Three chemistry experts will present their potentially life-saving research to the public this Friday, September 30, at the second annual Spencer Symposium at Florida Southern College. The symposium is hosted by FSC’s chemistry and physics department and will be held in the Hollis Room on campus from 2 pm to 5 pm.
In honor of the late Dr. Jack Spencer, a Florida Southern College professor of chemistry who is credited with making major advances in the research and development of antibiotics, this annual Symposium draws together the FSC community and interested members of the public to highlight the application of chemistry in health. The event is organized by Dr. Carmen Gauthier, professor of chemistry and chair of the natural sciences and mathematics division at Florida Southern College.
This year, highly notable advances in the research of Alzheimer’s, breast cancer, and methods for effective drug design, will be presented and discussed.
The 2011 program will include the following presentations:
2:00 “Biophysical Characterizations of Alzheimer’s Disease Related Amyloid-? Oligomers,” Dr. William M. Tay, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL
3:00 “How a mass spectrometer can tell us medicinal chemists NOT to synthesize inactive compounds,” Dr. Roman Manetsch, Chemistry Professor, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL.
4:00 “Treasures from Under the Antarctic Ice: Natural Products Drug Discovery at the End of the Earth,” Dr. Bill Baker, Chemistry Professor, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL.
More about the symposium panelists:
Dr. William Tay moved to the U.S. at the age of 12 from Myanmar (formerly known as Burma) to escape political unrest and to seek a better education. He completed his undergraduate degree in chemistry and mathematics at Florida Southern College in 2002 and continued to a graduate career at the University of South Florida under the mentorship of Dr. Li-June Ming from 2002-2008. His graduate training was largely in enzyme or chemical kinetics with some emphasis on nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Since earning his Ph.D., he has joined Dr. Terrone Rosenberry’s lab as a postdoctoral fellow for further training in biophysical techniques and mass spectrometry.
Dr. Roman Manesch received his Ph.D. in Chemistry in 2002 from the University of Basel (Switzerland) developing antibody-catalyzed cylization reactions under the guidance of Wolf-Dietrich Woggon. He then joined the group of K. Barry Sharpless at the Scripps Research Institute working on click chemistry. In 2005, he moved to the Department of Chemistry at the University of South Florida as an assistant professor. His current research focuses mainly on organic chemistry and chemical biology addressing modern aspects of medicinal chemistry, hit-to-lead progression strategies, and development of chemical probes for the study of specific proteins in complex biological matrices.
Dr. Bill Baker earned his BS in chemistry from California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, CA, and studied under Paul Scheuer at the University of Hawaii where he earned his PhD in marine natural products chemistry. He held postdoctoral appointments with Ron Parry at Rice University and Carl Djerassi at Stanford University, joining the University of South Florida in 2001 where he is currently Professor of Chemistry and Director of the Center for Drug Discovery and Innovation (CDDI). He has been studying the chemistry of marine invertebrates, algae and microbiota for more than 20 years, including projects that encompass drug discovery, chemical ecology, biosynthesis and synthesis, centered on source organisms collected from environments that are understudied, such as Antarctica, and from highly productive environments such as the Florida Keys.
More about Dr. Jack Spencer:
Jack Spencer was born in 1932 in Sanford, FL, where he graduated from Seminole High School as Valedictorian. He attended Rollins College for one year and transferred to DePauw University in Indiana, where he received his bachelor degree in Chemistry. He then went on to receive his PhD with honors in organic chemistry from the University of Michigan.
Dr. Spencer started his career as a research chemist at Lederle Company in New York and then joined Eli Lilly & Co. in Indianapolis, where he held several management positions in research & development, quality control, and production. He is named on several Lilly patents. Jack Spencer retired from Eli Lilly and joined the Florida Southern College Chemistry Department in 1988. At FSC, he held the Jessie Ball DuPont Chair in the Natural Sciences and retired in 2003 as an emeritus faculty. He was a 50-year member of the American Chemical Society, and in his spare time, he cultivated prize-winning camellias.