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Principal Investigator

May H. Abdelaziz, BPharm, MS, PhD

Assistant Professor

Fisch College of Pharmacy

The University of Texas at Tyler

Dr. Abdelaziz received a Bachelor of Pharmacy and Masters in Pharmaceutical chemistry from Cairo University in Cairo, Egypt, and Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) in Richmond, Virginia. Dr. Abdelaziz has completed two postdoctoral research fellowships in drug discovery of neurologic agents at the University of Utah (U of U) and in cancer research at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF).

As a graduate teaching assistant at VCU, she actively participated in several pharmacy courses. Her teaching experience also includes mentoring undergraduates, graduate, and professional students (pharmacy and nurse anesthesia) in several class and laboratory settings as well as working as a trainer in NIH glycoscience workshops. Dr. Abdelaziz is an active member in several professional associations including the American Chemical Society, American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy and National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity. 

Her research area is centered around drug discovery in several fields with a special focus on cancer and cancer biology research. Research interests include discovery and study of allosteric modulators, screening of chemical and natural products libraries, studying enzyme kinetics, mechanisms of inhibition and discovery and analysis of protein – protein interactions in protein networks using biophysical techniques. 

Complete CV

FCOP Profile

Lab Members

Thanya Chaisuwan (Lab Technician) 

Thanya earned her Bachelor's degree in Biology from the University of Texas at Dallas and is currently pursuing graduate studies at the University of Texas at Tyler in the Interdisciplinary Medical Sciences Program. Thanya aspires to apply to the UT Tyler Medical School to further her academic journey. In her free time, Thanya passionately explores the culinary world through cooking and finds joy in discovering new destinations through travel.


Liaqat Ali, M.S, Ph.D. (Postdoctoral Fellow)

Liaqat earned his Ph.D. from Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, China, and completed his first postdoctoral fellowship at Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS.  He has excellent expertise in the infectious diseases field with a concentration on bacterial genomics and antibiotic resistance. Liaqat joined our lab in June, 2022 and is working to elucidate resistance mechanisms and crosstalk between two-component signaling networks in Staphylococcus aureus to develop novel therapeutic strategies.


Itzel Montoya (Graduate Student) 

Itzel is a MS in Chemistry student. Itzel previously worked in the Chemistry department as a teaching assistant, at Analytical Environmental Laboratories as a lab technician and volunteered with Bethesda Health Clinic. In doing so, she found a passion for the medical field and plans to pursue a career in medical research. In her free time, Itzel enjoys caring for houseplants and painting.

Salima Karki (Undergraduate Student) 

Salima transferred to UT Tyler in spring 2022 and is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Biology with a minor in Biochemistry. She completed an Associate degree in science from Dallas College (December 2020) where she was a member of the Phi Theta Kappa Honors Society. She previously worked as a medical scribe and is passionate about the medical field and research. She plans to continue a career in research. 

Ava Nguyen (Undergraduate Student)

Ava is a sophomore at UT Tyler pursuing a degree in biology. Following graduation, she plans to apply to physician assistant school. She is interested in the field of medicine and, through doing research, hopes to learn more about the field. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with friends and watching movies. 


Dana Al-Manaseer (Undergraduate Student)

Dana Al-manaseer is nursing undergraduate student at UT Tyler. She became interested in research, especially bacterial resistance, after learning about bacterial resistance in her undergraduate classes. She is a student who is interested in medicine and has plans to do great things in the field of medicine!

Aryanna Blakeney (Undergraduate Student)

Aryanna is a sophomore at UT Tyler pursuing a degree in Biochemistry. Once she graduates, she intends to apply to the Ben and Maytee Fisch College of Pharmacy. Her primary interest lies in compound pharmacy, and she hopes that her research work will help her master the techniques and skills that will benefit her in the class and the future. In her free time, she likes to go to the gym, hang out with friends, and play games.


Araceli Solis (Undergraduate Student)

Araceli is a freshman at UT Tyler pursuing a degree in Biochemistry. She has received her Associate's Degree of Science and has previously worked as a patient care technician. She is a part of Greek life at UT Tyler and has found great interest in research and medicine. Through her time in the lab, she has become curious about the growing field of medicine and hopes to one day pursue it!

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