Kent Chapman | BioDiscovery Institute

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Kent Chapman

Kent D. Chapman
BDI Director, Regents Professor

Kent Chapman, PhD. completed a B.A. degree in biology in 1986 from Lycoming College in Williamsport, PA. He then traveled Tempe, AZ, where he earned a Ph.D. degree in botany (plant cell biology) at Arizona State University under the supervision of Richard N. Trelease for studies on peroxisome membrane lipids. After completing his doctoral degree, Chapman was awarded a 2-year NSF postdoctoral fellowship to study plant biochemistry with Thomas S. Moore, Jr., at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, LA. In 1993, he accepted a position as a tenure-track, Assistant Professor of Biochemistry at the University of North Texas (UNT) in Denton. During the last 25+ years, Chapman has developed an internationally-recognized research program in plant biochemistry and cell biology, specifically in the area of plant lipid metabolism. The Chapman lab has contributed more than 150 publications to the primary literature, and new ideas about the evolutionary conservation of lipid metabolism, storage and function in eukaryotes have emerged from these efforts. With John Ohlrogge (Michigan State), Chapman proposed and chaired the inaugural Gordon Research Conference on Plant Lipids: Structure, Metabolism and Function in 2009 in Galveston TX. Chapman is co-inventor on ten patents (issued or pending), and in 2010 was recognized with an award for Outstanding Achievement in Intellectual Property at UNT. Chapman received the first Research Leadership Award at UNT for National and International Scientific Achievement in Research, and in 2017 was re-appointed Regents Professor of Biochemistry. In January, 2014, he took leave from UNT for eighteen months to serve as Program Director at the US National Science Foundation's Division of Integrative Organismal Systems. Chapman is Executive Editor for the journal, Progress in Lipid Research, and reviewing editor for The Plant Cell. In 2020, Chapman was awarded the Terry Galliard Medal by the International Plant Lipid Symposium for contributions in plant lipid biochemistry.Chapman currently serves as Director of the BioDiscovery Institute.


  • Lipid signaling in plants.

  • Compartmentalization of neutral lipids in plant cells.

  • Plant lipids for human health and industrial applications.

  • Lipidomics in tissues and organelles.


  • United States Department of Energy, Office of Science, Basic Energy Sciences, Physical Biosciences program. Elucidating the Cellular Machinery for Storage Lipids in Plants. (Kent Chapman PI, Robert Mullen and John Dyer, Co-PIs). 9/1/2016 - 8/31/2022. (DE-SC0016536).
  • Cotton Incorporated. Genetic Manipulation of Cottonseed Protein Reserves. (Kent Chapman PI). 1/1/08-12/31/21. (Agreement numbers #08-895; #16-043)
  • NSF Integrative Organismal Systems. Molecular targets and actions of ethanolamide oxylipins in Arabidopsis thaliana. (Kent Chapman PI, Xiaoqiang Wang named senior collaborator). 3/15/2017-3/14/2021. (IOS 1656263)
  • Cotton Incorporated. Cotton Transformation Facility (Kent Chapman PI). 1/1/20-12/31/22
  • United States Department of Energy, Office of Science, Biological and Environmental Research program. Functional Analysis of Candidate Genes Involved in Oil Storage and Stability in Pennycress. (PI Ana Alonso; Kent Chapman and Erich Grotewold, Co-PIs). 9/15/2019 - 9/14/2022 (DE-SC0020325).


  1. A Kilaru, KD Chapman (2020) The endocannabinoid system. Essays in Biochemistry, 64 (3): 485- 499.
  2. MS Greer, Y Cai, SK Gidda, N Esnay, FK Kretzschmar, D Seay, E McClinchie, T Ischebeck, RT Mullen, JM Dyer, KD Chapman (2020) SEIPIN Isoforms Interact with the Membrane-tethering Protein VAP27-1 for Lipid Droplet Formation. The Plant Cell, 32 (9), 2932-2950,
  3. C Yan, AE Cannon, J Watkins, J Keereetaweep, BR Khan, AM Jones, EB Blancaflor, R Azad, KD Chapman (2020) Seedling chloroplast responses induced by N-linolenoylethanolamine require intact G-protein complexes. Plant Physiology, 184 (1), 459-477
  4. T Ischebeck, HE Krawczyk , RT Mullen, JM Dyer, KD Chapman (2020) Lipid droplets in plants and algae: Distribution, formation, turnover and function. Seminars in Cell & Developmental Biology. In press, Available online
  5. N Esnay, JM Dyer, RT Mullen, KD Chapman (2020) Lipid Droplet-Peroxisome Connections in Plants. Contact vol 3, 2515256420908765
  6. Sturtevant D, S Lu, Z-W Zhou, Y Shen, S Wang, J-M Song, J Zhong, DJ Burks, Z-Q Yang, Q-Y Yang, AE Cannon, C Herrfurth, I Feussner, L Borisjuk, E Munz, GF Verbeck, X Wang, RK Azad, B Singleton, JM Dyer, L-L Chen*, KD Chapman*, L Guo* (2020) The genome of jojoba (Simmondsia chinensis): a taxonomically-isolated species that directs wax-ester accumulation in its seeds. Science Advances, 6 (11), eaay3240. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aay3240
  7. Aziz M, KD Chapman (2020) Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolases: An Expanded Capacity for Chemical Communication? Trends in Plant Science, 25(3):236-249
  8. Lu S, M Aziz, D Sturtevant, KD Chapman* and L Guo* (2020) Heterogeneous Distribution of Erucic Acid in Brassica napus Seeds. Frontiers in Plant Science Vol 10, 1744.
  9. Romsdahl T, A Shirani, RE Minto, C Zhang, EB Cahoon, KD Chapman*, D Berman* (2019) Nature-Guided Synthesis of Advanced Bio-Lubricants. Nature Scientific Reports 9, Article number: 11711 (2019). *jointly communicated.
  10. KD Chapman, M Aziz, JM Dyer, RT Mullen (2019) Mechanisms of lipid droplet biogenesis. Biochemical Journal 476 (13), 1929-1942.

