October 2017

    Special Election Edition the Newsletter

    Division of Chemical Toxicology Elections

    The Nominations Committee has put together a very strong slate of candidates for our Fall election for Secretary, Treasurer-elect, Executive Committee Member-At-Large, Counselor/Alternate Counselor, and Nominations Committee Member.  Your involvement in all aspects of the Division is crucial for our success; therefore I encourage you to vote in this election.  The election will open starting Friday, Oct. 18th and close at Midnight (EST) Monday, Nov. 6th.

    To vote, go to TOXI Elections. Use your email address as your username and your ACS ID number as your password.

    If the above link does not work, paste the following URL into your web browser:  http://acschemtox.org/vote2017/

    If you have problems voting, contact Zucai Suo at suo.3@osu.edu.

    Slate of Candidates


    The Secretary is responsible for communications between TOXI and the ACS and between the TOXI Executive Committee and the members.  The term is two years

    ·         Hauh-Jyun Candy Chen, Ph.D., National Chung Cheng University, Taiwan (bio)



    The role of the Treasurer-Elect is to assist the Treasurer.  The Treasurer shall have charge of the funds of the Division and shall receive payments and make all disbursements subject to the approval of the Executive Committee. The term for the Treasurer-Elect is two years, after which the Treasurer-Elect will become Treasurer for a two-year term.

    ·         Zucai Suo, Ph.D., The Ohio State University (bio)


    Executive Committee, Member-at-Large

    Members-at-large of the Executive Committee are elected for 3-year terms.  The duties of the members-at-large are to assist the chair in running the Division.

    ·         Ujjal Sarkar, Ph.D., AstraZeneca (bio)

    ·         Kaushik Mitra, Ph.D., Merck (bio)


    Councilor/Alternate Councior

    The duties of the Councilors shall be to promote the interests of the Division in the Council of the American Chemical Society and to carry out the decisions of the Executive Committee and membership as decided at the business meeting of the Division.  The winner of the Election will be the Councilor, the second-place finisher will be Alternate Councilor.  The term is three years.

    ·         Penny Buening, Ph.D., Northeastern University (bio)

    ·         Irina Stepanov, Ph.D., University of Minnesota (bio)


    Nominations Committee Member

    The nominations committee is responsible for selecting individuals to run for the elected members of the TOXI Executive Committee.  The term is for three years.

    ·         Judy Bolton, Ph.D., University of Illinois Chicago (bio)

    ·         Yinsheng Wang, Ph.D., University of California at Riverside (bio)

    Candidate Biographies:


    Hauh-Jyun Candy Chen, Ph.D., National Chung Cheng University

    Candy Chen is a Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at National Chung Cheng University (NCCU) in Taiwan. She received her B.S. degree in Chemistry from National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) in Taiwan (1983) and Ph.D. degree in Organic Chemistry from State University of New York at Stony Brook (1988) under the supervision of Prof. Iwao Ojima. After postdoctoral work at the National Institutes of Health and the Rockefeller University, she joined American Health Foundation where she was later promoted to Associate Research Scientist, a tenure-track position. From 1997-2004, she held the positions of Assistant through Full Professor at NCCU. Her research interests started from medicinal chemistry to toxicological chemistry, and shifted to bioanalytical chemistry. She has developed several mass spectrometry­-based analytical methods for DNA and protein adducts in humans, aiming to find valid disease biomarkers.

    She has published more than 50 scientific papers in leading journals with 4 patents granted. She received the Outstanding Research Award from NCCU in 2005 and was elected as the Extinguished Alumni from the Chemistry Department of NCKU in 2014. She served as the Executive Officer of the Taiwan Society for Mass Spectrometry (2007-2009 and 2012-2018) and Chair of the Female Chemist Organization (2014). She has been a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of Chemical Research in Toxicology since 2016.


    Zucai Suo, Ph.D., The Ohio State University

    Zucai Suo received a B.S. (Chemistry) in 1986 and an M.S. (Physical Chemistry) in 1989 from Fudan University in Shanghai, China, and a Ph.D. (Biological Chemistry) in 1997 from Pennsylvania State University at University Park, PA, under the direction of K. A. Johnson. He was Jane Coffin Childs Memorial Fund Postdoctoral Fellow under the guidance of Christopher T. Walsh at Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA. He then spent 16 months as a senior biochemist at Eli Lilly & Company at Indianapolis, IN, and was in a team which successfully developed an anti-hepatitis C protease drug Telaprevir. After the short stay in industry, he moved to The Ohio State University at Columbus, OH, where he is currently a Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry. He has served as a regular and ad hoc member of both NIH study panels and NSF review panels. In addition, he has been on the Editorial Advisory Boards of three research journals including Chemical Research in Toxicology and has served as a guest editor for PNAS. His research interests are in both antiviral and anti-cancer drug discovery, and the enzymology of DNA replication, DNA lesion bypass, DNA damage repair, and gene editing. He has published over 100 research papers and won several research awards including an NSF Career Award in 2005 and an OKeanos-CAPA Senior Investigator Award in 2017. In 2013, he was elected to be a fellow of American Association for the Advancement of Science. For the TOXI Division, he has served as Secretary since Jan. 1, 2016 and is or was a member of the Program Committee, Communications Committee, and Professional Development Committee.

