Media Gallery


UF College Of Pharmacy – 2022

Dr. Hendrik Luesch and team awarded $8.8 million NIGMS grant to unlock limitations in natural product drug discovery research

The research will focus on marine organisms with exceptional biosynthetic potential, employing genomic and chemical approaches.

American Chemical Society – 2022

Targeting a human protein to squash SARS-CoV-2 and other viruses

New research from the UF College of Pharmacy finds apratoxin S4 can interfere with the replication of many viruses.

UF College of Pharmacy – 2021

Discovering a New Wave of Medicine

Dr. Hendrik Luesch explores the world’s oceans in search of natural compounds that treat cancer and other deadly diseases.

UF College of Pharmacy – 2021

Dr. Hendrik Luesch wins UF Innovate Award for Gatorbulin discovery

Hendrik Luesch’s discovery and complete chemical and pharmacological characterization of a novel marine natural product that can potentially fight cancer has earned him a 2021 UF Innovate Award.

UF College of PHARMACY – 2021

UF researchers discover marine natural product off Florida’s coast that could help fight cancer

Dr. Hendrik Luesch and a team of researchers have discovered a novel marine natural product that binds to a new site of tubulin, an important target for cancer drugs.

Smithsonian Magazine – 2021

Scientists Find Blue-Green Algae Chemical with Cancer Fighting Potential

A discovery by scientists at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and the University of Florida shows how studying marine biodiversity can enhance biomedical research.

Florida Trend– 2020

A side of seaweed?

Researchers with the University of Florida’s College of Pharmacy say seaweed has anti-inflammatory properties that might ward off colon cancer and other inflammation-related digestive diseases.

Smithsonian Marine Station – 2020

Decrypting Defenses

Smithsonian research into cyanobacteria’s powerful chemical compounds yields benefits for humans as well as reef habitats.

Groundbreaking announcement

Dr. Luesch featured in UF + NVIDIA AI Initiative video

The video announces an ambitious public private partnership that will make the University of Florida home to higher education’s most powerful AI supercomputer.

UF Foundation video – 2020

UF Foundation video released during COVID-19 pandemic features Dr. Hendrik Luesch

Luesch appears 90 seconds into the video. The footage was captured during one of his recent research trips to the Florida Keys.

UF College of pharmacy – 2020

Dr. Hendrik Luesch wins Doctoral Dissertation Mentoring Award; mentees showcase research at Gordon Research Conference on Marine Natural Products

Alumni and graduate students who worked under Luesch’s mentorship came from across the world to present at the Gordon Research Conference on Marine Natural Products.

University of florida on Youtube – 2019

Every Day is Game Day Video

Hendrik Luesch, Ph.D., and his research lab are featured in the University of Florida’s 2019 TV commercial which aired during Gator sporting events.

FOX 10 Phoenix – 2019

Eating seaweed could prevent colon cancer, inflammation of digestive tract, study suggests

Researchers conducted a multi-year study to identify the compounds in seaweed that contain anti-inflammatory properties as well as the mechanisms that cause these compounds to reduce inflammation. Their findings were published in the journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine.

UF College of pharmacy – 2019

UF researchers dive into the science of how seaweed might prevent colon cancer and inflammation of the digestive tract

Consuming a seaweed found near the Florida Keys may offer health benefits in preventing colon cancer and inflammatory diseases of the digest tract.

UF College of pharmacy – 2019

UF scientists eye novel drug candidate with marine origins to treat vision loss

Researchers from the University of Florida and Singapore are focused on a novel drug candidate with marine origins as a new method to prevent or treat vision loss.

UF College of Pharmacy – 2018

Novel drug inspired by a marine natural product offers new approach to treat pancreatic cancer

A novel drug candidate based on a marine natural product discovered 20 years ago could be the basis for a new approach to treating pancreatic cancer.


Dr. Hendrik Luesch appointed to Natural Product Reports’ editorial board

The Royal Society of Chemistry has appointed Hendrik Luesch, Ph.D., to the editorial board of the journal Natural Product Reports.


Dr. Hendrik Luesch featured in Go Greater campaign video

In an increasingly complex and global world, the Gator Nation is more determined than ever to do its share.

UF College of PHARMACY -2017

Key drug discovery experts from across Florida converge at 2017 UF Drug Discovery Symposium

The second annual UF Drug Discovery Symposium brought together many of Florida’s major players in the drug discovery field.

UF College of Pharmacy – 2017

Dr. Luesch receives golden medal honors at Thailand conference

Hendrik Luesch, Ph.D., received the Golden Medal Award for his presentation at the 2nd International Conference on Herbal and Traditional Medicine.


