Jack Rosazza

University of Iowa
Center for Biocatalysis & Bioprocessing

Dr. Jack Rosazza, a native of Connecticut received BSc (Pharmacy), MSc and PhD in Pharmacognosy/Synthetic Organic Chemistry all from UConn. Following a postdoctoral appointment in Pharmaceutical Biochemistry at Wisconsin he accepted an assistant professorship at Iowa in 1969 with promotions to associate and full professorships (1977). Jack served as head the division of Medicinal and Natural Products Chemistry for 18 years. He is founder and the first director of the University of Iowa, Center for Biocatalysis and Bioprocessing – a center that supported over 300 graduate student fellowship years of activity spawned through collaborations of as many as 55 faculty from 8 departments.

His research always had a natural products bent with emphasis on microbial and enzymatic transformations of organic compounds including alkaloids, terpenes, phenylpropanoids and flavonoids. His laboratory discovered the first bacterial nitric oxide synthase (NOS) system, a host of biocatalytic reactions, new organisms, and applications. Grants and contracts through NIH, NSF, USDA, State of Iowa and industry supported 30 Ph.Ds, more than 30 visiting scholars, 10 MSc students plus more than 50 technicians during his 35 years at Iowa. Together, he, his group and faculty and industrial collaborators realized more than 220 published works. Jack consulted extensively for the NCI, Pharma, chemical and agrochemical industries. He was a member of eight editorial boards, was active in ACS, ASP (President, Fellow), SIM, and served extensively on collegiate, university, state and national committees.