Katherine E. Zink

Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy

University of Illinois at Chicago

Katherine E. Zink

Katherine Zink is a fourth-year graduate student in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmacognosy at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She graduated in 2013 from Connecticut College with a dual degree in East Asian Studies (concentration in Chinese) and Botany (concentration in Ethnobotany). Katherine received at post-baccalaureate certificate in Pre-Medical Studies from Northwestern University in 2015 before beginning her PhD.

With natural products chemistry at the heart of her PhD program, Katherine primarily studies inter-cellular chemical communication using imaging mass spectrometry in two thesis projects under the advising of Dr. Laura Sanchez. To better understand the drivers of primary metastasis in high grade serous ovarian cancer, one project aims to uncover chemical communication between tumorigenic fallopian tube cells and healthy ovarian tissues using a novel 3D imaging mass spectrometry method. In collaboration with the Mandel Lab at the University of Wisconsin - Madison, her second thesis project is the structural elucidation of chemical factors that influence the establishment and maintenance of the symbiotic relationship between the Hawaiian bobtail squid (Euprymna scolopes) and the bioluminescent bacterium, Vibrio fischeri.