Having received many awards over the years, the most recent one is the cherry on top of the sundae for a University of Toledo professor of chemistry and biochemistry.Dr. Jared Anderson was named the recipient of the 2016 Pittsburgh Conference Achievement Award sponsored by the Society for Analytical Chemists of Pittsburgh. Each year the society solicits nominations and recognizes one individual with outstanding achievements in the fields of analytical chemistry and applied spectroscopy within 10 years after receiving his or her PhD. Anderson earned his doctoral degree in 2005 from Iowa State University.
“This is probably the most prestigious award I’ve won because I know there’s a lot of other very deserving candidates out there at a number of other universities in the world that get nominated,” Anderson said. “Since there’s a timeline, it has to be 10 years or you’re no longer eligible, and they only give one award a year; that makes the competition very fierce.”
But Anderson said he couldn’t have done it without his research team: “It’s certainly a great, great honor. But the award would not be possible without my research team. I’ve amassed a truly tremendous research team here at UT. Their hard work and dedication to promoting our science resulted in this award.”
Anderson will receive the honor during the Pittsburgh Conference Achievement Award Symposium held in his honor at the 2016 conference, which will be in Atlanta in March. He will be presented with a scroll and a cash award at the Society for Analytical Chemists of Pittsburgh Awards Reception and Dinner. Several of Anderson’s colleagues, including Dr. Jon Kirchhoff, Distinguished University Professor and chair of UT’s Chemistry and Biochemistry Department, will speak about the great work he has done over the past 10 years.
In addition to receiving the award, Anderson will have the opportunity to present some of his work at the symposium — namely his research in new methods to extract and preserve the structure of nucleic acids.
“It’s still a very large challenge for those working with DNA and RNA to extract those compounds from a very complicated cellular matrix and store those under appropriate conditions without degradation of the nucleic acid,” he said. “We’re working on developing novel materials that allow us to extract those materials, but then also store the molecules at room temperature or different conditions that will prevent degradation.”
The research has been funded by a National Science Foundation grant totaling $400,000.
“Good science is being done here at the University,” he said. “It’s awesome to get this award because it shows that UT is regarded. If the committee didn’t believe UT was a good school, I don’t think they’d have chosen me. This proves we are doing great work.”