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October 29, 2019 at 11:05 am

Chemistry & Biochemistry Department Welcomes Benjamin Bythell

 Benjamin Bythell, portrait

Dr. Benjamin Bythell

Dr. Benjamin Bythell joins Ohio University this fall as an Associate Professor of Chemistry & Biochemistry.

What was your professional/academic training?

I received a combined BSc. and master’s degree in Chemistry from Bath University, UK in 2002 and a Ph.D. from Oregon State University in 2007. I then took a postdoctoral fellowship at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg, Germany, before moving to the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory at Florida State University (2010-2013). I was hired as an Assistant Professor at the University of Missouri in St. Louis in the fall of 2013, where I received tenure and was promoted to Associate Professor in early 2019. However, this coincided with my agreeing to move to the Chemistry & Biochemistry Department at Ohio University.

What attracted you to Ohio University?

I was attracted to OHIO by the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry’s strong Analytical and Forensic Chemistry program and the integrated research and teaching opportunities this provides me. I was impressed by the faculty, their leadership, and vision for our future in the new Chemistry building (opening 2020).

Since you arrived, what have you enjoyed the most so far?

Getting to know my new colleagues.

What are you most looking forward to doing as you establish yourself at Ohio University?

I’m looking forward to getting my lab fully up and running and publishing some of the interesting work on complex carbohydates (glycans) we have been undertaking. In the future this National Science Foundation-funded project has the potential to impact many areas of chemistry, biology, and biomedical science.

What have you enjoyed the most about Athens?

Athens is a beautiful location. So far, I’ve enjoyed living in a small college town in which commuting by bike or on foot is possible. I’m slowly exploring the surrounding parks and hills, which is great.

Are you looking for students to join your research group?

I’m actively recruiting undergraduate and graduate students who are excited by science and the prospect of making new discoveries. We study the fascinating “Chemistry of Useful Destruction”; controlled breaking of biological/industrial gas-phase ions into structurally diagnostic pieces, which we then detect. We then reassemble the precursor ion from the pieces and identify the structure. We use both experimental and parallel computational approaches providing a wealth of potential undergraduate mini-projects with significant potential for co-authoring one or more publications.

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