2016 News

Prien, MacWilliam
The UCSF School of Pharmacy has established new endowed faculty positions to be held by the chairs of two School departments.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has awarded the UCSF-Stanford Center of Excellence in Regulatory Science and Innovation (UCSF-Stanford CERSI) a five-year grant with up to $25 million in funding.
Dzau, Desai
The recently concluded National Academy of Medicine (NAM) Annual Meeting saw the formal induction ceremony and welcome dinner for Academy members elected in 2015. Five individuals from UCSF were honored: Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, MD, PhD, MAS; Andrew Bindman, MD; Atul Butte MD, PhD; Tejal Desai, PhD; and Shinya Yamanaka, MD, PhD.
Giacomini
Kathy Giacomini, PhD, has been named the 2017 recipient of the Henry W. Elliott Distinguished Service Award from the American Society for Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics (ASCPT). Founded in 1900, ASCPT comprises more than 2,200 members whose primary interest is to advance the science and practice of clinical pharmacology and translational medicine.
Fischbach, Fraser, Hernandez, Abate, Ahituv, Desai
The Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences recently held a reception to honor its newly promoted faculty members. A collegial group of faculty, lab members, and staff lauded Nadav Ahituv, Ryan Hernandez, James Fraser, Michael Fischbach, and Adam Abate for their many achievements and contributions to the department and to the University.
Yee
Metformin is the most widely used initial medication for controlling blood sugar (glucose) in type 2 diabetes, a disease affecting 350 million people worldwide. The drug helps reduce their risk of complications leading to heart, eye, and kidney disease. But there are major differences in metformin response and more than a third of patients fail to achieve acceptable blood glucose control from the drug.
Szoka
The American Foundation for Pharmaceutical Education(AFPE) announced Francis C. Szoka, PhD as the 2016 recipient of The Mentor of the Year Award. Szoka, Professor in the UCSF School of Pharmacy Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, is the founder of Sequus Pharmaceuticals. His research group utilizes chemical, biophysical, and physiological principles to develop new vaccine, drug, and nucleic acid delivery systems.
graphical abstract
Research results from the lab of Valerie Weaver, PhD, were reported online July 21, 2016 in Cell Stem Cell. The article’s title is “Tissue Mechanics Orchestrate Wnt-Dependent Human Embryonic Stem Cell Differentiation.” Weaver performed her work in the UCSF Department of Surgery. She has a joint appointment in the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences (BTS) and is a core faculty member in the UCSF/UC Berkeley Joint Graduate Program in Bioengineering.
pharmacokinetics diagram
Pharmacokinetics for Pharmaceutical Scientists is an annual course, now in its 30th year. 
Tsinghua scholars
The Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences (BTS) was pleased to present Certificates of Completion to Tsinghua University students who completed our Collaborative Education and Research Program. To mark the occasion, BTS hosted an informal ceremony and reception on July 7, 2016. Professor Kathy Giacomini presided over the festivities.
Fulton
The 2016 Dean’s Innovation in Education Award was presented to Tracy Fulton, PhD, on Thursday during the School of Pharmacy faculty meeting on the Parnassus campus. A faculty member of the UCSF School of Medicine, Fulton was recognized for her excellence in bringing new educational approaches to the PharmD program’s first-year biochemistry course, which she teaches. The class focuses on human metabolism, its regulation, and how it goes awry in common metabolic diseases.
White, Contreras, Risse-Adams
The photograph of Martin Luther King Jr. hanging on the wall of the Asthma Collaboratory lab in UC San Francisco’s Rock Hall serves a reminder to all who toil there, purifying DNA samples or analyzing genetic, social or environmental data that their research is also part of a dream of equality and scientific excellence.
Guglielmo
Education: Evolving PharmD curriculum, Daniels Curriculum Awards; Collaborations and partnerships: pharmacy residency, UCSF/Haas MD/PhD startup marketplace; Patient care: SB 493 update; Faculty honors: Benet, Abate, Craik, Wells, Kroon, Corelli, Hudmon, Bourdet, Fischbach; Research publications: genetic testing, pharmacogenomics, cancer, computational tools & modeling (Phillips, Shin, Altschuler and Wu, Sali, Savic); Research funding: Top in NIH funding, protein design, specialty drugs (Kort
award ceremony
Sharmila Majumdar, PhD, Professor and Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging at the University of California, San Francisco, has been awarded the 2016 Gold Medal of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM).
Burchard
Esteban G. Burchard, MD, MPH, has received the Innovations in Health Equality Lifetime Achievement Award, bestowed by the American Thoracic Society's Clinicians Advisory Committee and Health Equality Subcommittee. A peer group of ATS Committee members chose Burchard based on his body of work in supporting health equality over the entire course of his professional career.
golden apple
The 2016 winter term Teaching Awards are out, and we are pleased to announce that Andrej Sali, PhD and Sook Wah Yee, PhD have each earned The Apple! The awards are bestowed based on student evaluations. Both Sali and Yee are multiple-time recipients of this honor, having met or exceeded a score of 4.5 on a scale of 1 to 5, considered outstanding.
