Dr. Michael Eze


Michael Eze Title: Associate Professor
Office: 2RC025 - Lab: 3RC031, 3RC033
Building: Richardson College for the Environment and Science Complex
Phone: 204.786.9946


Ph.D.  University of Alberta
B.Sc.  University of Nigeria



Postdoctoral Fellow: U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), Fogarty International Research Felllow: at Tufts New England Medical Center Hospitals, Boston, MA, USA

Senior Resident Research Associate of the U.S. National research Council, Division of Communicable Diseases and Immunology, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Washington DC, USA

Visiting Scientist, MRC Group in the Radiation Sciences, Faculty de Medécine (CHUS), Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Québec, Canada

Associate Member, International Centre for Theoretical Physics (Physics of the Living State Program), International Atomic Energy Agency, Trieste, Italy

Director, Institute for Health and Human Potential, Global College, UofW 

Great Turnout at Lecture Exploring Indigenization and Resiliency

6th World Nursing and Healthcare Conference



CHEM 1112/3 Basic Chemical Reactivity
CHEM 3502/3 Intermediate Biochemistry I
CHEM 3503/3 Intermediate Biochemistry II
CHEM 3701/3 Directed Studies in Chemistry
CHEM 4701/6 Research Projects in Chemistry
CHEM 4703/3 Unique Chemical Species in Health and Disease 

UPDATE: For Prospective Students Winter 2020 - CHEM-4703

Unique Chemical Species in Health and Disease Course Description - CHEM-4703


Special Courses designed by me: Public Health, Development and Policy:

[A] Designed and team-taught by me in collaboration with some expert colleagues, from within the local community of experts.

  1. Health, Disease, and Development [GMULT-7319 a new graduate course designed 2013-14, and offered Spring/Summer (May-August) 2014. (This was offered together with the undergraduate options MULT/BCHM-4219(3); and MULT/BCHM-2219(3)
  2. Health and Sustainable Development [GDP-7704: core course of the UofW “Masters in Development Practice” (MDP) program: Offered fall (September-December) 2014, together with the undergraduate option MULT/BCHM-4219(3).

[B] Graduate Course designed by me for, and offered at University of Manitoba Chemistry Department for Two Consecutive Years.
Cellular Redox Chemistry in Health and Disease: Microbes, humans/animals and plants [(UofManitoba): 002.740 Topics in Biochemistry – (Winter 2005; & Winter 2006).

[C] Courses designed for the University of Winnipeg Chemistry Department.

  1. Unique Chemical Species in Health and Disease [CHEM-4703(3): A Chemistry Special Topics course, designed and taught by me]
  2. Chemical Wisdom in Indigenous Health [CHEM-2503(3): A Chemistry course towards fulfilling the Indigenous requirement in Science at UofW. [Currently being considered for approval by the UofW Senate Curriculum Committee as an Experimental Course]


[D] Summer Institute in Diseases and Policy (SIID).
[A symposium-type biennial, multi-tier (graduate and undergraduate), multidisciplinary program of courses in Public Health: There were six iterations in 10 years (2005-2015; see below). SIIDII to SIIDVI were designed by me in collaboration with some other expert colleagues. Team-teaching was with colleagues from the local and international communities of experts]. For each offering, there were intensive in-class sessions for the first week; then thereafter, the rest of the program (assignments etc.) was accomplished within 2 extra months.

  1. Inaugural Offering (SIIDI, 2005): The inaugural SIID (May 30 – June 3, 2005 for in-class intensive sessions). Theme: “Impact of Infectious Diseases on Local and Global Communities”.
  2. SIIDII (2007): (June 11–15, 2007 for in-class intensive sessions). Theme of SIIDII: “Issues and Strategies for Intervention on HIV/AIDS.”
  3. SIIDIII (2009): (June 8 – 12, 2009 for in-class intensive sessions). Theme: “Impact of Infectious Diseases on Local and Global Investment and Development.”
  4. SIIDIV (2011): (June 6 – 10 for in-class intensive sessions). The first iteration of this Special Topics program was “Summer Institute in Diseases and Policy: Theme: Infectious Diseases, Health Policy, and Vulnerable Populations.”
  5. SIIDV (2013): (June 10-15, 2013 for in-class intensive sessions). Theme: “Infectious and Chronic Diseases Interaction: Policy Perspectives for Indigenous and Global Health”
  6. SIIDVI (2015): (May 25 - 30, 2015 for in-class intensive sessions). Theme: “Disease, Ill-health and Healing: Combating Global Health Inequities.”

