Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry

Sridhar Varadarajan, Associate Professor


  • B.S., Tech (Chem. Eng.), Bombay University
  • B.S., (Chemistry), Bombay University
  • Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University

Research Area: Drug Design, Organic Chemistry, Medicinal Chemistry

Our research interests include the design, synthesis and investigation of compounds that can selectively target specific types of cells and initiate cytotoxic events in those cells. One strategy that we are exploring is to make compounds that can inflict a specific kind of DNA-damage in the cells that are to be targeted for destruction and chemically prime the immune system against those cells. We are also synthesizing compounds that can modulate the mechanism of cell death (apoptosis or necrosis) in targeted cells. Such compounds would have applications in the treatment of diseases such as cancer and diabetes, and can lead to a better understanding of autoimmune diseases.

Selected publications:

Bobola, M. S.; Varadarajan, S., Smith, N. W., Goff, R. D., Kolstoe, D. D., Blank, A., Gold, B., and Silber, J. R., Characterization of human glioma cell sensitivity to the sequence-specific alkylator methyl-lexitropsin, Clinical Cancer Research, 13(2), 612-620 (2007).

Monti, P.; Iannone, R.; Campomenosi, P.; Ciribilli, Y.; Varadarajan, S.; Shah, D.; Menichini, P.; Gold, B., and Fronza, G. Influences of nucleotide and base excision repair defects on the lethality and mutagenicity induced by Me-lex, a sequence selective N3-adenine methylating agent, Biochemistry, 43, 5592-5599 (2004).

Varadarajan, S.; Shah, D.; Dande, P.; Settles, S., Chen, F-X., Fronza, G., and Gold, B. DNA damage and cytotoxicity induced by minor groove binding methyl sulfonate esters, Biochemistry 42, 14318-14327 (2003).

Grants etc…

National Cancer Institute Training Grant (2003).

UNCW Summer Research Initiative - $3000 (2004)

Charles L. Cahill Award - $2500 (2004)

Cottrell College Science Award, Research Corporation - $41,968 (2005 - 2007)

GlaxoSmithKline Award for Undergraduate Research - $5000 (2005)

Faculty Engagement in Sponsored Research, UNCW, (Spring 2007)

e-Learning Course Development Grant, UNCW, $4000 (Feb 2007)

VITA and Publications

Research Website

Current courses:

Courses taught: Organic Chemistry (lecture and lab), Physical Organic Chemistry and Medicinal Chemistry.

  • CHM 211
  • CHM 212
  • CHM 415
  • CHM 517
  • CHM 595-DE