Jeremiah Bearss

Recent Graduate
College of Medicine – Tucson
Year Entered Program: 
Grad Year: 
Degrees Received: 

B.S. in Chemistry from Utah State University, Logan, Utah May 2014

PhD 2
Thesis Advisor: 
Dr. Andrew Kraft
Thesis Research: 

I am looking at the role of Processing-bodies (P-bodies) in cancer and how cellular signaling changes mRNA processing within these granules. P-bodies occur naturally within the cell and serve as important hubs of mRNA repression, degradation and processing. They have been shown to play a role in learning and memory, but their role in cancer has yet to be studied. We have discovered that key P-body proteins are under the control of oncogenes and play a role in regulating mRNA within the cell through their control of P-bodies. My research will provide an understanding into the nature of how cancer cells use P-bodies to manipulate mRNA processing within the cell and if we can manipulate this pathway through targeted cancer therapies as a potential new treatment modality.

About Me: 

I was born and raised in Boise, Idaho and graduated with a degree in chemistry from Utah State University prior to joining the MD/PhD program at UA in 2015. The rare times I am not in the lab I love being with my family, spending time with my kids and thinking of ways to get back on the football field. Once I have finished the program, I want to run clinical trials and do drug development and discovery with an emphasis in oncology.

Honors & Awards: 
  • December 2018: NIH T32 Training Grant Awardee T32CA009213, University of Arizona
  • December 2018: Graduate Interdisciplinary Research Showcase Presenter, University of Arizona
  • 2015-2017: Medical Award of Excellence Scholarship, University of Arizona
  • 2007-2014: Magna Cum Laude, Utah State University
  • 2007-2014: Dean’s List, Utah State University
  • 2013-2014: Chemistry Club member and Vice-President, Utah State University
  • 2014: Tutor of the Year, Utah State University
  • 2013: George H. and Billy Bush Emert Scholarship award, Utah State University
  • 2012: Seely-Hinckley Scholarship, Utah State University
  • 2012: “A” Pin Award recipient, Utah State University
  • 2012: Irving Condie Frost award in organic chemistry, Utah State University
  • 2011: College of Science Scholarship, Utah State University
  • 2007, 2010: Dean Scholarship, Utah State University
  • 2007: Whiteside’s Scholar Athlete, Utah State University
  • 2007: Scout Player of the Week, Utah State University
  • 2006: American Chemical Society Award Winner at ISEF, American Fork High School
  • 2006: Winner of Utah High School Science Fair for Chemistry/Biochemistry, American Fork High School
Selected Publications: 
  1. “Structure−Activity Relationships for Antibacterial to Antifungal Conversion of Kanamycin to Amphiphilic Analogues” Marina Fosso, Madher N. AlFindee, Qian Zhang, Vincent de Paul Nzuwah Nziko, Yukie Kawasaki, Sanjib K. Shrestha, Jeremiah Bearss, Rylee Gregory, Jon Y. Takemoto, and Cheng-Wei Tom Chang.  The Journal of Organic Chemistry (2015)

  2. “Synthesis and anticancer structure activity relationship investigation of cationic anthraquinone analogs” Jaya P. Shrestha, Marina Y. Fosso, Jeremiah Bearss, Cheng-Wei Tom Chang. European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 77 (2014) 96e102


  1. Bearss, J., K. Okumura, S. Padi, J. Song, L. Luevano, N. Singh, V. Olive, A. S. Kraft. 2018. A druggable backside pocket on Pim kinase mediates interaction with newly characterized substrate EDC3. Cancer Biology & Therapeutic Development Joint Symposium

  2. Bearss, J., K. Okumura, S. Padi, J. Song, L. Luevano, N. Singh, V. Olive, A. S. Kraft. 2018. Pim and AKT control P-body formation through phosphorylation of EDC3. UACC Annual Scientific Retreat

  3. Bearss, J., 2018. “The Role of EDC3 Phosphorylation by Pim and AKT in P-body Formation and Tumor Growth” Cancer Biology Student Seminar. University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, Oral Presentation

  4. Bearss, J., B. Bahr, K. Soh, P. Peterson, C. Whatcott, A. Siddiqui-Jain, D. Bearss, S. Warner. 2015. Targeting the Pim kinases in combination with BTK inhibition is synergistic in preclinical models of B-cell malignancies. Proceedings of the 106th Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research