Department of Chemistry

A. I. Scott Medal Symposium for Biological Chemistry

Professor A. Ian Scott, an internationally acclaimed and pioneering chemist, came to Texas A&M University in 1977 and achieved worldwide renown for his work with vitamin B12, the essential life pigments chlorophyll and heme, the cancer drug taxol, and other important natural products. He was one of the early US chemists to apply the concepts and methodologies of chemistry to the study of biological systems and his research revolutionized both organic and natural products chemistry.

We celebrate the tremendous scientific contributions Scott made during his 30-year-Texas A&M career, both to the University and to the international chemistry community, with the A. I. Scott Medal for Excellence in Biological Chemistry Symposium on September 27-28, 2019. Professor Benjamin Cravatt is the 2019 medalist.

2019 A.I. Scott Medalist

Dr. Cravatt obtained his undergraduate education at Stanford University, receiving a B.S. in Biological Sciences and a B.A. in History. He then trained with Drs. Dale Boger and Richard Lerner and received a Ph.D. in Macromolecular and Cellular Structure and Chemistry from The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) in 1996. Professor Cravatt joined the faculty at TSRI in 1997 as a member of the Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology and the departments of Cell Biology and Chemistry, where he is currently Professor and the Norton B. Gilula Chair of Chemical Biology. Dr. Cravatt is an Associate Editor for JACS and is a co-founder of Activx Biosciences, Abide Therapeutics, and Vividion Therapeutics. His honors include a Searle Scholar Award, the Eli Lilly Award in Biological Chemistry, a Cope Scholar Award, the ASBMB Merck Award, the RSC Jeremy Knowles Award, and memberships in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, National Academy of Medicine, and National Academy of Sciences.

Dr. Cravatt's research group has pioneered the development and application of chemical proteomic technologies for the discovery of proteins and ligands on a global scale. The activity-based protein profiling (ABPP) strategy introduced by Cravatt's group in 1999 advanced the concept that the proteome can be parsed into distinct functional subsets based on the principles of reactivity and recognition and that appropriately designed small-molecule probes can exploit these divisions to characterize proteins and their functionality on a global scale directly in native biological systems. Dr. Cravatt's group has used ABPP to functionally characterize several enzymes, including, for instance, the FAAH and MGLL enzymes that control lipid transmitters in the nervous system and for which selective inhibitors are now in clinical development to treat a range of neurological disorders. More generally, the innovative methods developed by the Cravatt group have enabled global investigations of protein reactivity and small-molecule interactions and, through doing so, uncovered many novel sites of functionality and druggability across the human proteome.

Invited speakers

Deepak Nijhawan

UT Southwestern Medical Center

Eranthie Weerapana

Boston College

Symposium Schedule - Friday, September 27
Interdisciplinary Life Sciences Building (ILSB) Lobby and Auditorium, Texas A&M University

1:00 pm Poster Session
1:50 pm Opening Remarks, Simon North and Tadhg Begley, Texas A&M University
2:00 pm Eranthie Weerapana, Boston College "Chemical-proteomic strategies to investigate reactive cysteines"
3:00 pm Deepak Nijhawan, UT Southwestern Medical Center "Expanding the Druggable Genome"
4:00 pm Poster Session and Coffee Break
4:30 pm Benjamin F. Cravatt, The Scripps Research Institute, 2019 Scott Medalist "Activity-based proteomics – applications for protein and ligand discovery on a global scale"

Banquet and Medal Presentation - RSVP Required
The George, 180 Century Court, College Station, TX

6:45 pm Reception
7:15 pm Dinner
8:30 pm Presentation of the AI Scott Medal
Dong Hee Son, Chair, Texas A&M Section of the American Chemical Society

Closing Remarks
Benjamin F. Cravatt

Saturday, September 28
Interdisciplinary Life Sciences Building (ILSB) Lobby and Auditorium, Texas A&M University

9:00 am - 5:00 pm A. I. Scott Biological Chemistry Symposium
Invited talks by graduate students and postdocs and a poster session