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Professor Isabel Rozas

Professor (Chemistry)

Professor (Trinity Inst. of Neurosciences (TCIN))

Isabel Rozas was born in Madrid (Spain). After completing her BSc (hons) in Chemistry at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid in 1981, and her 'Licenciado de grado' research (similar to a MSc) in 1982, her PhD research was embarked upon at the Instituto de Quimica Medica in the National Council of Research (CSIC) in Madrid, and the degree achieved in 1987 at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid. Thereafter, she worked as a postdoctoral researcher at both the Department of Chemistry of the University of Saskatchewan (Canada) between 1989 and 1990, and the Department of Chemistry of Queen's University in Kingston (Canada) between 1993 and 1994. She worked as a researcher in the Medicinal Chemistry Institute (CSIC) until the year 2000, thereafter joining the School of Chemistry in TCD as a Lecturer. After being promoted to Senior Lecturer, and becoming a Fellow of TCD (2005), she became Associate Professor (later named Professor in) in 2011. She has supervised 19 PhD students and 5 MSc, earned approximately €2,500,000 in research income and published 165 peer-reviewed research outcomes. During 2009-2012 she served as External Examiner in Organic/Medicinal Chemistry at the School of Chemistry in NUI Maynooth and during 2012-2016 in the Department of Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Chemistry (serving the Schools of Pharmacy and Medicine) at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. Additionally, she has held positions as Director of the Medicinal Chemistry Moderatorship, member of the Fellowship Central committee, Head of Organic, Medicinal and Biological Chemistry at the School of Chemistry, Director of Postgraduate Teaching and Learning, Director of Research and Director of Global Relationships at the School of Chemistry, Director of Dublin Chemistry postgraduate program, Tutor and served in numerous College committees and selection panels. Moreover, she has served in different scientific committees such as the Irish panel of the ERA-Chemistry panel, the Irish Centre of High-End Computing or the XXIII EFMC-International Symposium in Medicinal Chemistry held in Lisbon in September 2014, and the WATOC Theoretical Chemist conference to be held in Vancouver 2022. Additionally, she has organised the first Medicinal Chemistry Ireland conference in 2016 (TCD, Dublin) and co-organised the second and third editions (DCU-2018, NUI-Galway-2022). Since 2019 she is an Editor of the journal Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters (Elsevier).
  Anticancer therapies   Chemistry of drug receptor interactions   Computational Biology   Computational chemistry and modelling   Computer assisted drug design   Depression   Design and synthesis of drugs   Drug development and evaluation   Drug discovery   Genitourinary, prostatic function and disease   Hetrocyclic chemistry   Hydrogen bonding   Malaria   Medicinal Chemistry   Molecular Biology   Neurodegeneration   Organic chemistry   Protein chemistry, structure and folding   Quantum chemistry   Structural Biology, Determination, Function   Synthesis and new molecules   Theoretical chemistry
 Towards an antiviral drug to treat Covid-19 infections
 Blocking SARS-CoVid2 infection by inhibiting the TMPRSS2 protease
 Fluorescent probes to target nucleic acids
 Amidine-like derivatives targeting the Ras/Raf/MEK/ERK pathway
 Derivatives of guanidine-based DNA minor groove binders as antiprotozoal agents

