Kattesh Katti, an Indian American researcher at the University of Missouri, has won the 2015 Hevesy Medal, the premier international award of excellence honoring outstanding achievements in radio-analytical and nuclear chemistry.

The award, given annually to an individual in recognition of sustained career achievements, is named for Nobel Prize winner George de Hevesy (1885-1966), a pioneer in using isotopes as tracers to study chemical processes.

A professor of radiology and physics in UM’s School of Medicine and senior research scientist at the University of Missouri Research Reactor, Katti developed several tools in nano-medicine.

For instance, while cancer researchers using gold nano-particles to treat prostate cancer are limited by its levels of toxicity during chemotherapy, Katti and other MU researchers found more efficient and environmentally friendly ways to target tumors by using gold nano-particles and a compound found in tea leaves.

“I am excited to receive this highly coveted international prize, as this truly reflects the outstanding quality of scientific research being done in my laboratories, my department and our medical school at the University of Missouri,” Katti said in a statement.

“This award is the culmination of my success in several different areas of nuclear sciences and medicine including radio-pharmaceutical sciences, nano-medicine using radioactive gold nano-particles, bio-conjugation chemistry, transition metal and radio-metal chemistries, green nanotechnology and nuclear chemistry for the remediation of radioactive waste.”

Wynn A. Volkert, director of the Radiopharmaceutical Sciences Institute at MU, added that Katti has created “new knowledge with applications in nuclear medicine, nano-medicine and radio-pharmaceutical sciences, and his discovery of radioactive gold nano-particles is already creating the potential for new therapeutic applications in oncology."

Katti, who has a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry from the Indian Institute of Science, was recently inducted in the National Academy of Inventors (I-W, Jan. 16, 2015).

Nobel Laureate Norman Borlaug also dubbed him the “Father of Green Nanotechnology” to honor his groundbreaking green nanotechnology invention of producing gold nano-particles by a simple mixing of soybeans with gold salt.

Katti will receive the Hevesy Medal at a ceremony at the 14th International Conference on Modern Trends in Activation Analysis, to be held this August at the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands.

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