Michael Ferracane

Assistant Professor


Ph.D., Organic Chemistry, University of Virginia, 2014;


B.S., Chemistry & Biochemistry, University of Arizona, 2008


Chemistry, Hedco Hall
P: 909.307.7818
P: 909.748.8370
E: Michael_Ferracane@redlands.edu

Research and Academic Interests


My research lies within the field of medicinal chemistry and uses different methods to design, synthesize, and investigate the properties and therapeutic potential of cyclic peptides. Current research is focused on:

·       Design and synthesis of cyclic peptide-based modulators of the opioid receptors and histone deacetylases

·       Analysis of cyclic peptide structure via NMR spectroscopy and X-ray crystallography

·       Incorporation of active teaching techniques in the organic chemistry curriculum


Research and Professional Background


I am a computational and synthetic organic chemist by training. In the past, my research has focused on developing novel small molecules and peptides intended to modulate the activity of the sphingosine 1-phosphate and opioid receptors. These receptor families are important targets for the treatment of multiple sclerosis and pain respectively. As a new faculty member at the University of Redlands, I intend to unite and expand upon this research, synthesizing cyclic peptides intended to treat pain, addiction, or cancer. This research will contribute new knowledge to the field while providing students interested in the chemical or health sciences with a meaningful research experience.


Courses Offered at Redlands


·       CHEM 231 Organic Chemistry I Lecture and Lab

·       CHEM 232 Organic Chemistry II Lecture and Lab

·       CHEM 320 Biochemistry Lecture and Laboratory


Professional Experience


·       Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry, University of Redlands

·       Post-Doctoral Associate, Department of Medicinal Chemistry, University of Florida


Selected Awards and Honors


·       Bert L. Schram Young Investigator Award – 2015

·       Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Award – 2014

·       Alumni Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Research – 2007


Selected Recent Publications


Malaker, S.; Ferracane, M.; Depontieu, F.; Zarling, A.; Shabanowitz, J.; Bai, D.; Engelhard, V.; Topalian, S.; Hunt, D. Identification and characterization of complex glycosylated peptides presented by the MHC class II processing pathway in melanoma. Journal of Proteome Research (in press). http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jproteome.6b00496


Ferracane, M.; Aldrich, J. Opioid ligand binding to opioid receptors: insight and implications for peptide design. Proceedings of the 24th American Peptide Symposium 2015, 24, 22-23. http://dx.doi.org/10.17952/24APS.2015.022


Lefever, M.; Szabo, L.; Anglin, B.; Ferracane, M.; Hogan, J.; Cooney, L.; Polt, R. Glycosylation of α-amino acids by sugar acetate donors with InBr3. Minimally competent Lewis acids. Carbohydrate Research 2012, 351, 121-125. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.carres.2012.01.008

Professional Affiliations

·       American Chemical Society

·       American Peptide Society

·       Council on Undergraduate Research