Friday, April 19, 2024

FAU Making Health News

Research with world-wide implications is happening here, in Boca Raton.

Dr. Ramaswamy Narayanan, a professor at Florida Atlantic University’s Charles E. Schmidt College of Science, is using computer technology to “mine” the human genome and identify potential drug targets to treat Ebola. The research is helping Narayanan understand Ebola-associated genes in the human genome. The next step would be to create a pipeline of drug targets to test and evaluate.

One of the things that’s interesting about Narayanan’s work is that the human genome provides clues about how drugs already FDA-approved to treat other diseases, such as heart disease and cancer, might work in treating Ebola. In other words, his work could provide options that eliminate the lengthy process of new drug development.

Narayanan’s research has uncovered lots of current drugs that potentially could be used to treat patients with the Ebola virus. These include medications for inflammation, heart disease, cancer and HIV. Recently, the local researcher’s work on harnessing the human genome to identify new drug targets for Ebola was published in the open-access MedCrave Online Journal of Proteomics and Bioinformatics.

“With the high mortality rate of this disease, the world urgently needs new ways to treat patients,” Narayanan says in an FAU press release. “The ability to use drugs that are already approved by the FDA could provide clinicians with more options to treat Ebola patients, rather than just relying on supportive measures like fluid replacement or antibiotics.”

In other news….

FAU Hires Vice President of Research

Florida Atlantic University has a new vice president of research: breast cancer researcher Dr. Daniel C. Lynn.

With more than 20 years’ research experience, Flynn was chosen among 76 nationwide applicants. Research, FAU President John Kelly says in a press release, is central to the university’s academic standing.

“We are hiring stellar faculty whose mere presence will be game-changers for the university, and their association with FAU will attract the best faculty and the brightest students,” Kelly says.

Flynn has held several academic posts throughout the years. Among those, he was a professor at the Mary Babb Randolph Cancer Center and the department of microbiology and immunology of West Virginia University; associate dean for research and economic development at Commonwealth Medical College; and, most recently, associate dean for research, at the University of Delaware’s College of Health Sciences.

His studies in breast cancer focused on how changes in cellular signals can affect the start and progression of breast cancer. He also was part of a research team that discovered a protein called AFAP1, which has a potential role in breast and prostate cancer.


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About Lisette

Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has had the luxury of reporting on health, fitness and other hot topics for more than 23 years. The longtime Boca Raton resident, University of Florida graduate and fitness buff writes for local, regional and national publications and websites. Find out more on

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