UNM Rainforest Innovations

Distinguished Professor, Department of Pathology

The Victor and Ruby Hansen Surface Endowed Professor in Cancer Cell Biology and Clinical Translation

Cancer Center – Member Cellular & Molecular Oncology Program & Associate Director for Education, Training and Mentoring

University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center


BS – Biochemistry, University of Massachusetts

PhD –  Biochemistry, University of California, Los Angeles

Postdoctoral Training – European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Heidelberg, Germany

Business/Research Background

Dr. Angela Wandinger-Ness has been with the Department of Pathology as a faculty member with the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center since 1998.  An expert in cell biology and protein biochemistry, Dr. Wandinger-Ness has been studying enzymes called GTPases for nearly 30 years.  GTPases are molecular switches that control cell behavior, regulating how cells break down, organize, move around and attach to one another.  They are the biological catalysis in cells and when their process grow awry, then cells proliferate uncontrollably.  Current work is focused on advancing GTPases diagnostics and therapeutics to clinics.

Particular Knowledge and Skills

Dr. Wandinger-Ness has authored over 100 peer-reviewed articles and reviews; and has nine awarded patents.  She is an elected Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, served as a Visiting Professor at the Max-Planck Institute for Molecular Physiology in Dortmund, Germany, and a Research Ambassador for the German Academic Exchange Program.  She is the recipient of numerous awards for excellence in research, innovation, and education.  Most recently she was recognized as the 2019 Innovation Fellow by UNM Rainforest Innovations, the 2020 American Association for the Advancement of Science Lifetime Mentor, and the U.S. Presidential Awardee for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring.  She attributes her success to her abilities to communicate, engage with diverse people, and secure funding to an entrepreneurial spirit.  

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