David A. Horne, Ph.D., an expert in synthetic organic and medicinal chemistry, has been appointed co-director of City of Hope’s new Synthetic and Biopolymer Chemistry Core.
A professor of molecular medicine, Horne will lead City of Hope’s efforts in translational medicinal chemistry — which aim to turn compounds into new treatments for cancer patients. Horne joins City of Hope from Oregon State University, where he was a professor of chemistry.
“David Horne is a valuable addition to City of Hope and our efforts to identify natural cancer fighters, engineer them to be more effective and create new therapies that benefit cancer patients,” said Theodore G. Krontiris, M.D., Ph.D., executive vice president of medical and scientific affairs and director of City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center. “The expertise in synthetic and biopolymer chemistry that Dr. Horne brings to City of Hope will complement our established cancer biology program and will contribute significantly to our multidisciplinary approach to cancer research.”
In addition to leading City of Hope’s translational medicinal chemistry efforts, Horne will also conduct National Institutes of Health-funded research into the synthesis of structurally complex bioactive natural products. He is working with Richard Jove, Ph.D., co-director of City of Hope’s Developmental Cancer Therapeutics Program, on a compound derived from tunicates – also known as sea squirts – which has demonstrated strong activity against solid tumors and promising activity in prostate cancer. Horne and Jove have filed a co-patent for this synthetic molecule.
Horne’s lab will be housed in the Flower Research Building that is adjacent to City of Hope’s campus in Duarte, Calif.
“No one at City of Hope works in isolation, and the entire institution is dedicated to collaborative translational studies that offer the opportunity to bring potential anticancer compounds from the research bench directly to patients,” said Horne. “This is an exciting time in cancer research – discoveries we make of compounds that attack cancer both inform and are shaped by what we learn about how cancer works.
“I look forward to collaborating with the outstanding scientists and physicians here at City of Hope to further advance the rapid translation of scientific discovery into new diagnostics and treatments.”
Horne began his career in chemistry at Columbia University in New York City in 1991 as an assistant professor of chemistry. He was later named an adjunct professor in biological sciences and then an associate professor in chemistry. He joined Oregon State University in 1998.
In addition to publishing numerous studies in journals such as the Journal of Organic Chemistry, Journal of the American Chemical Society and Synthesis, Horne is also a reviewer for numerous publications. He serves on the synthetic and biological chemistry review panel for the National Institutes of Health and belongs to the American Chemical Society. Horne also holds six patents on his work.
Horne received his Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in chemistry from UCLA and his doctorate in chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.