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York Chemistry Professor Gets Impressive Grant

Dr. Adam Profit, a Professor of Chemistry at York College, has been awarded a grant from the National Institutes of Health with funds totaling over $490,000.

According to Dr. Emmanuel Chang, department chair, the funds will help engage both York undergraduate and graduate students in hands-on research experiences that “give them an edge with potential employers and in further studies.”

The grant, entitled, "Helical Peptoids as Potential Amylin Aggregation Inhibitors", "focuses on the design, synthesis, and characterization of chemical compounds as potential Type 2 diabetes therapeutics.”

Dr. Profit's grant runs from 2019 - 2022 and represents the fourth NIH grant (total funding over $1.9 million) awarded to faculty from the Department of Chemistry since 2013, according to Chang. Asked how many students would directly benefit, Dr. Profit explained that it cuts across four educational levels.

“All individuals working in my lab will benefit from the grant, including high school and undergraduate students involved in college-sponsored research activities,” said Profit. “I currently have one undergraduate, one Pharmaceutical Science Master’s student and one Chemistry Ph.D. student working in the lab. The grant actually provides funds for me to pay additional undergraduate students to work on the project.”

Dr. Profit says that the “ultimate goal of the project is to develop compounds that inhibit the formation of amyloid plaques in the pancreas that is associated with type 2 diabetes.” Such compounds, he says, may be of use as potential therapeutic agents.

Dr. Donna Chirico, Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, welcomes this news as the answer in part to a stated goal.

“Congratulations to Adam for his outstanding work and persistence resulting in this hard-won NIH grant,” said Dean Chirico. “In this year's PMP, a stated goal is [to], ‘Increase the number of externally funded research grants from 13 to 15.’ We are now halfway to this goal in October!”