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Dhiren Thakker


Dhiren Thakker

Emeritus Professor



301 Pharmacy Lane, , CB# 7355, Chapel Hill, NC, 27599

Dhiren Thakker, Ph.D., is an emeritus professor at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy.

Thakker has been a member of the School’s faculty for more than 20 years. Before being named interim dean, he served as the associate dean for entrepreneurial development and global engagement. He is also a researcher focusing on drug absorption and metabolism, as well as a successful entrepreneur.

Thakker came to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1996 after a career in research at the National Institutes of Health and in drug discovery at Glaxo, Inc., now GSK. Just two years after joining the School, he became the associate dean of graduate and research programs. He has taken other significant roles, including serving as the associate dean for entrepreneurial development and global engagement, director of the Campbell Faculty Mentoring Program and the Howard Q. Ferguson Distinguished Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences. He has mentored dozens of graduate students, postdocs and visiting international scholars and paved the way for pharmacy students to experience education on a global scale.

Just two years after coming to UNC, Thakker assume the role of associate dean of graduate and research programs. He is also a scientific founder and member of the board for Qualyst, Inc., a venture capital–backed business venture that spun out of his research on drug metabolism. He also worked at the Food and Drug Administration..

Thakker is co-editor of Medicinal Research Reviews and an editorial board member of the Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Current Drug Metabolism, as well as a past editorial board member of Drug Metabolism and Disposition. He is a recipient of the Sato Memorial Award from the Pharmaceutical Society of Japan and is a fellow of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists.



Mechanisms of drug transport; structure-transport relationships; prodrug strategies for tumor-targeting; metabolism of drugs and xenobiotics; delivery and disposition of macromolecules