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Innovations and Transformations in Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences 2023

A summer learning experience for current and future scientists to learn about the discovery, delivery, and clinical use of drugs and vaccines.

July 10, 2023 - July 28, 2023

ITPS is a 3-week course offered to learners around the world by the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy. This program will expose learners to world-class professors from the No.1-ranked school of pharmacy in the United States. Participants will explore cutting-edge research and innovative technologies as professors explore the lifecycle of drugs and vaccines in our modern world. This year, participants will have 2 options to attend ITPS. Participants may elect to attend ITPS in-person on the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill campus. Those who choose this option will receive four credit hours and an official UNC transcript upon successful completion of the program. The cost of this option is $5,500 USD. This price includes housing, food, tuition, cultural activities, and site visits for the duration of the program. Participants may elect to attend ITPS virtually. Participants who select this option will have access to all lectures and will receive a Certificate of Completion at the conclusion of the program. The cost of this option is $500. Please note that all virtual participants will be able to watch lectures live or view recordings at their convenience. Live programming will be held from 8:00am – 11:00am EST most days.

Registration closes on March 1 (ITPS In-Person) and June 30 (ITPS Virtual) so register now to save your spot for this unique summer learning experience!


“I feel very honored to be able to listen to the lectures of the world’s top pharmaceutical scientists, and I did learn a lot of basic knowledge. The most important thing is that this activity completely ignited my enthusiasm for pharmaceutical research and I hope that I can develop in this field in the future.”

– ITPS Virtual 2020 Participant


In-Person: $5,500 USD

Virtual: $500 USD

Who Should Attend?

Students interested in a career in pharmaceutical sciences, biopharmaceutical research, or drug development.

Why Attend?

Through ITPS, participants will have the opportunity to learn about and develop valuable skills in topics related to the drug development pipeline (from discovery and delivery to outcomes and practice), pharmaceutical sciences, pharmacy practice, and professional development.

Participants will learn from world-renowned researchers as they discuss hot topics such as COVID-19 treatments, pharmacogenomics, unique drug delivery systems, and so much more!

When to Attend?

July 10 – July 28, 2023

Last year, we offered the following lectures as part of the 2022 Innovations and Transformations in Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences (ITPS) program. More information about the 2023 programming will be added soon!

Introduction to Drug Discovery
Dr. Qisheng Zhang
  Introduction to Drug Delivery
Dr. Yutian Ma
Introduction to Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics
Dr. Carter Cao
  Therapeutic Induced Neural Stem Cells for Brain Cancer Therapy
Dr. Andrew Satterlee
How Computers Help Identify Small Molecule Leads
Holli-Joi Martin
  How to Get a Hit Using DNA-Encoded Library Screening
Devan Shell
Cultural Intelligence in Healthcare
Dr. Carla White
  Deprescribing and Medication Safety: An evidence-based approach
Dr. Joshua Niznik
Strategies for improving ADME properties of lead molecules
Kareem Galal
  Vaccine Hesitancy in Rural Communities
Dr. Delesha Carpenter
Molecular Tumor Board
Dr. Amber Cipriani
  Enhancing Diabetes Care in Rural Areas through Telehealth Clinical Pharmacy Services
Jon Easter
Introduction to the Scientific Article: How to Get the Most out of the Science
Dr. Cati Callahan and Dr. Kristin Inman (NIEHS)
  Effects of Viral Infections and Vaccines on the Innate Immune System and the Pharmacology of Complex Drugs
Dr. Bill Zamboni
Integrating Cheminformatics and Computational Biology for Deriving Drug Discovery Hypotheses
Dr. Rima Hajjo
  Overview of Presenting at Conferences and Networking Effectively
Dr. Amanda Stover
Practical Considerations in Recommending and Administering Vaccines to Adult Patients
Dr. Dennis Williams
  Quantitative Targeted Proteomics: Applications in Drug Development
Dr. Philip Smith
Clinical and Preclinical Developments in the Delivery of Vaccines
Dylan Hendy
  Teaching the Immune System to Love Again: Tolerogenic Vaccines for Autoimmune Disease
Rebeca Stiepel
Introduction to Grant Writing
Dr. Ruth Everett
  Antibiotic Drug Discovery
Dr. Albert Bowers
Genetic Diagnoses Informing Drug Therapy
Dr. Erin Heinzen
  Human Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (hiPSC) in Modeling Neurodevelopment Disease
Dulcie Lai
Use of Single Cell RNA Sequencing in Guiding Therapeutic Interventions for Cortical Malformations
Meethila Gade
  HIV Integrase Inhibitors and Weight Gain in Women and Older Patients
Dr. Julie Dumond
Overview of Evidence-Based Literature
Rebecca Carlson and Hannah Burrows
  PK/PD Modeling to Optimize Dosing of Novel HIV Therapeutics
Dr. Mackenzie Leigh Cottrell


