Anita Nag Faculty and Staff Chemistry Furman University
  • Visiting Assistant Professor of Biology and Chemistry
  • 864.294.2354
  • Plyler 244D, Townes Science Center

Anita Nag grew up in Calcutta, India. She received her B.Sc. in Chemistry from Jadavpur University, India, and M.Sc. in Chemistry from Indian Institute of Technology, in Kanpur. She moved to California and completed her Ph.D. in Chemistry with emphasis on Biochemistry from University of California, Los Angeles. At UCLA, she worked with Professor Harold Martinson to study functional coupling among various stages of messenger RNA processing. After receiving her Ph.D., she joined the laboratory of Professor Joan Steitz at Yale University where she worked on RNA decay factors. Dr. Nag received the Anna Fuller Postdoctoral Fellowship and Leukemia Lymphoma Postdoctoral Fellowship to conduct her postdoctoral research. She was intrigued by the functional diversity of virally encoded RNAs and joined the laboratory of Professor Hengli Tang at Florida State University where she worked with the Hepatitis C virus.

Dr. Nag served as Assistant Professor at Florida A&M University before joining Furman. She collaborated in multiple projects, trained several undergraduate students, and actively developed new courses implementing modern pedagogical approach.

Dr. Nag received awards including ASM-LINK Undergraduate Faculty Research Initiative (UFRI) fellowship by American Society of Microbiology, and funding from Research Center in Minority Institution (NIMHD). Dr. Nag enjoys mentoring undergraduate students in her research laboratory. At Furman, she continues her research on viral RNAs.

Name Title Description


Principles of Biology

The basic principles common to living organisms, including: cell and molecular biology, genetics, organismal physiology, ecology, evolution. All sections address these topics, but the focus for each may vary. Designed for non-science majors.


Seminar in Chemistry

Seminars presented based on current literature. Presentations include articles detailing the application of chemical principles and techniques to the natural environment. Surveys of assigned journals are presented individually; more detailed presentations are made by small groups working as teams. Topics include: coverage of recent important developments, global awareness of the application of chemistry to the natural world, experience in making scientific presentations, and encouragement of good literature reading habits.


Foundations of Chemistry

Introduction to the principles of chemistry. Topics include: atomic and molecular structure and chemical bonding, stoichiometry, properties of the states of matter, and energetics of chemical reactions with emphasis on problem solving, conceptual understanding, and analytical reasoning. Laboratory focuses on quantitative measurements and interpretation of data.


Kntcs, Thrmodynmcs, & Environ

Kinetic and thermodynamic principles of chemical reactions including the laws of thermodynamicss, acid-base chemistry, solubility, electrochemistry and colligative properties applied in an environmental context. Nuclear chemistry including radioactive decay, nuclear power, and the energetics of nuclear reactions.


Bio-Organic Chemistry

Introduction to the organic chemistry of living systems. Topics include: the structure and chemistry of proteins, mechanistic enzymology, the organic chemistry of cofactors, DNA-drug interactions, and the biosynthesis of natural products.


Advanced Biological Chemistry

Advanced topics in bio-organic chemistry, mostly related to enzymes, kinetics and coenzymes, as well as detailed discussion of nucleic acid chemistry/bio-chemistry, molecular aspects of genetics, and gene control. Laboratory includes isolation and purification of enzymes, determination of DNA structures, DNA sequencing, and individual mini-projects.


Metabolic Biochemistry

Exploration of the chemical principles that underlie basic physiological processes, with a focus on the action and regulation of enzymes that function in major metabolic pathways and maintain homeostasis. These principles will be applied to understand and solve problems in human health.


Metabolic Biochemistry

Exploration of the chemical principles that underlie basic physiological processes, with a focus on the action and regulation of enzymes that function in major metabolic pathways and maintain homeostasis. These principles will be applied to understand and solve problems in human health.

My research group is interested in understanding various functional RNAs encoded by different viruses. Viruses cause dampening of gene expression through selective inhibition of host protein translation, and by destabilizing the host messenger RNA. Several viruses including Kaposi’s sarcoma virus, SARS corona virus encode viral proteins that actively engage with the ribosome on mRNA. However, some viral RNAs may escape this RNA destabilization step. We are particularly interested in understanding how viral RNAs escape these destabilization steps in the host cell. We use biochemical and molecular biology techniques to study viral RNA and protein complexes that are involved in this host shut-off pathway.


Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles
M.Sc., Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur
B.Sc., Jadavpur University

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