Seamlessly blending chemistry, biology and computational science to discover new therapeutic agents and targets


About CBMC

Research in the Division of Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy spans activities in contemporary chemical biology and drug discovery and blends the principles and experimental techniques of chemistry and biology with computational science. While maintaining a traditional emphasis on the drug candidate, we integrate contemporary biological methods to merge small molecule and target biomolecule research. This approach allows for elucidation of disease pathways and mechanisms of drug action. Our program encompasses nearly all aspects of drug discovery, including bioactive natural products, organic chemistry, computational drug design, assay development, high throughput screening of chemical libraries, and studies in living cells.

pipette machine

The division works closely with biotech and pharmaceutical companies in North Carolina’s Research Triangle and is a campus-wide leader in new scientific inventions. Discoveries made by CBMC investigators have led to three FDA-approved drugs, two spin-off companies, and several compounds in advanced phases of clinical trials for cancer and infectious diseases.


  • Scientists in the CICBDD study biological "locks" in search of new keys to treating diseases, particularly cancer.

    NCI Renews Partnership with UNC to Seek New Cancer Drugs

    The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will pursue treatments for specific cancer targets as a specialized member of the National Cancer Institute’s renewed Experimental Therapeutics, or NExT, program. Because of its unique expertise, UNC has been designated a … Continued



Comprising the creators of three FDA-approved drugs, NIH study section members, entrepreneurs, editorial board members, and authors of hundreds of scholarly works


Outstanding shared instruments; state-of-the-art University cores


40,000 square feet of lab space; most newly constructed or renovated since 2008


Twenty-eight graduate students and twenty-seven postdoctoral scientists


More than $10 million in research funding per year over the last four years


Interdisciplinary research collaborations spanning many disciplines at an internationally known research university with a major teaching hospital