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Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences is where great minds make a difference. The Faculty enjoys an international reputation for outstanding pharmaceutical sciences research. Across a broad base of collaborative, paradigm-shaping pilot projects, our world-leading researchers generate relevant results that address the pressing health needs of society. In short, our work improves lives.

If you are passionate about health sciences research that makes a difference in people's lives, you're in good hands. We offer award-wining graduate programs led by world-class researchers. You'll have access to top-tier facilities and be working alongside the best and brightest in the field, conducting research that addresses real life problems. Our paradigm-changing approach is collaborative, innovative, and results-driven.

We're tackling diseases like asthma / chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and arthritis. We're developing better ways to deliver drugs and prevent adverse drug reactions. And we're conducting clinical and economic research in pharmaceutical outcomes. 

Our reputation as a top research centre attracts some of the brightest and most productive minds in the field. Our faculty includes Canada Research Chairs, Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research Scholars and Senior Scholars, and Distinguished University Scholars.

Purpose

We are innovators in pharmacy education, research and practice, with the goal of supporting the optimization of drug therapy in the pursuit of improved patient outcomes.

Commitments

  • We support our people, creating a community that enables excellence through collective action.
  • We seek novel ideas, putting into practice those with the greatest scope for sustained impact.
  • We search for relevant connections, fostering meaningful collaborations that provide mutual benefit.
 

Research Centres

adMare BioInnovations is located in our building. It is an independent, non-profit organization with a focus on bridging the gap between academic discoveries in the health sciences and the development of new medicines to treat human disease. The Faculty partners with adMare BioInnovations to provide unique research and mentoring opportunities for MSc and PhD students. 

We are also home to several sophisticated research centres that specialize in the areas of human genome and exome sequencing, and health outcomes research.

Research Facilities

Opened in 2012, the Pharmaceutical Sciences Building at UBC is a state-of-the-art learning and research facility. The building houses modern, modular labs designed specifically for the type of research intended for the space. Our classroom facilities are fitted with advanced technology to facilitate new modes of learning.

Measuring 246,000 square feet, it's an eye-catching addition to our campus, and has drawn attention and admiration from around the world—including 15 awards of excellence. 

Research Highlights

As a leading research faculty, we conduct ground-breaking research in the pharmaceutical sciences – all with the goal of addressing the pressing health needs of society and improving lives. Our research activities centre around four areas of focus.

Epidemiology & Health Outcomes

This theme covers our activities in epidemiological analysis, health outcomes and health economics research seeking solutions for the predictive enhancement of intervention strategies for practical and preventive healthcare. The impact of this work is used to shape policy to optimize the allocation of health care resources as well as defining the efficacy of healthcare interventions and strategy.

Molecular & Systems Pharmacology

This highly interdisciplinary theme embodies research directed at the interactions of therapeutic agents with human cells, and covers fundamental questions of the mechanisms of the drug action through to the behaviour of drugs in human systems. These studies are used to inform and optimize the development and delivery of drug intervention regimes for clinical practice and the pharmaceutical industry.

Nanomedicine & Chemical Biology

This theme applies our expertise in the chemical biology of the fabrication and handling of nanoscopic materials to drug discovery and delivery. Sensing and screening technologies are also an important focus.

Pharmacy Education

Our research in this theme addresses the issue of scholarship in pharmacy and the pharmaceutical sciences with a view to augment our educational research capacity and enhance the methodologies of teaching practice, student learning and curriculum decision-making.

Explore Research Themes

Recent Publications

This is an incomplete sample of recent publications in chronological order by UBC faculty members with a primary appointment in the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences.

 

Publication: Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders
UBC Author(s): Larry Lynd (Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences / Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences)
ISSN: 22110348
Volume: 80
Publication Date: December 2023

View Publication
Publication: Pediatric Rheumatology
UBC Author(s): Mark Harrison (Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences / Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences), Mary De Vera (Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences / Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences)
Volume: 21
Publication Date: December 2023

View Publication
Publication: ACS nano
UBC Author(s): Colin Ross (Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences / Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences)
Volume: 17
Page Range: 22046-22059
Publication Date: 14 November 2023

View Publication
Publication: International Journal of Pharmaceutics
UBC Author(s): Shyh-Dar Li (Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences / Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences)
ISSN: 03785173
Volume: 646
Publication Date: 5 November 2023

View Publication

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Recent Thesis Submissions

Doctoral Citations

A doctoral citation summarizes the nature of the independent research, provides a high-level overview of the study, states the significance of the work and says who will benefit from the findings in clear, non-specialized language, so that members of a lay audience will understand it.
Year Citation Program
2020 Dr. Agnoletti investigated the use of polymeric microspheres as carriers to deliver antibiotics selectively to the lungs after intravenous administration. Her findings support the passive lung targeting strategy to improve the treatments of bacterial lung infections and, potentially, other lung diseases. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2020 Dr. Lal studied the role of the protein VEGFB in the diabetic heart. He found that this growth factor has the potential to protect against the changes that occur in the heart following diabetes and can lead to heart failure. This research helps in identifying a novel therapeutic target to prevent diabetic heart disease. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2020 Dr. Atiquzzaman revealed the mediating role of NSAIDs in the increased risk of heart diseases among osteoarthritis patients. He also evaluated the cardiovascular safety of various NSAIDs used to treat osteoarthritis. This will help to understand the link between osteoarthritis and heart disease better and improve the safe treatment of this disease. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2020 Dr. Johnson evaluated strategies for improving the diagnosis of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). She found that early detection strategies for COPD are cost-effective, and that the risk of COPD should be assessed regularly at primary care visits. Her research can help to reduce the burden of COPD on patients and the healthcare system. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2019 Current HIV treatment can effectively manage infection, but it is not a cure. Hence, there is a need for new kinds of anti-HIV drugs. Dr. Zamiri discovered two anti-HIV molecules active in both wild and drug resistant HIV strains. Her research suggests a mechanism of action different from the current HIV drugs and may inform future therapies. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2019 Dr. Gorrin constructed a model based on his conversations with people with asthma and measured how participants in two asthma studies reported their medication usage. The integration of his findings helped to understand why some people don't take the medication and how to encourage regular medication usage. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2019 Drug discovery can be lengthy, complicated and requires extensive resources. Working in partnership with the pharmacy and chemistry departments, Dr. Koperniku explored access to pharmaceutically relevant small molecules. Her work advances the optimization of pharmaceuticals and informs improved patient care. Her past and future dedication is to serve humanity. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2019 Dr. Wang found out that heparanase, using its properties to promote cell survival, protect the heart cells against multiple stresses frequently seen in patients with ischemia and diabetes-induced heart diseases, in both cell experiments and animal studies. This research could help devise new strategies to combat heart diseases. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2019 Dr. Lambert investigated causes of pain in fibromyalgia and determined that specialized immune cells in the brain may play a critical role. She also created two novel molecules which act on the endocannabinoid system to reduce the pain-causing actions of these immune cells. Her work may form the basis of a new therapeutic strategy for chronic pain. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)
2019 Dr. Buchwalder developed a new class of molecules to bind radioactive isotopes and attach them to disease targeting vectors. Specifically, he found that ligand molecules bind zirconium ions particularly strongly. His work contributes to the development of better diagnostic and potentially therapeutic agents for applications in nuclear medicine. Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmaceutical Sciences (PhD)

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