[E] Inter-Institutional Course.
“Tropical and Infectious Diseases and HIV/AIDS” [UofW Experimental Course BCHM-3504(6)], offered at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN): We sent two students, one (Ms. Dana Dell) in 2008 and the other (now Dr. Robert Bertrand) in 2010, to Professor Peter Uzoegwu at UNN. The students did this 6-Credit course in 8 weeks, taught by Prof. Uzoegwu and his expert team, and involving Ebonyi State University (and our affiliates to the UofW-UNN Exchange Program) for field trips and awareness campaigns. On return to UofW, the student (undergraduate in each case, at that time) received the credit as part of his/her degree program. The course was accepted here at UofW as an Experimental Course BCHM-3504(6). For each student, it was an exciting and transformative experience.


Research Interests:

Health-Enhancement & Public Health Biochemistry

NITRIC OXIDE, AND REACTIVE OXYGEN IN HEALTH AND DISEASE AND INDUSTRY - Humanity is (to varying extents) under chronic exposure to nitric oxide (NO) and reactive oxygen species (ROS), as well as related substances. These come from exogenous pollutants (cigarette smoke, factory and automobile exhaust gases, etc), and from endogenous sources (neuronal and cardiovascular NO synthases form low levels of NO for regulatory events); at sites of inflammation and infection, and around cancerous cells, phagocytes and other immune/inflammatory cells form copious amounts of NO and ROS in response to the same chemical and particulate stimuli; our normal aerobic metabolic activities, including oxidative electron transport chronically produce ROS; etc. ROS include superoxide (O2), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), hypochlorite (OCl), etc. An oxidative stress is imposed on the cell by the presence of ROS and NO. Some chemotherapeutic agents may impose oxidative stress in the cell as part of their mode of action [e.g., artemisinin against malaria]. Some of the physiological roles of NO are mediated by products formed from the reaction of NO and ROS, e.g., peroxynitrite (ONOO) from superoxide (O2) and NO. Via oxidation, nitrosation and nitration reactions often involving free radicals, ONOO modifies and/or damages cellular molecules, e.g., proteins, DNA, RNA, carbohydrates, and lipids. NO may also interact with heme-iron and iron-sulfur clusters.

Cellular antioxidants, including thiols [glutathione (GSH), and cysteine (CySH)], beta-carotene, enzymes [superoxide dismutase (SOD), and catalase], and vitamins A, C, and E (tocopherols), detoxify the free radicals and restore homeostasis. If the antioxidants are inadequate, inflammatory, degenerative and other diseases (e.g., cardiovascular disease, arthritis, cataracts, Alzeimer’s disease, etc) as well as cancer may result. Thus, NO and ROS may cause a spectrum of effects from beneficial to adverse. The specific products formed, and the particular physiological events triggered depend on levels of NO, ROS and other chemical components, the cellular location, and redox state. Generally, at low levels, NO serves salutary cellular regulatory functions. We are interested in the consequences of the interactions of antibiotic, anti-neoplastic and other chemotherapeutic agents with NO, ROS, thiyl and/or other free radicals that may be formed by the myriad of combinations of potential chemical events at specific cellular microenvironments, especially during pathogenesis. How are these interactions related to: (a) the outcome of a therapeutic intervention, for instance (efficacy, drug resistance, etc.)? (b) the choice of therapeutic agents for specific individuals in specific pathological conditions. At the present time, using an in vitro model, we are studying the susceptibility of Escherichia coli and Azotobacter vinelandii to the antibiotic/antineoplastic agent, Cerulenin. We relate the efficacy of cerulenin with; (i) its inhibition of fatty acid synthesis; and (ii) homeoviscous adaptation in these organisms. Our goal is to unravel, at the molecular level, how NO and ROS may modulate these events; and the potential consequences to treatment outcome in real life antibiotic/anti-neoplastic intervention. For Azotobacter vinelandii we further aim to discover how this bacterium could be managed to perform its nitrogen fixation and bioremediation functions optimally, for greater crop yields, and a cleaner environment. Methods and Techniques: Microbial Culture; Wet assays for oxidative stress; Differential Scanning Calorimetry for membrane lipid phase transitions; HPLC and Thin Layer Chromatography for lipid classes; Gas Liquid Chromatography for fatty acid profiles; SDS-PAGE and Western Blotting for protein modifications.