2023 Innovations and Transformations in Pharmaceutical Sciences (ITPS) Speakers


Albert Bowers, PhD

Albert Bowers, PhD is the Vice Chair of the Division of Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry. He received his PhD in organic chemistry (synthetic methods) from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He carried out postdoctoral research (total synthesis) at Colorado State University before moving as an NIH sponsored fellow to Harvard Medical School (biosynthesis).  He is a member of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and affiliate member of the Center for Integrative Chemical Biology and Drug Discovery.

Research in his lab is concentrated on the synthesis, assessment, and modification of potential therapeutic leads, especially those derived from natural products. His lab uses chemical synthesis as well as genetic manipulation of the natural biosyntheses to access and modify compounds to study structure-activity relationships (SAR). These efforts involves the integration of basic concepts in organic reaction mechanisms, synthetic organic chemistry, biochemistry, molecular biology, bioinformatics and computational chemistry.


Yanguang Cao, PhD

Yanguang Cao, Ph.D., joined the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy as an assistant professor in the division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics. Prior to joining the School, Cao served as a research assistant professor at SUNY Buffalo for two years after completing a postdoctoral training program at SUNY, Buffalo.

Dr. Cao has training in pharmacology, pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics, and computational oncology and immunology. He led a multidisciplinary team having scientists in the field of molecular biology, pharmacology, and pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics. His group is currently funded by the National Institute of Health and the Food and Drug Administration.


Rebecca Carlson, MLS, AHIP

Rebecca Carlson, MLS, is Health Sciences Librarian and Liaison to the School of Pharmacy at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Rebecca is the primary provider of library support for the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy, and is responsible for collaborating with faculty to design and provide curriculum-integrated instruction; participating in new program planning, accreditation processes, and the scholarship of teaching and learning; providing research and scholarly communication consultations, expert literature searches, and other services for teaching, clinical care, research, and administrative purposes.

Rebecca is the Clinical Librarian for the Department of Surgery at UNC-Chapel Hill. She is the primary provider of library support for surgery, including collaborating on surgical research, evidence-based practice, and clinical education. Rebecca also serves as one of the Interprofessional Education and Practice Directors for the Health Science Library and works with the Office of Interprofessional Education and Practice at UNC-Chapel Hill. Rebecca has her Master of Science in Library Science degree from UNC-Chapel Hill and is a senior member of the Medical Library Association’s Academy of Health Information Professionals.


Delesha Carpenter, PhD, MSPH

Delesha Carpenter, PhD, MSPH, is an associate professor and Interim Chair in the Division of Pharmaceutical Outcomes and Policy. Her research focuses on developing trainings to improve patient-provider communication about sensitive issues, like suicide and substance abuse use disorders. She is especially interested in improving access to healthcare services in rural areas and directs a practice-based research network for rural community pharmacists.

She also runs an active research program in inhaler technique education and mHealth. She is particularly interesting in developing training technique and asthma self-management. She has developed an adolescent asthma self-management app and a tailored video software program to improve children’s asthma inhaler technique.

She teaches the Social & Behavior Aspects of Pharmaceutical Use course and has enjoyed mentoring PhD students, PharmD students, and hosting students from other universities for research rotations.

