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ABILENE, Texas – Dr. Hyunshun Shin (McMurry chemistry department faculty member) and Jonathan Urbancyzk (senior chemistry major) have been working for two years on a research project focusing on designing and synthesizing potential antibiotics against wide ranges of Gram-negative bacteria. Some of these reactions are not easy due to the moisture sensitivity and purification issues, but Jonathan has persevered and successfully synthesized potential antibiotic compounds. He has synthesized three inhibitors which were sent to Dr. David Christianson’s lab at the University of Pennsylvania for biological activities and to Dr. Sung-kun Kim at Baylor University.

His skills in the research laboratory are impressive, and he matches this with his ability to solve problems in many areas, such as analysis of spectrums. Although he did not originally have much experience in organic synthesis, he quickly learned to operate an NMR, an FT-IR, do flash chromatography, and set-up reactions under anhydrous reaction conditions.

Jonathan and Dr. Shin presented his research in the division of medicinal chemistry at the American Chemical Society (ACS) 242th National Meeting & Exposition, August 22-26, 2011, in Denver, CO. The title of Jonathan’s poster is: Synthesis of Analogues with Phenanthroline Functionality Targeting Biosynthesis of Lipid A in Various Gram-negative Bacteria.