We also explore the in vitro effects of extracts and chemical constituents of traditional medicinal herbs on inflammation and oxidative stress, as a means of understanding the molecular basis for the use of the herbs in traditional medical practice by Indigenous peoples and other less-privileged peoples.

Research Project Students & Research Assistants 

Inga Sliskovic May 2001-Aug 2002, Dennis Ramos May 2002-Aug 2003, Danijel Juric Sept 2002-Aug 2004, Christine Pinnock Jan 2003–Aug 2005, Aaron Larsen May 2003–May 2004, Holly Kullman May 2004-2005, Brendan Olynik 2008-2009, Dana Danielson 2008-2009, Robert Bertrand 2008-2014, Victor Gong 2010-2011, Kendra Kuo 2012-2013, Laudina Ahiable 2013-2015, Anjali Goel 2018-present, Nikita Goel 2019-present

Governor General's Gold Medal Robert Bertrand Class of 2020 - Graduate Studies (Chemistry)

Graduate Students (Joint Supervision):

Chibuike Udenigwe 2005-2006, Francis Awah 2007 & 2009, Beth Oluka 2007, Eziaku Akobueze 2007, Grace Azuka Ekpunobi 2007, Kingsley Nwakpu 2014, Basil Nwali 2015-16

Research Gate



Peer-Reviewed Publications

1. Eze, M.O. (2015) “The Oxygen Paradox and the Place of Oxygen in our Understanding of Life, Aging, and Death” Ultimate Reality and Meaning (URAM) Monographs No. 3.  Philosophical Studies in Medicine and Health. pp199-216. University of Toronto Press.

This contribution was originally published as:

  1. Eze, M.O. (2006) “The Oxygen Paradox and the Place of Oxygen in our Understanding of Life, Aging, and Death” Ultimate Reality and Meaning (URAM): Studies in Medicine and Health 29(1-2), 46-61; and subsequently found worthy of upgrading to this Chapter in this monograph.
  2. [The special significance of this 2015 monograph chapter  is underscored by the fact that, inspired by my work, Rev. Dr. Gorden McPhate (MD; a physician and Dean of Chester Cathedral in England) has contributed another chapter in the said monograph: “The search for Ultimates in Molecular and Cellular Processes: A Philosophical-Theological Response to Michael Eze and the Oxygen Paradox’”]

2. Bertrand, R. and Eze, M.O. (2014) “Modifying polyacrylamide background color for the nitroblue tetrazolium-based superoxide dismutase staining assay.” Advances in Enzyme Research (AER). 2: 77-81.

3. Bertrand, R.L. and Eze, M.O. (2013) “Escherichia coli superoxide dismutase expression does not change in response to iron challenge during lag phase: Is the ferric uptake regulator to blame?” Advances in Enzyme Research (AER) 1: 132-141.

4. Bertrand, R., Danielson, D., Gong, V., Olynik, B., and Eze, M.O. (2012) “Sodium Nitroprusside may Modulate Excherichia coli Antioxidant Enzyme Expression by Interacting with the Ferric Uptake Regulator.” Medical Hypotheses 78: 130-133

5. Awah, F.M., Uzoegwu, P.N., Ifeonu, P., Oyugi, J.O., Rutherford, J., Yao, X.J., Fehrmann, F., Fowke, K.R., and Eze, M.O. (2012) “Free radical scavenging activity, phenolic contents and cytotoxicity of selected Nigerian medicinal plants.” Food Chemistry 131, 1279-1286

6. Eze, O., Kiazyk, S., Beaudoin, C.M., Lin, L., Plummer, F.A., Andonov, A., and Fowke, K.R., (2011) “GB Virus C in HIV co-infected individuals: Could there ever be a consensus on outcome?” Current Trends in Microbiology 7, 31-40

7. Udenigwe, C.C., Ejike, C.C.C., Quansah, J.K., and Eze, M.O. (2011)Towards the management of hypertension: Modulation of the renin-angiotensin system by food protein hydrolysates and peptides.” Biokemistri. 23(3), 108-117

8. Awah, F.M., Uzoegwu, P.N., Ifeonu. P., Oyugi, J.O., Rutherford, J., Yao. X.-J., Fehrmann, F., Fowke, K.R., and Eze, M.O. (2011) “Sphingomyelinase Inhibitory, and Free Radical Scavenging Potential of Selected Nigerian Medicinal Plant Extracts.” Biokemistri 23(3), 129-135.