Researchers identify new strategy for discovering colorectal cancer drugs

University of Florida pharmacy researchers have identified novel drug targets and a new screening method for drugs affecting the signaling pathways in colorectal cancer.

Huffington Post – 2013

Florida Seaweed May Fight Cancer, Says University of Florida Study

Seaweed, particularly a variety found in Florida waters, may be a secret weapon against cancer, according to a recent study by the University of Florida.


Marine natural products may provide new weapons against cancer and other diseases

Cyanobacteria have many names and most are not very flattering — like sea scum and red slime. Hendrik Luesch would like to improve their image by adding another name — cancer treatment.


Why scientists are searching for cures underwater

When Hendrik Luesch invited me to Florida to go snorkeling, I didn’t expect to be wading through brackish muck in the Indian River Lagoon, a 156-mile-long estuary.

UF Health’s The Post – 2008

Under the Sea

Forget visions of frothy, bubbling beakers — Hendrik Luesch, Ph.D., calls the ocean his laboratory, where marine organisms may hold the key to curing the world’s worst diseases.


ACS Infectious Diseases Cover July 2022

2022 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch

ACS Infectious Diseases

Apratoxin S4 in action against SARS-CoV-2: This host-directed antiviral shuts off spike protein production and trafficking (top) and prevents double membrane vesicle formation and assembly of progeny virions (bottom).

ACS Chemical Neuroscience

2020 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch

ACS Chemical Neuroscience

Surfing across the blood-brain barrier with a purpose and a splash: The marine natural product and potent class I HDAC inhibitor largazole has activity against glioblastoma cells and induces neuroprotective and antiproliferative functional responses in the brain through modulation of gene expression of entire networks underlying CNS diseases.

Organic Letters Journal

2019 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch

Organic Letters

The cover image illustrates the multidisciplinary research that linked a natural product discovered from the depicted marine cyanobacteria to GPCR modulation. The portrayed peptide, amantamide, was isolated, synthesized, and characterized as a selective CXCR7 agonist. Molecular modeling of amantamide provides the starting point for rational optimization.

CHEMBIOCHEM journal cover

2018 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch


The cover feature picture shows Ahp-cyclodepsipeptides, the producing marine cyanobacterium overgrowing a coral, and the compounds’ anticancer effects. These cyclodepsipeptides inhibit human neutrophil elastase and, as a consequence, the migration of invasive breast cancer cells through the modulation of gene expression and proteolytic processing of membrane proteins.

Current Drug Targets

2012 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch

Current Drug Targets

Small molecules that modulate histone acetylation by targeting key enzymes mediating this posttranslational modification – histone acetyltransferases and histone deacetylases – are validated chemotherapeutic agents for the treatment of cancer. Secondary metabolites from various biological sources target this epigenetic modification through distinct mechanisms of enzyme regulation by utilizing a diverse array of pharmacophores. We review the discovery of these compounds and discuss their modes of inhibition together with their downstream biological effects.


2010 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch

Chemistry – A European Journal

Natural products are secondary metabolites that confer survival advantages to the producing organism. Many require activation before they exert their biological effects, perhaps as part of the organism's self‐resistance strategy or to aid targeted delivery. In this Concept article Luesch and Kwan outline several examples of “Weapons in Disguise”, natural products that use protecting group chemistry or intricate chemical cascades for activation beyond simple “prodrug” paradigms.

The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics

2010 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch

The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics

The Luesch lab previously described the bioassay-guided isolation, structure determination, synthesis, and target identification of largazole, a marine-derived antiproliferative natural product that is a prodrug that releases the most potent natural inhibitor of class I histone deacetylases (HDACs), validated targets for cancer therapy. The cover highlights structure-activity studies using biochemical and molecular docking approaches. The article describes the characterization of the anticancer activity of largazole using in vitro and in vivo cancer models, including comparative transcriptomics, pharmacology, biochemical validation, stability, and efficacy studies.

Natural Products Reports

2010 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch

Natural Product Reports

Hendrik Luesch’s discovery of largazole and its producing cyanobacterium are featured in this annual Marine Natural Products review and on the journal cover, respectively.

Molecular Biosystems

2006 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch

Molecular BioSystems

Genome-scale analysis has been extended from gene expression profiling to parallel cell-based functional profiling, allowing the characterization of gene function and small molecule actions in yeast and in mammalian cells.

Nature Chemical Bio journal cover

2006 – Dr. Hendrik Luesch

Nature Chemical Biology

This is the first report that uses an unbiased functional genomics approach in cancer cells to study the mode of action of a potent cyanobacterial cytotoxin and also visualizes “apratoxin A in action” in zebrafish.

This lab is managed by Hendrik Luesch