The Department of Chemistry Presents, via Webinar: Christian Melander, George & Winifred Clark Professor, Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, University of Notre Dame
Antibiotic resistance and the rise of antibiotic resistant pathogens are threatening the vast strides we have made over the past century in human medicine. To combat the threatening tide of multi-drug resistant (MDR) bacteria, we have been exploring the use of small molecules based upon naturally occurring nitrogen-dense marine natural products to serve as adjuvants for antibiotic treatment regiments. The talk will detail our efforts to develop small molecule leads that inhibit and disperse bacterial biofilms both in vitro and in vivo, and the application of knowledge gained through mechanistic studies to identify additional small molecules that are able to reverse both acquired and intrinsic resistance in MDR pathogens.
BIO Christian Melander earned his BS in Chemistry at the University of California, Davis and went on to obtain his MA, M. Philosophy and a PhD in Chemistry at Columbia University. He was a Postdoctoral Scholar at the California Institute of Technology and a Research Associate at The Scripps Research Institute. Dr. Melander then became an Assistant as well as Associate Professor and further progressed to a Professor and a Howard J. Schaeffer Distinguished Professor of Chemistry while at North Carolina State University. Dr. Melander is now a George & Winifred Clark Professor at University of Notre Dame. The Melander lab is interested broadly in applying the principles of synthetic organic chemistry and microbiology to deliver novel molecules that address problems associated with failure in antibiotic therapy for the treatment of bacterial infections. Specifically, we are interested in developing novel approaches to combat biofilm-based infections that typically give rise to chronic infections (such as those found in Cystic Fibrosis patients, indwelling medical devices, and diabetic ulcers), as well as acute bacterial infections caused by multi-drug resistant pathogens.