Distinguished Scientist: Daren Knoell, PharmD

Daren Knoell, PharmD

Daren Knoell, PharmD

This profile is part of a series to highlight the researchers who will be honored at a ceremony on Nov. 9 for UNMC’s Scientist Laureate, Research Leadership, Distinguished Scientist, New Investigator and Community Service to Research Award recipients.

Distinguished Scientist

The Distinguished Scientist Award — which is sponsored by the chancellor — recognizes researchers who have been among the most productive scientists at UNMC during the past five years.

  • Name: Daren Knoell, PharmD
  • Title: Lewis E. and Antonia E. Harris Professor and Chair, Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science, UNMC College of Pharmacy
  • Joined UNMC: October 2016
  • Hometown: Fremont, Nebraska

Please describe your research focus in three words or less: Zinc is good.

Why is research important in the world today? A moldy orange, Dr. Alexander Fleming and Penicillium chrysogenum (Penicillin) saved countless lives. Need we say more?

My research will make a difference because: It is revealing how a vital nutrient (zinc) has profound influence on the host response to infection. Through our discoveries, also inspired by the work of others, new translational knowledge is emerging that will lead to advancements in the prevention and treatment of populations that are vulnerable to zinc deficiency and infectious disease.

The best advice I’ve ever received is: “Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans.” Someone shared this with me long before I heard it in the lyrics of a John Lennon song years later. I try to remind myself of this, especially when chaotic moments arise.

Three things you may not know about me are:

  • I hauled and distributed Dekalb seed corn with my father in the winter as a child.
  • I am adopted, which inspired my interest in pharmacogenomics, followed by 23andMe, a number of years ago.
  • I enjoy catfishing from an airboat on the Platte River, something I did growing up and on occasion still get to do today.


  1. Todd Wyatt says:

    Congratulations on a well-earned recognition! I am pleased to be your colleague and appreciate your friendship. You are a great asset to the Alcohol Center!

  2. Karen R Knoell says:

    Congratulations for an honor well deserved!

  3. Patrick Fuller says:

    Congratulations Dr. Knoell!! A great honor and even greater to be able to work with you and represent our college of pharmacy, UNMC and NMC!!!

  4. John Keady says:

    Congrats Dr. Knoell! No doubt well desrved. The College is lucky to have such a distinguished Faculty member and Chair.

  5. Angie Svoboda, Pharm.D. FAPC says:

    Congrats Dr. Knoell, the college and State of Nebraska is lucky to have you! – Yes, I agree….zinc is GOOD!!!!

  6. Kusum K. Kharbanda says:

    Congratulations, Daren! A well-deserved honor!

  7. Clarence Ueda says:

    Congratulations, Daren. Very impressive. Give my best to Karen.

Comments are closed.