Skip to main content

Scott Singleton

Vice Chair, CBMC Associate Professor

Scott Singleton, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Division of Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry

(919) 966-7954
4105 Marsico Hall, , CB# 7363, Chapel Hill, NC, 27599-7363

Scott Singleton is an associate professor in the Division of Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry in the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is also an adjunct professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics in the UNC School of Medicine.

Singleton’s research focuses on the chemical biology of DNA metabolism, especially as it relates to understanding the molecular basis of the evolution of antibiotic resistance in bacterial pathogens. The goal is to discover new small-molecule probes to tease apart important biological activities leading to antibiotic resistance, as well as to establish new druggable targets.

Singleton serves as chair of the School’s Curriculum Transformation Oversight Committee that is leading the School’s efforts to transform how professional pharmacists are educated. The school is seeking to better position students to meet the health care needs of society in an increasingly complex landscape.

Singleton is also the scientific founder of Synereca Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Synereca was spun out of UNC in late 2009 to address the growing problem of bacterial resistance to current antibiotics by developing orally active drugs that restore or increase the effectiveness of existing antibiotics. Synereca is an early discovery-stage biotech company that brings an innovative approach to combating antibiotic resistance. Rather than pursuing the conventional route to find a new class of bacteria-killing molecules, Synereca’s approach is to develop new drugs that block the root processes that allow bacteria both to escape an antibiotic’s killing effect and to evolve to a resistant state.

Singleton is an award-winning teacher of organic chemistry and medicinal chemistry for undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. In addition, Singleton has served as secretary of the School’s faculty and director of graduate studies for the School’s graduate programs in pharmaceutical sciences.

Singleton holds a BA in chemistry and in biology from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, and a PhD in organic chemistry from the California Institute of Technology. Following his doctoral research with Professor Peter B. Dervan at the California Institute of Technology, Singleton was an NSF postdoctoral fellow with Professor Stephen J. Benkovic at Penn State. Before his appointment to the UNC in 2003, he was an assistant professor in the Departments of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Cell Biology at Rice University from 1996 to 2003.

  • 1994-1996:  Postdoctoral in enzymology, the Pennsylvania State University
  • 1994:  PhD in chemistry, California Institute of Technology
  • 1988:  Trinity University, BA in chemistry and biology