Skip to main content



Through ongoing research, the Institute for Drug Safety Sciences aims to provide drug developers and regulators with the best science to enable the early detection of drug safety concerns, optimize risk management, and support precision medicine strategies to “save” compounds with toxicity liabilities. We also train researchers in the areas of quantitative systems pharmacology modeling, novel organ injury biomarkers, and translational pharmacogenomics with an emphasis on drug safety. We encourage you contact us for to learn more about drug safety education and training opportunities.


The Institute aims to advance safety science by developing tools and approaches that enable drug developers and regulators to solve safety problems encountered at any point in the life cycle of a new drug candidate. We are also working to improve the prediction of drug toxicity liabilities before they occur. Long-term, we expect that the fundamental understanding of drug toxicities provided by our research will also inform the rational design of safer drugs. We regularly disseminate the findings of our research through:

  • Presentations at seminars, symposia, and scientific meetings
  • Peer-reviewed manuscripts in high-impact journals
  • Commentary, reviews, and book contributions in areas of expertise


The Institute is affiliated with the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics (DPET) within the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy. We accept students and fellows through the DPET training programs. Dr. Watkins is also a member of the Curriculum in Toxicology and can accept trainees through the School of Medicine’s Biological and Biomedical Sciences Program.