Our Team

Nadja B. Cech, PhD

Patricia A. Sullivan Distinguished Professor of Chemistry

Phone: 336.334.3017
Fax: 336.334.5402
Room: 408 Sullivan Science Bldg.
Email: nadja_cech@uncg.edu

Dr. Cech earned a BS degree in chemistry from Southern Oregon University at the age of 19.  This degree was funded in part by a large crop of the medicinal plant Echinacea, which she helped to cultivate on her family’s organic farm.  In 2001, Dr. Cech was awarded her PhD in Analytical Chemistry from the University of New Mexico, where she worked under the direction of Dr. Chris Enke, co-inventor of the triple quadrupole mass spectrometer.  Dr. Cech’s initial research efforts were focused on fundamental studies of electrospray ionization mass spectrometry, and her review on this topic is one of the most widely reference in this field. When she joined the faculty at the University of North Carolina Greensboro in 2001, Dr. Cech was excited to apply her theoretical studies of mass spectrometry to her long-dormant interest in medicinal plants.  In particular, she tackled the question, “How can mass spectrometry be used to study the synergistic interactions responsible for the biological activity of botanical medicines?”  This question has been the topic of 10 consecutive years of external funding from agencies including the National Institutes of Health (National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health).  Dr. Cech’s work in this area was recently covered by C&E News, and she was awarded the Jack L. Beal Award from the Journal of Natural Products for best paper by a young investigator in 2011.  She currently supervises a dynamic group of 14 undergraduates, graduate students, and post-doctoral research associates.  Dr. Cech has been recognized for both her teaching (with the 2008 University of North Carolina Greensboro College Teaching Award) and her research (with the 2011 University of North Carolina Greensboro Junior Research Excellence Award) and has published more than 80 peer-reviewed papers.

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Current Members

Zoie Bunch

PhD student, Medicinal Biochemistry
zlbunch@uncg.edu

BS, Biochemistry, University of North Carolina Greensboro
BA, Spanish, University of North Carolina Greensboro

Amanda Douglas

BS student, Nutrition Science
addougla@uncg.edu

Sabiba Hossain

BS student, Biochemisty

Joëlle Houriet

Postdoctoral Research Associate
j_hourie@uncg.edu

PhD, Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Geneva, Switzerland

Derick D. Jones, Jr.

PhD student, Medicinal Biochemistry
ddjones4@uncg.edu

MS, Chemistry, North Carolina A&T State University
BS, Human Biology, North Carolina State University

Samarth Khasakia

BS student, Biochemistry
 s_khasak@uncg.edu

International student from India

Colby Laws

BS student, Biochemistry with a minor in Biology
cmlaws@uncg.edu

Joseph Mangun

Post-baccalaureate student, Biochemistry

Preston Manwill

Postdoctoral Research Associate
pkmanwill@uncg.edu

PhD, Pharmaceutical Sciences – Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy, The Ohio State University

Luis Mejia Cruz

MS student, Chemistry
lamejiac@uncg.edu

BS, Chemistry, University of North Carolina Greensboro

Isaiah Odoyo

Research Scientist
ioodoyo@uncg.edu

MS, Biochemistry, University of North Carolina Greensboro

Chantal Pelzer

Post-baccalaureate student, Biochemistry
cvpelzer@uncg.edu

BS, Public Health, East Carolina University

Dahlia S. Porter

BS student, Chemistry
dsporte3@uncg.edu

Finch and Griffin Scholarship 2019-2020, Summerlin Scholarship

Fridah Rotich-Too

PhD student, Medicinal Biochemistry
fcrotich@uncg.edu

BS, Chemistry, Davidson College

Ali Shahbandi

MS student, Biochemistry
a_shahba@uncg.edu 

Madeline Tillman

BS student, Biochemistry

Warren Vidar

PhD student, Medicinal Biochemistry
wsvidar@uncg.edu

MS and BS, Chemistry, University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines

Heather Winter

PhD student, Medicinal Biochemistry
hlwinter@uncg.edu

BS, Nutritional Sciences, minor in Molecular and Cell Biology, University of Connecticut
AA, Liberal Arts and Sciences, Manchester Community College

Recent Graduates

  • Clint Alfaro - Graduate Research Assistant, Purdue University, Aston Labs
  • Sochima Anike - Previous Biochemistry Major
  • Jessica R. Bame - Graduate Research Assistant, University of Bristol
  • Emily Britton, PhD - Food and Natural Product Manager at Waters, Inc. - PhD, Medicinal Biochemistry, UNC Greensboro; BS, Chemistry with minor in Nutrition and Foods, Appalachian State University
  • Adam Brown, PhD - Chemistry Lecturer, Frostburg State University
  • R. Owen Bussey, III, PhD - Research Scientist, RJ Reynolds
  • Lindsay Caesar, PhD - Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Northwestern University - PhD, Medicinal Biochemistry, UNC Greensboro; MS, Plant and Environmental Science, Clemson University; BS, Biology, Furman University
  • Nadjali Chung - Student, School of Pharmacy, Vanderbilt University; previous Biochemistry major
  • William Crandall - PhD student, Molecular and Systems Pharmacology, Emory university - BS, Chemistry, UNC Greensboro
  • Joseph Egan - Graduate Research Assistant, Simon Fraser University
  • Keivan Ettefagh, PhD - Certifying Scientist, Ameritox, Greensboro, NC
  • Daniel Foil - Previous Research Scientist; BS German and Chemistry, UNC Greensboro
  • Michaela Harris - Biology Major with a concentration in Pre-Medicine
  • Alan K. Jarmusch - Graduate Research Assistant, Purdue University, Aston Labs
  • Hiyas A. Junio, PhD - Assistant Professor, University of Philippines, Diliman
  • Vamsikrishna Kandhi, PhD - Scientist, KBI Biopharma
  • Manead Khin - PhD. student, Pharmaceutical Sciences with a concentration in Pharmacognosy, University of Illinois Chicago - BS, Chemistry, UNC Greensboro
  • Martha Leyte-Lugo, PhD - Research Scientist, Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán
  • Ashley Moody - Student, School of Pharmacy, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
  • Ashleigh Musso - BS, Biochemistry, UNC Greensboro
  • Cassandra Naphen - Lead Chemist, Brightseed - MS, Biochemistry, UNC Greensboro; BS, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of California Santa Cruz
  • Sabina Nogo - Student, Eastern Carolina University Medical School - previous post-baccalaureate student; BA, Economics and Political Science, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
  • Nese Okut, PhD - Previous Visiting Scholar from Turkey - MS and PhD, Crop Sciences, Yuzuncu Yil University, Turkey; BS, Plant Protection Yuzuncu Yil University, Turkey  
  • Amanda B. Roffman - Graduate Research Assistant, University of Vermont
  • Bety Rostandy - Student, School of Mathematics, UNC Greensboro; Previous PhD Student, Medicinal Biochemistry; BA, Chemistry, University of Minnesota Twin Cities; BS, Mass Communication, St. Cloud State University
  • Alyssa Sanchez - BS, Biochemistry
  • Sam Stangl - Lab Technician, Ennis-Flint
  • J. Stempin - Scientist at Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies; Previous Biochemistry Major
  • Daniel Todd - Mass Spectrometry Facility Director, UNC Greensboro
  • Agbo-Oma Uwakweh - Graduate Student, UNC Greensboro
  • Diane Wallace - BS, Biochemistry
  • Matt Wright - Senior Associate Scientist at Catalent Pharma Solutions - MS and BS, Chemistry, UNC Greensboro
  • David Zich - Analytical Chemist, ITG Brands