Carpenter has published more than 100 peer-reviewed articles on the topics of pediatric asthma, patient-provider communication, the effects of conflicting medication information on medication adherence, and evaluating the impact of technology on patient outcomes. She has received funding to support her research from a diverse body of funders, including the American Lung Association, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Arthritis Foundation, NIH, NSF, the Veteran’s Administration, and startup companies.

Amber Cipriani, PharmD

Amber Proctor Cipriani, Pharm.D., joined the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy as a clinical assistant professor in the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapy. Cipriani’s appointment is cofunded by UNC Hospitals, where she serves as a clinical oncology specialist in thoracic oncology. Cipriani began her appointment on August 1, 2015.

At the hospital, Cipriani established a pharmacy presence in the ambulatory oncology clinics for lung, sarcoma, head and neck and melanoma malignancies. At the School, Proctor co-coordinates PHYC 447, a hematology and oncology course for third-year pharmacy students, with William Zamboni, Pharm.D., Ph.D., in the fall and coordinates DPET 812, an oncology elective, in the spring.

Cipriani earned her Doctor of Pharmacy from the Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences University of Colorado Denver in 2013. She then came to UNC Hospitals to complete a PGY1 pharmacy residency and a PGY2 hematology and oncology pharmacy practice specialty residency.

Mackenzie Leigh Cottrell, PharmD

Mackenzie Cottrell, Pharm.D., M.S. is an assistant professor in the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics. Her research focuses on describing pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic relationships in mucosal tissues for antiretrovirals being used in HIV prevention and cure interventions.


Julie Dumond, PharmD, MS

Julie Dumond is an assistant professor in the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics. Her primary research interest is the pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics of antiretrovirals for HIV treatment and prevention. She is Chair of the MACS/WIHS Combined Cohort Study Pharmacology Working Group, and is currently conducting a study of intracellular tenofovir pharmacology within the cohort (R21AG058490). She also serves as the HIV Prevention Trials Network Pharmacologist on four NIH-sponsored early-phase studies of HIV broadly neutralizing antibodies for HIV prevention. She also has an interest in the influence of cellular and biologic aging on antiretroviral PK/PD and immunologic recovery of persons living with HIV.

Dumond directs the first module in the DPET graduate pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics curriculum, DPET 853, and is one of the DPET Division Directors for the Research and Scholarship in Pharmacy (RASP) program for Doctor of Pharmacy students.


Jon Easter

Jon Easter is a Professor of the Practice in the Division of Practice Advancement and Clinical Education. Jon also directs the U.S. Healthcare course in the PharmD curriculum at UNC, and leads the pharmacy practice section within the global PharmAlliance collaboration.

Previously, Jon spent 20 years at GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), where he primarily worked in health policy. His team focused on care coordination, quality measurement and medication management policy development through the creation of healthcare improvement demonstration projects.  Initiatives included launching a patient-centered medical home program and building a predictive analytics tool that identified patients at risk for medication therapy problems.

Jon has a B.S. in Pharmacy from the University of Georgia and is a registered pharmacist. In addition to improving healthcare and the practice of pharmacy, his true passions are spending time with his wife Anne and their two boys, Charlie and Ben, as well as cheering on his Bulldogs.


Stephen Eckel, PharmD, MHA

Stephen Eckel, Pharm.D., M.H.A., is associate dean for global engagement and a associate professor in the Division of Practice Advancement and Clinical Education. He leads a two-year Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences with a specialization in health-system pharmacy administration. This degree is hosted at eight hospitals, five of which are in North Carolina and others are located in 3 other states. At UNC Medical Center, he is director of pharmacy for innovation services, where he is residency program director for the 2-year health system pharmacy administration and leadership residency program. He has worked with almost 200 residents over the years.

As an innovator and entrepreneur, Eckel spearheaded the development of UNC Pharmacy Grand Rounds with ASHP and launched ChemoGLO, LLC with Bill Zamboni, Pharm.D., Ph.D. He is also the founder of Assure Technologies, LLC, which is leading the development of the medical device Precynge (precise syringe). Eckel is the previous editor of the health-system edition of Pharmacy Times and a passionate supporter of the role of the pharmacist and technology in patient care. He conducts and publishes his research and is frequently asked to speak around the world on these issues.

