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Dana Ferraris

I received my Ph.D. in chemistry from Johns Hopkins University in 1999 and my MBA from Carey Business School in 2009. Over the past 20 years, I have held a variety of leadership positions in the pharmaceutical industry in the field of medicinal chemistry. In 2009, I joined Johns Hopkins Medical Institute as a Principal Scientist in medicinal chemistry. At JHMI, our primary mission was translating discoveries in basic science into novel therapeutics.

I have recently transitioned into teaching undergraduate organic chemistry and medicinal chemistry here at McDaniel College. I have used my industrial experience to generate relevant undergraduate research projects, create internships and establish collaborations with both industry and academia. I have also been involved with the American Chemical Society since 1994. Since 2012, I have served as a councilor for the Maryland section, and at the national level, I have served on committees within the ACS that are responsible for career development and project funding. And, my wife and I own Kismet Cafe, so naturally I like coffee.


M.B.A., Johns Hopkins Carey Business School
Ph.D. in Chemistry, Johns Hopkins University
B.A. in Biochemistry, Lafayette College

Research Interests

  • Medicinal chemistry

  • Drug discovery

Recent Courses

  • CHE 2217: Organic Chemistry 1

  • CHE2218: Organic Chemistry 2

  • CHE3301: Medicinal Chemistry

Selected Publications

“Design, Synthesis and Evaluation of Inhibitors of the SARS-CoV-2 nsp3 macrodomain” Sherrill, L. M.; Joya, E. E.; Walker, A.; Roy, A.; Alhammad, Y. M.; Atobatele, M.; Wazir, S.; Abbas, G.; Keane, P.; Zhuo, J.; Leung, A. K. L.; Johnson, D. K.; Lehtiö, L.; Fehr. A.; Ferraris, D. Bioorg. Med. Chem. 2022, 67, 116788.

Discovery of compounds that inhibit SARS-CoV-2 Mac-1-ADP-ribose binding by high-throughput screening” Roy, A.; Alhammad, Y. M.; McDonald, P.; Johnson, D. K.; Zhou, J.; Wazir, S.; Ferraris, D.; Lehtiö, L.; Leung, A. K. L.; Fehr. A. Antiviral Res. 2022, 203, 105344.

“Pre-clinical activity of amino-alcohol dimeric naphthoquinones as potential therapeutics for acute myeloid leukemia” Ferraris, D.; Lapidus, R.; Truong, P., Bollino, D.; Carter-Cooper, B.; Lee, M.; Chang, E.; LaRossa-Garcia, M.; Dash, S.; Gartenhaus, R.; Choi, E.-Y.; Kipe, O.; Lam, V.; Mason, K.; Palmer, R.; Williams, E.; Ambulos, N.; Kamangar, F.; Zhang, Y.; Kapadia, B.; Jing, Y.; Emadi, A. Anticancer Agents Med. Chem. 2022, 22, 239-253.

“Recent development in the discovery of PARP inhibitors as anticancer agents: a patent update (2016-2020)” Velagapudi, U. K.; Pathak, S. K.; Ferraris, D. V.; Talele, T. T. Expert Opin. Ther. Pat. 2021, 31, 609-623.

“Integrating DNA-encoded chemical libraries with virtual combinatorial library screening: Optimizing a PARP10 inhibitor” Lemke, M.; Ravenscroft, H.; Rueb, N.; Kireev, D.; Ferraris, D.; Franzini, R. Bioorg. Med. Chem. Lett. 2020, 30, 127464.

“Analysis of the Mechanisms of Action of Naphthoquinone-Based Anti-Acute Myeloid Leukemia Chemotherapeutics” Lee, M. H.; Lapidus, R. G.; Ferraris, D.; Emadi, A. Molecules, 2019, 24, 3121-3140.

“The coronavirus macrodomain is required to prevent PARP-mediated inhibition of virus replication and enhancement of IFN expression” Grunewald, M.; Chen, Y.; Kuny, C.; Maejima, T.; Lease, R.; Ferraris, D.; Aikawa, M.; Sullivan, C.; Perlman, S.; Fehr, A. 2019, PLOS Pathogens, 2019, 15(5), e1007756.

Clubs and community involvement

  • Faculty Mentor for McDaniel Women's Soccer Team

  • Faculty Mentor Love Your Melon Club

Awards and Honors

  • Charles A. Boehlke Jr. Engaged Faculty Fellows Award, AY 2018-2019

  • Scholarly Publications Award, McDaniel College, AY 2017-2018

  • Nora Roberts Award for Community Outreach, McDaniel College, AY 2016-2017

  • John Desmond Kopp Professorship in the Sciences

Dana Ferraris

"You're a rockstar."

2018 summer research group