Jurgen Rohr

Contact Information

363 BioPharm Complex
789 South Limestone Street
Lexington, KY 40536-0596

Phone: 859-323-5031
Fax: 859-257-7564

Contact by email


  • Director, Division of Drug Discovery
    Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Professor
    Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences


  • B.S. in Chemistry
    University of Göttingen, Germany, 1979
  • M.S. in Organic Chemistry
    University of Göttingen, Germany, 1981
  • Ph.D. in Bioorganic Chemistry and Microbiology
    University of Göttingen, Germany, 1984
  • Postdoctoral Research in Biochemistry
    Ohio State University, 1985-1987

Jürgen Rohr, Ph.D.

Dr. Rohr's research is focused on natural product drugs, i.e. antibiotics, anticancer drugs and drugs against bone diseases. It includes the elucidation of complex multi-step biosynthetic pathways, carried out by bacteria, fungi or plants, with particular emphasis on enzyme mechanisms. The results of these biosynthetic studies are used to generate modified natural product drugs through genetic engineering (pathway engineering, combinatorial biosynthesis).

Used techniques in the Rohr-laboratory include isolation and structure elucidation of natural products, incorporation experiments with isotope-labeled biosynthetic precursors, NMR spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, and recombinant DNA techniques for the targeted interruption or recombination of genes of the biosynthetic pathways. Newer aspects of the research include (i) generation and testing of new antitumor drugs and drugs against bone diseases, (ii) the investigation of biochemical mechanisms of anticancer drugs, and (iii) discovery and investigation of new antibacterials. Dr. Rohr's publications (ca. 190) can be found in biochemical and chemical journals, such as Angew. Chem., Biochemistry, Chem. Biol., ChemBioChem, Chem. Commun., Gene, J. Am. Chem. Soc., J. Bacteriol., J. Biol. Chem., J. Nat. Prod., J. Org. Chem., Microbiol., Mol. Gen. Genet., Nat. Prod. Rep. etc.

Before joining University of Kentucky, Dr. Rohr was Assistant and Associate Professor at the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry of the University of Göttingen, Germany and Associate Professor at the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences of the Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC.

Selected Honors

  • Distinguished Senior Visiting Professor, Chinese Academy of Sciences (2014)
  • Provost's Distinguished Service Professor Award (2012)
  • Robert A. Blouin Excellence in Pharmaceutical Graduate Education Award for Academic Year (2006)
  • Honor Member, Rho Chi Pharmaceutical Society (2005)
  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC) (2004)
  • Research and Scholarly Activity Award, Medical University of South Carolina, College of Pharmacy (2001)


  • See Google Scholar (left, orange!)

Website Links

page last modified: December 08 2014     

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