NERIC 2017 Speakers

Dr. Malcolm D’Souza

Dr. Malcolm D’Souza

Professor of Chemistry and
Associate Dean of Interdisciplinary/Collaborative
Sponsored Research
Professional Activities

In addition to my research in physical organic chemistry, I have projects, presentations, and publications in the areas of chemometrics, STEM education, obesity studies, and in the design of commercial databases that assist in the development of new pharmaceutical and agricultural products. 95 Wesley College undergraduates from my laboratory have earned national and regional recognitions, and 65 undergraduates are co-authors on 57 peer-reviewed publications.

I am the Principal Investigator on the Wesley College NIH-NIGMS (IDeA) INBRE, NSF-EPSCoR, NSF ARRA, Cannon Scholar (NSF S-STEM), and DEDO programs. In 2009, to mark the occasion of its 50th anniversary, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Northern Illinois University, recognized me for my accomplishments as one of its 50 most distinguished alumni. In 2012, I was awarded the American Chemical Society’s E. Emmett Reid Award, which recognizes high-quality teaching in chemistry at small colleges in the Mid-Atlantic region. In 2016 I earned two mentoring awards; the NIH-NIGMS INBRE Sidney A. McNairy, Jr. Mentoring Award, and the Delaware BioScience Association, Educator of the Year-Higher Education Award.

Our continued success in the Wesley-mentored undergraduate research program in chemistry has been recognized with articles in the state’s flagship newspapers: The Delaware News Journal and The Delaware State News. Articles have also appeared in the Dover Post, Hockessin Community News, Milford Beacon, and Delaware Today.

In 2010, the Strategic Pharmaceutical Advisors (SRxA’s) Word on Health used our drug development informatics findings ( to corroborate the criticism of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) from the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

In October 2012, the European International Innovations, a magazine devoted to disseminating science, research, and technology information, featured the decade-long transformation that the Wesley undergraduate research program has produced. The article outlined how the program has created a dynamic and exciting environment where research drives undergraduate teaching for student benefit (

In June 2013, the well-read NerdWallet blog used our mentored research program as an example when putting forward compelling suggestions as to how to achieve success in diversifying the STEM fields (

The initiatives for integrating project-based STEM learning into the College-core were featured in the May 2014 issue of International Innovations (

In September 2015, in order to advance the national conversation about diversity and inclusion, the oldest and largest higher education diversity magazine Insights into Diversity, published an article highlighting the efforts within our Cannon Scholar program (

In April 2016, I provided input to a detailed study about greenest US States (

In May 2016, I authored an article for the Delware News Journal, Projecting the Future: STEM Job Prospects Will Boom (

In November 2016, I was a panelist on the Delaware STEMCouncil’s STEM Symposium (‘not-told-complete-story-all-scientists’-leaders-talk-equality-stem).

In 2017, I was involved in an Obesity Case Study with fellow Wesley faculty and students.

To help build a STEM capable workforce with increased participation from women and underrepresented minorities, I established the Wesley College’s STEM program launched the STEM Undergraduate Research – Center for Analytics, Talent and Success (UR-CATS) (

Publications (past five years)

“Correlation Analysis of the Rates of Solvolysis of 4-Bromopiperidine: A Reaction following a Grob Fragmentation Pathway,” Kevill, D. N.; Ryu, Z. H.; D’Souza, M. J. European Journal of Chemistry, 2017, Under Review
“Investigation of Obesity-Related Mortality Rates in Delaware,” D’Souza, M. J.; Wentzien, D. E.; Bautista, R. C.; Gross, C. E. American Journal of Health Sciences, 2017, In Press
“Descriptive and Inferential Statistics In Undergraduate Data Science Research Projects,” D’Souza, M. J.; Brandenburg, E. A.; Wentzien, D. E.; Bautista, R. C.; Nwogbaga, A. P.; Miller, R. G.; Olsen, P. E. In, Advances in Statistical Methodologies and Their Applications to Real Problems. ISBN 978-953-51-4962-0. Editor; Tsukasa Hokimoto, Hokkaido Information University, Japan. INTECH-Open Access. 2017. In Press

