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Texas A&M Chemist Retires After 40-Year Career – Texas A&M University Today

Ganesa Gopalakrishnan, a senior lecturer in the Texas A&M Department of Chemistry, is retiring after 40 years of teaching organic chemistry.

Texas A&M College of Science

In the basement of the Chemistry Building on the campus of Texas A&M University, Ganesa Gopalakrishnan is packing up his office. After 40 years of teaching organic chemistry, Gopalakrishnan, a senior lecturer in the Department of Chemistry, is retiring.

Hes boxed up his collection of textbooks some dating back to the start of his career. The plastic models of molecular structures that adorned his desk are disassembled and stored away.

The last things that remained were decades-worth of awards and plaques on his wall honoring his service to higher education at Texas A&M, a personal retrospective of a profession to which he devoted the majority of his life.

There are so many outstanding researchers and outstanding teachers in our department, Gopalakrishnan said. Im really lucky to have been a part of it.

Gopalakrishnan, whose official last day was May 31, played a major role in helping to develop Texas A&Ms organic chemistry program in its formative years. His genial, straightforward teaching style in conveying the structure of molecular compounds found in living things, often punctuated with humorous anecdotes, made him revered by students who came to affectionately refer to him as G.G.

Nearly 80 colleagues and former students recently gathered via video conference to celebrate Gopalakrishnans career with a virtual retirement ceremony.For an hour and a half, teary goodbyes were interwoven with fond recollections of Gopalakrisnans quirky lectures and personal accounts of how his influence impacted lives.

Every aspect of teaching, I loved it, Gopalakrishnan said. My teaching philosophy was to put myself in the shoes of each student and explain things in a way that they would be able to understand. Every lecture had to be taught a different way; thats what made teaching both challenging and enjoyable.

Simon W. North, professor and head of Texas A&M Chemistry, emceed the event and estimates that Gopalakrishnan taught approximately 25,000 students during his four decades as an instructor. Although a formal gathering to honor Gopalakrishnan was not possible due to COVID-19 social distancing restrictions, the outpouring of support from those wanting to send him off with one last thank-you, especially former students, was overwhelming.

It is his ability to connect to students that they remember, and his students consistently comment that they feel he truly cares, not only about their success in the course, but also about them as individuals, North said. His record serves as a reminder to us all to try and see every interaction with students as an opportunity to inspire and encourage and connect.

Anna Birgisson 21 remembers being terrified as a freshman. Despite an advisor telling her point-blank to avoid organic chemistry, Birgisson says Gopalakrishnans enthusiasm and nurturing demeanor quickly put her at ease.

Little did I know that his class would end up being my favorite because G.G. really did care so much, she said. He made it so much fun to learn with all of his stories. Im just really honored that I got to be a part of G.G.s legacy.

While many of Gopalakrishnans pupils through the years would go on to pursue careers in research, education and medicine, his own academic journey was an uphill struggle. Raised in the small farming village of Maruthur in southern India, no one in Gopalakrishnans family had ever received any formal education, and he was homeschooled until the fifth grade.

In 1980, Gopalakrishnan joined the Department of Chemistry, where he completed his postdoctoral studies as a member of the late John L. Hoggs research group. Six months later, a full-time teaching position became available, and Gopalakrishnan was officially hired on as faculty.

Little did I know what a treasure I was bringing to Texas A&M University when he joined my research group those many years ago, Hogg said years later when reflecting on his decision to hire Gopalakrishnan.

His flair for teaching earned him numerous awards, including the Student Led Award for Teaching Excellence (2008), the Piper Professor Award (1999), the Texas A&M Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching (1998) and the Texas A&M Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement College-Level Award in Teaching (1994).

In addition to teaching, Gopalakrishnan was a stalwart of educational outreach, helping to organize the Brazos Valley Regional Engineering and Science Fair for 15 years and the Joy of Chemistry in Summer Program for local junior high students for five years.

I never sought or applied for any other job in my life, even in India, Gopalakrishnan said. I only applied for a teaching position at Texas A&M, and I continued it. I have to thank the Department of Chemistry for offering me the job all those years ago and keeping me.

I could not have achieved any of this in any other place.