Ruth Everett Headshot

Ruth Everett, PhD

Ruth Everett is the Director of Strategic Research Development. She  worked for several years as a lecturer and Head of the Department of Zoology at Jyoti Nivas College, Bangalore, India. She received her PhD from Purdue University, and postdoctoral training at Duke University Medical Center. Ruth gained experience in cell and molecular biology at the Cystic Fibrosis/Pulmonary Research and Treatment Center at UNC-Chapel Hill, and at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (Department of Pulmonary Medicine) as a research instructor. She joined the laboratory of Dr. Dhiren Thakker, initially as a visiting scholar, and then as research faculty. Ruth’s research interests are in the areas of metformin intestinal absorption/transport mechanisms and anticancer activities, and in the modulation of tight junctions for enhanced drug delivery.

Meethila Gade, MPH

Meethila Gade is a rising third year doctoral student in the pharmaceutical sciences program. She received a double major in biology and chemistry from University of Delhi and then received her Master’s in Public Health (Toxicology) at Columbia University. She is currently working on the transcriptomic characterization of focal cortical dysplasia type 2 using single cell RNA sequencing in Dr. Erin Heinzen’s lab. Her work is mostly geared towards the development and optimization of single cell RNA sequencing protocols and analyzing the data generated using a large variety of bioinformatic tools.

Kareem Galal

Kareem Galal, PhD

Kareem Galal is a postdoctoral research associate at SGC-UNC. His current work is focused on designing kinase inhibitors for combating infectious diseases. He obtained his Bachelor of Pharmaceutical Sciences degree in 2013 from the College of Pharmacy at Cairo University, Egypt. He completed his doctoral degree at the Medicinal Chemistry department at the University of Florida’s College of Pharmacy. During his Ph.D. studies, Kareem worked as a synthetic medicinal chemist under the supervision of Professor Christopher McCurdy. His dissertation project involved design, synthesis, and biological evaluation of small molecule ligands for the Neuropeptide FF receptor.

Rima Hajjo Headshot

Rima Hajjo, MS, PhD

Dr. Hajjo is a computational scientist with over 10 years of industrial experience in drug discovery and development. She also worked as a Solutions Scientist at Thomson Reuters IP & Science and Clarivate Analytics. Currently, Dr. Hajjo is an Assistant Professor at Al-Zaytoonah University of Jordan, an Adjunct Associate Professor at Eshelman School of Pharmacy at UNC-CH, a Board Member at the Jordanian Center for Epidemics and Disease Control (JCDC), and a Chief Scientist in Computational Chemical Biology at the Office of the Advisor to His Majesty, King Abdullah II. Dr. Hajjo has a PhD degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences from UNC-CH and a post graduate degree in Bioinformatics from Harvard University. She is a recipient of several awards including: AAPS Young Innovator Award, ACS Cheminformatics Award for Scientific Excellence, Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) Young Investigator Award for the years 2008 and 2009, Forma Therapeutics Service Award in 2014, and Clarivate Analytics Award for Best Performing Teams in 2018.


Erin Heinzen, PharmD, PhD

Erin Heinzen, Pharm.D., Ph.D., is an associate professor at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy in the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics with a joint appointment in the UNC Department of Genetics. Dr. Heinzen received her Pharm.D. (2001) and her Ph.D. (2004) in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She then went on to do postdoctoral training in human genetics at Duke University. Previously she served as Deputy Director of the Institute for Genomic Medicine and was the Herbert Irving Assistant Professor of the Department of Pathology & Cell Biology at Columbia University. Dr. Heinzen is a licensed pharmacist in North Carolina and New York.
Dr. Heinzen’s research broadly focuses on neurodevelopment disease genetics. She has contributed to the discovery of 15 novel epilepsy genes, and the gene responsible for Alternating Hemiplegia of Childhood, a rare neurodevelopmental disorder. She part of multiple highly collaborative research groups including the Epi4K Consortium, Epi25 Collaborative, EPIGEN, the ILAE Consortium of Complex Epilepsies, Pediatric Status Epilepticus Research Group, and the Epilepsy Genetics Initiative. Dr. Heinzen’s research program is funded by the National Institutes of Neurological Disorders and Stroke and the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

Dylan Hendy

Dylan Hendy is a second year PhD candidate in the lab of Dr. Kristy Ainslie. His research focuses on using microparticle formulations to increase the efficacy of broadly active influenza vaccines.


