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Three researchers in the School of Pharmacy’s Division of Medicinal Chemistry and Natural Products have received National Institutes of Health Roadmap Grants.

Kenan Professor K.H. Lee, PhD, will receive $1.28 million over three years for his project, “Chemical Diversity Libraries from Medicinal Plants. Professor and interim chair Alex Tropsha, PhD, will receive $762,000 over two years for his project, “Carolina Exploratory Center for Cheminformatics Research, and assistant professor Michael Jarstfer, PhD, will receive $73,000 over one year for his project, “A High Throughput Screen for Telomerase Assembly.”

In addition, assistant professor Rihe Liu, PhD, is a key member of a team of UNC researchers that has received a National Cancer Institute award to establish the Carolina Center of Nanotechnology Excellence. The team is led by Rudy Juliano, PhD, a professor in the Department of Pharmacology. First-year awards totaling $26.3 million will help establish seven Centers of Cancer Nanotechnology Excellence across the United States.

“These new awards cover the whole range of activities outlined in the NIH Molecular Libraries Roadmap, which makes the depth and breadth of our contributions as a unit totally unique not only within UNC but perhaps even nationwide,” said Tropsha. “These new awards open the door for cross-disciplinary collaborations within the framework of MLI and chemical genomics initiatives at NIH, and position our division as one of the leaders in these areas of research.”

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill received a total of eight grants, more than any other institution for 2005. The Roadmap is a new initiative from the National Institutes of Health that encourages researchers to attack difficult problems using interdisciplinary collaboration and sophisticated computational techniques and informatics to create quick translations to patient care. For more information about UNC Roadmap initiatives, please visit

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