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Texas A&M Chemist Retires After 40-Year Career - Texas A&M University Today

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Portland Trail Blazers’ team chemistry in early 90s was just different – Yahoo Sports

Rip City has so many fond memories and moments that come to mind when looking back at the 1989-92 Trail Blazers seasons.

The early 90s teams were special on the court, no doubt, but their bond off the court may have been even more special.

"Those were fun times,"Terry Porter reminisced on NBA TV's Trail Blazers documentary, Rip City Revival.'"There's nothing like playing professional sports. You build a bond, a brotherhood, a willingness to protect each other, and you always have that."

The final two segments of Sunday's special on the 1989-92 Trail Blazers era focused on what made this Blazers squad so unique: their team chemistry.

As you know the longer you're with a group of guys, the more chemistry you develop, especially when you're all really good friends and so that was the key to our success. -- Clyde Drexler on Rip City Revival'

[RELATED]: 'Rip City Revival' was a Trail Blazer history lesson that left out a few chapters

During Portland's 198990 campaign, the team posted a 5923 record. They defeated the Dallas Mavericks, San Antonio Spurs, and Phoenix Suns in the Western Conference playoffs, before ultimately losing to the defending-champion Detroit Pistons.

In the 199091 season, the Blazers posted a 6319 record, which was the best in the league and the best in franchise history. Theirseason ended in the West Finals when the Lakers defeated the Blazers 42.

As for the 199192 season, Portland repeated as Pacific Division champions as they dominated through the Western Conference playoffs. They met the Chicago Bulls in the Finals, losing 42, with the big storyline beingMichael Jordan vs. Drexler.

[RELATED]:'Rip City Revival' vs. 'The Last Dance': A different take on the 1992 NBA Finals

"The whole team, I mean that's what made this team so unique, is the chemistry, the personnel," Buck Williams said during the NBA TV special.

Drexler discussed how on the road they would hang out and go to movies together as a team. Porter reiterated that, adding this was a team that enjoyed hanging out with each other and would do so every chance they got.

"What made it all go was trust, we trusted each other," Williams added.

They had fun together.

"To have the success we had as a group and the excitement we brought this city and this state -- it is always going to be somewhere special in my heart. We grew up together on and off the court," Porter said.

As Drexler put it, "That bond will keep you together for a lifetime."

Be sure to check out the fullTalkin' Blazers Podcastwith host NBA Champion Channing Frye and Emmy Award winner Dan Sheldon, and Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri.

Portland Trail Blazers' team chemistry in early 90s was just different originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest

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Sun Chemical to Increase Prices on Solvent Inks and Coatings – Printing Impressions

Sun Chemical will increase the prices of its solvent-based inks and coatings in North America, effective July 1, 2020.

Due to the significant increase in the demand for alcohol and solvent for use in sanitizers and pharmaceutical initiatives, the prices of these materials have increased substantially. In order to secure the needed components for the production of solvent-based inks and coatings, Sun Chemical has experienced raw material cost escalation during the second quarter of 2020. These increases are expected to remain in place and possibly accelerate throughout the remainder of the year.

The COVID-19 pandemic is driving an increased demand for various alcohols and solvents to combat the virus and allow for the gradual reopening of economies around the globe, said Chris Parrilli, president of North American Inks, Sun Chemical. These raw materials are critical to the proposed safety practices of manufacturing organizations and service industries where the focus on consumer and employee health is at the forefront of new sanitizing protocols to help slow the spread of the virus."

Parrilli continues: The dynamics that have taken place over the last three months are unprecedented and the future of the pandemic remains unpredictable. However, Sun Chemicals desire to deliver best-in-class supply, service, and quality, as expected by our customers, requires us to ensure a reliable source of raw materials. In order to continue to meet these expectations, we, unfortunately, must raise prices to offset the extraordinary market undercurrents that are driving up raw material costs.

Source: Sun Chemical

Thepreceding press release was provided by a company unaffiliated withPrinting Impressions.The views expressed within do not directly reflect the thoughts or opinions of the staff ofPrinting Impressions.

