• Brian Gute received several grants to improve the general chemistry laboratory program. These projects include revising the general chemistry laboratory manual, converting it to an electronic format, developing demonstration kits for faculty, and creating tutorial videos on laboratory techniques.
• Erika Bladholm is working on incorporating more biologically relevant experiments into the BMB major’s physical chemistry laboratory including an experiment focusing on the diffusion controlled kinetics of a metabolic enzyme. In addition, she is working with Anne Hinderliter to develop the new physical biochemistry laboratory.
• Several faculty members in the department are members of the Integrated Biosciences graduate program. Anne Hinderliter and Ahmed Heikal were particularly instrumental in developing a new M.S. and Ph.D. emphasis in Chemical Biology. Students will be admitted to this new program this fall.
The 2012 SURP Poster Symposium was held on August 9th, 2012 in the atrium of Swenson Science Building, University of Minnesota Duluth. Twenty students from UMD Chemistry and Biochemistry presented their research posters to a wide range of audience from UMD and external guests. The poster presentations were judged by Professors Lynne Bemis, Andrew J. Skildum, Benjamin L. Clarke (DMED Biomedical Sciences), Jonathan Maps, Sergei Katsev (UMD Physics), and Clay Carter (UMD Biology). The top three “Outstanding Poster Presentation” Awards went to Christine Hedstrom, Travis Fransen, and Jared Sabin. All participating students were also awarded a "Certificate of Completion". Congratulations to all on a job well done!
In recognition of his outstanding contributions to the organic chemistry of iodine and other hypervalent main group elements, Viktor Zhdankin received the 2011 American Chemical Society (ACS) Award for Creative Research and Applications of Iodine Chemistry. The purpose of this award, which is given every two years, is "to support, promote, and motivate global research of iodine chemistry and develop its use and knowledge through applications." Dr. Zhdankin has published 220 journal articles and several books, and successfully competed for numerous research grants from the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, Research Corporation, Petroleum Research Fund, Camille and Henry Dreyfus foundation, and other agencies. Read more
Dr. Steve Berry was awarded funding through the General Medical Sciences Institute at the National Institutes of Health. The award was an AREA, or Academic Research Enhancement Award, that includes funding for graduate and undergraduate students. Dr. Berry is interested in defining the features that lead to the activity of copper enzymes. There are over a dozen human copper enzymes, many of which facilitate electron transfer reactions and oxidize substrate with molecular oxygen. Dr. Berry’s research group uses protein metal site design to incorporate and adjust different layers of structural elements into models of the native copper systems to test the factors that are hypothesized to be essential for their biological functions and implications to health.
Former UMD Vice Chancellor for Academic Administration, Professor Vince Magnuson was awarded the 2011 William Plater Award for Leadership in Civic Engagement from the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU). The Plater Award recognizes the leadership and critical role Vince Magnuson demonstrated during his tenure as UMD's chief academic officer to advance the civic mission of the campus through curricular reform, faculty development, accountability for institutional citizenship, and developing partnerships with community organizations. Through his efforts the campus is involved in the American Democracy Project which led to the establishment of the UMD Office of Civic Engagement. Dr. George Mehaffy, AASCU Vice President for Academic Leadership and Change announced this award at the 2011 AASCU Annual Conference and also presented it to Vince at a campus forum in February 2012. Read more
Jared Sabin, a UMD junior from Hibbing Minnesota, received an American Chemical Society Certificate of Recognition and monetary award for his research poster "Synthesis, electronic structure, and properties of organometallic indium porphyrins" presented at the Joint 46th Midwest and 39th Great Lakes Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society in St. Louis, MO (October 2011). Jared is a B.S. Chemistry and Physics double major and will graduate in Spring 2013. His research advisor is Professor Victor Nemykin. Jared started his undergraduate research during his sophomore year and is a co-author on five peer-reviewed research publications appearing in highly selective research journals.
Student Award: Jillian Bartusek, a UMD senior and Biochemistry major, has presented her undergraduate research at the MN Academy of Science, Winchell Undergraduate Research Symposium (April 16th, 2011). Her research presentation, entitled "Partitioning, stoichiometry, and diffusion dynamics of FTY720 (an immune modulator) in Triton X-100 micelles" was awarded "Best of Session in Poster Presentation". Jillian was also featured in the Bridge magazine (Winter 2012 issue, Volume 29, Number 2) for her UROP-supported research in Heikal laboratory. Read more at http://www.d.umn.edu/publications/bridge/