UAMS Researcher Zhou named Winthrop Rockefeller Chair

By Nate Hinkel

The chair was established with a gift from the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation and will allow Zhou to advance his research, which focuses on making radiation therapy for cancer safer, less toxic and more effective, as well as developing safer, non-toxic medical countermeasures for use in radiological and nuclear emergencies.

“When Dr. Zhou joined us in 2010, he brought an unparalleled expertise in radiation-related research. His team is internationally recognized and their work will undoubtedly advance our understanding of how radiation can more effectively treat leukemia and other cancer patients in the years to come,” said UAMS Chancellor Dan Rahn, M.D.

Zhou and his team of researchers officially joined the UAMS College of Pharmacy Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences in March 2010. He serves as professor and deputy director in the department’s Division of Radiation Health.

In addition to Rahn, speakers at the ceremony included Stephanie Gardner, Pharm.D., dean of the UAMS College of Pharmacy; Martin Hauer-Jensen, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Division of Radiation Health in the College of Pharmacy, associate dean for research, and professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Surgery and Pathology; and Lijian Shao, M.D., Ph.D., research instructor in the Division of Radiation Health.

Zhou is the principal investigator for three Research Project Grants (R01s) and two American Recovery and Reinvestment Act administrative supplement grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) totaling almost $4 million to examine radiation-induced injury to bone marrow.

He previously served as a professor of pathology and an adjunct professor of radiation oncology at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC). Since 2007, he has served as director of the Flow Cytometry Facility at Hollings Cancer Center at MUSC.

A graduate of Yunyang Medical College in Hubei, China, and Zhou completed his internship at the college’s Affiliated Hospital and postdoctoral training at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

He is a regular member of the NIH Radiation Therapeutics and Biology Study Section and a member of the International Society of Stem Cell Research, the American Society of Hematology, the International Society of Experimental Hematology and the Radiation Research Society.

In July 2010, Zhou was one of two University of Arkansas System researchers honored by Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe when he was announced as an inaugural ARA Scholar.

Formed from funds appropriated by the state Legislature and authorized by the Arkansas Science and Technology Authority in 2007, the ARA aims to strengthen economic development in the state by championing university-based research and innovation in defined strategic focus areas.

Winthrop Rockefeller was elected Arkansas’ governor in 1966 and served two terms. He died of pancreatic cancer in 1973, at which time his wealth was divided between a charitable trust and the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, which concentrates on economic development, education, as well as economic, racial and social justice.

UAMS is the state’s only comprehensive academic health center, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Related Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; a 540,000-square-foot hospital; a statewide network of regional centers; and six institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, the Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, the Myeloma Institute for Research and Therapy, the Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, the Psychiatric Research Institute and the Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging. It is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. UAMS has 2,836 students and 761 medical residents. It is the state’s largest public employer with more than 10,000 employees, including nearly 1,150 physicians who provide medical care to patients at UAMS, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, the VA Medical Center and UAMS’ Area Health Education Centers throughout the state. Visit or