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Dr. Robert Strongin
Dr. Robert Strongin

Professor of Organic Chemistry

Ph.D.| University of Pennsylvania, 1995

503-725-9724

strongin@pdx.edu

Personally Maintained Website

Curriculum Vitae (PDF)

Research Interests

The Strongin research group develops fundamental chemistry to enable new technology for diagnosing, understanding and treating major diseases via the design and synthesis of new organic and organometallic reagents and therapeutics.

Examples of our ongoing projects include:

1. Cardiovascular disease, Alzheimers and Neural tube defects:

  • Developed the first synthetic reagents for selectively monitoring homocysteine levels in human plasma and post-translationally-modified proteins.
  • Our early studies in the above project were highlighted in Putting Color in Homocysteine Detection, Science and Technology Concentrate, Chemical and Engineering News, March 29, 2004 issue.
  • Synthesized potential new therapeutics for anti-arrhythmic effects, in collaboration with the Abramson group (PSU Physics, patent pending).

2. Ovarian Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment

Synthesizing new reagents for the early stage detection of ovarian cancer, in collaboration with Dr. Laurent Brard, Brown University Medical School.

For an example of our initial investigation see Alptürk, O.; Rusin, O.; Fakayode, S. O.; Wang, W.; Escobedo, J. O.; Warner, I. M.; Král, V.; Strongin, R. M. “Lanthanide Complexes as Fluorescent Indicators for Neutral Sugars and Small Molecule Cancer Biomarkers,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 103, 9756-9760 (2006).

Highlighted in Tuning Lanthanides to Detect Cancer Biomarkers, Chemistry World, Royal Society of Chemistry, June 20, 2006.

New ovarian cancer therapeutics:

Recent work: Lange, T. S.; McCourt, C.; Singh, R. K.; Kim, K. K.; Singh, A. P.; Luisi, B. S.; Alptürk, O.; Strongin, R. M.; Brard, L “Apoptotic and Chemotherapeutic Properties of Iron(III)-salophene in an Ovarian Cancer Animal Model,” Drug Design, Development and Therapy, 3, 17-26 (2009).

3. Diagnosing Inborn Errors of Purine Biosynthesis, Mental Retardation and Cancer

Developed a fully synthetic chemosensor reagent for selectively monitoring ribose, adenosine nucleoside and nucleoside levels as disease biomarkers.

Our initial studies: Jiang, S.; Escobedo, J. O.; Kim, K. K.; Alpturk, O.; Samoie, G.; Fakayode, S. O.; Rusin, O.; Warner, I. M.; Strongin, R. M. “Stereochemical and Regiochemical Trends in the Selective Spectrophotometric Detection of Saccharides,” J. Am. Chem. Soc., 128, 12221-12228 (2006).

4. Mechanisms of Chemotherapy and Antimicrobial Drug Effects

Developing new reagents for imaging the intracellular trafficking of drugs exhibiting significant hearing loss and kidney failure side effects, in collaboration with Dr. Peter Steyger, OHSU, patent pending.

5. Development of New Fluorescent Dyes for Biomedical Research

  • The synthesis of specific organic fluorophores that absorb and emit over the UV to far red and near infra-red spectral regions.
  • The synthesis of a unique organic red-green-blue (RGB) white light–emitting fluorophore.
  • The synthesis of an organic dye with a 200 nm Stokes shift whose emission appears in the near infra-red spectral region.

For an example of our ongoing studies see: Yang, Y.; Lowry, M.; Xu, X.; Escobedo, J. O.; Wong, L.; Schowalter, C. M.; Jensen, T. J.; Fronczek, F. R.; Warner, I. M.; Strongin, R. M. “Seminaphthofluorones are a family of water-soluble, low molecular weight, NIR-emitting fluorophores,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 105, 8829-8834 (2008).

Highlights of this project appear in:

Fluorophores Emit White Light, Biophotonics News Article, Biophotonics International, December 2006 issue.

White Light Emitting Fluorophore has Solid State Applications, Photonics Technology News Article, Photonics Spectra, January 2007 issue.

Near-IR Imaging Goes Further, Chemical and Engineering News, Sept. 22, 2008 issue.

