Vanderbilt Researcher to Deliver Borne Lecture

Nov. 2 talk by Lawrence Marnett to focus on mechanism of NSAID action



OXFORD, Miss. – Lawrence J. Marnett, a cancer researcher and administrator at Vanderbilt University, is set to deliver the 11th annual Ronald F. Borne Distinguished Lecture, coming up Nov. 2 at the University of Mississippi.

Marnett is director of the A.B. Hancock Jr. Memorial Laboratory for Cancer Research, senior associate dean for biomedical sciences, associate vice chancellor for research, professor of cancer research and professor of biochemistry, chemistry and pharmacology at Vanderbilt.

Hosted by the Department of BioMolecular Sciences in the university’s School of Pharmacy, the lecture is free and open to the public. It is slated for 11:30 a.m. in Room 1044 of the Thad Cochran Research Center. Marnett plans to discuss “Endocannabinoids Provide Critical Insights into the Action of Non-steroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs on Cyclooxygenase 2.”

“My lecture will focus on the mechanism of action of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs,” Marnett said. “These are the oldest and most-used drugs in the world. I hope the audience will come away with an understanding of the molecular mechanism of NSAID action and an appreciation for how much new there is to learn even about systems that we think we understand pretty well.”

Stephen J. Cutler, chair of the Department of BioMolecular Sciences, said he is looking forward to the lecture.

“Dr. Marnett is an exceedingly accomplished scientist and we are excited that he will be this year’s Ronald F. Borne Distinguished Lecturer,” Cutler said.

Marnett received a Ph.D. in chemistry from Duke University and completed postdoctoral work at the Karolinska Institute and Wayne State University. He began his academic career at Wayne State University and moved to Vanderbilt in 1989, serving as associate director of basic research for the Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center from 1993 to 2002.

The author of more than 500 research publications and 14 patents, Marnett’s research program focuses on the mechanism of action of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, known as NSAIDs, and the role of chronic inflammation in cancer. Marnett has been the recipient of an American Cancer Society Faculty Research Award, the Sigma Xi Research Award and a National Cancer Institute Outstanding Investigator Award, among other awards.

Marnett is looking forward to his return to Oxford.

“I have visited Ole Miss several times and have a number of friends who I am looking forward to seeing,” he said. “Also, my wife and I like Oxford very much and are excited to sample its charms once more.”

The lecture was established in 2004 as a way of recognizing Ronald F. Borne, a longtime medicinal chemistry professor, and his contributions to the department and the university. Borne was a classroom favorite of students for many years and has been recognized on numerous occasions for his teaching and research excellence. He received the university’s 1972 Elsie M. Hood Teacher of the Year Award and 1996 Faculty Achievement Award. He was also named by the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education as the Mississippi Professor of the Year in 1992.

Borne served as department chair from 1979 to 1988, acting associate vice chancellor for research and acting dean of the Graduate School in 1985-86, interim associate vice chancellor for research in 1997-98 and vice chancellor for research in 1998-2001. He retired from the university in 2004.

For more information on the lecture or for assistance related to a disability, contact Danielle Noonan at or 662-915-7026.