23, 2014, Moos Tower 2-650Barbara A. Gilchrest, MD
Chair Emeritus and Professor of Dermatology
Boston University School of Medicine
Title: Harnessing an Innate DNA Damage Pathway to Prevent and Treat Cancer

 Hasan Mukhtar, PhD

March 19, 2014, Mayo AuditoriumHasan Mukhtar, PhD
Professor, Department of Dermatology
School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Wisconsin
Title: Delphinidin, A Dietary Anthocyanidin for Treatment of Psoriasis 

Michael Lee, PhD

Feb 19, 2014Michael Lee, PhD
Professor, Department of Neuroscience
Co-Director and ITN Scholar, Center for Neurodegenerative Disease, Institute for Translational Neuroscience
Title: Neurodegeneration in Mouse Models of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease: Relevance to Therapy Development 

Lin Zhang, PhD

Jan 15, 2014, Mayo 3-125Lin Zhang, PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Pharmacology and Chemical Biology
University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
Title: Role of PUMA-Mediated Apoptosis in Anticancer Therapies



Michael Barbachyn, PhD Dec 18, 2013, Moos Tower 2-530
Michael Barbachyn, PhD
Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
Calvin College, Grand Rapids, MI
Title: Oxazolidinone Antibacterial Agents: Progress and Prospects

Jodi L. Johnson, PhDNov 22, 2013, Moos 2-690
Jodi L. Johnson, PhD
Departments of Pathology and Dermatology
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Title: Targeting DNA Damage Repair or Epidermal Differentiation Pathways for Prevention of Skin Cancer

Megan Shaw, PhDNov 20, 2013, Moos 2-620
Megan Shaw, PhD
Associate Professor, Microbiology
Mount Sinai Hospital, New York
Title: Exploring Novel Targets for Influenza Antivirals

Daniel Quinn, PhDSep 18, 2013, Mayo Auditorium
Daniel Quinn, PhD
Professor, Department of Chemistry
University of Iowa
Title: The Quest to Resurrect Aged Acetylcholinesterase

A. Douglas Kinghorn, PhD, DScMar 20, 2013, Moos 2-690
A. Douglas Kinghorn, PhD, DSc
Jack L. Beal Professor and Chair,
Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy
The Ohio State University
Title: Contemporary Prospects of Drug Discovery from Higher Plants

Jeff Krise, PhDFeb 20, 2013, Mayo Auditorium
Jeff Krise, PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry
The University of Kansas
Title: The sequestration of drugs in Lysosome: Mechanisms and Therapeutic Consequences

Ming Luo, PhDJan 16, 2013, Mayo 3-125
Ming Luo, PhD
Professor, Associate Director
Center for Biophysical Sciences and Engg.
The University of Alabama at Birmingham
Title: Discovery of Novel Inhibitors of Influenza

Priscilla Yang, PhDApril 17, 2013, Moos 2-530
Priscilla Yang, PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Microbiology and Immunobiology
Harvard Medical School
Title: Chemical Approaches to the Study of Human Viruses