Pharmaceutical Sciences

The Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences comprises faculty from a broad range of scientific disciplines that are critical to the discovery and development of new drugs and therapies. Faculty research interests are focused on environmental health, cancer, infectious disease, cardiovascular disease, brain and behavioral health, and drug and vaccine delivery.

From the Chair

Welcome to the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences. Members of the department are highly dedicated to our research and educational missions. We teach pharmacology, medicinal chemistry, and pharmaceutics in the College of Pharmacy’s professional Doctor of Pharmacy program. We also provide laboratory training and mentoring to these students as well as undergraduate, graduate, and post-doctoral trainees. At the graduate level, we teach didactic course in pharmacology and toxicology and other specialized topics courses. We strive to develop critical thinking and problem solving skills in all our trainees.

Our faculty conduct basic and translational research in the pharmaceutical sciences. Faculty research interests are focused on environmental health, cancer, infectious disease, cardiovascular disease, brain and behavioral health and drug and vaccine delivery. Our faculty are part of interdisciplinary teams and collaborate extensively with colleagues within the Health Sciences Center and Main Campus. The scope of our research programs spans from “bench to bedside”, from cell culture to animal models to human subjects and community-based educational and intervention studies. Visit “About Our Labs” link to learn about the cutting edge research that is occurring in our Department.

Our Mission

Our mission is to advance pharmaceutical sciences through research and the education and training of our professional, graduate and post-graduate students.

Highlights

Research: Our faculty are part of interdisciplinary teams and make key scientific contributions critical to the discovery and development of new drugs and therapies.

Teaching: Our faculty are committed to providing outstanding educational experiences for both professional and graduate students. In addition to didactic teaching, faculty provide laboratory training and mentoring to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

Service: Our faculty provide leadership within the Health Sciences Center and the broader scientific community.

The UNM College of Pharmacy continued its ascent in the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) national research rankings for NIH funding. The COP ranked 13th in the nation this year, up two places from last year's ranking of 15th, for research funding from the National Institutes of Health. Annually, the AACP measures extramural research funds received by the nation's roughly 130 pharmacy schools in such categories as: total research funding; NIH funding and other federal funding. Of the more than $12.3 million in total extramural research funding at the COP in UNM FY18, nearly ninety percent (over $11 million) came from the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences. Funding for these awards comes from various sources including:

  • NIH & NSF
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • American Heart Association
  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Pharmaceutical companies

The pharmaceutical sciences comprise a broad range of disciplines, including pharmacology and toxicology, pharmaceutics and drug delivery and pharmaceutical and medicinal chemistry, which are critical to the discovery and development of new drugs and therapies. Our faculty are part of interdisciplinary teams and collaborate with the UNM Health Sciences Center’s signature programs. Research ranges from cell culture to animal models to human subjects in the following areas:

2019 Faculty Honors

Pamela Hall named William M. Hadley Distinguished Scholar

Dr. Hall is an associate professor in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences and has been a tenure track faculty member since 2011. She has demonstrated an exceptional level of consistent scholarly achievement, mentorship and leadership.

Dr. Hall’s research in the area of host immune response to S. aureus encompasses exceptionally important questions in her field and displays her creativity and ability to push scientific boundaries. She has a built an impressive and multi-faceted research program that includes basic understanding of host apolipoprotein B in S. aureus quorum sensing and MRSA infections, collaborative studies to test a potential vaccine to control regulation of S. aureus virulence factor production and exploring the mechanistic underpinnings of sex differences in S. aureus soft tissue infections. Dr. Hall’s research has been supported by multiple grants from the National Institutes of Health representing more than four million dollars in direct costs.

The William M. Hadley Distinguished Scholar award was created in recognition and celebration of the 16 years (1986-2002) of outstanding leadership provided to the College by Dean William M. Hadley. It recognizes faculty excellence in original research, leadership and other scholarly activities, as evidenced by a sustained record of outstanding achievement, productivity and discovery.

 

Todd A. Thompson named UNM College of Pharmacy Distinguished Educator

Dr. Todd Thompson (BSPh ‘87) demonstrates excellence in teaching and student mentorship through his sustained commitment to motivating, facilitating, and expanding the horizons of student learning. He has a long standing devotion to both PharmD and graduate education and this is evident in the classroom as well as in the research laboratory. For student pharmacists, his commitment starts at the most basic of levels where he wants to ensure that they have a solid scientific foundation for future therapeutic applications.

Having earned a BS in Pharmacy, Dr. Thompson understands that biochemistry and pharmacology form foundational sciences on which the careers of successful pharmacists are based, whether those careers are in industry, academia or in clinical, hospital or community pharmacy. Dr. Thompson’s commitment to PharmD teaching, however, extends well beyond biochemistry. In 2018, he had many didactic lecture hours spread across six different PharmD classes, including Introduction to Pharmacology, Complementary and Alternative Medicine and Oncology.

Dr. Thompson has also been a leading visionary for meaningful integration of research into pharmacy education. As such, he was a driving force for the development of the PharmD/MS dual degree program and a key faculty member in developing and establishing the curriculum for this new degree program.

The Distinguished Educator award recognizes College faculty members for excellence in teaching, mentoring and leadership, as evidence by a sustained record of exemplary contributions to professional and graduate education.