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Biochemistry Major Awarded Grant for Organic Chemistry Research

Biochemistry major Jeb Braunscheidel received a grant to support his research into the synthesis of Rhytismatones A and B, in Professor Tim Gregg’s lab in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry.

Jeb spent the summer of 2023 working on a novel synthesis procedure for these fungal-derived natural compounds that originated in a Canadian spruce forest.  The molecules have a complicated dihydropyran-2-one structure, have never been synthesized before, and have interesting biological activity that can only be investigated further if a lab procedure makes them available in suitable quantity.

The award, from the Rochester Academy of Science (RAS), will help with materials needed to complete the synthesis that Jeb detailed in his proposal to RAS.  Jeb’s research project was one of nine funded this year by the RAS Undergraduate Student Research Grant Fund.  The Rochester Academy of Science is an affiliate of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Submitted by: Phil Sheridan, Professor and Chair, Chemistry and Biochemistry

Chemistry Alumnus Receives Dual DDS/PhD Degrees

Chemistry alumnus Ben Swanson ’17 recently completed the dual DDS/PhD program in the School of Dentistry at the University of Michigan.  He’s now bringing a ‘clinician-engineer’ vision of scientific discovery and new technologies to clinical care.

His story is featured in the latest edition of UM Dentistry News.  Click here to read the article.

Submitted by: Phil Sheridan, professor and chair, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry


Biochemistry Alumnus Featured for National Nurse Practitioner Week


Nicholas Wodo, a pediatric nurse practitioner at the University of Rochester Medical Center, was highlighted by the University of Rochester School of Nursing in honor of National Nurse Practitioner Week 2023.

Nick graduated from Canisius in 2013 with a BS degree in biochemistry.

Click here to read the story.

Submitted by: Phillip Sheridan, Professor and Chair, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

Chemistry and Biochemistry Presents at American Chemical Society National Meeting

Chemistry and biochemistry majors and faculty attended the spring 2023 National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) and presented posters on their latest research results.

Alann Au II ’23 :  “Computational Study of Alkaline Earth Metal Thiocyanates”  (Phil Sheridan’s lab)

John Federice ’23:  “Progress toward the enantioselective synthesis of rhytismatones A and B” (Tim Gregg’s lab)

Hannah Rivett ’23 and Anthony Fuszara ’24:  “Lead in shoreline soil samples along the Buffalo River:  An undergraduate research project” (Pete Schaber’s lab)

Aaron Szczepankiewicz ’24:  “GC/MS Analysis for PCB congeners in Lake Ontario salmon” (Steve Szczepankiewicz’s lab)

Submitted by: Phil Sheridan, Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry


Chemistry and Biochemistry Summer Research Symposium

The Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry hosted its 6th annual Summer Research Symposium on Friday, July 8, in the first floor hallway of Horan O’Donnell.  Ten students presented posters on the latest results from their summer research projects in the areas of chemistry, biochemistry, and physics.  Over 50 students, faculty, administrators, alumni, and family members attended this celebration of our student researchers.


Submitted by: Phillip Sheridan, professor and chair, Chemistry and Biochemistry