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Details Date
Editor of the Elsevier journal "Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters" 2019-present
Member of the selection panel for the FWO (Belgium) 2017-2019
Member of the Science Council of the Irish Centre of High-End Computing (ICHEC) 2011-present
Member of the Irish panel for the ERA-Chemistry (EU calls) program 2009-2011
Member of the Molecular Medicine panel for the Health Research Board 2005-2008
External examiner in Organic/Medicinal Chemistry for the BSc-Chemistry & BSc-Pharmaceutical/Biomedical-Chemistry programs, School of Chemistry, NUI-Maynooth, Ireland 2009-2012
External examiner in Organic/Medicinal Chemistry for the Pharmacy degree and Chemistry modules of the Foundation-Year (Medicine & Physiotherapy degrees), Department of Pharmaceutical/Medicinal Chemistry, Royal College of Surgeons Ireland, Ireland 2012-2016
Project evaluator for funding agencies: National Science Foundation (USA), Association for International Cancer Research (UK), Wellcome Trust (UK). 2011-present
Reviewer for top-ranked international journals including: Journal of the American Chemical Society, Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, Journal of Physical Chemistry, ChemMedChem, Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry, European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, New Journal of Chemistry, Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics. 2000-present
Language Skill Reading Skill Writing Skill Speaking
English Fluent Fluent Fluent
French Medium Basic Basic
Spanish Fluent Fluent Fluent
Details Date From Date To
Member of the American Chemical Society 2008 present
Member of the Royal Society of Chemistry 2005 present
World Association of Theoretical and Computational Chemists (WATOC) 1988 present
Member and Founder of the Medicinal Chemistry Ireland network 2015 present
Spanish Society of Medicinal Chemistry 1987 2013
Raj Chari, Isabel Rozas, Virus, Antivirals and Vaccines: Why Politics Matter, First, Berlin/Boston, DeGruyter, 2022, 144pp, Book, PUBLISHED  URL  URL
Rebecca Amet, Viola Previtali, Helene B. Mihigo, Emily Sheridan, Sarah Brophy , Nadhim Kamil Hante, Maria Jose Santos-Martinez, Patrick J. Hayden, Paul V. Browne, Isabel Rozas, Anthony M. McElligott , Daniela M. Zisterer , A novel aryl-guanidinium derivative, VP79s, targets the signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 signaling pathway, downregulates myeloid cell leukaemia-1 and exhibits preclinical activity against multiple myeloma , Life Sciences, 290, 2022, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
M.C. Costas-Lago, N. Vila, A. Rahman, P. Besada, I. Rozas, J. Brea, M. Loza, E. González-Romero, C. Terán, Novel pyridazin-3(2H)-one-based guanidine derivatives as potential DNA minor groove binders with anticancer activity, ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters, 13, 2022, p463 - 469, Journal Article, PUBLISHED
McMullan M., Kelly B., Mihigo H.B., Keogh A.P., Rodriguez F., Brocos-Mosquera I., Garcia-Bea A., Miranda-Azpiazu P., Callado L.F., Rozas I., Di-aryl guanidinium derivatives: Towards improved "2-Adrenergic affinity and antagonist activity, European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, 209, 2021, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Rahman A., Stipanicev N., Keogh A.P., Twamley B., Rozas I., Selective carbamate conversion of protected guanidines, Tetrahedron Letters, 74, 2021, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Aggarwal R., Hooda M., Jain N., Sanz D., Claramunt R.M., Twamley B., Rozas I., An efficient, one-pot, regioselective synthesis of 2-aryl/hetaryl-4-methyl-5-acylthiazoles under solvent-free conditions, Journal of Sulfur Chemistry, 2021, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
N. A. Al-Hadhrami, A. Ladwig, A. Rahman, I. Rozas, J. P. M. G. Malthouse, P. Evans, Synthesis of 2-Guanidinyl Pyridines and their Trypsin Inhibition, Bioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry, 2020, Notes: [DOI:10.1016/j.bmc.2020.115612], Journal Article, PUBLISHED
J. Grover, C. Trujillo, M. Saad, G. Emandi, N. Stipanicev, S. Bernhard, A. Guedin, J.-L. Mergny, M. O. Senge, I. Rozas, Dual-binding conjugates of diaromatic guanidines and porphyrins for recognition of G-quadruplexes, Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry, 2020, Notes: [DOI: 10.1039/D0OB01264E], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
Viola Previtali , Helene B Mihigo , Rebecca Amet, Anthony M McElligott , Daniela M Zisterer , Isabel Rozas , Exploring the Anti-Cancer Mechanism of Novel 3,4'-Substituted Diaryl Guanidinium Derivatives, Pharmaceuticals (Basel), 13, (12), 2020, p485 , Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Ullah, H. and Previtali, V. and Mihigo, H.B. and Twamley, B. and Rauf, M.K. and Javed, F. and Waseem, A. and Baker, R.J. and Rozas, I., Structure-activity relationships of new Organotin(IV) anticancer agents and their cytotoxicity profile on HL-60, MCF-7 and HeLa human cancer cell lines, European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, 181, (111544), 2019, Notes: [cited By 0], Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI

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Award Date
Fellow of Trinity College Dublin 2005
Driven by my passion, research forms the core of my work. I am an international leader in Medicinal-Chemistry. My work is published in highly prestigious international journals and my expert opinion sought from several sources, attesting to my expertise in the area. More importantly, my transformational impact and leadership has been acknowledged with increasing citations (>400 in 2021). I have published 11 articles in the top-journal in my field (Journal of Medicinal Chemistry) and my citations clearly indicate a track-record of sustained achievement. Presently, my research is more productive than ever, with new ideas highlighting a continuing trajectory of research excellence and impact. This is reflected in recently obtaining major SFI funding to develop potential therapies for Covid-19. My aim is to find new therapies to cure diseases such as cancer, infections and neurological conditions. I am a dynamic researcher who combines experiment and computation, which makes my group unique. This multi-faceted nature of my research underlines my novel contributions. Current research includes: Computational Chemistry- Modelling drug-target interactions to evaluate in-silico new therapeutics; Computational study of weak interactions to understand biological activities or mechanisms of reaction. Experimental Medicinal Chemistry- synthesis and biochemical/pharmacological/biophysical evaluation of: Antagonists of alpha2-adrenoceptors as antidepressants/antipsychotics. This work has been mostly published in the top-journal in the field and rendered a patent application; Nucleic acids' ligands. We have prepared many derivatives targeting DNA as minor-groove binders (MGBs) with potential as anticancer, antimicrobial or antiparasitic agents. My expertise in the field of MGBs is internationally recognized. Now, we are developing fluorescent probes to bind guanine quadruplexes (GQs), that will enable to explore the GQs' role in human diseases (cancer, ALS); Protein kinases inhibitors. Different families of novel derivatives are being prepared as inhibitors of the kinases BRAF or JAK2 showing excellent results in treating a particular cancer, Multiple Myeloma; Anti-tuberculosis therapies. We are developing inhibitors of the enzyme InhA, which is key in the biosynthesis of the cellular wall of the tuberculosis pathogen. Our compounds are showing an anti-mycobacterial activity similar to that of current therapies. Recently, we have started exciting research involving the development of inhibitors of the TMPRSS2 protease that activates the protein spike of the SARS-CoV-2 virus (responsible of the COVID19 pandemic); by blocking this protease our potential antiviral agents will stop the entrance of the virus into lung cells. My emphasis is on producing innovative research disseminated in high-ranking international journals and translated into biologically active compounds. Since becoming Professor, I have published 61 high-ranking international peer-reviewed publications (165 publications in total, plus 3 submitted). The significance of my research can be judged by the journals where I publish (e.g. Medicinal Research Reviews, IF:12.944; Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, IF:7.446; Chemical Society Reviews, IF:54.56 or Journal of the American Chemical Society, IF:15.42) and by the recognition of the results presented. In terms of citations (WoS) while the average citation/article in Medicinal-Chemistry is 29.15, the average citation for each of my 165 publications is 39.15. All these indicators positively compare with international Full-Professors in the field.