“Integrative Approach for a Transformative Freshman-Level STEM Curriculum,” D’Souza, M.J.; Curran, K.L.; Olsen, P.E.; Nwogbaga, A.P.; Stotts, S. Journal College Teaching & Learning, 2016, 13 (2), 47-64. PMCID: PMC4824183
“Mechanistic Studies of the Solvolyses of Carbamoyl Chlorides and Related Reactions,” Review Chapter, D’Souza, M.J.; Kevill, D.N. International Journal of Molecular Science, 2016, 17 (111), 20 pages, doi:10.3390/ijms17010111. PMCID: PMC4730352

“Integrative Wesley College Biological Chemistry Program Includes the Use of Informatics Tools, GIS and SAS Software Applications,” D’Souza, M. J.; Kashmar, R. J.; Hurst, K.; Fiedler, F.; Gross, C. E.; Deol, J. K.; Wilson, A. Contemporary Issues in Education Research, 2015, 8 (3), 193-214. PMCID: PMC4505611
“Strategies and Initiatives that Revitalize Wesley College STEM Programs,” D’Souza, M. J.; Kroen, W. K.; Stephens, C. B.; Kashmar, R. J. The Journal of College Teaching and Learning, 2015, 12(3), 195-208. PMCID: PMC4501633
“Evolution of a Structure-Searchable Database into a Prototype for a High-Fidelity SmartPhone App for 62 Common Pesticides Used in Delaware,” D’Souza, M.J.; Barile, B.; Givens, A.F. International Conference on Industrial Instrumentation and Control (2015 ICIC), IEEE XPlore, 2015, 71-76. PMC4604753
“Effect of Gender and Lifestyle Behaviors on BMI Trends in a Sample of the First State’s Undergraduate Population,” D’Souza, M. J.; Walls, K-J. E.; Rojas, C.; Everett, L. M.; Wentzien, D. E. American Journal of Health Sciences, 2015, 6(1), 59-74. PMCID: PMC4459742
“Statistical Methods for the Investigation of Solvolysis Mechanisms Illustrated by the Chlorides of the Carbomethoxy Protecting Groups NVOC and FMOC,” D’Souza, M. J.; Deol, J. K.; Pavey, M. T.; Kevill, D. N. Journal of Analytical Methods in Chemistry, 2015, vol. 2015, Article ID 941638, 8 pages, doi:10.1155/2015/941638, PMID:4342068

Review Chapter. “Influence of Sulfur for Oxygen Substitution in the Solvolytic Reactions of Chloroformate Esters and Related Compounds,” D’Souza, M. J.; Kevill, D. N. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 2014, 15, 18310-18332, PMID: 25310653
“LFER Studies Evaluating Solvent Effects on an ?-Chloro- and two 1 ?,?,?-Trichloro- Ethyl Chloroformate Esters,” D’Souza, M. J.; Sandosky, B.; Fernandez-Bueno, G. A., McAneny, M. J. Canadian Chemical Transactions, 2014, 2, 160-174, PMID: 24812595

“Manipulating In-House Designed Drug Databases for the Prediction of pH-Dependent Aqueous Drug Solubility,” D’Souza, M. J.; AlAbed, G. J.; Earley, M.; Roberts, N.; Gerges, F. J. American Journal of Health Sciences, 2013, 4, 137-150, PMID: 24478935
Review Chapter. “Application of the Grunwald-Winstein Equations to Studies of Solvolytic Reactions of Chloroformate and Fluoroformate Esters,” D’Souza, M. J.; Kevill, D.N. Research Recent Developments in Organic Chemistry, 2013, 13, 1-38, Editor, S. G.. Pandalai. Publisher, Transworld Research Network, Trivandrum-695 023 Kerala, India, ISBN: 978-81-7895-600-8, PMC4215406
“Kinetic Studies that Evaluate the Solvolytic Mechanisms of Allyl and Vinyl Chloroformate Esters,” D’Souza, M. J.; Givens, A.F.; Lorchak, P.A.; Greenwood, A.E.; Gottschall, S.M.; Carter, S.E.; Kevill, D. N. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 2013, 14, 7286-7301. PMID: 23549265

