Rachid Skouta, Ph.D., research assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry, received $109,300 from the Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Technologìa via The University of Texas System for a two-year study.
His postdoctoral fellowship will focus on the identification of small molecules that inhibit certain proteins in non-small cell lung cancer.
“We are delighted to receive this award to continue our exciting research projects toward the development of potential drugs to overcome resistance in lung cancer,” Skouta said. “We hope that our research projects will aid to further advancements in the field that may have a big impact in the Paso del Norte region.”
Skouta’s research at UTEP’s Border Biomedical Research Center (BBRC) involves developing new drugs with specific mechanisms for targeted cell death to overcome drug resistance. His studies initiated when he joined UTEP in 2014 and include computer simulation and laboratory created molecules.
One of Skouta’s ultimate goals is to understand the proliferation of lung cancer cells using medicinal chemistry and drug development skills. Lung cancer is currently the top cancer killer worldwide.
Skouta says oncologists are making tremendous efforts to uncover the molecular mechanisms involved in order to prevent or cure the disease.