Gary Grunewald

  • Professor Emeritus
  • School of Pharmacy - Medicinal Chemistry
785-864-5326
Office
Malott Hall, Room 4060-A
University of Kansas
1251 Wescoe Hall Drive
Lawrence, KS, 66045-7582

Education

  • Ph.D., Physical Organic Chemistry, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI (1966)
  • B.Pharm., Pharmacy (w/highest honors), Washington State University, Pullman, WA (1960)
  • B.S., Chemistry, Washington State University, Pullman, WA (1960)

Research Overview

Gary Grunewald's research focused on drug design and using computer modeling and NMR techniques, mechanism of drug action in the central nervous system, enzyme inhibitors and neurotransmitters.

His research group studied the three-dimensional shape of drugs required for interaction with target sites (receptors, enzymes). For many flexible drug molecules, one conformation is preferentially required for the desired action at a receptor site, and a different low-energy conformation is responsible for side effects through action at a second site. Grunewald's work also included the synthesis of analogues in which the molecular framework of the pharmacophore of the drug is "locked" into a conformationally-restricted (semi-rigid) or conformationally-defined (rigid) system allows a careful study of conformational aspects of drug action. To determine the function of epinephrine in the central nervous system, selective inhibitors of phenylethanolamine N-methyltransferase (PNMT) are required. Coupled with high-field NMR techniques, such as transferred nuclear Overhauser enhancements, and molecular modeling using computational techniques for pharmacophore delineation, a potent and selective inhibitor of epinephrine biosynthesis has recently been synthesized. The Grunewald research group simultaneously mapped the desired active site of the enzyme PNMT and the undesired competing binding site, the a2-adrenoceptor, to achieve this success.


Events
2nd among all schools of pharmacy in National Institutes of Health funding
Brings more than $20 million in external funding into the state each year
7 of 19 cancer drugs formulated through the National Cancer Institute were developed at the KU School of Pharmacy
3,000 free flu shots given to Kansans in need during the past 5 years
4,000 living alumni, 63 percent of them living and working in Kansas
KU pharmacists practice in 95 of Kansas’ 105 counties
20th among public schools of pharmacy.
—U.S. News & World Report
$20.2 million NIH research grant earned by Distinguished Professor Jeff Aubé was 2nd largest in Kansas history
100 percent placement after graduation for KU Pharm.D. students
Established in 1885 as the 1st professional program at KU