    Executive Committee, Member-at-Large

    Ujjal Sarkar, Ph.D., AstraZeneca

    Ujjal Sarkar a Mechanistic Biotransformation Scientist, currently supporting a series of small molecule portfolio at the division of Oncology DMPK at AstraZeneca Plc. Waltham, Massachusetts. He earned a B.Sc. (Hons.) in Chemistry from Presidency University, and a M.Sc. in Chemistry from the Indian Institute of Technology, West Bengal. He then moved to the US to pursue a Ph.D. at the interface of drug metabolism, anticancer drug designing and mechanism of drug actions at the University of Missouri-Coumbia with Prof. Kent S. Gates. Dr. Sarkar was fortunate to work with late Prof. Richard N. Loeppky who initiated the establishment of the Div. of Chem. Toxi. Ujjal joined Prof. Steven R. Tannenbaum’s lab at MIT as a postdoctoral research fellow. While at MIT, he focused on drug metabolism and metabolomics-based small molecule biomarker discovery to develop 3D microphysiological systems, which was funded by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Ujjal was three-time top Young Investigator award winner at the ACS TOXI meetings, and received an outstanding poster awards from the Center for Environmental Health Sciences (CEHS) at MIT. He has been active member in the Division of Chemical Toxicology over 10+ years on a number of program committees. Ujjal Chaired the Young Investigator Oral Symposiums for the 2016 and in 2017. He had been invited as honorary speaker at the DVDMDG meeting in 2016. He has published a number of research papers in JACS, CRT, J. Med. Chem. and DMD. He has been a peer reviewer of 10+ journals including from the Royal Society of Chemistry, Elsevier and the American Chemical Society, and has been on two editorial boards. In 2014, he became an elected Fellow of the American Institute of Chemists. He has been a member of American Association for the Advancement of Science 
(AAAS), American Chemical Society (ACS), International Society for the Study of Xenobiotics (ISSX), and North Eastern Section of American Chemical Society. We are thankful that AstraZeneca is giving him the opportunity to serve the Division. As an active member, he is continuously bringing new ideas and perspectives to our divisional programs. In his free time, he enjoys cooking (unwinding), playing drums (Tabla) and summertime boating on the Charles River.


    Kaushik Mitra, Ph.D., Merck

    Kaushik Mitra is the Director of the Investigative and Molecular Toxicology group within the Department of Safety Assessment at Merck. In this capacity, he leads efforts to provide mechanistic understanding of toxicity of drug molecules, integrating such toxicology-related findings with medicinal chemistry and biotransformation sciences to help design potentially safe drug candidates. As part of the departmental leadership team, he is involved in establishing scientific and business strategies of the department, managing employee careers and evaluating the external landscape for appropriate opportunities.   In his previous role as Director of Preclinical ADME in the Department of Pharmacodynamics, Pharmacokinetics and Drug Metabolism, Kaushik was responsible for preclinical PK/PD and biotransformation support to drug discovery and development portfolios. Kaushik received his Ph.D. degree in organic chemistry from the University of Missouri, Columbia and conducted post-doctoral research in the Department of Bioengineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Research during Kaushik’s academic career was focused on understanding covalent and non-covalent interactions of therapeutically relevant small molecules with proteins and DNA. Kaushik was the recipient of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation Post-doctoral Fellowship Award and a Young Investigator Award from the Division of Chemical Toxicology of The American Chemical Society for his research at MIT. He has published his research work in several international journals, has conducted short courses on topics of safety and drug metabolism, and has served as an invited speaker in several national and international conferences.


