David J Kroll, PhD, is a molecular cancer pharmacologist and state university professor in the southern US. Hailing from the New Jersey Meadowlands area, David always intended to pursue a career in the pharmaceutical industry. But after a BS in Toxicology at the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science and a PhD in Pharmacology & Therapeutics at the University of Florida, he was bitten by the teaching bug and has since seized every opportunity to talk to students - or anyone else who might listen - about drugs and the wonders of pharmacology.
Kroll's interest in natural products - single-agent pharmaceuticals from plants, microorganisms, marine creatures, etc. - led him to also be tapped for public and professional commentary on the exploding area of herbal medicine and non-botanical supplements in the 1990s while a faculty member at the University of Colorado School of Pharmacy in Denver. He was fortunate to develop excellent relationships with television, radio, and print journalists, and became interested in the use of media to inform health consumers and combat pseudoscience. Throughout his time teaching and running a small lab on the tenure track, David took great enjoyment in writing for and speaking to general audiences who had few options for objective information on dietary supplements.
In late 2005, he began the blog, Terra Sigillata, under the pseudonym, Abel Pharmboy. Picked up by ScienceBlogs.com in June, 2006, Abel's Terra Sig enjoyed a four-year run with a great community of bloggers there before taking a hiatus on WordPress in Summer, 2010.
In August, 2010, David was ecstatic to be invited to move Terra Sigillata to CENtral Science, the online blog network of Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), the official organ of the American Chemical Society. Here, Terra Sig has remained a specialty blog on natural products, focusing on chemistry and pharmaceutical issues. The Right Chemistry, our introductory post, describes our path from ScienceBlogs to our comfy new home here at CENtral Science.
In September, 2010, David also began a new blog - Take As Directed - at PLoS Blogs. Take As Directed is an expansion of the many areas Terra Sig began to cover as David wrote about personal issues related to medicine - his father's death from alcoholism, his reflections on chronic illness, life challenges in a dual biomedical career family - as well as less serious and occasionally flippant observations on life, music, and culture. In October, 2012, Take as Directed relocated to the Pharma & Healthcare section of Forbes.com.
DISCLAIMER: Statements made on this blog are solely the personal opinions of the author and do not reflect the positions of his employer or his other affiliated academic institutions, graduate training programs, professional associations, or research funding agencies.
In his spare time, David is also an amateur singer-songwriter. This aspect of his work is revealed in a nice interview with Princess Ojiaku, a neuroscientist and fellow musician who writes the blog, Science with Moxie. You can hear some of his past and current work in this regard at his ReverbNation site.
If this is too much for you to read, David can also be found on Twitter as @DavidKroll in more manageable bites.
You can always send David tips, suggestions, complaints, corrections, or just say "hello" by e-mail to abelpharmboy at Gmail.
Last updated 24 October 2011.
The author with one of his all-time favorite science writers, Ed Yong, the London-based proprietor of Not Exactly Rocket Science, at ScienceOnline2010 in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. Credit: John Timmer/Ars Technica