Research Programs

Research Programs

All Chemistry and Biochemistry faculty have active research programs focusing on undergraduate researchers. Our research interests span numerous fields from materials development to protein expression and enzyme kinetics.


Faculty Research Areas

George Barnes, Ph.D., Assistant Professor (materials and theoretical/computational chemistry)  

  • Reaction dynamics and theoretical simulations, peptide fragmentation driven by proton mobility, high energy surface modification.

Stephen Deyrup, Ph.D., Assistant Professor (natural products chemistry)

  • Discovering new antibiotics from fungi, investigating insect chemical defenses, using biological principles to find new chemistry, NMR Techniques.

Jason Hofstein, Ph.D., Associate Professor (thermodynamics, spectroscopy, lab development)

  • Design of pulsed dye lasers, spectroscopy, free-energy relationships, hydrogen bonding of substituted alcohols, general/analytical/physical chemistry laboratory development.

Thomas Hughes, Ph.D., Associate Professor (organic materials/physical organic chemistry)

  • Organic synthesis of novel carbon-rich molecules for use in organic light-emitting diodes, organic photovoltaic cells, and shape-persistent macrocycles.

Jesse Karr, Ph.D., Assistant Professor (bioinorganic/biophysical chemistry)

  • Metals in biology with a focus on disease-related roles, structure-function correlations and, biophysical characterization of metal binding proteins

Erin Kolonko, Ph.D., Assistant Professor (protein biochemistry/bioorganic chemistry)

  • Protein expression and purification, investigation of histone methyltransferases using biochemical techniques, enzyme kinetics.

Daniel Moriarty, Ph.D., Associate Professor and Chair (biophysical chemistry)

  • Isolation and characterization of antibacterial molecules, protein folding, amyloid formation.

Jodi O’Donnell, Ph.D., Associate Professor (materials inorganic chemistry)

  • Thin film materials for pollutant and biological sensors, novel liquid crystalline materials, photovoltaic devices, and electrochromic materials.

Kevin Rhoads, Ph.D., Associate Professor (atmospheric/environmental chemistry)

  • Geochemical cycles of anthropogenic substances, environmental chemistry, and the development of reliable analytical methods for use in the field.

Lucas Tucker, Ph.D., Assistant Professor (organic chemistry)

  • Synthesis and characterization of liquid crystalline materials, green methodologies for synthesis of polymers, nanomaterials, and development of grip related materials.

Department Chair

George Barnes

George L. Barnes

Associate Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry

202 Morrell Science Center

(518) 782‑6880