Pharmacology and Toxicology

The Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology aims to enrich the lives of our students through providing an excellent educational experience in pharmacology: the science of the mechanism of action of drugs and other biologically active agents on living cells or organisms; and toxicology: the study of the adverse effects of chemical, physical or biological agents on living organisms and the ecosystem.

The department offers an extensive program of formal and informal courses through the Division of Graduate and Professional Education to provide students with a broad training in basic areas of pharmacology as well as a degree of expertise in a selected research area. The department has four major research strengths: Neuropharmacology, Molecular Signaling and Signal Transduction, Neuroscience, and Toxicology. Consult the Graduate School Bulletin for a complete listing and description of graduate courses. A description of the elective courses in pharmacology and toxicology for medical students appears below.

Research Opportunities

Specific areas of research interest within the department include drug-receptor interactions, signal transduction mechanisms, discovery and synthesis of receptor-selective melatonin ligands for the treatment of circadian sleep disorders, depression, and cancer; behavioral pharmacology of psychoactive drugs; signaling mechanism of cardiac ischemia/reperfusion stress; signaling mechanisms in the induction of glial progenitors and role of in vivo models of central nervous system demyelination/remyelination; biomarkers of exposure to environmental chemicals; toxicology of halogenated aromatic hydrocarbons and organophosphate pesticides; design, synthesis and evaluation of inducers, substrates and inhibitors of drug metabolizing enzymes.

Course Descriptions