“Inter-institutional Partnerships Propel a Successful Collaborative Undergraduate Degree Program in Chemistry,” D’Souza, M. J.; Wang, Q. J. College Teaching and Learning, 2012, 9, 245-252, PMID: 24273464
“Correlation of the Rates of Solvolysis of tert-Butyl Chlorothioformate and Observations Concerning the Reaction Mechanism,” Kyong, J.B.; Lee, Y.; D’Souza, M.J.; Mahon, B.P.; Kevill, D.N. European Journal of Chemistry, 2012, 3, 267-272, PMC3607629
“Evaluation of Electronic Effects in the Solvolyses of p-Methylphenyl and p-Chlorophenyl Chlorothionoformate Esters,” D’Souza, M. J.; Hampton, O. N.; Sansbury, B. M. Journal of Chemistry, Vol. 2013, 2012, Article ID 248534, 9 pages, PMID: 24377055
“Nucleophilic Participation in the Solvolyses of (Arylthio)methyl Chlorides and Derivatives: Application of Simple and Extended Forms of the Grunwald-Winstein Equations,” Kevill, D. N.; Park, Y. H.; Park, B.-C.; D’Souza, M. J. Current Organic Chemistry, 2012, 16, 2012, 1502-1511, PMID: 22711999
“Use of Linear Free Energy Relationships (LFERs) to Elucidate the Mechanisms of Reaction of a ?-Methyl-?-alkynyl and an ortho-Substituted Aryl Chloroformate Ester”, D’Souza, M .J.; Knapp, J. A.; Fernandez-Bueno, G. A.; Kevill, D. N. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 2012, 13, 665-682, PMC3269712


Ph.D., Organic Chemistry, Northern Illinois University
M.S., Organic Chemistry, Northern Illinois University
M.S., Inorganic Chemistry, University of Bombay
B.S., Chemistry, University of Bombay
Courses Taught
BI406 Research Methods
BI407 Experimental and Project Research
CH130 Chemistry for Allied Health
CH200 Organic Chemistry I
CH210 Organic Chemistry II
CH265/365 Directed Research
CH326 Biochemistry


Wednesday, August 16th

2:00 - 9:00 PM Registration Desk Hours of Operation
(Diamond Foyer)
5:00 - 6:00 PM Reception and Poster Session I Setup
6:00 - 6:15 PM Welcoming Remarks
(Emerald I-III Ballrooms)

6:15 - 7:30 PM Plated Dinner
(Emerald I-III Ballrooms)
7:30 - 9:00 PM Poster Session I (Undergraduate students and Cores)

Thursday, August 17th

7:00 AM - 5:30 PM Registration Desk Hours of Operation
(Diamond Foyer)
7:00 - 8:15 AM Breakfast, Career Tables for interested students (Exhibition Hall), Poster Session II Set-up

  • Tim Hunter, MS, Biotek and Yolanda Nesbeth PhD, Celdara Medical
    "Biotech Career"
  • Corine Farewell, DVM, MBA UVM Innovations
    "Technology Transfer"
  • Charles Irvin, PhD, UVM College of Medicine, Director, Vermont Lung Center, and Ralph Budd, MD, UVM College of Medicine, Director, Vermont Center for Immunology & Infectious Diseases
    "Academic Career"
  • Yanping Liu, MD, PhD, NIH, NIGMS
    "Scientific Careers in Government"
  • Daniel Kolker, PhD, United States Patent and Trademark Office
    “Patent Assessment”
  • Karen Spach, PhD, Senior Medical Writer, Envision Pharma Group
    "Scientific Careers in Government"
8:30 - 9:45 AM Opening Remarks
(Emerald I-III Ballrooms)

NIGMS staff:

