Mr. Don Gibson - Chemistry
I went to Oklahoma City University for my BA and then to the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center for my MS in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology with a minor in Pharmacology.
I have worked in a biochemistry research lab at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation (OMRF) for 27 years where I studied many biological processes from a biochemical standpoint. These research projects ranged from oxidative mechanisms, carcinogen mechanisms and effect of different lipid diets with various antioxidants and the incidence of tumor formation. Also investigated different toxic compounds in the environment and investigated them from a stand point of generation of free radicals in the body. A big portion of my research dealt with protective mechanisms against oxidative damage using glutathione and α-tocopherol (Viitamin E) and purified several unknown enzymes that utilized these two antioxidants as cofactors to prevent oxidative damage to cellular membranes. Our group at OMRF was the first group that was clearly able to demonstrate the existence of free radicals being produced in the body.
I then worked with a biotechnology company from research we developed at OMRF. This company produced a flu diagnostic device that could determine with you were infected with the influenza virus within 20 minutes at your local doctor’s office. I originally worked as a protein biochemist and then developed the process to purify the reactive compound for the diagnostic test. I then went from the research lab to the Operations Department where I served as the Associate Director of Operations and was in charge of the production of the various products we produced for the influenza market. I then worked at a nanotechnology company producing super paramagnetic nanoparticles that had cancer therapeutics attached to them and these modified super-paramagnetic nanoparticles were then sent to M. D. Anderson Hospital for use in the laboratory setting to magnetically vector the nanoparticles to tumors in mice. We also started another nanotechnology subsidiary that we developed a process to control the size of titanium (IV) oxide particles. I was one of the collaborators on various projects at these nanotechnology companies and was awarded three patents for that work.
During most of the time in these research settings I was an adjunct instructor of chemistry here at UCO, beginning my teaching career in 1976, and became a full time faculty member in 2003. I am now serving as the Coordinator of General Chemistry for the Chemistry Department.
I currently teach sections of General Chemistry I and II as well as the laboratories for General Chemistry I and II. In the Spring semester I teach a section of Biochemistry I at night.
Outside of the classroom I try to attend as many of the UCO Ice Hockey team games that are played at the Artic Edge. I also go to the Baron Games in Oklahoma City. I live on a farm and have cattle and a garden that I love to work in.