9. Awah, F.M., Uzoegwu, P.N., Oyugi, J.O., Rutherford, J., Ifeonu, P., Yao, X.-J., Fowke, K., and Eze, M.O. (2010) “Free Radical Scavenging Activity and Immunomodulatory Effect of Stachytarpheta angustifolia Leaf Extract.” Food Chemistry 119, 1409-1416.

10. Awah, F.M., Uzoegwu, P.N., Ifeonu, P., Oyugi, J.O., Rutherford, J., Yao, X.-J., Fehrmann, F., Fowke, K., and Eze, M.O. (2010) “Superoxide anion production in phytohemagglutinin A and Staphylococcal enterotoxin B – activated human peripheral blood mononuclear cells.” Nigerian J. Biochem. Mol. Biol. 25(1), 18-24

11. Ata, A., Udenigwe, C.C., Watochko, W., Holoway, P., Eze, M.O. and Uzoegwu, P.N. (2009). The Chemical Constituents of Nauclea latifolia and their Anti-GST and Anti-Fungal Activities. Natural Product Communications 4 (9), 1171-1318.

12. Shamsulhaq Zahid., Udenigwe, C.C., Ata, A., Eze, M.O., Segstro, E.P., and Holloway, P. (2006). “New Bioactive Natural Products from Coprinus micaceus.” Natural Product Research, 20(14), 1283-1289.

13. Larsen, A., Sliskovic, I., Juric, D., Pinnock, C., Kullman, H., Segstro, E., Reinfelds, G. and Eze, M.O. (2005). “The Fatty Acid Profile of Vegetative Azotobacter vinelandii ATCC 12837: Growth Phase-Dependence” Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology 68, 548-553.

14. Eze, M.O., Yuan, L., Crawford, R.M., Paranavitana, J. A., Hadfield, T.L., Bhattacharjee, A.K. Warren, R.L. and Hoover, D.L. (2000). “Effects of Opsonization and Gamma-Interferon on Growth of Brucella melitensis 16M in Mouse Peritoneal Macrophages in Vitro”. Infection and Immunity, 68, 257-263.

15. Onwurah, I.N.E. and Eze, M.O., (2000). “Superoxide Dismutase Activity in Azotobacter vinelandii in the Disposition of Environmental Toxicants Exemplified by Fenton Reagent and Crude Oil”. Toxic Substance Mechanisms, 19, 111-123.

16. Nwanguma, B.C., Eze, M.O. and Ezengwa, O.O. (1996). “Changes in Activity of Sorghum Lipase during Malting and Mashing”. J. Institute of Brewing (UK.). 102, 39-41.

17. Nwanguma, B.C. and Eze, M.O. (1996). “Changes in the Concentrations of the Polyphenolic Constituents of Sorghum during Malting and Mashing”. J. Science of Food and Agric. (UK.) 70, 162-166.

18. Nwanguma, B.C. and Eze, M.O. (1995). “Heat Sensitivity, Optimum pH and Changes in Activity of Sorghum Peroxidase during Malting and Mashing”. J. Institute of Brewing (UK.). 101, 275-276.

19. Eze, M.O. (1995). “Membrane Phase Separations, Asymmetry and Implications in the Origin of Life”. Chapter in Section 3 (Biochemical Aspects of Self-Organization) in Chemical Evolution and the Origin of Life. Chela-Flores, M. Chadha, A. Negron-Mendosa, and T. Oshima (eds.) Deepak Publishers, Hampton, Virginia, USA. pp 131-137.

20. Eze, M.O. (1994). “Buffers and pH”. Chapter 1, in Introduction to the Principles of Biochemistry.O. Anosike (editor). Sunray Publishers Ltd, PortHarcourt, Nigeria (& Houston, Texas). pp 1-34.

21. Eze, M.O., Hunting, D.J. and Ogan, A.U. (1993). “Reactive Oxygen Associated with Parasitic and Other Tropical Infections: Carcinogenic Potential”. Chapter 6, in Free Radicals in Tropical Diseases.I. Aruoma (editor). Harwood Academic Publishers, Great Britain, Switzerland, USA. pp 111-136.

