KSU to host John C. Salerno Memorial Research Symposium

KSU bus

Kennesaw State University‘s Office of Research will host the first John C. Salerno Memorial Research Symposium on Friday, Sep. 28 from 1-5 p.m.  Salerno was the Neel Distinguished Chair in Biotechnology at KSU.  He died in 2015, after a career marked by prolific research.

The symposium is open to the public. and will be held in Room 400 of the KSU Center. Participants will deliver 15-minute presentations on their research, followed by a question-and-answer period.

In a KSU press release, Jonathan McMurry, associate vice president for research and professor in KSU’s Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, said, “John’s legacy at KSU is to be found not only in the discoveries he made and his contributions to building the research environment but also to the mentoring of young faculty who have now come into their own as independent researchers.”

Salerno’s research was published in more than 200 scientific journals.  He arrived at KSU in 2006, after serving as a professor and Biology Department chair at Rensselaer Polytechnic for 26 years.

According to the press release, “Many of Salerno’s innovations were in enzymology, particularly the properties and activity of nitric oxide synthases, a family of enzymes that produce nitric oxide. This important cell-signaling molecule is beneficial to cardiovascular health as it regulates blood vessel expansion in the body’s circulatory system.”

Faculty from all disciplines were invited to submit research abstracts to the Office of Research to be considered for the symposium. Selection will be made by a faculty committee headed by McMurry. A cash prize will be awarded to a participant as well as a “People’s Choice” award to be chosen by attendees.

Susan M.E. Smith, a KSU Biology professor and researcher and Salerno’s spouse, said, “John gave so much to so many people, and he’s still giving even after he’s gone. The family is pleased to see his legacy of research and teaching honored by the university.”