Mike Jarstfer, PhD

As Assistant Dean for Graduate Education, Mike Jarstfer is the Director of Graduate Studies for Pharmaceutical Sciences PhD Program and in this role advances innovative approaches to enhance graduate training. The Jarstfer lab is interested in targeting telomere biology for aging disorders and cancer treatment strategies and exploring the mechanism of oxytocin in controlling social behavior.

Dulcie Lai, PharmD, PhD

Dulcie received her PhD at Queen’s University in cancer research followed by her PharmD at the University of Waterloo. She is currently a post-doctoral research scientist in Erin’s Heinzen’s lab where she is modeling SLC35A2-associated epilepsy using human induced pluripotent stem cell derived neuron models.

Yutian Ma

Yutian Ma, PhD

Yutian Ma is a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Division of Pharmacoengineering and Molecular Pharmaceutics at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy. He conducted his Ph.D. at the University of Melbourne (Australia). He has a background in biomedical engineering, biomolecular engineering, nanomedicine and drug delivery. In Australia, he worked on developing nanoengineered drug delivery systems for the treatment of inner ear disease. He is currently working on developing non-viral vectors for improving the efficacy and safety of RNA therapeutics.

Joshua Niznik, PharmD, PhD

Joshua Niznik, PharmD, PhD is an assistant professor with a joint appointment in the Division of Pharmaceutical Outcomes and Policy at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy and in the Department of Medicine, Division of Geriatric Medicine at the UNC School of Medicine.  Dr. Niznik is a geriatric health services researcher with clinical training in the pharmaceutical sciences. He received his PharmD and PhD from the University of Pittsburgh and worked as a pharmacist with UPMC Magee-Women’s Hospital and as a researcher with the VA Pittsburgh Health System.  His research interests are focused on evaluating the quality of medications in older adults to improve the safety of medication use in this population.  Dr. Niznik is the recipient of several notable research awards, including the American Geriatrics Society’s 2018 Scientist-in-Training and Best Paper in Health Services and Policy Research awards.  He currently serves as a facilitator in the School’s Patient Care Experience II course and serves as a research mentor for PharmD Students in the Research and Scholarship in Pharmacy (RASP) elective.  He also works with medical students as part of the UNC Medical Student Training in Aging Research (MSTAR) program.


Sachiko Ozawa, PhD, MHS

Sachiko Ozawa, Ph.D., M.H.S., is a health economist whose work focuses on generating evidence that can be used to improve the health of populations globally. Her research focuses on examining the value of vaccines, assessing the economic burden of diseases and examining the demand and utilization of health care. She is interested in the interface between pharmacy and public health from the perspective of a global health economist. She serves on the WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts Global Vaccine Action Plan Working Group on the demand for immunization. She is also a member of the Scientific Committee Review Panel for the International Health Economics Association.

Megan Roberts, PhD - Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention

Megan Roberts, PhD

Megan Roberts, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Division of Pharmaceutical Outcomes and Policy and the Director of Implementation Science in Precision Health and Society at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy. Her research focuses on evaluating and improving the implementation of genomic medicine. In particular, she is interested in conducting research to understand how precision medicine technologies can be implemented to improve access to and reduce disparities in high-quality care and prevention. To date, her research has largely focused on the intersection between genomic medicine, health equity and implementation science including research about the implementation of population genetic screening, cascade screening for hereditary conditions, precision diagnostics in low resourced settings both globally and in the US, and building capacity for precision public health.


