Duane D. Miller, PhD

Duane D. Miller, Ph.D.

Van Vleet Professor

Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences


The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
227c Johnson Building
847 Monroe Avenue
Memphis, TN 38163
Tel: (901) 448-6026
Fax: (901) 448-6828
Email: Duane D. Miller

 

Education

  • PhD Institution: University of Washington, Medicinal Chemistry Department

Research Interests

The design, synthesis and characterization of new drug molecules for mechanism based structure-activity relationships is the primary focus of our laboratory. One of the important areas of research is studying new drugs affecting the central and peripheral nervous systems. Our laboratory is very interested in the design of drugs that are used to treat asthma, emphysema and obesity. Other areas of keen interest are drugs used to treat and diagnose prostate cancer and diabetic complications.

We are currently investigating the modification of a molecule called trimetoquinol which is used in Japan. We are attempting to make chemical structural changes in the molecule so that it can be used to activate selectively beta 2-adrenergic receptors found in lung tissue. We are also attempting to make changes that will also convert this same molecule into a beta 3-adrenergic receptor agonist for the treatment of obesity. The latter receptors are found in adipose tissue and upon activation lead to the breakdown of fat. We are also in the process of studying medetomidine, an alpha-adrenergic agonist. We are changing the structure of medetomidine chemically to see if such changes can lead to a better understanding of how this molecule binds to the various subtypes of a- adrenergic receptors.

We are very interested in drugs that could interfere with the craving for cocaine. We are now synthesizing drugs that will block specific glutamate receptors found in the brain and hopefully such new information will help us find an agent that will be useful in treating cocaine addiction.

Drugs that bind to androgen receptors and their relationship to prostate cancer are being studied in our laboratory. A major project is directed toward synthesizing new radiolabeled androgen ligands and we plan to use this technology towards imaging metastatic prostate cancer.

A major enzyme in the development of diabetic complications such as cataracts is thought to be the enzyme aldose reductase. Our laboratory has developed irreversible inhibitors for studying this enzyme.

Representative Publications

  • Lin Z, Chen H, Belorusova AY, Bollinger JC, Tang EKY, Janjetovic Z, Kim TK, Wu Z, Miller DD, Slominski AT, Postlethwaite AE, Tuckey RC, Rochel N, Li W. 1α,20S-Dihydroxyvitamin D(3) Interacts with Vitamin D Receptor: Crystal Structure and Route of Chemical Synthesis. Sci Rep. 2017 Aug 31;7(1):10193. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-10917-7. PubMed PMID: 28860545; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5579064.
  • He H, Weir RL, Toutounchian JJ, Pagadala J, Steinle JJ, Baudry J, Miller DD, Yates CR. The quinic acid derivative KZ-41 prevents glucose-induced caspase-3 activation in retinal endothelial cells through an IGF-1 receptor dependent mechanism. PLoS One. 2017 Aug 10;12(8):e0180808. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0180808. eCollection 2017. PubMed PMID: 28796787; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5552119.
  • Chen H, Lin Z, Arnst KE, Miller DD, Li W. Tubulin Inhibitor-Based Antibody-Drug Conjugates for Cancer Therapy. Molecules. 2017 Aug 1;22(8). pii: E1281. doi: 10.3390/molecules22081281. Review. PubMed PMID: 28763044.
  • Yang R, Mondal G, Ness RA, Arnst K, Mundra V, Miller DD, Li W, Mahato RI. Polymer conjugate of a microtubule destabilizer inhibits lung metastatic melanoma. J Control Release. 2017 Mar 10;249:32-41. doi: 10.1016/j.jconrel.2017.01.028. Epub 2017 Jan 24. PubMed PMID: 28130039; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5502538.
  • Banerjee S, Norman DD, Lee SC, Parrill AL, Pham TC, Baker DL, Tigyi GJ, Miller DD. Highly Potent Non-Carboxylic Acid Autotaxin Inhibitors Reduce Melanoma Metastasis and Chemotherapeutic Resistance of Breast Cancer Stem Cells. J Med Chem. 2017 Feb 23;60(4):1309-1324. doi: 10.1021/acs.jmedchem.6b01270. Epub 2017 Feb 10. PubMed PMID: 28112925.
  • Ponnusamy S, Tran QT, Thiyagarajan T, Miller DD, Bridges D, Narayanan R. An estrogen receptor β-selective agonist inhibits non-alcoholic steatohepatitis in preclinical models by regulating bile acid and xenobiotic receptors. Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2017 Mar;242(6):606-616. doi: 10.1177/1535370216688569. Epub 2017 Jan 16. PubMed PMID: 28092182.

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