Rachael M. Crist, PhD
Scientist, Head of Strategic Client Relations
Dr. Crist is a Scientist in the NCL and Head of the lab's Strategic Client Relations. In this role, she coordinates research efforts across multiple disciplines to promote the clinical translation of novel nanotech therapeutics and diagnostics for cancer, and most recently Sars-CoV-2. With more than a decade of experience in the nanotech field, she has managed more than a hundred interdisciplinary scientific collaborations with academic and pharmaceutical organizations from around the globe, developing an extensive network of the world's leading experts in nanomedicine. She has also interfaced with various agencies within the US Government with respect to regulatory and consumer safety aspects of nanotechnology and served as an Executive Board member for the European Union’s Nanomedicine Characterization consortia. Her roles include all aspects of project management, such as prioritization of projects, allocation of resources, creation of budgets, risk assessment, production of various scientific and technical reports, and solicitation of new partners and funding opportunities. She also participates in review committees, evaluating candidate nanotech products with regards to physical and chemical attributes, as well as in vitro and in vivo safety and efficacy profiles. Her areas of interest include nanotech drug development and the environmental, health and safety issues associated with nanomaterials.
Prior to joining the NCL, Dr. Crist completed a post-doctoral fellowship with the HIV Drug Resistance Program, National Cancer Institute at Frederick, exploring the mechanism and requirements for the retroviral assembly process. She received her Ph.D. degree in chemistry from Michigan State University, studying the underlying protein/substrate interactions modulating color vision, and her B.S. degree in chemistry from Miami University, investigating conformational tendencies of small polyamides for rational drug design. Her research experiences include molecular biology, protein and virology techniques, and organic synthesis.