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PhD In Biopharmaceutical Sciences

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The Biopharmaceutical Sciences PhD curriculum revolves around a research-based program that trains interdisciplinary scientists to apply chemical and biologic tools to pressing therapeutic challenges.

The Biopharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Program offers an interdisciplinary approach to solving problems that will hopefully translate to novel therapeutic approaches in humans. By understanding the general principles of pharmaceutics, pharmacokinetics, pharmacology, and pharmacogenomics, the faculty, staff, and graduate students in Biopharmaceutical Sciences conduct research projects that will develop novel methods for delivering drugs (pharmaceutics), assess new therapeutic targets (pharmacology), understand how a drug is metabolized and excreted (pharmacokinetics), and understand how individuals’ genomes influence their responses to drugs (pharmacogenomics). The research may use the tools of bioimaging, biophysics, chemistry, cell and molecular biology, genetics, bioinformatics, nanotechnology and biomedical engineering to address these issues, but the underlying research seeks to gain insight into the given research problem.

Scope of study

A comprehensive and rigorous program encompassing research that:

  • Determines new therapeutic targets and mechanisms of action (molecular pharmacology)
  • Understands how a drug is metabolized and excreted (pharmacokinetics)
  • Discerns how individuals differ in their drug reactions (pharmacogenomics)
  • Develops novel methods for delivering drugs (pharmaceutics)

Research emphasis 

Studies span both the basic sciences and clinical interests, including translational research. Some faculty members are involved with research centers beyond the College, including the University of Illinois Cancer Center.

Research topics

  • Lipid and polymer-based drug delivery
  • Molecular, cellular and systems pharmacology
  • Targeted drug delivery
  • Pharmacokinetics membrane transport and absorption
  • Neuropharmacology
  • Environmental and forensic toxicology
  • Cancer pharmacology and genetics
  • Nanomedicine
  • Pharmacogenomics

For more information on pharmaceutical science and potential careers