H. Lee Sweeney, Ph.D. joins the Department of Pharmacology as The Thomas H. Maren, M.D., Eminent Scholar Chair.

sweeneyThe Department of Pharmacology is honored to welcome Dr. H. Lee Sweeney to the faculty.  Dr. Sweeney will join the department as The Thomas H. Maren, M.D., Eminent Scholar Chair.  Dr. Sweeney’s  world-renowned research on neuromuscular diseases has led to the development of the first drug approved in Europe for the treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, the most common form of muscular dystrophy in children. While his research on treatments for muscular dystrophy will continue, so will Dr. Sweeney’s parallel work on myosin motors. His myosic work is directed toward understanding the fundamental chemo-mechanical transduction mechanism used by these nano-machines. Dr. Sweeney now plans to use this knowledge towards developing novel approaches to fight cancer cells.

“Cancer cells depend on myosin  motors to grow rapidly and move.  I am now applying my knowledge of how these myosin motors work to cripple cancer cells,” said Sweeney.

In addition to his research, Dr. Sweeney will develop the Myology Institute.  This institute will bring together researchers and knowledge from the University of Florida to  study muscle biology, neuromuscular medicine and cancer.