The research interests of our departmental faculty members are diverse yet complementary, reflective of the discipline of pharmacology. Although many labs work on research projects that span multiple areas, the concentrations of research excellence within the department can be broadly divided as follows:
Cellular Pharmacology and Cancer Therapeutics
Faculty members study mechanisms of cancer progression and metastasis with emphasis on proteolytic pathways, membrane trafficking, cell survival, death and aging, and tumor-stromal interactions. Cellular and mouse models are employed for these mechanistic studies as well as for developing and optimizing targeted therapy, photodynamic therapy, and immunotherapy in cancers. The Pharmacology Ph.D. Program provides opportunities for study in these areas.
Molecular and Environmental Toxicology (MET)
Faculty members study the molecular and cellular mechanisms that determine the development and progression of environmentally-linked diseases. Our Ph.D. program offers a concentration in MET that places particular emphasis on understanding the human health impact of complex environmental exposures, life windows of heightened susceptibility to environmental toxicants, gene-environment interactions, and the role of chemical and non-chemical environmental stressors as mediators of pathogenesis.
Neurobiology and Neuropharmacology
Faculty members study the pharmacology of neuronal development, function, and disease, ranging from the most basic mechanisms regulating neuronal morphology and synaptic function to the treatment of neurodegenerative and other CNS disorders. Researchers study a range of experimental systems including fruit fly, mouse, and human. Our doctoral program includes a concentration in molecular neuropharmacology that provides training with an emphasis in molecular signaling and cutting-edge neuroscience techniques.