  • Yanping Liu, MD, PhD Program Director, NIGMS
    “Overview of Programs in the Center for Research Capacity Building”
  • Arina Kramer, Grants Specialist at the Center for Research Capacity Building, NIGMS
    “IDeA Post Award Management”
9:45 - 10:00 AM Break and Refreshments
10:00 - 12:00 PM

Concurrent Sessions

  1. Core Presentations of Resources Available to NERIC Investigators
    (Emerald III Ballroom) Chair, Ralph Budd, MD, University Distinguished Professor of Medicine, The University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine

    • Eric Kmiec, PhD, Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute, Newark, DE
      "CRISPR-based Gene Editing in Biomedical Research"
    • Youngwook Ahn, PhD, Brown University Transgenics and Gene-Targeting Facility
      “CRISPR/Cas9 Mouse Preparation”
    • Bongsup Cho, PhD, Coordinator INBRE and Professor, The University of Rhode Island
      "Expanding Bioinformatic Core: 3D Printing of Molecules and Viruses!”
    • Nagib Ahsan, PhD, Brown University
      "Proteomics Core Facility"
    • Calvin Vary, PhD, Maine Medical Research Institute
    • Dwight Matthews, PhD, University of Vermont
      "Metabolomics and 13C-labeling"
  2. Entrepreneurship Workshop: "How to Turn Your Innovative Ideas Into Reality"
    (Emerald II Ballroom)

    • Mercedes Rincón, PhD,   University of Vermont
      "Welcome to the I-Trep program for IDeA states"
    • Keynote speaker, Mathew Portnoy, PhD, Overall HHS SBIR/STTR Program Manager, NIH Program Manager, NIH Office of Extramural Programs
    • Pitch presentations
      • Voot Yin, PhD, MDI Biological Laboratory
      • Qian Chen, PhD, The Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University/Rhode Island Hospital
    • Round tables (20 minutes each, choose three)
      • Daniel Kolker, PhD, Supervisory Patent Officer, USPTO, and MaryDilys Anderson, PhD, Esq, Finch & Maloney PLLC)
        “Assessing your Invention and Intellectual Property”
      • Samantha Roach-Gerber, VCET, and Erik Monsen, PhD, University of Vermont
        “How To Pitch-How to Sell Your Idea”
      • Cairn Cross, Fresh Tracks Venture
        “Funding Through VC, Angels”
      • Mathew Portnoy, PhD, NIH SBIR Program, and Yolanda Nesbeth, PhD, Celdara Medical
        “Funding Through SBIR/STTR”
      • Sarah O'Connell Kalil, COO, Boston Microfluidics, and Tanya Kanigan, PhD, COO, Genomic Expression Inc.
        “Setting Up Your Startup”
      • Tina Thornton, PhD, University of Vermont
        “I-Trep Program Opportunities”
  3. INBRE Program (Emerald I Ballroom)
    • 10:00 - 11:00 AM - Sharon O'Connor, MS, MBA, Internal Evaluation Manager, Dartmouth College, New Hampshire INBRE
      "INBRE Program Evaluation"
    • 11:00 - 12:00 PM - Elizabeth Ambos, PhD, Executive Officer, Council on Undergraduate Research
      "PM Council on Undergraduate Research Presentation"
10:30 - 11:30 AM COBRE/INBRE Business Grant Managers Meeting with Arina Kramer, Grants Specialist at the Center for Research Capacity Building, NIGMS (Carlton Boardroom)
12:00 - 1:30 PM U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (Exhibition Hall)

Lunch and Networking
(Exhibition Hall)
VGN Baccalaureate Partner Institution Meeting
(Carlton Boardroom)
1:30 - 3:30 PM

Concurrent Scientific Sessions
Development/Genetics (Emerald I Ballroom) Chair, Bruce Stanton, PhD, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, Geisel School of Medicine, Dartmouth

