Skip to Main Content

Student’s research aims to overcome antibiotic resistance

"M

y research keeps me awake at night,” said Trevor Boram. “But in a good way.”

Boram, a Ph.D. candidate in biochemistry, began his collegiate career at Indiana University East. There, a faculty mentor who completed a postdoc at Purdue encouraged Boram to apply to graduate school in West Lafayette.

“My visit to Purdue was an amazing experience,” said Boram. “It felt like everybody here wanted me in their department.”

During faculty presentations to incoming graduate students, Boram was intrigued by the research of Jeremy Lohman, an assistant professor of biochemistry.

“I realized his work was incredibly important. It used medical applications of biochemistry to solve modern-day health crises,” Boram said.

Boram’s rotation in Lohman’s lab solidified his interest. Since fall 2017, Boram has worked in the same research space his Indiana University East mentor previously did.

“With my advisor’s support, I feel motivated to think up my own ideas and work hard in the lab to see if we can make them happen.”

Boram studies how the human body makes fatty acids and their secondary metabolites. These specialized molecules are used to make pharmaceuticals.

“Our lab has taken a new approach to study the specific phenomenon,” said Boram, who uses synthetic organic chemistry to make novel compounds and takes pictures using X-ray crystallography.

The resulting knowledge could lead to new antibiotics that can overcome antibiotic resistance and extend human lifespans.

“Every day my job gives me the opportunity to make new chemicals and learn strategies to apply to a real problem,” said Boram.

At Purdue, Boram has mentored 16 undergraduate students and chaired the 2020 Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Biomolecular Galaxy symposium. After completing his Ph.D. next spring, he plans to work as a chemist in the industry and conduct research in drug discovery.

Featured Stories

Chris Wirth holding bug specimen
Behind the Research: Chris Wirth

Many people are involved in the remarkable range of programs, services and facilities that...

Read More
Purdue College of Agriculture.
Farmer sentiment recovers in May; interest in solar leasing rising

U.S. farmers’ outlook improved in May as the Purdue University/CME Group Ag Economy...

Read More
Ken Fuelling leans against a brown pole in an empty classroom. Empty chairs and a blank projector screen fill the background.
Promoting acceptance in agricultural education

Ken Fuelling (he/they) had already been accepted into graduate school to work with Sarah LaRose...

Read More
The 2024 Ecology of Natural Disturbances course students and faculty on a bridge in Smoky Mountain National Park
Smoky Mountain Spring Break Trip Brings Disturbance Ecology Coursework to Life

While some students headed to tropical locales for Spring Break excursions, those in the FNR...

Read More
Composting bins outdoors
Unlocking the benefits of composting: tips for a greener garden

For centuries, gardeners have provided nutrients to plants through composting, but Karen...

Read More
Sarah Stanhope
Sarah Stanhope - Graduate Ag Research Spotlight

Sarah Stanhope likes investigating things: “I always asked a lot of questions,” she...

Read More
To Top