Elite Drug Discovery Award Recognizes Work of Duquesne Researcher
Dr. Aleem Gangjee, Distinguished Professor of Medicinal Chemistry and holder of the Van Kaam, C.S.Sp., Endowed Chair in Scholarly Excellence at Duquesne University, has been recognized with the elite American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) Award in Drug Discovery and Development Interface.
Gangjee was presented the only international award for Research Achievement in Drug Discovery and Development Interface at the annual AAPS meeting on Oct. 14 in Chicago.
The award reflects Gangjee's efforts to produce efficient, hard-working compounds that abate cancer by acting in ways that usually require more than one agent. "Dr. Gangjee and coworkers designed, synthesized and evaluated single agents with 'combination chemotherapy' attributes," reads the Research Achievement Award. "These single agents target cancer cells at two or more different sites."
Gangjee's compounds "show remarkable efficacy" in animal tumor models "and are poised for possible clinical trials."
Additionally, Gangjee's compounds are not toxic to the patients, so do not sicken them further as chemotherapy often does now.
"Dr. Gangjee's work has expanded the field of new and novel drugs available for chemotherapy because he looks not only for new base chemotherapeutics but has developed multi-acting drugs," said Dr. Alan Seadler, associate provost for research. "These can provide better therapy and overcome resistance that is seen with current drugs. Dr. Gangjee's years of exceptional research, which contributed to his recognition by AAPS, has created a new frontier for cancer treatment."
Gangjee has been a powerhouse of production in his 20-some years of research at Duquesne, receiving about 30 patents and developing many compounds.
"The impact of Dr. Gangjee's research in drug discovery is unprecedented in the School of Pharmacy," said Dr. J. Douglas Bricker, dean of pharmacy. "It is exceptional that a member of the Duquesne University faculty be recognized in such a significant way by the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists."
Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic research universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. The University is nationally ranked by U.S. News and World Report and the Princeton Review for its rich academic programs in nine schools of study for nearly 10,000 graduate and undergraduate students, and by the Washington Monthly for service and contributing to students' social mobility. Duquesne is a member of the U.S. President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction for its contributions to Pittsburgh and communities around the globe. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Princeton Review's Guide to Green Colleges acknowledge Duquesne's commitment to sustainability.