Dr. Witczak was educated in Lodz, Poland, receiving his M.S. and Ph.D.
degrees from the Medical University of Lodz. Zbigniew worked at Purdue University as postdoctoral fellow with Professor Roy L. Whistler, a world-renowned authority in carbohydrate chemistry.
Dr. Witczak has wide industrial experience as well as academic experience
in sweetners. At UConn, Zbigniew was highly regarded for his teaching and research. His students in the UConn School of Pharmacy elected him Teacher of the Year in 1996 and in 2003 at the Nesbitt School of Pharmacy at Wilkes University. He also received the
John S. Burlew award in 1997 from the Connecticut Valley Section of the American Chemical Society for his outstanding contribution to carbohydrate chemistry.
Dr. Witczak now devotes his time and energy to his favorite activities, teaching and research and expanding medicinal chemistry courses and research programs.
Later, in August 2000, Dr. Witczak was awarded the Melville
L. Wolform, Award of American Chemical Society, Division of Carbohydrate
Chemistry for his outstanding research contribution to carbohydrate
chemistry and service to the Division.
Dr. Witczak's work on levoglucosenone and its utilization to the synthesis of various classes of rare sugars led him to study the entire field to explore the hidden potential of this universal carbohydrate building block by expanding its application to medicinal chemistry of carbohydrates. His developments have made it possible to synthesize new classes of compounds important in biology and medicine (thiosugars, aminosugars) as potential therapeutics directly from levoglucosenone and have pointed the way toward new green methods for use in large-scale chemistry. His current research sparked further enthusiasm that led to a fruitful book collaboration. In 1997, he co-edited with Karl A. Nieforth the first book on
Carbohydrates in Drug Design which has since become the leading reference in the field.
Zbigniew is a regular speaker at national and regional ACS meetings, as well as IUPAC and International Carbohydrate meetings. He has been invited to lecture on his work in numerous research institutions in the US an d abroad. He has published over 60 research papers and patents in the field of carbohydrate, medicinal and biological chemistry. In addition he has edited three books and is a guest editor for carbohydrate topics of the world-renowned journal,
Current Organic Chemistry, and serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Carbohydrate Chemistry,
Current Medicinal Chemistry, Carbohydrate Research and the former Investigational Drugs Journal.
Recently in November 2005, Dr. Witczak delivered a plannary lecture at the XV Simposio Nacional de Quimica Organica in Mar del Plata, Argentina. He was also awarded with a honorary membership to the Argentine Chemical Society.