The research of Dr. Jean Chmielewski ’83 and colleague Dr. Christine Hrycyna of Purdue University on a new a new approach to fighting HIV has been featured in a recent issue of Chemical and Engineering News (October 3, 2011, p 38).
Drs. Chmielewski and Hrycyna and their colleagues have targeted P-glycoprotein (P-gp), a transporter protein that is highly expressed in the blood-brain barrier, and prevents many small molecules from entering the brain. The researchers have created a new drug that acts like a Trojan horse: It gains entry to the brain by turning off P-gp and then converts to an ant-HIV drug in brain cells.
Dr. Jean Chmielewski received a B.S. degree with a major in chemistry from Saint Joseph’s University in 1983 and a Ph.D. degree in organic chemistry from Columbia University in 1988. She was an NIH Postdoctoral Fellow at Rockefeller University and the University of California at Berkeley before she joined the faculty at Purdue University in 1990. Dr. Chmielewski has been recognized as an Alfred P. Sloan Fellow and with a Cope Scholar Award from the American Chemical Society. Her research in chemical biology is directed toward drug discovery, the cellular delivery of therapeutic agents, and bionanotechnology. She is currently Alice Watson Kramer Distinguished Professor in Organic Chemistry/Chemical Biology