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UA pharmacy researcher named regents professor


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Arizona Daily Wildcat

Barbara Timmermann

By Jeff Jensen
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
February 3, 2000
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UA pharmacy professor Barbara Timmermann, who is internationally recognized for her work in biodiversity prospecting and drug discovery, received the honor of regents professor last month.

"I have always worked in drug discovery and in finding treatments and cures for cancer and infectious diseases," Timmermann said.

She received the honor from the Arizona Board of Regents at its meeting last month in Phoenix.

This position is awarded to 3 percent of tenured faculty members at Arizona's public universities that have demonstrated the highest academic merit. Timmermann is the first regents professor named from the University of Arizona College of Pharmacy.

She said the best part of her job is "being able to contribute my knowledge to science for the betterment of human health. Also, to share my information with colleagues all over the world."

As a professor in the department of pharmacology and toxicology and the principal investigator and project director of an International Cooperative Biodiversity Group Project, she is involved with the discovery and development of prescription drugs from plants and microbes from temperate, arid and semi-arid ecosystems in Latin America.

"Nature makes molecules that a chemist can never dream of," Timmermann said.

In addition to the scientific research, Timmermann's work promotes economic growth in the Latin American areas that provide these resources. This work demands the cooperation of colleges and schools worldwide, as well as private pharmaceutical companies and government and environmental organizations.

"Dr. Timmermann's work has an incredible impact on the biomedical research community," said Dr. J. Lyle Bootman, dean and professor at the UA College of Pharmacy. "Her dedication to developing prescription drugs inspires students, faculty, researchers and colleagues around the world."

In addition to this work, she has served as a research advisor and educational sponsor for numerous postdoctoral associates, visiting scientists, doctoral and undergraduate students.

Timmermann is a member of numerous national and international scientific organizations and her research has led her to extensive travel through Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

Of her new position, Timmermann said "it's an honor to have it, but it just makes me want to do more."

Timmermann received her master's and doctorate degrees in phytochemistry from the University of Texas at Austin. She has published more than 100 research papers, edited five conference proceedings and co-authored two books in the field.

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