22. Eze, M.O., (1993). “Mechanism of the Translocation Step of Mediated Transport Across Biomembranes: In favour of the Allosteric Model”. BIOCHEMICAL EDUCATION 21, 151-153.

23. Eze, M.O. (1992). “Membrane Fluidity, Reactive Oxygen Species and Cell-Mediated Immunity: Implication in Nutrition and Disease”. Medical Hypotheses 37, 220-224.

24. Eze, M.O. (1991). “Towards More Efficacious Chemotherapy of Trypanosomiasis: Combination of Alpha-Difluoromethyl Ornithine (DFMO) with Reactive Oxygen Generating Drugs”. Medical Hypotheses 36, 246-249.

25. Eze, M.O. (1991). “Production of Superoxide by Macrophages from Plasmodium chabaudi Infected Mice”. CYTOBIOS 66, 93-104.

26. Eze, M.O. (1991). “Avoidance and Inactivation of Reactive Oxygen Species: Novel Microbial Immune Evasion Strategies”. Medical Hypotheses 34, 252-255.

27. Eze, M.O. (1991). “Phase Transition in Phospholipid Bilayers: Lateral Phase Separations Play Vital Roles in Bimembrames”. BIOCHEMICAL EDUCATION 19, 204-208.

28. Eze, M.O., Hunting, D.J. and Ogan, A.U. (1990). “Reactive Oxygen Production Against Malaria - A Potential Cancer Risk Factor”. Medical Hypotheses 32, 121-123.

29.  Eze, M.O. (1990). “Consequences of the Lipid Bilayer to Membrane-Associated Reactions”. Journal of Chemical Education 67, 17-20.

30. Eze, M.O. (1989). “Requirement for Lipopolysaccharide for Enhanced in vitro Superoxide Producing Competence in Macrophages from Normal and Malaria (Plasmodium chabaudi) Infected Mouse Spleen”. Free Radical Res. Comms. 6, 209-216.

31. Eze, M.O. and Okoro, S.I. (1989). Membrane-Bound Succinate Dehydrogenase of Bacillus pumilus strain 5: Effects of Monoelectron Transfer Modulators”. MICROBIOS 60, 45-51.

32. Eze, M.O. and McElhaney, R.N. (1989). “Effects of Temperature on Active Amino Acid Transport in Escherichia coli strain 7”. MICROBIOS 58, 173-182.

33. Eze, M.O. (1988). “Superoxide Generation by Isolated Spleen Macrophages from Theiler’s Virus and Plasmodium chabaudi Malaria Infected Mice”. Nigerian J. Biotechnol. 5, 130-134.

34. Eze, M.O. and Ogan, A.U. (1988). “Sugars of the Unfermented Sap and the Wine from the Oil Palm, Elaeis guinensis Tree”. Plant Foods Hum. Nutri. 38, 121-126.

35. Eze, M.O., Nnamani, L.C., Ojiako, R.I. and Ogan, A.U. (1987). “Effects of Oxygen Free Radical Scavengers on the Membrane Myoinositol Dehydrogenase of Bacillus pumilus strain 5”. Free Radical Res. Communications. 4, 105-108.

36. Eze, M.O. and McElhaney, R.N. (1987). “Lipid and Temperature Dependence of the Kinetic and Thermodynamic Parameters for Active Amino Acid Transport in Escherichia coli K1060”. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 887, 159-168.

37. Eze, M.O. and McElhaney, R.N. (1984). “Modulation of Membrane Lipid Physical State as a Means of Survival in Various Environments: Evidence from Escherichia coli K1060”. Nigerian J. Biochem. 1, 1-11.

38. Eze, M.O., Okafor, E.I. and Okoronkwo, C.E. (1982). “Membrane-Associated Myo-Inositol Dehydrogenase Activity of Bacillus pumilus strain 5”. Eur. J. Appl. Microbiol. Biotechnol. 15, 52-55.

39. Eze, M.O. and McElhaney, R.N. (1981). “The Effects of Alterations in the Fluidity and Phase State of the Membrane Lipids on the Passive Permeation and Facilitated Diffusion of Glycerol in Escherichia coli”. J. Gen. Microbiol. 124, 299-307.

40. Eze, M.O. and McElhaney, R.N. (1978). “Stopped-Flow Spectrophotometric Assay of Glycerol Permeation in Escherichia coli: Applicability and Limitations”. J. Gen. Microbiol. 105, 233-242.