Department News

 

Kudos - Apr. 16, 2013

  • Chemistry presentationGeneseo chemistry students and faculty recently presented at the 245th American Chemical Society National Meeting and Exposition in New Orleans, April 8 through 11.

    Distinguished Teaching Professor of Chemistry Dave Geiger, Lecturer Cristina Geiger and Professor Kazu Yokoyama presented papers. Chemistry students also presented their research: Mike Nellist '14, Matt Destefano '14, Jerrod Deck '13, Carrie Levinn '14, Mike Azzaro' 13 and Will Stephens '13. They have worked with several professors on their research. The theme of the meeting was Chemistry and Energy of Food.

    Students had an opportunity to interact with leaders in their research areas and representatives from the top graduate programs in the country. The meeting was attended by more than 15,000 chemists from around the world. Travel was funded by donors to The Geneseo Foundation.

 

Apr. 18, 2012
Cancer-Fighting Alumnus Receives Geneseo’s Highest Honor

For 21 years of his career as a scientist, William Henzel '76 managed a research team at the trailblazing biotechnology company Genentech Inc.

He and his team isolated sequences of new proteins for human therapeutic uses, which led to Genentech biologists being able to develop a human antibody that could be used as a therapeutic cancer drug. The result — Avastin — is the most significant breakthrough in company history. The drug prevents blood vessels from forming near a tumor, thus "starving" it.

For his exceptional professional achievement and contributions to society, Henzel was recently awarded the Geneseo Medal of Distinction, the college's highest honor awarded to alumni. President Christopher C. Dahl presented the award to him at the San Francisco launch event in March for Shaping Lives of Purpose: The Campaign for Geneseo.

"Like all scientists, Bill is constantly learning," said Dahl, "and for that we are very grateful. His research, evidenced by more than 130 scientific publications and three U.S. patents, has moved us closer to a cure for cancer. His career and life accomplishment clearly reflect the ideals symbolized by this distinctive award."

Henzel's legacy is the development of the concept of peptide mass fingerprinting using mass spectrometry, which made it easier and faster to identify experimental proteins.

A chemistry major at Geneseo, after graduation Henzel worked in research labs at the Harvard-affiliated Children's Hospital Boston and at the University of Massachusetts before joining Genentech in 1982. In 2003, he switched gears to share his passion for science with young students, as a biology teacher for two years. He now volunteers teaching biology and earth science to students in the sixth and seventh grades near his home in California.

In 2002, the American Society of Mass Spectrometry recognized Henzel for his distinguished contribution in mass spectrometry. He also is affiliated with the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities.

 

Apr. 03, 2012
Kudos, The SCENE

James McGarrah, assistant professor of chemistry, and Benjamin Nagasing '13, a chemistry and mathematics major, will be participating in the U.S. Department of Energy's Summer 2012 Visiting Faculty Program. They will be working in collaboration with Karen Mulfort, assistant chemist in the Division of Chemical Sciences and Engineering at Argonne National Laboratory, in Argonne, Ill., on a project entitled, "Caging an Electrocatalyst: Investigations of Photocatalytic Hydrogen Generation using a Supramolecular Coordination Cage." The summer 2012 award includes direct support for 10 weeks in residence at Argonne National Laboratory, a summer stipend, and housing and travel allowances.

 

Apr. 02, 2012
"Seeing is Believing! Diagnostics in the 21st Century" 4/19

Tom Meade, professor of Chemistry at Northwestern University, will present the 2012 Richard F. Smith Lecture, entitled "Seeing is Believing! Diagnostics in the 21st Century." The event will be held on Thursday, April 19 at 7:30pm in Newton 202, and is free and open to the public.

When a doctor is needed to diagnose and treat a patient for a possible disease, accuracy is essential. Diagnostic techniques such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and genetic probes offer the promise of informative test results.  Meade will discuss how scientists are using chemicals to create the next generation of even more sensitive and more discriminating diagnostic tools,  including new ways to test food and water for contamination, test patients for viruses, and identify genetic predispositions to certain diseases.

Meade's research focuses on bioinorganic coordination chemistry and its application in research that include biological molecular imaging, electron transfer processes and the development of electronic biosensors for the detection of DNA and proteins. He has received numerous awards and founded three biotech companies, Clinical Micro Sensors, PreDx and Ohmx which are developing hand-held devices for protein and DNA detection and bioactivated MR contrast agents for in vivo imaging of cancer.