B.S., Boston College (1997)
Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin (2002)
The Scripps Research Institute (2002-2005)
Dr. Best received his B.S. in chemistry from Boston College in 1997, where he worked with Prof. Lawrence T. Scott on the synthesis of fullerene derivatives. He received his Ph.D. in 2002 from the University of Texas at Austin, where he worked on the design and synthesis of fluorescent sensors for biomolecules in the lab of Prof. Eric V. Anslyn. Following this, he performed post-doctoral research with Prof. Chi-Huey Wong at The Scripps Research Institute. This focused on the application of carbohydrate microarrays for studying cell-surface interactions, as well as the development of heterocycle and nucleotide-derived inhibitors of sulfotransferase enzymes. In 2005, Dr. Best joined the faculty at Tennessee as an assistant professor of organic chemistry.
He was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure in 2010, appointed as Director of Graduate Studies for Chemistry in 2012, and awarded a Paul and Wilma Ziegler Professorship in 2013. Dr. Best is a recipient of the NSF CAREER Award, and is on the editorial advisory board for the journal Chemistry and Physics of Lipids.