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School of Pharmacy|College of Health Sciences

New Biomedical Sciences Ph.D. Program Welcomes Students

BMS Ph.D. students and advisers.The UW School of Pharmacy is proud to announce the beginning of a new Ph.D. program in biomedical sciences (BMS) at the University of Wyoming. The program has eight Ph.D. candidates who started this fall. Four of the Ph.D. candidates are in the School of Pharmacy. The director of the BMS Program is Don Roth, Ph.D., professor of molecular biology, associate director of the School of Energy Resources, and director of the K12 Science Posse. This is the first interdisciplinary doctoral program mainly based in the College of Health Sciences with faculty mentors from College of Agriculture and College of Engineering also participating.

The BMS program is designed to meet the needs and interests of students and to address important workforce demands for doctorate level biomedical research expertise.

The new program is designed to position graduates for long-term competitive success in the rapidly changing and multifaceted health-related arena in the 21st century. It is a comprehensive, interdisciplinary program, making connections between various disciplines to gain new insights, discover and apply new knowledge, and promote self-directed, life-long learning.

Areas of BMS Ph.D. candidates' focus may include but are not limited to cardiac health, nutrition, reproductive biology, toxicology, diagnostic and imaging and medical engineering. Students are expected to conduct original, innovative research leading to a publishable dissertation and to be involved in teaching.

The program of study is designed according to student learning goals and research opportunities and promotes student competency in a series of outlined student learning outcomes. The program provides a unique array of formal courses and informal discovery experiences focused on ensuring aptitudes, behaviors and skills necessary for leadership and competitive success in the biomedical science arena. Each student works directly with an adviser in their area of interest.

BMS Ph.D. candidates joining the new program this fall in the School of Pharmacy are Jodi Schilz, Yinan Hua, Xihui (Alex) Xu, and Zhi Xia.

Jodi Schilz' advisers are Suzanne Clark, Ph.D., assistant professor of pharmacology, and Kem P. Krueger, Pharm.D., Ph.D., associate professor of pharmacoeconomics and health outcomes research. Schilz' interests include occupational and environmental toxicology and public health.

Yinan Hua's adviser is Sreejayan Nair, Ph.D., director of the Center for Cardiovascular Research and Alternative Medicine (C-CRAM), and associate professor of pharmacology. Hua's area of interest is to understand the molecular mechanisms of type-2 diabetes and to develop therapeutic strategies aimed at treating or preventing the progression of the disease.

Xihui (Alex) Xu's adviser is Jun Ren, M.D., Ph.D., FAHA, associate dean for research for the College of Health Sciences, professor of pharmacology, and director of the Wyoming INBRE Program. Xu's research interests are studying the general underlying molecular mechanisms for several different cardiovascular diseases, such as hypertrophy, to improve the treatment of these diseases; and uncovering the possible role of aldehyde dehydrogenase 2 (ALDH2) in the development of cardiomyocyte dysfunction on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced mice sepsis model. 

Zhi Xia's adviser is Jun Ren, M.D., Ph.D., FAHA, associate dean for research for the College of Health Sciences, professor of pharmacology, and director of the Wyoming INBRE Program. His main research direction will be on cardiac health in critical care medicine such as sepsis and hypothermia.


New BMS Ph.D. students are pictured with Director Don Roth and their advisers. Seated (L to R), Xihui (Alex) Xu, Yinan Hua, adviser Dr. Suzanne Clark, and Jodi Schilz. Standing (L to R) adviser Dr. Sreejayan Nair, Director Don Roth, and advisers Dr. Jun Ren and Dr. Kem Krueger. Zhi Xia was not available for the photo.

Posted on Monday, August 30, 2010

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