• Mitsch-2018

    2018 3M/Ronald A. Mitsch Lecture in Chemistry

    Illuminating Sugars, the "Dark Matter" of the Cell Surface

    Guest Lecturer

    Carolyn Bertozzi

    Carolyn R. Bertozzi
    Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Chemistry and professor of chemical and systems biology and radiology, Stanford University; investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute 

    Friday, April 20 at 12:45 p.m.
    Sundin Music Hall, 1531 Hewitt Avenue,
    Saint Paul, Minnesota


    All cells are coated with sugars, but their precise roles in biology remain rather mysterious. This is in part due to the fact that the tools of biology are not well suited to studying sugars—rather, they were invented with proteins and nucleic acids, the other major cellular biopolymers, in mind. In recent years, chemists have joined the challenge of studying sugars by inventing tools that enable molecular imaging and profiling of sugars on live cells and organisms. We now have a better appreciation of the roles sugars play in such diverse processes as viral and bacterial infection and cancer. Glycobiology has proven to be a rich field for chemists seeking to impact biology and medicine.

    Carolyn Bertozzi is the Anne T. and Robert M. Bass Professor of Chemistry and professor of chemical and systems biology and radiology (by courtesy) at Stanford University and an investigator at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. She received her undergraduate degree in chemistry from Harvard University in 1988 and her PhD in chemistry from UC Berkeley in 1993. After completing postdoctoral work at UC San Francisco in the field of cellular immunology, she joined the UC Berkeley faculty in 1996. In June 2015, she joined the faculty at Stanford University, coincident with the launch of Stanford's ChEM-H institute.

    Bertozzi's research interests span the disciplines of chemistry and biology, with an emphasis on studies of cell surface glycosylation pertinent to disease states. Her lab focuses on profiling changes in cell surface glycosylation associated with cancer, inflammation, and bacterial infection and exploiting this information for development of diagnostic and therapeutic approaches, most recently in the area of immuno-oncology. She has been recognized with many honors and awards for her research accomplishments. She is an elected member of the Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, and American Academy of Arts and Sciences and has been awarded the Lemelson-MIT Prize, the Heinrich Wieland Prize, and a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, among many others.


  • About the Mitsch Lectures in Chemistry

    The 3M/Ronald A. Mitsch Lectures in Chemistry are part of the 3M/Ronald A. Mitsch Endowed Fund in Chemistry, established in 1998 by the 3M Foundation in recognition and appreciation of Dr. Mitsch. The fund is intended to promote new connections and pioneering efforts between education and industry as an essential basis for the education of chemists who are prepared to meet the challenges and opportunities of the 21st century and beyond. Dr. Mitsch, a 1956 graduate of Hamline University’s College of Liberal Arts, began his career at 3M in 1960 as a research chemist. He earned 19 patents.

    In 1998, he retired from 3M as vice chairman of the board and executive vice president of the Industrial and Consumer Sector, Corporate Services. He is a Hamline University life trustee.

  • Past Lectures


    "Meeting the Clean Energy Demand with Nanotechnology." Prashant V. Kamat, University of Norte Dame


    "New Chemical Probe Technologies: Applications to Cancer Imaging and Drug Discovery." Matthew Bogyo, Stanford University School of Medicine


    "Got Fakes? New Ways to Detect Counterfeit Pharmaceuticals." Dr. Marya Lieberman, University of Notre Dame


    "Biological and Ecological Toxicity of Engineered Nanomaterials." Dr. Christy L. Haynes, University of Minnesota


    "Recent Developments in the Peaceful Use of Chemistry: Eliminating the Chemical Weapons Threat." Ambassador Robert Mikulak '64 


    "From Toxicology Mechanisms to Translational Medicine: Paracelsus Meets Sarandib." Dr. Daniel G. Baden, University of North Carolina at Wilmington



    “The Aging Brain and What We are Trying To Do About It.” Dr. Gregory A. Petsko, Brandeis University


     "The Golden Age of Pharmaceuticals." Dr. Cynthia A. Maryanoff, Stanford University


    Dr. Richard N. Zare, Stanford University


    "Applications of Olefin Metathesis Catalysts: Fundamental Research to Commercial Products." Dr. Robert H. Grubbs, California Institute of Technology



    Dr. JoAnne Stubbe, Massachusetts Institute of Technology


    Chemical Studies of Violence, Sex and Drugs in the Insect World. " Dr. Jerrold Meinwald, Cornell University