Pharmaceutical Sciences and Drug Design

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Program Overview

The Graduate Program in Pharmaceutical Sciences and Drug Design provides advanced training in basic, translational, and clinical research within the pharmaceutical sciences and prepares students for career opportunities in academia, pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries, and governmental agencies. It is one of five programs coordinated through the Molecular and Biomedical Sciences Umbrella.

The Pharmaceutical Sciences and Drug Design program is aimed at designing effective new drug therapies while minimizing adverse effects. Research in the program includes a diverse range of therapeutic areas including cancer, cardiovascular, dermatological, immune-mediated, neurological, and psychiatric diseases. Students receive didactic and laboratory training in the design and development of pharmacological compounds including the disciplines of molecular and cellular pharmacology (drug target and biomarker discovery), medicinal chemistry (drug design and synthesis), pharmacokinetics (drug absorption, distribution, metabolism, and elimination), pharmaceutics (drug delivery and formulation), pharmacogenomics (genetic basis for drug response) and toxicology (drug-induced toxicity). A unique feature of the PSDD program a focus on health equity for rural and underserved populations.

The Graduate Program is highly collaborative within the broader University of Montana research community with diverse opportunities for study and research at the interface of chemistry, biochemistry, cell and structure biology, computation, and genetics with emphases on issues of pharmaceutical and biomedical importance. Faculty in the program are also closely aligned with several multidisciplinary research Centers and Institutes at the University of Montana including the Center for Biomolecular Structure and Dynamics, the Center for Environmental Health Sciences, the Center for Structural for Functional Neuroscience, the Montana Biotechnology Center, and the L.S. Skaggs Institute for Health Innovation.

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