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Eric W. Schmidt and Lab

Professor of Medicinal Chemistry



Phone: 801.585.5234

Fax: 801.585.6208



  • William R. Droschkey Endowed Chair in Pharmacy

  • Professor of Medicinal Chemistry L. S. Skaggs Pharmacy Institute

  • Adjunct Professor of Biology, College of Science


  • NIH Fellowship 1999-2001 Johns Hopkins University

  • Ph.D. 1999 Scripps Institution of Oceanography

  • B.S. 1994 University of California at San Diego

Research Interests

The mission of our laboratory is to understand the origin of chemical diversity, and to apply that diversity to drug discovery and the synthetic biology of new materials to serve human health.

We are funded by National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Science Foundation, and others.

Current projects include:

  • Biosynthesis of natural products in marine animals

  • RiPP biosynthesis and synthetic biology

  • Discovery of non-opioid drugs to treat pain

  • New treatments for infectious diseases

cop schmidt lab solomon island trip
2018 Schmidt Lab Solomon Island Collection Trip

Lab Information

Research Group Members

Zhenjian Lin, PhD

Research Associate Professor

Medicinal Chemistry, University of Utah

Research interests:

1. Natural products and drug discovery

2. Metagenomes and marine symbiosis



Postdoctoral Scholars

Changshan Niu, PhD

Haygood lab/ICBG

M.S. 2014: Medicinal Chemistry, Peking Union Medicinal College

Ph.D 2017: Medicinal Chemistry, Peking Union Medicinal College




Noemi Paguigan, PhD

Haygood lab/ICBG

Yixin Fang, PhD

Haygood lab/ICBG

B.S. 2008: Chemistry, Xiamen University

Ph.D. 2015: Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences


Bailey Miller, PhD

Haygood lab/ICBG

B.S. 2009: Biopsychology, University of California, Santa Barbara

Ph.D. 2016: Marine (Chemical) Biology, Scripps Institution of Oceanography




Paul Scesa, PhD

Haygood lab/ICBG

B.S. : Florida Atlantic University 2015

Ph.D. : Florida Atlantic University 2020




Graduate Students

Wenjia Gu

B.S. 2014: Chemistry, Zhejiang University

Research interest:

RiPP biosynthesis and synthetic biology



Snigdha Sarkar

B.S. 2013: Chemistry, University of Calcutta

M.S. 2015: Chemistry, Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi




Youjung Sung

B.S.2014: Earth environmental science, Korea University

M.S.2016: Earth environmental science, Seoul National University




Ying Cong

B.S. 2017: Pharmacy, Tianjin University


Aarthi Venugopalan

B.Tech. 2010: Pharmaceutical Technology, Anna University, Chennai

M.S. 2015: Biotechnology, Indian Institute of Technology, Chennai

Research interest: Non-ribosomal peptide biosynthesis


Rotation Students

Albebson Lim (ICBG)

Albeb is a current visiting scholar of the U from the University of the Philippines Diliman. He works under the Philippine Mollusk Symbiont – International Cooperative Biodiversity Group (PMS-ICBG). His current research interest is marine natural product chemistry of mollusk associated bacteria and bioassay development for infectious diseases, and neuroactive compounds using zebrafish models. He works with Drs. Eric Schmidt and Margo Haygood for chemistry and symbiosis work, Dr. Louis Barrows for the development of bioassays for screening compounds with anti-HIV, tuberculosis, and tularemia activities, and with Dr. Randall Peterson for screening neuroactive and anti-pain compounds using zebrafish embryos’ behavior as model. In his free time, he usually plays video games or fiddle with his guitar.

Visiting Scholars

Feng Li

B.S. 2014: Medicinal Chemistry, Ocean University of China

M.S. 2017: Medicinal Chemistry, Ocean University of China

PhD Graduate student, Prof. Huashi Guan's lab

Ocean University of China


Lab Pets

schmidt lab guppy fish
Guppy Fish


Prospective graduate students can join the group via the Biological Chemistry or Molecular Biology Programs.

Prospective postdoctoral fellows should send a CV and statement of interest to Dr. Schmidt.

Undergraduate researchers: please email Dr. Schmidt.