Faculty in the URI College of Pharmacy are respected experts in the biomedical, clinical and applied pharmaceutical sciences. Their primary areas of research, interest, and expertise are outlined below.
Where will we find the next generation of antibiotics? Can natural products augment or replace our current therapies for cancer and dementia? Many of humankind’s most devastating diseases have few or no effective therapies. Researchers in the College of Pharmacy are using a variety of approaches to identify and develop new strategies for treating antibiotic-resistant infections, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. These investigators are collaborating with local and federal agencies and industry partners to translate laboratory results into real-world solutions.
Sustained release technologies, transporters, nanoparticles, powders and aerosols are among the drug delivery strategies being investigated today at the College of Pharmacy. Researchers are developing new approaches for delivering therapies across physiological barriers to enhance the treatment of a wide variety of diseases.
About URI College of Pharmacy Research
The development of new drugs and drug delivery strategies is dependent on a solid understanding of the chemistry of the medication and its vehicle. Pharmacy faculty employ a number of sophisticated technologies to probe the chemistry of organic and inorganic molecules, including Mass Spectrometry, NMR Spectroscopy, HPLC and nucleic acid synthesis and isolation. In many cases these investigators share their expertise and capabilities with pharmaceutical developers and manufacturers (large and small) in relationships that benefit the College as well as our industry partners.
Pharmacologists in the College of Pharmacy possess expertise in a variety of sub-disciplines, including clinical pharmacology, drug metabolism, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, clinical study design and the analysis of drug response within populations. In many cases, these studies are designed to develop an understanding the sources of variability in drug disposition and effect and in the identification of individual factors that lead to altered drug response.
A number of the investigators in the College of Pharmacy study the consequences of exposure to environmental toxins. These investigators have particular interests in the relationships between the environment and Alzheimer’s disease, fatty liver disease, obesity and kidney disease. Their work has led to significant advancements in our understanding of the environment’s impact on the epigenome (factors that influence gene expression without changing the genetic code).
A large proportion of the College of Pharmacy faculty conduct research related to the practice of pharmacy. In some cases this work focuses on the treatment of a specific disease, such as diabetes, while in other instances the research involves the study of populations, e.g. the elderly. Many COP faculty members have a strong interest in developing practices that will improve the dissemination of drug-related information and enhance patient compliance.
Clinical Study Design and Analysis
The value of clinical studies is directly related to the quality of the study design and its subsequent analysis. A number of Pharmacy faculty members are recognized experts in this field. These investigators participate in a variety of partnerships and collaborations at the local, regional and national level.
Health Policy and Economics
The rapidly evolving nature of the healthcare marketplace in the United States requires that health-related decisions be appropriately informed by sound health policy and accurate economic analyses. Pharmacy faculty provide consulting and research support to government agencies and a variety of healthcare organizations and help to develop strategies that maximize the quality of care, improve strategic and operational efficiency and optimize the allocation of resources.