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Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry Divisions Faculty Grants and Awards Research,
Grayson Mendenhall
August 14, 2014

Albert Bowers
Albert Bowers, PhD

Albert Bowers, PhD, is the recipient of a 2014 Beckman Young Investigator Award, a four-year, $750,000 award that recognizes the nation’s most innovative young scientists. Bowers is an assistant professor in the Division of Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry.

Bowers is one of only seven recipients nationwide selected across all disciplines of science for this prestigious award. He says his goal for this grant is to use the chemistry encoded in bacterial genomes to access to new therapeutics more quickly by genetically manipulating biosynthetic pathways within the bacteria themselves to make new pharmaceutically relevant compounds.

The Arnold and Mable Beckman Foundation established its Young Investigator program in 1991 to provide research support to the most promising young faculty members in the early stages of their academic careers. In particular, the award seeks “to foster the invention of methods, instruments, and materials that will open up new avenues of research in science.”

Bowers is currently recruiting students and postdoctoral fellows to be a part of this project. With a background in both chemistry and biology, Bowers and the trainees in his lab say they are well equipped to exploit the biological chemistry of microbial pathways.

Bowers received his PhD in synthetic organic chemistry from the University of Illinois at Chicago and then worked on biosynthesis and biotechnology as an NIH Ruth L. Kirchstein postdoctoral fellow at Harvard Medical School. He is a member of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and and affiliate member of the Center for Integrative Chemical Biology and Drug Discovery.

By Abigail Brewer

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