Sun Chemical to Increase Prices on Solvent Inks and Coatings - Printing Impressions

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NOVA Thin Film Pharmaceuticals and Quality Chemical Laboratories Announce Partnership in Formation and Commencement of Soluble Thin Film Operations -…

GREENSBORO, N.C., June 01, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- NOVA Thin Film Pharmaceuticals LLC (NTFP) announced today its formation and the commencement of its soluble thin film operations. NTFP is commercializing its patented DepoFilm technology. NTFP is based in North Carolina with a research and development facility in Greensboro and manufacturing in Wilmington. NTFPs manufacturing is located at Quality Chemical Laboratories (QCL)s state of the art manufacturing and laboratory facilities in Wilmington. QCL is also a lead investor in NTFP.

NTFPs Chief Executive Officer, Joseph Fuisz, commented: NOVA Thin Film is founded on a simple premise: that existing film technology is too complex and too costly to meet market needs. Thin film offers valuable benefits to patients and NOVA Thin Films superior technology will address formulation, scale up and cost challenges.

Patented DepoFilm represents thin film technology 2.0. DepoFilm addresses the challenges in conventional wet-cast thin film, and enables entirely new product concepts not possible with conventional technologies. This makes NOVA Thin Film the partner of choice for the industry.

NOVA Thin Film starts with the right film technology, the right manufacturing partner, the right investors and the right Board of Directors. These advantages, coupled with management execution, will drive value for NOVA Thin Film and its partners.

Madhu Hariharan, NTFPs Chief Operating Officer, stated:

DepoFilm technology has game-changing implications for soluble film drug delivery. It allows for rapid prototyping and shortened product development timelines with more efficient API usage. The added advantage of a low cost and high yield manufacturing process makes DepoFilm a compelling and disruptive innovation.

Our partnership with Quality Chemical Laboratories has provided the capital, facilities and know-how to enable us to provide world-class production and analytical capabilities from day one. We are immediately positioned to deliver value for ethical, generic and consumer healthcare companies.

Richard C. Fuisz, M.D., the noted drug delivery inventor and entrepreneur credited with pioneering two novel dosage form classes, orally disintegrating tablets and oral soluble film, serves on our Board of Directors. Dr. Fuisz is, together with Joseph Fuisz, the inventor of our issued DepoFilm patents.

Dr. Fuisz remarked: The beauty of DepoFilm lies in its elegant simplicity, and the move of thin film manufacture into a single stage integrated manufacturing process from film formation to final primary packaging, together with the virtual elimination of yield issues that have bedeviled wet-cast manufacturers. This new effort represents an important contribution to drug delivery.

Dr. Yousry Sayed is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of QCL. QCL is NTFPs partner and lead investor. Dr. Sayed has joined the Board of Directors. QCL provides cGMP manufacturing facilities and world class laboratory and quality capabilities to NTFP.

Dr. Sayed stated: We are delighted to enter into partnership with NOVA Thin Film as an investor and also a provider of manufacturing and laboratory services. NOVA Thin Film is based on a unique technology platform that offers a great benefit to drug companies and patients. We are pleased to partner with NOVA Thin Film and excited about what this investment will mean for Wilmington and patients near and far.

About NOVA Thin Film Pharmaceuticals LLC (NTFP): NTFP is a drug delivery company focused on commercializing thin film pharmaceutical products using its patented DepoFilm technology. NTFP is based in North Carolina, with facilities in Greensboro and Wilmington. Learn more at, or contact us using

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Lecturer Below the Bar in Chemistry Job with National University of Ireland, Galway – The Irish Times

Applications are invited for the following post:

College of Science & Engineering

Lecturer Below the Bar, School of Chemistry,

The successful candidate will be expected to teach and examine in the organic chemistry area essential course work related to the programmes of the School of Chemistry in all undergraduate years and can also contribute to postgraduate teaching. She/he will contribute to module coordination. She/he will supervise or co-supervise undergraduate and postgraduate students in research and contribute to wider activities in the School, College and University. The successful candidate will have an excellent understanding of fundamental principles of organic chemistry and demonstrate that they can communicate these to students. They will establish a research group in an area of chemistry and compete for funding from national or other programmes. The research interests of the successful candidate will add to and complement the research of the School and wider University. Candidates will be asked at interview to outline if/how their proposed research interests align to the University research priority areas and research institutes. The appointee will have excellent interpersonal skills and be prepared to collaborate with their colleagues within the School, University, nationally and internationally.

Closing Date: Friday, 17th of July 2020

Application details/procedure:

For further information and to make an online application for theabove posts please visit

National University of Ireland, Galwayisan equal opportunities employer.