    Councilor/Alternate Councilor

    Penny Buening, Ph.D., Northeastern University

    Penny Buening received a B.A. in Chemistry from Macalester College in St. Paul, MN, and a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota in the field of RNA-protein interactions and RNA biochemistry. She completed postdoctoral research focused on protein-protein interactions that regulate cellular responses to DNA damage at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the laboratory of Graham C. Walker. She is currently an Associate Professor of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Northeastern University in Boston. Her research on DNA damage tolerance and protein engineering has been recognized with the 2015 Chemical Research in Toxicology Young Investigator Award, a Cottrell Scholar Award, an NSF CAREER Award, and an American Cancer Society Research Scholar Grant. A major research focus is on the specificity and regulation of Y family DNA polymerases. Prof. Beuning has been active in efforts to enhance the recruitment and retention of groups traditionally underrepresented in the sciences. She has served ACS as a facilitator for the Postdoc-to-Faculty workshops and New Faculty Workshops. She has served the TOXI Division by chairing the oral session of the Young Investigator Symposium in 2012, serving as a judge for the Young Investigator poster session, as a member of the Professional Development Committee, as Councilor from 2015-2017, and serving as a guest editor for Chemical Research in Toxicology.


    Irina Stepanov, Ph.D., University of Minnesota

    Irina Stepanov, received as BS (1997) and PhD (2002) in Chemistry from Moldova State University in Chisinau, Moldova. She joined the laboratory of Stephen Hecht at the University of Minnesota in 2003, first as a Postdoctoral Associate and later as a Research Associate. Dr. Stepanov’s research is aimed at understanding the toxic, carcinogenic, and addictive potential of tobacco product use, with the specific focus on quantitative and mechanistic links between tobacco product chemical composition and subsequent exposures and disease risk in tobacco users. Her research methodologies span from chemical characterization of tobacco and cigarette smoke to the development and application of biological markers for tobacco constituent exposure, metabolism, and effect in humans. Her laboratory has developed novel unique highly sensitive approaches to the measurement of blood and oral cell DNA adducts formed as the result of exposure to tobacco constituents, oxidative stress, and inflammation. Currently, she is the principal investigator on two R01 and one U01 grants in the field of tobacco regulatory science. She is also actively involved in the global research capacity building and is a co-PI on a recently awarded grant from the Fogarty Center to develop laboratory capacity for tobacco product and biomarker analyses in India. Dr. Stepanov served on numerous NIH review panels, is on the editorial board for the journal Scientific Reports, an Associate Editor for Tobacco Regulatory Science, and with the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco she is co-Chair of the Education Subcommittee and the Advisory Board member for the Global health Network. For the TOXI Division, she served as a member of Professional Development Committee, Communications Committee, and is an Executive Committee Member-at-Large.

    Nominations Committee Member

    Judy Bolton, Ph.D., University of Illinois Chicago

    Judy L. Bolton is currently a full professor and Head of the Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy at the University of Illinois at Chicago.  I am an associate editor for Chemical Research in Toxicology and I have served as chair of the Cancer Etiology Study Section, NIH. My research is focused on bioactivation of estrogens and antiestrogens and mechanisms of botanical dietary supplements.  I currently have over 150 publications and have already mentored 22 Ph.D. students, 8 masters students, and 27 postdoctoral fellows.  Finally, I have been recognized as Fellow of the American Chemical Society, 2011, Woman of the year award, 2013, and Distinguished Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago, 2017.


    Yinsheng Wang, Ph.D., University of California at Riverside

    Yinsheng Wang received his Ph. D. degree from Washington University in St. Louis after obtaining his BS and MS degrees from Shandong University and Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, respectively.  He joined the faculty of the University of California Riverside in 2001, where he is now a Professor and Donald T. Sawyer Endowed Founder’s Chair in Chemistry. Yinsheng also serves as the Director for the Environmental Toxicology graduate program, and directs the NIEHS-funded T32 training program in Environmental Toxicology at UC Riverside.  His current research involves the use of mass spectrometry, along with synthetic organic chemistry and molecular biology, for examining the occurrence and biological consequences of DNA damage and for assessing the biological functions of post-translational modifications of proteins.  Yinsheng has trained or in the process of training of over 70 Ph. D. students and post-doctoral fellows, and he has co-authored more than 220 research articles.  Yinsheng was named as a fellow for the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences in 2012, and he was the recipient for the inaugural Chemical Research in Toxicology Young Investigator Award from the Division of Chemical Toxicology of the American Chemical Society (2012), and the 2013 Biemann Medal from the American Society for Mass Spectrometry. He was also named the Yangtze River Scholars Distinguished Professor in 2016.  Yinsheng was a standing member for the Cancer Etiology study section in 2011-2015 and for the Environmental Health Sciences study section since 2016. Yinsheng organized multiple symposia for the Division of Chemical Toxicology at annual ACS National Meetings, and he also served as the treasurer for the Division in 2014-2015.  In addition, he has been a member for the editorial advisory board for Chemical Research in Toxicology since 2007.