Representative Publications

  • Fletcher, K. A.; Fakayode, S. O.; Lowry, M.; Tucker, S. A.; Neal, S. L.; Kimaru, I. W.; McCarroll, M. E.; Patonay, G.; Oldham, P. B.; Rusin, O.; Strongin, R. M.; Warner, I. M. “Molecular Fluorescence, Phosphorescence and Chemiluminescence Spectrometry,” Anal. Chem. 78, 4047-4068 (2006).
  • Pacsial-Ong, E.; McCarley, R. L.; Wang, W.; Strongin, R. M. “Electrochemical Detection of Glutathione Using Redox Indicators,” Anal. Chem. 78, 7577-7581 (2006).
  • Jiang, S.; Escobedo, J. O.; Kim, K. K.; Alpturk, O.; Samoei, G.; Fakayode, S. O.; Rusin, O.; Warner, I. M.; Strongin, R. M. “Stereochemical and Regiochemical Trends in the Selective Spectrophotometric Detection of Saccharides,” J. Am. Chem. Soc., 128, 12221-12228 (2006).
  • Alptürk, O.; Rusin, O.; Fakayode, S. O.; Wang, W.; Escobedo, J. O.; Warner, I. M.; Král, V.; Strongin, R. M. “Lanthanide Complexes as Fluorescent Indicators for Neutral Sugars and Small Molecule Cancer Biomarkers,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 103, 9756-9760 (2006).
  • Samoei, G.; Wang, W.; Xu, X.; Escobedo, J. O.; Schneider, H.-J.; Strongin, R. M. “A Chemomechanical Polymer that Functions in Blood Plasma with High Glucose Selectivity,” Angew. Chem., Int. Ed. Engl., 45, 5319-5322 (2006).
  • Yang, Y.; Lowry, M.; Schowalter, C. M.; Fakayode, S. O.; Escobedo, J. O.; Xu, X.; Zhang, H.; Jensen, T. J.; Fronczek, F. R.; Warner, I. M.; Strongin, R. M. “An Organic White Light-Emitting Fluorophore,” J. Am. Chem. Soc., 128, 14081-14092 (2006).
  • Escobedo, J. O.; Wang, W.; Strongin, R. M. “Using a Commerically Available Reagent for the Selective Detection of Homocysteine in Plasma,” Nature Protocols, 1, 2759-2762 (2006).
  • Gates, A. T.; Lowry, M.; Fletcher, K. A.; Merugeshu, A.; Rusin, O.; Robinson, J. W.; Strongin, R. M.; Warner, I. M. “Capillary Electrophoretic Screening for the Inhibition of Homocysteine Thiolactone-Induced Protein Oligomerization,” Anal. Chem., 79, 8249-8256 (2007).
  • Schneider, H.-J.; Kato, K.; Strongin, R. M. “Chemomechanical Polymers as Sensors and Actuators for Biological and Medicinal Applications,” Sensors, 7, 1578-1611 (2007).
  • Gates, A. T.; Fakayode, S. O.; Lowry, M.: Ganea, G. M.; Murugeshu, A.; Robinson, J. W.; Strongin, R. M.; Warner, I. M. “Gold Nanoparticle Sensor for Homocysteine Thiolactone-Induced Protein Modification,” Langmuir, 24, 4107-4113 (2008).
  • Richard, G.; Marwani, H.; Jiang, S.; Fakayode, S.; Lowry, M.; Strongin, R. M.; Warner, I. M. “Chiral Recognition of Amino Acids by Use of a Fluorescent Resorcinarene" Applied Spectroscopy, 62, 476-480 (2008).
  • Williams, A. A.; Fakayode, S. O.; Alpturk, O.; Jones, C. M.; Lowry, M.; Strongin, R. M.; Warner, I. M. Determination of Enantiomeric Compositions of Analytes Using Novel Fluorescent Chiral Molecular Micelles and Steady State Fluorescence Measurements. J. Fluoresc., 18, 285-296 (2008).
  • Bwambok, D. K.; Marwani, H. M.; Fernand, V. E.; Fakayode, S. O.; Lowry, M.; Negulescu, I.; Strongin, R. M.; Warner, I. M. “Synthesis and Characterization of Novel Chiral Ionic Liquids and Investigation of Their Enantiomeric Recognition Properties. Chirality, 20, 151-158 (2008).
  • Lange, T. S.; Kim, K. K.; Singh, R. K.; Strongin, R. M.; McCourt, C. K.; Brard, L. Iron(III)-Salophene: An Organometallic Compound with Selective Cytotoxic and Anti-Proliferative Properties in Platinum-Resistant Ovarian Cancer Cells,” PLoS One,3, e2303, 1-10 (2008).
  • Yang, Y.; Lowry, M.; Xu, X.; Escobedo, J. O.; Wong, L.; Schowalter, C. M.; Jensen, T. J.; Fronczek, F. R.; Warner, I. M.; Strongin, R. M. “Seminaphthofluorones are a family of water-soluble, low molecular weight, NIR-emitting fluorophores,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 105, 8829-8834 (2008).
  • Sibrian-Vazquez, M.; Strongin, R. M. “Optimizing the Synthesis and Red-Green-Blue Emission of a Simple Organic Dye,” Supramol. Chem. 21, 107-110 (2009).
  • Lange, T. S.; McCourt, C.; Singh, R. K.; Kim, K. K.; Singh, A. P.; Luisi, B. S.; Alptürk, O.; Strongin, R. M.; Brard, L “Apoptotic and Chemotherapeutic Properties of Iron(III)-salophene in an Ovarian Cancer Animal Model,” Drug Design, Development and Therapy, 3, 17–26 (2009).
  • Wang, D.; Crowe, W. E.; Strongin, R. M.; Sibrian-Vazquez, M. "Exploring the pH dependence of viologen reduction by alpha-carbon radicals derived from Hcy and Cys," Chem. Commun. 14, 1876-1878 (2009).