Steven M. Firestine Ph.D.

Steven M. Firestine Ph.D.


Interim Chair and Professor


Pharmaceutical Sciences

Office Location

EACPHS, Room 3134




Steven M. Firestine Ph.D.

Degrees and Certifications

  • B.S. Chemistry - University of Michigan, Ann Arbor MI
  • PhD. Medicinal Chemistry - Purdue University, West Lafayette IN
  • Postdoc Enzymology - Pennsylvania State University, University Park PA

Positions and Employment

  • 1988-1990 Undergraduate Research Assistant (Dr. James K. Coward), University of Michigan,
  • Ann Arbor, MI
  • 1990-1995 Graduate Research Assistant (Dr. V. Jo Davission), Purdue University , West Lafayette, IN
  • 1996-2000 Postdoctoral Fellow (Dr. Stephen J. Benkovic), The Pennsylvania State University,
  • University Park, PA
  • 2000-2005 Assistant Professor of Medicinal Chemistry, Duquesne University Mylan School of Pharmacy, Pittsburgh PA
  • 2005-2010 Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Wayne State University, Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Detroit, MI
  • 2010-2016 Associate Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Wayne State University, Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Detroit, MI
  • 2016-present Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences,  Wayne State University, Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Detroit, MI 
  • Sept. 2021-present Interim Chair of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Wayne State University, Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Detroit, MI


Awards and Honors

  • 1989 Gomberg Summer Research Fellowship, University of Michigan
  • 1990 Merck Award, University of Michigan
  • 1992-1993 NIH Predoctoral Training grant, Purdue University
  • 1994-1995 American Chemical Society Division of Medicinal Chemistry Predoctoral Fellowship, Purdue University
  • 1995 Jenkins/Knevel Award for Outstanding Graduate Research, Purdue University
  • 1996-1999 Damon Runyon-Walter Winchell Fellowship, Penn State
  • 1999 ASBMB Travel Award, Penn State
  • 2005 Outstanding Young Investigator, Duquesne University
  • 2012 Research Recognition Award, Outstanding Achievement in Basic Science Research, Eugene Applebaum College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Wayne State University
  • 2015 Outstanding Graduate Mentor, Wayne State University
  • 2016 Faculty Recognition Award in Pharmaceutical Sciences, Class of 2016, Wayne State University

Areas of Expertise

  • Medicinal chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular biology
  • Enzymology
  • Computational chemistry
  • Organic chemistry

Primary Research Interest

  • Anti-infective drug discovery
  • Organic chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Chemical biology

Recent Publications

  1. Rowe H.M., Hanson B.R., Runft D.L., Lin Q., Firestine S.M. and Neely M.N.* Modification of the CpsA Protein Reveals a Role in Alteration of the Streptococcus agalactiae Cell Envelope. Infect Immun., 1497-506, 2015.
  2. Kochanek, S., Clymer, T., Pakkala, V., Hebert, S., Reeping, K., Firestine, S.M.*, and Evanseck, J.D.*, Intramolecular Charge-Assisted Hydrogen Bond Strength in Pseudo-Chair Carboxyphosphate. J. Phys. Chem. B., 1184-91, 2015.
  3. Dewal, M. B. and Firestine, S. M.* Site-Directed Mutagenesis of Catalytic Residues in N5-Carboxyaminoimidazole Ribonucleotide Synthetase. Biochemistry, 52, 6559-6567, 2013.
  4. Islam, M.S. and Firestine, S.M.* Synthesis of substituted pyridyl-pyrimidines as potential protein-protein interaction inhibitors. J. Heterocycl. Chem., 50, 1043-1048, 2013.
  5. Li J., Zhu Y., Hazeldine S.T., Firestine S.M. and Oupický D*. Cyclam-Based Polymeric Copper Chelators for Gene Delivery and Potential PET Imaging. Biomacromolecules, 13, 3220-3227, 2012.
  6. Dewal, M.B., Wani, A.S., Vidaillac, C., Oupicky, D., Rybak, M.J. and Firestine, S.M.* Thieno[2,3-d]pyrimidinedione derivatives as antibacterial agents. Eur. J. Med. Chem., 51, 145-53, 2012.
  7. Fawaz, M.V., Topper, M.E. and Firestine, S.M.* The ATP-grasp enzymes. Bioorg. Chem., 39, 185-191, 2011.
  8. Vooturi, S.K., Dewal, M.B. and Firestine, S.M.* Examination of a synthetic benzophenone membrane-targeted antibiotic. Org. Biomol. Chem., 9, 6367-6372, 2011.
  9. Dewal, M.B. and Firestine, S.M.* Non-peptidic α-helical mimetics as protein-protein interaction inhibitors. Curr. Med. Chem., 18, 2420-2428, 2011.
  10. Vooturi, S.K. and Firestine, S.M. Synthetic Membrane-Targeted Antibiotics. Curr. Med. Chem.,. 2010, 17, 2292-2300.
  11. Thoden, J.B., Holden, H.M., Paritala, H., and Firestine, S.M. Structure and Site-Directed Mutagenesis ofAspergillus clavatus N5-Carboxylaminoimidazole Ribonucleotide Synthetase. Biochemistry, 2010, 49, 752-60.
  12. Paritala, H. and Firestine, S.M. Characterization of insulin ILPR sequences for their ability to adopt a G-quadruplex structure. Nucleosides Nucleotides Nucleic Acids, 2010, 29, 81-90.
  13. Vooturi, S.K. and Firestine, S.M.* Solution-Phase Parallel Synthesis of Novel Membrane-Targeted Antibiotics. J. Comb. Chem., 2010, 12, 151-160.

Publications: 43

Poster and Oral Presentations: Over 100 presentations