  • Featured Speaker: Vicki Losick, PhD, MDI Biological Laboratory
    “Wound Healing the Fruit Fly Way”
  • Featured Speaker: Jodi Camberg, PhD, University of Rhode Island
    "Remodeling protein architectures leads to big changes in cell physiology"
  • Santina Snow, MDI Biological Laboratory
    “The Role of Specific Tissues in Coordinating Changes in Organismal Growth, Longevity and Resilience to Stress in Response to Reduced mRNA Translation in C. Elegans”
  • Aaron Brown, PhD, Maine Medical Center Research Institute
    “A Novel Human Pluripotent Stem Cell-Derived Model of Beige Adipogenesis for Development of Anti-Obesity Therapies”
  • Larissa Williams, PhD, Bates College
    “The Transcription Factor, Nuclear Factor, Erythroid 2 (Nfe2), is a Regulator of the Oxidative Stress Response During Danio Rerio Development”
  • Michaela Reagan, PhD, Tufts University
    “3D Tissue Engineered Design of Bone Marrow Adipose Tissue to Investigate the Influence of Myeloma on Adipocytes and Adipogenesis

Cancer (Emerald III Ballroom) Chair, Mercedes Rincon, PhD, Professor of Medicine, The University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine

  • Featured Speaker: Patrycja Dubielecka, PhD, Brown University
    “Beyond JAK/STAT: Signaling Pathways Contributing to the Pathogenesis of Myeloproliferative Neoplasms”
  • Sonali Barwe, PhD, Alfred I. DuPont Hospital for Children
    “Disseminated Patient-Derived Xenograft Models for Preclinical Testing of New Drugs for Pediatric Leukemia”
  • Mark Perfetto, University of Delaware
    “ADAM9 Cleaves EphrinB1 to Regulate Canonical Wnt Signaling and Colorectal Cancer Cell Migration”
  • Con Sullivan, PhD, University of Maine
    "A Role for the Tumor Necrosis Factor-Alpha-Induced Protein 8-like 1 Gene in Cancer and Inflammation"
  • Sigrid Langhans, PhD, Nemours/Alfred I DuPont Hospital for Children
    “Beta-Hairpin Peptide Hydrogels as Scaffolds for 3D High-Throughput Screening in Drug Discovery”
  • Andrea Villanti, PhD, MPH, Associate Professor, Vermont Center on Behavior and Health, Department of Psychiatry, University of Vermont
    “Characteristics of Young Adult Cigarette Smokers in the U.S.: Findings from the 1st Wave of the PATH Study, 2013-2014”

Infectious Diseases and Immunology (Emerald II Ballroom) Chair, William Green, PhD, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, Geisel School of Medicine, Dartmouth

  • Featured Speaker: William Landesman, PhD, Green Mountain College
    “Drivers of Variation in theIxodes Scapularis Microbiome”
  • Jason Shapiro, MD, Alpert Medical School, Brown University
    “Immunoglobulin-A Coated Bacteria Represent a Unique Subset of the Microbiome in Patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease”
  • Md Mahmudul Hasan, University of Vermont
    “Motility of E. Histolytica Through Host Extracellular Matrix: Involvement of Invadosome-like Actin Structures”
  • Rajiv Jumani, University of Vermont
    “Identification and Pharmacokinetic-Pharmacodynamic Modeling of a Piperazine-Based Drug Lead for Cryptosporidiosis”
  • Hacene Boukari, PhD, Delaware State University
    “Tracking HIV Viruses in Human Cervical Mucus”
  • Victoria DeVault, University of Vermont
    “Natural Genetic Variation within a 0.1Mbp Genetic Interval on Chromosome 1 Regulates NKT Cell Development and Function”
3:30 - 3:45 PM Break and Refreshments
3:45 - 4:45 PM Keynote Lecture I
(Emerald III Ballroom)

  • Jason McLellan, PhD, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth
    “Developing New Therapeutic Interventions to RSV Infection by Inhibiting the Metamorphosis of the RSV Fusion Glycoprotein”
4:45 - 6:00 PM Poster Session II (Graduate students and Postdoctoral Fellows)
5:30 - 6:30 PM NIH COBRE and INBRE PI Meeting
(Universal Amphitheater)
6:00 PM Dinner on your own in Burlington