White and Burchard
Results from the largest single study of the genetic and environmental causes of asthma in African American children suggest that only a tiny fraction of known genetic risk factors for the disease apply to this population.
graduates take selfie
The UCSF School of Pharmacy held its 2016 commencement ceremony on May 5 at Louise Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco, conferring the doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree on each of the 115 members of the graduating class.
research notes
Predicting difficult-to-detect drug binding sites Most drugs are comprised of small molecules that pass through cell membranes and are designed to bind to much larger protein molecules at exposed concave pockets. But in many disease-associated proteins, these binding sites are difficult to detect. Concave pockets may form only in the immediate presence of small molecules that bind to them (natural ligands or drugs) or are open only for brief periods during protein shape-shifting.
Savic, Altschuler, Wu, Phillips
Computer models provide optimal dosing for pediatric TB meningitis
Guglielmo
Learning how to solve problems and think critically—using course content as the vehicle to apply these skills—is one evolving goal of the UCSF School of Pharmacy doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) curriculum, according to the School’s dean, B. Joseph Guglielmo PharmD, in an interview posted April 12, 2016, in Pharmacy Times.
John Urquhart
John Urquhart, MD, passed away on March 19, 2016. Dr. Urquhart was an adjunct professor in the Department Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences at the UCSF School of Pharmacy. He was best known for pioneering the science of medication adherence and for development of innovative electronic technologies and metrics to assess patient compliance with self-medication during clinical trials.
NIH rank graphic
For the 36th consecutive year, the UCSF School of Pharmacy has received more funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) than any other pharmacy school in the United States. School researchers were awarded $27 million during NIH’s 2015 fiscal year, from October 1, 2014 to September 30, 2015. Rankings of schools are compiled by the independent Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research based on the most current NIH data.
bat embryo
Researchers in the laboratory of UCSF School of Pharmacy faculty member Nadav Ahituv, PhD, study the roles of gene regulatory elements—DNA segments that tell genes when, where, and to what extent to turn on and off—including in human conditions ranging from limb malformations to epilepsy and autism.
Krogan
UC San Francisco today announced the establishment of the Quantitative Biosciences Institute (QBI). The mission of QBI, located in Byers Hall on the UCSF Mission Bay campus, is to drive forward the application of computation, mathematics, and statistics toward a deeper understanding of complex problems in biology, with the ultimate goal of developing new treatments for disease.
Pharmacy students
The UCSF School of Pharmacy’s doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) program is among the top-ranked programs in the 2017 U.S. News and World Report survey of accredited PharmD programs released on March 15, 2016.
Troy C. Daniels
The Troy C. Daniels Curricular Innovation Awards provide funds in 2016 to support the evolution of the UCSF School of Pharmacy doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) curriculum to prepare leaders for a changing health care marketplace. The award and its endowment honor Troy C. Daniels, PhD, who served as dean of the School from 1944 to 1967. Dean Daniels led bold revisions of the pharmacy curriculum during his tenure and was committed to continuous curriculum improvement.
Koda-Kimble
The Mary Anne Koda-Kimble Seed Award for Innovation funds “truly innovative projects” by faculty, staff, and students that “have the potential to move forward the mission of the UCSF School of Pharmacy in new ways.” The award was established in 2012 to honor Dean Emeritus Koda-Kimble upon her retirement and to reflect her support for new directions in science, education, and patient care.
We are thrilled to announce that Michael Fischbach and Xin Chen have won prestigious Apple Teaching Awards for Fall 2015.
Abate
UCSF School of Pharmacy faculty member Adam Abate, PhD, has been named a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Abate and 104 fellow recipients of the White House honor will formally receive their awards at a Washington, DC, ceremony this spring.
Benet
UCSF School of Pharmacy faculty member Leslie Benet, PhD, has been named the 2016 recipient of the Remington Honor Medal, the highest honor bestowed by the American Pharmacists Association (APhA). He will be officially recognized during the APhA Annual Meeting and Exposition in Baltimore, MD, March 4–7, 2016.
Youmans and Navarro
The UCSF Office of Diversity and Outreach (ODO) celebrated its five-year anniversary on Friday, January 15, 2016 with a ceremony at the Millberry Union Event & Meeting Center on the Parnassus campus, honoring six campus leaders who were instrumental in the development of the office. Included among those ODO champions was UCSF School of Pharmacy Vice Dean Sharon Youmans, PharmD, MPH, who oversees the School’s education and diversity initiatives.