Thomas Nowak, who joined the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry in 1972, has become an emeritus professor in the department. Nowak’s research involves enzyme mechanisms, their regulation and structure, and how they are related to each other.
The enzymes, involved in metabolic energy utilization and energy storage, require cations for activity, and the research focuses on their roles in regulatory and catalytic processes. The study has suggested several amino acids that serve in enzyme regulation and catalysis and have generated targets for site-directed mutagenesis.
Nowak, who graduated in 1964 from Case Institute of Technology, earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Kansas in 1969 and worked at the Institute for Cancer Research before he came to Notre Dame. During his career, Nowak was a visiting professor at the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, and a visiting professor at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile in Santiago, as well as the recipient of a National Institutes of Health Research Career Development Award.