Andrew Satterlee, PhD

Dr. Andrew Satterlee completed both his PhD and postdoctoral research at UNC, and now works within the Eshelman Institute for Innovation to translate academic ideas toward the clinic.  Dr. Satterlee’s research develops models of brain cancer to better understand and predict responses to novel and approved therapies using live, organotypic tissue explants


Mollie Ashe Scott, PharmD

Mollie Ashe Scott, Pharm.D. BCACP, CPP, FASHP, serves as the Regional Associate Dean for the School and oversees the operations of the School’s regional campus in Asheville.  She collaborates with leaders at UNC Health Sciences at MAHEC including UNC School of Medicine, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and UNC Adams School of Dentistry to advance inteprofessional primary care and rural health education, practice, and research.

Her clinical interests include geriatrics and women’s health, and she practices at MAHEC Family Health Center’s interprofessional osteoporosis clinic.  She serves as the course director for On Becoming a Pharmacist which is the first course in the leadership and professional development stream and oversees the Ambulatory Care Program which emphasizes practice management and development of new ambulatory care services.  Mollie serves as a preceptor for MAHEC’s PGY2 residency programs in Ambulatory Care and Geriatrics.  She is an active member of NCAP where she is currently serving as Chair of the Task Force on Pharmacist Prescribed Hormonal Contraception.  She served six years on ASHP’s Section of Ambulatory Care Practitioners’ Executive Committee as Director-at-Large and Chair and has been recognized as a Fellow of ASHP for her service to the profession of Pharmacy.

Devan Shell

Devan Shell

Devan is a fourth-year Ph.D. candidate in the Pharmaceutical Sciences program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. As a member of the Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry division in Dr. Ken Pearce’s lab, his research focuses on the development and utilization of a DNA-Encoded Libray (DEL) platform for early-stage drug discovery. Research efforts also include assay development and hit optimization for chemical probe/drug characterization.


Philip Smith, PhD

Dr. Smith received a B.S. in Pharmacy from the University of Illinois, Chicago Medical Center, and then a Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Chemistry, with an emphasis in pharmacokinetics, in 1985 from the University of California, San Francisco. After postdoctoral studies at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, MD, as a National Research Council Fellow, he joined the faculty of the College of Pharmacy at the University of Texas at Austin. In 1992 he moved to the School of Pharmacy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he is presently Associate Professor and Vice Chair of the Division of Pharmacoengineering and Molecular Pharmaceutics. Dr. Smith’s main research efforts are directed toward establishing quantitative methods for proteins associated with drug disposition, understanding factors influencing the disposition, pharmacokinetics, reactivity and potential toxicity of labile acyl glucuronide metabolites, the role of glucuronidation in intestinal toxicity of drugs and the modulation of drug glucuronidation by botanicals/herbal remedies.

He is Director of the Quantitative Targeted Proteomics Laboratory which utilizes LC-MS for protein measurements in complex matrices. He was recently on the USP Dietary Supplements: Performance Standards Expert Committee. He is past recipient of the Faculty Development Award in Pharmacology and Toxicology from the PhRMA Foundation.   Dr. Smith was Co-Chair of the 1997 ISSX meeting and is currently an ISSX Council Member for North America.  He serves as an ad hoc reviewer for NIH study sections and as a consultant to the pharmaceutical industry. Dr. Smith is a member of the editorial advisory board for the Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Current Drug Metabolism, and participates as a reviewer for the journals Drug Metabolism and Disposition, Biochemical Pharmacology, Pharmaceutical Research, the Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and others.

Rebeca Stiepel

Rebeca Stiepel

Rebeca Stiepel is a 4th year PhD candidate in Dr. Kristy Ainslie’s lab. Her research focuses on the development of a microparticle-based tolerogenic vaccine platform to treat autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis.This tolerogenic vaccine platform is designed with the goal of alleviating an autoimmune response in an antigen specific manner, without broad immunosuppression.


