Dr. McDermott holds a PhD degree in organic chemistry from Brown University and an MBA degree in finance from Rutgers University.
He is faculty in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, part of the leadership faculty of the University of Pittsburgh Drug Discovery Institute and a member of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute. He is also editorial board member of Pharmaceutical Frontiers and the Journal of Drug Research and Development.

Prior to joining the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Dr. McDermott was a Life Sciences Director in a NY consulting firm. In that capacity, Dr. McDermott led and participated in interdisciplinary consulting teams that advised pharmaceutical industry clients. Prior to that, Dr. McDermott was a Senior Principal Scientist in the Department of Discovery Chemistry of Roche Pharmaceuticals. As part of the Oncology and Metabolic Diseases medicinal chemistry sections he was involved in hit-to-lead campaigns, the SAR and DMPK optimization of small molecule leads, and the rational design of small molecule series via the use of molecular modeling and x-ray structures. During his tenure at Roche Dr. McDermott was part of extended teams that identified two small molecules that entered clinical trials and was named inventor in 23 patent applications.

Dr. McDermott is teaching faculty in the courses: a) Pharm_3032, Medicinal Chemistry; b) Pharm_3023, Foundations of Pharmaceutical Sciences; c) Pharm_5117, Biochemistry II; d) Pharm_2001, Pharmaceutical Analysis; e) MSMPHL_2370, Drug Discovery.  His research interests are rational drug design, synthesis and optimization of small molecules against enzyme targets that are important in tumor cell proliferation, neuronal injury pathways, metabolic and infectious diseases

Dr. McDermott's research interests are rational drug design, synthesis and optimization of small molecules against enzyme targets that are important in tumor cell proliferation, neuronal injury pathways, metabolic and infectious diseases.

Selected recent publications.

1. McDermott, L. A. “Kidney-type glutaminase inhibitors for treating cancer”. J. Drug Res. Dev. 2017, 3(2), 133 (http://dx.doi. org/10.16966/2470-1009.133)

2. McDermott, L.A. “McDermott LA, Iyer P, Vernetti L, Rimer S, Sun J, Boby M, Yang T, Fioravanti M, O'Neill J, Wang L, Drakes D, Katt W, Huang Q, Cerione R. “Design and evaluation of novel glutaminase inhibitors” Bioorg. Med. Chem. 2016, 24(8), 1819-39.

3. Marani, M.; Paone, A.; Fiascarelli, A.; Macone, A.; Gargano, M.; Rinaldo, S.; Giardina, G.; Pontecorvi, V.; Koes, D.; McDermott, L.; Yang, T.; Paiardini, A.; Contestabile, R.; Cutruzzolà, F. “A pyrazolopyran derivative preferentially inhibits the activity of human cytosolic hydroxymethyltransferase and induces cell death in lung cancer cells” Oncotarget. 2016, 7(4), 4570-4583.

4. Skrypnyk, N.I.; Sanker, S.; Brilli-Skvarca, L.; Novitskaya, T.; Woods, C.; Chiba, T.; Patel, K.; Goldberg, N.D.; McDermott, L.; Vinson, P.N.; Calcutt, M.W.; Huryn, D.M.; Vernetti, L.A.; Vogt, A.; Hukriede, N.; deCaestecker, M.P. “Delayed treatment with PTBA analogs reduces post injury renal fibrosis after kidney injury”. Am J Physiol Renal Physiol. 2016, 310 (8), F705-F716.

5. Paiardini, A,.; Fiascarelli, A.; Rinaldo, S.; Daidone, F.; Giardina, G.; Koes, D.R.; Parroni, A.; Montini, G.; Marani, M.; Paone, A.; McDermott, L.A.; Contestabile, R.; Cutruzzolà, F. “Screening and in vitro testing of antifolate inhibitors of human cytosolic serine hydroxymethyltransferase.” ChemMedChem 2015, 10, 490-497.

6. McDermott, L.; Qin, C. “Allosteric MeK Inhibitors for the Treatment of Cancer. An Overview” J. Drug Res. Dev. 2015, 1 (1): doi.org/10.16966/jdrd.101

7. Qian, W.; Wang, J.; Roginskaya, V.; McDermott, L. A.; Edwards, R. P.; Stolz, D. B.; Liambi, F.; Green, D. R.; Van Houten, B. “Novel combination of mitochondrial division inhibitor 1 (mdivi-1) and platinum agents produces synergistic pro-apoptotic effect in drug resistant tumor cells” Oncotarget, 2014, 5(12), 4180-4194.

8. Novitskaya, T.; McDermott, L.; Zhang, K.X.; Chiba, T.; Paueksakon, P.; Hukriede, N.; de Caestecker, M.P. “A PTBA class small molecule enchances recovery and reduces post injury fibrosis after aristolochic acid-induced kidney injury. Am. J. Physiol. Renal Physiol. 2014, 306, 496-504.

9. Sanker, S.; Cirio, M. C.; Vollmer, L.L.; Goldberg, N. D.; McDermott, L. A.; Hukriede, N. A.; Vogt, A. “Development of high-content assays for kidney progenitor cell expansion in transgenic zebrafish” J. Biomol. Screen. 2013, 18(10), 1193-202.

10. Cosentino, C. C.; Skrypnyk, N.; Brilli, L. L.; Chiba, T.; Novitskaya, T.; Woods, C.; West, J.; Korotchenko, V.N.; McDermott, L.; Day, B. W.; Davidson, A. J.; Harris, R.; de Caestecker, M. P.; Hukriede. “Histone deacetylase inhibitor enhances recovery after AKI” J. Am. Soc. Nephrol. 2013, 24, 943-953.

11. Qian, Y.; Wertheimer, S. J.; Ahmad, M.; Cheung, A. W-H.; Firooznia, F.; Hamilton, M. M.; Hayden, S.; Li, S.; Marcopulos, N.; McDermott, L.; Tan, J.; Yun, W.; Guo, L.; Pamidukkala, A.; Chen, Y.; Huang, K-S.; Ramsey, G. B.; Whittard, T.; Conde-Knape, K; Taub, R.; Rodinone, C. M.; Tilley, J.; Bolin, D. “Discovery of Orally Active Carboxylic Acid Derivatives of 2-Phenyl-5-trifluoromethyloxazole-4-carboxamide as Potent Diacylglycerol Acyltransferase-1 Inhibitors for the Potential Treatment of Obesity and Diabetes”. J. Med. Chem. 2011, 54, 2433.