Two alumni named to C&EN’s “Talented 12” for 2024

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Alumni Dr. Jesus Moreno (Ph.D. ’17 Garg group) and Prof. Nako Nakatsuka (Ph.D. ’17 Andrews/P Weiss groups) have been named to Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN) “Talented 12” Class for 2024.

Moreno and Nakatsuka will speak about their work and their journeys during a symposium on August 19 at the American Chemical Society (ACS) Fall 2024 conference in Denver.

The C&EN Talented 12 list highlights early-career researchers in the chemical sciences who are fearlessly tackling difficult global problems. These intrepid innovators in chemistry are featured in the May 13/20 issue of C&EN; read about the impressive class.

Using a rigorous review process, a group of C&EN editors and staff selected this year’s Talented 12 from an array of nominations, which came from peers, supervisors and self-nominations. The world-changing work by this year’s group includes research with a variety of applications from making better batteries to developing new drugs to tackling climate change.

Below is the list of 2024’s Talented 12 class.

Chibueze Amanchukwu, University of Chicago
This electrochemist invents new electrolytes to boost batteries.

Ahmed Badran, Scripps ResearchThis synthetic biologist evolves proteins to tackle global challenges like climate change.

Rachel Carter, U.S. Naval Research Laboratory
This mechanical engineer makes batteries safer and more sustainable.

Rob Dennis-Pelcher, The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company
This materials scientist scouts out technologies to improve tire performance and sustainability.

Samantha M. Gateman,University of Western Ontario
This analytical chemist studies metals at the atomic level to prevent corrosion.

Alisha Jones,New York University
This biophysical chemist pairs computational and experimental tools to unravel RNA structure.

Outi Keinänen,University of Alabama at Birmingham
This radiochemist tracks how microplastics move through the body.

Sarah Lovelock, University of Manchester
This biological chemist streamlines oligonucleotide synthesis.

Jesus Moreno, Bristol Myers Squibb
This medicinal chemist designs and develops targeted protein degraders.

Nako Nakatsuka, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (EPFL)
This neurotechnologist integrates aptamers and transistors to monitor brain chemistry.

Michael Skinnider, Princeton University
This computational chemist combines mass spectrometry and machine learning to uncover metabolites.

Julian West, Rice University
This organic chemist harnesses the catalytic power of iron with light.

“Each of these chemists is doing important work, contributing to positive changes in our health, societies and environment,” says Nick Ishmael-Perkins, C&EN editor in chief. “They are also, all of them, compelling personalities, demonstrating that science takes talent and creativity as much as it does rigor and expertise. These are exactly the kind of stories of inspiration that C&EN wanted to showcase when it started the Talented 12 feature ten years ago.”