Amanda Stover, PhD, MPH

Amanda is a post-doctoral research assistant in the Eshelman School of Pharmacy. Her research interests include suicide prevention and harm reduction particular among individuals with opioid use disorder.  Currently, she works on projects focused on educating community pharmacy staff on suicide prevention training. Amanda received her Master’s in Public Health from the University of Cincinnati and her doctoral degree from West Virginia University. She grew up in Pittsburgh, PA and is a huge ice-hockey fan.

Carla White, BS Pharm

Carla White is a pharmacist, associate dean of Organizational Diversity and Inclusion, and clinical assistant professor at the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy.  She is responsible for the development of an organizational diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) strategy that will direct and align with the School’s education mission. She is a highly regarded thought leader, educator, influencer, and pragmatic disruptor in the DEI space. Major areas of responsibility include developing best practices and strategic and partnerships, addressing challenges, and determining the relevant metrics to assess the School’s effectiveness and impact.

Recent accomplishments include: development of the School’s DEI Strategic Plan with data driven metrics, Co-PI on a $386, 895.25 grant to support mentoring, wellness, and resiliency for BIPOC Women Faculty, first funded Innovation Fellowship, and recipient of the 2020 Triangle Business Journal Leaders in Diversity Award.


Dennis Williams, PharmD

Dennis Williams, Pharm.D., is an associate professor and the vice chair for professional education and practice for the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics.

Dr. Williams earned his Bachelor of Science in pharmacy and Doctor of Pharmacy degrees at the University of Kentucky in Lexington. He is a board-certified pharmacotherapy specialist, as well as a certified asthma educator. He has received fellow recognition from the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, American College of Clinical Pharmacy, and American Pharmacists Association.

Dr. Williams focuses his practice, teaching, and research on the management of patients with pulmonary and infectious diseases. He is a member of the National Asthma Education and Prevention Program Coordinating Committee of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and several other boards.

Dr. Williams has published research papers and book chapters in the area of pulmonary diseases and infectious diseases, and he regularly speaks on these topics at national and international professional programs. He has trained thousands of pharmacists and students about pulmonary, infectious disease, and immunization sciences, as well as practice considerations related to these topics.


William Zamboni, PharmD, PhD

William Zamboni, Pharm.D., Ph.D., serves as the director of the UNC Advanced Translational Pharmacology and Analytical Chemistry (ATPAC) Lab and Recharge Center in the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy (ESOP), the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center (LCCC), and the Carolina Institute of Nanomedicine. The UNC ATPAC Lab consists of the UNC Translational Oncology and Nanoparticle Drug Development Initiative (TONDDI) Lab and the UNC LCCC Analytical Chemistry and Pharmacology Core (ACPC) Lab. The UNC ATPAC Lab supports research from the Zamboni lab and highly collaborative and team science-based research with faculty members in the UNC ESOP, UNC LCCC, and Carolina Institute of Nanomedicine (CIN), as well as investigators from the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, other academic research centers, and the pharmaceutical companies.

Dr. Zamboni’s research program is part of the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics in the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy. The research program is also part of UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center (LCCC) and Carolina Institute of Nanomedicine (CIN). He considers himself as a translational pharmacologist where he applies standard and novel analytical chemistry, pharmacology, pharmacokinetic, pharmacodynamic, and biomarker methods to preclinical, translational, and clinical development of drugs, especially anticancer agents.


Qisheng Zhang, PhD

Dr. Zhang is an Associate Professor in the Department of Pharmacology and an Associate Professor in the Division of Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry. The Zhang lab studies lipid signaling pathways that are involved in development and diseases by developing novel chemical probes and technologies. As key components of cellular membranes, lipids also serve as signaling molecules and modify functions of proteins through either covalent or non-covalent interactions. Dys-regulation of lipid signaling has been correlated with various diseases including cancer, diabetes, and neurodegenerative diseases. Consequently, many lipid-related proteins or processes have been used as therapeutic targets. However, lipids are dynamically metabolized and transported, making it difficult to illustrate the roles of lipids in development and diseases with limited availability of probes and technologies for lipid studies.

Register here to attend ITPS in-person.
Deadline: March 1, 2023

Register Now - In-Person

Register here to attend ITPS virtually.
Deadline: June 30, 2023

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