Dora Carrico-Moniz

Associate Professor of Chemistry

Interested in synthesis of novel anticancer and antiviral agents; teaching introductory chemistry, organic chemistry, and synthetic methods.

My research projects involve the use of organic synthesis to prepare novel compounds of medicinal importance. Two areas of research in my laboratory are the design and synthesis of naturally occurring organic molecules and analogues as anticancer agents and the design of therapeutic agents against hepatitis C virus and efficient fluorescent probes for screening of antiviral agents. Students working in my laboratory learn and apply techniques used in drug discovery, including organic synthesis, structure-activity relationship (SAR) studies, lead compound optimization, and assay development. Since 2007, I have had the pleasure of mentoring numerous talented Wellesley College women who have made important contributions to these projects. My students and I have shared the findings of our research both within the College and externally.

During my time at Wellesley I have taught courses at the introductory, intermediate, and advanced levels, including Fundamentals of Chemistry, Organic Chemistry I, Organic Chemistry II, and Advanced Organic Chemistry. In my classes, I enjoy incorporating a wide variety of teaching methods and activities, such as combining PowerPoint and traditional lectures with 3D animations, in-class molecular model exercises, class-interactive exercises, in-class and out-of-class group exercises, student presentations, and peer review discussions. To demonstrate how individual chemical reactions and organic substances are intimately related to living systems, I incorporate several exciting examples from biology, the environment, medicine, and industry into my lectures.

I have served as the faculty advisor for the Wellesley College student affiliates of the American Chemical Society. As a science educator, I am interested in helping motivate women and underrepresented minorities to pursue careers in science. In support of this mission, I have given research talks and served as a panelist at several events, such as the Wellesley College Mentoring in the Sciences Program and the Fifth National Symposium on the Advancement of Women in Science at Harvard University.

I enjoy biking, cooking, traveling, painting, and spending time with my family and friends.

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  • B.S., SUNY (Purchase College)
  • M.S., Yale University
  • Ph.D., Yale University