Alexander Gorka, PhD

Senior Technology Specialist

Alexander Gorka is a technology specialist whose practice focuses on the preparation and prosecution of domestic, international and foreign patent applications. Dr. Gorka works with a variety of clients, such as those in the life sciences industry, including the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and energy sectors. In addition to patent prosecution and counseling, Dr. Gorka assists lawyers in conducting scientific journal and patent searching, preparation of patentability, validity, freedom to operate, and infringement opinions, as well as analyses of issues that arise in patent litigation matters. 

Dr. Gorka is currently pursuing his JD degree from Fordham University School of Law.

Prior to joining the firm, Dr. Gorka was an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Connecticut. While there, he led a research laboratory developing dual diagnostic/drug delivery technologies for infectious disease based on small molecule fluorophores and their bioconjugates. 

From 2013 to 2017, Dr. Gorka was a postdoctoral fellow in the Chemical Biology Laboratory at the National Cancer Institute. In that role, he developed near-infrared imaging agents and light-activated drug delivery approaches for the diagnosis and treatment of cancer and for site-specific control of gene expression. 

While working toward his doctorate at Georgetown University, Dr. Gorka elucidated key structure-activity principles governing drug pharmacology and resistance in malaria. He also invented multiple cell-based screening protocols for evaluating drug leads that aim to improve predictability by incorporating clinically relevant parameters.

Dr. Gorka has published 26 peer-reviewed articles, is a named inventor on a patent application and has given numerous invited lectures.

Selected Publications

  • Gorka AP, Nani RR, Schnermann MJ. Harnessing Cyanine Reactivity for Optical Imaging and Drug Delivery. Acc. Chem. Res. 2018, 51, 3226-3235.
  • Nani RR, Gorka AP, Nagaya T, Yamamoto, T, Ivanic J, et al. In Vivo Activation of Duocarmycin−Antibody Conjugates by Near-Infrared Light. ACS Cent. Sci. 2017, 3, 329-337.
  • Anderson ED, Gorka AP. Near-Infrared Uncaging or Photosensitizing Dictated by Oxygen Tension. Nat. Commun. 2016, 7, 13378.
  • Gorka AP, Nani RR, Zhu J, Mackem S, Schnermann MJ. A Near-IR Uncaging Strategy Based on Cyanine Photochemistry. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2014, 136, 14153-14159.
  • Gorka AP, de Dios AC, Roepe PD. Quinoline Drug-Heme Interactions and Implications for Antimalarial Cytostatic versus Cytocidal Activities. J. Med. Chem. 2013, 56, 5231-5246.


  • Schnermann MJ, Nani RR, Gorka AP, Kobayashi H, inventors; The United States of America, as represented by the Secretary, Department of Health and Human Services, assignee. Near-IR Light-Cleavable Conjugates and Conjugate Precursors. Application PCT/US2017/045694. 2017 Aug 7.


  • National Cancer Institute Cancer Research Training Award (2013-2017)
  • Federal Technology Transfer Award (2017)
  • National Cancer Institute Director’s Innovation Award (2016)
  • National Institutes of Health Fellows Award for Research Excellence (2016 and 2014)
  • Georgetown University Espenscheid Fellowship (2008)


  • Education

    • PhD, Chemistry, Georgetown University, 2013

    • BS, Chemistry and Biochemistry, Monmouth University, 2008

      magna cum laude