Friday, August 18th

8:00 - 9:00 AM Breakfast
(Exhibition Hall)
9:00 - 10:00 AM

Cool ideas from IDeA programs (Emerald III Ballroom) Chair, Charles Irvin, PhD, Professor of Medicine, The University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine

  • Bruce Stanton, PhD, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology, Geisel School of Medicine, Dartmouth
    “Leveraging COBRE Resources with Philanthropy”
  • Marie Stuart, MD, PI of SCD COBRE Program, Director of Hematology Research A.I. DuPont Hospital for Children
    “Single Disease Centered COBREs…A Novel Approach”
  • W. Kelley Thomas, PhD, Professor, Dept. Molecular, Cellular and Biomedical Sciences, University of New Hampshire
    “Early Undergraduate Experiences in Bioinformatics”
10:00 - 12:00 PM

Concurrent Scientific Sessions

Neuroscience (Emerald I Ballroom) Chair, Melissa A. Harrington, PhD, Associate VP for Research, Delaware State University

  • Matthew E. R. Butchbach, PhD, Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children
    "Characterization of Small Molecule Neuroprotectants for Spinal Muscular Atrophy”
  • Featured Speaker: Andrew Kennedy, PhD, Bates College
    "Targeting the Tet Enzymes to Enhance Cognition"
  • Neal Mecum, University of New England
    “Lacrimal Gland Excision in Male and Female C57BL/6 Mice Causes Pain- and Anxiety-like Behavior”
  • Michael Dash, PhD, Middlebury College
    “Synaptic Depotentiation Reduces Sleep Need”
  • Leslie Johnson, PhD, Johnson State College
    “More than Just ‘Baby Weight’: Perceived Postpartum Weight Bias and Well-Being in First-Time Mothers”

Infectious Diseases and Immunology II (Emerald III Ballroom) Chair, Ralph Budd, MD, University Distinguished Professor, Medicine, University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine

  • Michael Secinaro, University of Vermont
    “Glycolysis Primes Effector T Cells for Death Through the Induction of Caspase-3 Activity”
  • Melissa Maginnis, PhD, University of Maine
    “Characterization of Cellular Factors Required for JC Polyomavirus Invasion of Host Cells”
  • Abbas Raza, University of Vermont
    “Sex-Specific Regulation of CNS Autoimmunity by the Signal Lymphocytic Activation Molecule (Slam) Locus”
  • Danielle Dube, PhD, Bowdoin College
    “Discovery of Genes Required for Glycoprotein Biosynthesis in the Gastric Pathogen Helicobacter Pylori”
  • Scott Rusin, Dartmouth College
    “Identification of Candidate CK2 Substrates in Mitosis by Quantitative Phosphoproteomics”

Bioinformatics, Computational Biology, Complex Systems (Emerald II Ballroom) Chair, Cathy Wu, PhD, Edward G. Jefferson Chair of Bioinformatics & Computational Biology, University of Delaware

  • Featured Speaker: Benjamin King, PhD, University of Maine

    "microRNA co-expression network dynamics of Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection in the zebrafish, Danio rerio"
  • Featured Speakers: Dr. Malcolm D’Souza and Dr. Derald Wentzien from Delaware INBRE Wesley College
    “Undergraduate Data Science Research Projects Form an Integral Component of the Wesley College Science and Mathematics Curriculum”
  • Shawn Polson, PhD, University of Delaware
    “Markers to Metagenomes and Back Again: Bioinformatics advances toward understanding microbial viruses”
  • Edward Lyman, PhD, University of Delaware
    “Computational Approaches to GPCR Drug Discovery: The Membrane as a Therapeutic Target”
  • Cathy Wu, PhD, University of Delaware
    “Big Data to Knowledge: Integrative Literature Mining and Panomics Analysis for Kinase Cancer Drug Analytics”
12:00 - 1:00 PM Lunch and Networking
Box lunches
(G's Restaurant)
1:00 PM Conference Concludes