PATENTS (8 issued, 1 pending):

  1. US patent #7,199,082, issued April 3, 2007. (WO 01/30143) Methods For Extending The Freshness Of Cut Flowers, Ornamental Trees, And Plant Cuttings, PCT/US00/29959. Kent D. Chapman and Shea Austin-Brown Inventors; University of North Texas is patent holder. Published May 5, 2001, priority date October 28, 1999.
  2. US patent #7,316,928, issued Jan 8, 2008. (WO 2005/001100) Plant Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolases, PCT/US2004/017690. Kent D. Chapman, Rhidaya Shrestha, Elison Blancaflor, Richard A. Dixon, Published on January 6, 2005, Priority date June 4, 2003. UNT and Noble Foundation are patent holders.
  3. US Patent #8,097,768, issued January 17, 2012. Method of enhancing quality factors in cotton; Hake; Kater Davis; (Germantown, TN) ; Chapman; Kent Dean; (Denton, TX) ; Kerby; Thomas Arthur; (Scott, MS); Speed; Thomas Rainey; (Wolfforth, TX); Published on February 1, 2007, Priority date June 9, 2006. U.S. Patent Application #11/449,873 UNT and Delta and Pine Land Co. UNT is patent holder.
  4. US Patent #8,507,754, issued August 13, 2013. Engineering Lipids in Vegetative tissues of Plants. Chapman; Kent Dean (Denton Texas); Anderson, Richard G.W. (Dallas, TX). Filed January 31, 2010 (US Patent Application #12696037). Priority Date January 31, 2009. UNT and UT systems are joint patent holders.
  5. US Patent #9,474,271, issued October 25, 2016- Method For Enhancing Amidohydrolase Activity of Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase. John, George (New York, NY); Nagarajan, Subbiah (New York, NY); Chapman, Kent (Denton, TX); Faure, Lionel (Flower Mound, TX); Koulen, Peter (Leawood, KS). Research Foundation of the City University of New York, New York, NY, USA.
  6. US Patent #9,849,101, issued December 26, 2017. Method For Enhancing Amidohydrolase Activity of Fatty Acid Amide Hydrolase. John, George (New York, NY); Nagarajan, Subbiah (New York, NY); Chapman, Kent (Denton, TX); Faure, Lionel (Flower Mound, TX); Koulen, Peter (Leawood, KS). Research Foundation of the City University of New York, New York, NY, USA.
  7. US Patent # 10,238,056- HIGH OLEIC SEED OIL TRAIT IN COTTON VARIETIES TO ELEVATE THE OLEIC ACID CONTENT OF COTTONSEED OIL. Chapman, Kent Dean (Denton, TX); Horn, Patrick (Holt, MI); Sturtevant, Drew (Southlake, TX); Kennedy, Christopher (Ft. Worth, TX). Issued March 26, 2019
  8. US Patent # 10,308,950- METHODS FOR INCREASING OIL CONTENT IN PLANT TISSUES BY SUPPRESSING HYDROPHOBIC LIPID DROPLET PROTEIN. Chapman, Kent (Denton, TX); Mullen Robert (Guelph, Ontario, Canada); Pyc Michel (Guelph, Ontario, Canada); Dyer, John (Maricopa, AZ). Issued June 4, 2019
  9. US/International Patent Application PCT/US18/65718- LIQUID AND SEMISOLID LUBRICANT COMPOSITIONS, METHODS OF MAKING, AND USES THEREOF Inventor(s): Diana Berman, Kent Dean Chapman, Trevor Bradley Romsdahl, Edgar Benjamin Cahoon, Robert Earl Minto, December 14, 2018. Pending.

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