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Geology and Chemistry Drive Animal Migration in the Serengeti – Eos

The most famous migration in the animal kingdom is undoubtedly that of wildebeests. Every year, roughly 1.2 million of the ungulates wind their way through Africas Serengeti ecosystem. Researchers now have preliminary evidence that this record-setting migration is dictated by more than just precipitation patterns: Soil chemistry is also a likely driver.

The Serengeti is one of the last great migratory systems weve got left.Wildebeests resemble shaggy cows with long, skinny legs. They look funny, said Simon Kbler, a geoscientist at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich. They look like a mixture of several animals. Most people know the animals from nature documentaries showing them traversing the Mara River, a perilous crossing marked by drownings and hungry crocodiles.

Every year, the animals journey roughly 500 kilometers through wide plains covered with short grasses, as well as through wooded areas and landscapes withmixedgrasses and shrubs. Theyre following the route that their ancestors did, and that movement merits study, said Josephine Mahony, an environmental scientist at the University of Oxford not involved in the research. The Earth has lost a lot of its migratory ecosystems over time. The Serengeti is one of the last great migratory systems weve got left.

Scientists have often studied wildebeest migration from a climatic perspective but rarely from the angle of rock chemistry and weathering, said Kbler. And whats in the ground might have a significant influence on animal grazing patterns because soil nutrient levels modulate vegetation growth.

Last October, Kbler and three colleagues from German and African institutions met in Serengeti National Park in Tanzania. Starting in the southeastern part of the park, the researchers spent 2 weeks in a beige Toyota Land Cruiser retracing the wildebeests clockwise migration route.

Along the way, Kbler and his collaborators collected samples of rock, soil, and vegetation. The aim, said Kbler, was to obtain a chemical fingerprint of the landscape. That fingerprint would allow the team to determine how factors such as geology, volcanism, and tectonic activity might be affecting soil chemistry and nutrient availability, which in turn influence vegetation growth and therefore migration patterns.

Most of the samples are still awaiting analysis in a laboratory in Arusha, Tanzania, said Kbler. But the team, represented by Eileen Eckmeier from the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, presented several preliminary results at this months EGU2020: Sharing Geoscience Online, a virtual series hosted by the European Geosciences Union.

The site farthest south that the team sampledwithin the animals springtime grazing groundsis characterized by soils enriched by a nearby volcano, the researchers found. Ol Doinyo Lengai, roughly 50 kilometers east of Serengeti National Park, holds a unique honor among volcanoes: It produces magma rich in sodium and calcium. (Thats unlike most other volcanoes, which spew out silica-rich magma.)

Ash from Ol Doinyo Lengai rains down on the southeastern part of the park and sprinkles calcium into the soil, Kbler said. You can see calcium carbonate concretions in the soils.

The geological system thats underlying the entire ecosystem might be stable for longer periods of time.This nutrient contributes to soil fertility, which in turn promotes vegetation growth. Calcium also helps animals develop strong bones. Its probably not a coincidence that wildebeests graze here with their young, said Kbler. We believe that the activity of Ol Doinyo Lengai, as the calcium source for the southeastern part of the ecosystem, is critical for keeping the migration alive.

The next site that the team visited was a transitional grazing spot where wildebeests spend late fall and early winter. Chemical analyses are still in progress, but we believe that the nutrient levels in the soils [here] are probably the lowest, said Kbler. Wildebeest can only stay for a limited amount of time until they migrate farther north. Water-induced erosion likely contributes to the poor soil quality in this region, the team concluded.

The third and final site the scientists analyzed was near the northernmost border of the park, where wildebeests spend the late summer and early fall. Because of high precipitation levels in this area, rocks experience more chemical weathering, the team hypothesized, which releases nutrients into the soil and promotes vegetation growth. Furthermore, theres a source of fresh rock because tectonic activity and uplift are occurring near this part of the park, said Kbler. Tectonic processes can expose fresh and unweathered rocks.

In the future, Kbler and his colleagues plan to study the timescales over which geologically important processes like volcanism and tectonic activity occur. Climatic signals may be active on shorter timescales, said Kbler. The geological system thats underlying the entire ecosystem might be stable for longer periods of time.

Katherine Kornei (@KatherineKornei), Science Writer

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