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profile photo of Frank Foss

Frank W. Foss, Jr., Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

College of Science

UT Arlington

Frank W. Foss, Jr. joined The University of Texas at Arlington in September of 2008.  A native of Massachusetts, he completed a Bachelors of Science in chemistry at the University of Richmond.  He earned his doctorate in organic and medicinal chemistry under the supervision of Timothy L. Macdonald from the University of Virginia. His dissertation on the Synthesis of Biologically-Stable Phospholipids is entitled “Synthesis of Bioavailable Sphingosine-1-Phosphate Receptor Ligands: Structure-Activity-Relationships, Enzymatic Regulation, and Immunosuppression.” After his graduate work, he undertook a post-doctoral research position with Ronald Breslow at Columbia University in the City of New York to study natural catalysis by designing artificial enzymes. In addition to this biomimetic research, Foss was involved in collaborative efforts in the area of molecular electronics through the NSF-funded Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center.  Both fields challenge organic chemists to understand the fundamental properties of chemical structures in biology and material sciences in order to tailor new materials with desirable functions.

The Foss Laboratory at UT Arlington is currently involved in designing biomimetic redox catalysts that utilize sustainable oxidants, such as O2 or H2O2, to perform these important synthetic transformations. The laboratory also investigates a range of enzymes, through their interaction with small molecules, to understand their function and potential as tractable targets for new drug development. Finally, numerous collaborations exist that allow the laboratory to design and synthesize natural and non-natural biomolecules for a range of purposes, from medicinal to biomaterial.