KU Medicinal Chemistry welcomes two new faculty members
The Department of Medicinal Chemistry in the KU School of Pharmacy welcomes two new faculty members in summer 2019 - Shyam Sathyamoorthi and Jingxin Wang.
Shyam Sathyamoorthi graduated from Tulane University in New Orleans with a bachelor’s degree in cell and molecular biology in August 2012 and entered the Medical Scientist Training Program at Stanford University. After completing the first two years of medical school, he began his Ph.D. studies in the Department of Chemistry under the guidance of Professor Richard N. Zare.
He completed the requirements for the Ph.D. in 2018 and will complete his medical degree in the summer of 2019. His research embraced the development and mechanistic investigation of new C–H functionalization reactions and mechanistic investigation of the acceleration of organic reactions in electrosprayed microdroplets. At KU, his research will address unsolved problems in organic synthesis as well as organic methodology development.
His attention will focus on developing practical, scalable routes to heretofore unsynthesized natural products having anti-fungal, anti-viral or anti-bacterial activity. In parallel with this, he will focus primarily on transition metal-catalyzed processes in frontier areas of organic research, such C–H functionalization, decarbonylative etherification and photoredox catalysis.
Jingxin Wang graduated with a B.S. in chemistry from Peking University, China, where he received an introduction to computational chemistry and transition-metal catalysis (advisor: Prof. Zhi-Xiang Yu). He completed his Ph.D. in chemistry at the University of Maryland, College Park, under the guidance of Prof. Herman Sintim, where he synthesized novel molecules to combat bacterial antibiotic resistance. He then joined Prof. Jun Liu’s laboratory at Johns Hopkins University and conducted research on a novel drug modality using small molecules to induce protein-protein interaction.
He is currently a postdoctoral researcher in Prof. Peter Schultz and Dr. Kristen Johnson’s laboratory at the Scripps Research Institute, where he is performing high-throughput screening, assay development and target validation for novel viral and cancer immunotherapy, as well as identifying molecules that interfere with pre-mRNA splicing. He recently elucidated the mechanism of action of RG-7916, a first-in-class small molecule drug candidate for spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). At KU, he plans to extend his research into discovery of small molecules that can correct aberrant splicing resulting from disease-causing mutations in DNA.