Shanta Dhar, Ph.D., associate professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, and assistant director for technology and innovation at the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, has been inducted as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) based in the United Kingdom.
“I was very happy to hear the news,” Dr. Dhar said. “But the best part happened when I received the letter from the Royal Society of Chemistry and my 3-year-old daughter was excited that mommy received a letter from the Queen (Note: Queen Elizabeth is Patron of RSC). Since my early research days in India, I have always admired researchers who excelled in their fields and most of the extraordinary chemistry researchers became fellows of the Royal Society of Chemistry. It is very satisfying to be among such individuals.”
Chemist at Heart
Dr. Dhar has remained true to her passion for chemistry throughout her career, as shown in her research efforts at the Miller School. She has been a part of several grant-funded projects receiving $2 million from the Florida Department of Health for developing prostate cancer therapies and Zika therapy and prevention, studying kidney protection from radiation, and serving as the lead author on a study expanding therapeutic strategies for COVID-19 patients.
“I am a chemist in my heart,” Dr. Dhar said. “Although over the years, my lab started working on several interdisciplinary fields, but still at the core of our work, we develop new molecules and polymers which involve using synthetic chemistry. Thus, the opportunity to become part of the Royal Society of Chemistry is tremendous; it is like being in your scientific home.”
Due to her innovative approaches in chemistry along with the qualifications of being more than five years in a senior position, Dr. Dhar was nominated by Peter J. Sadler, DPhil, professor at the Department of Chemistry of the University of Warwick, RSC Fellow, and Sylvia Daunert, Pharm.D., M.S., Ph.D., the Lucille P. Markey Chair of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the Miller School.
As an RSC Fellow, Dr. Dhar joins a worldwide community of more than 50,000 accomplished individuals. The society offers ample networking opportunities with support in research funding and peer mentorship. As for her involvement in the organization, Dr. Dhar will continue to make her mark and give back as she has always been doing.
“I and my team will continue to drive research projects where chemistry plays a central role and continue to motivate and train next generation of researchers in the areas of chemistry and areas where you can combine chemistry with other areas to address human health-related issues,” Dr. Dhar said. “Being a member of these age-old established societies always gives you the satisfaction that you belong to this field, and people recognize what you do in this extensive number of researchers across the world.”