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I am pleased to welcome you to the Department of Pharmacology and Physiology, one of four basic science departments at Drexel University College of Medicine.

Our mission is to provide outstanding education and training to our students that will serve as the foundation for lifelong contributions to the biomedical and health sciences. We emphasize a collaborative atmosphere with the objective of fostering high quality, interdisciplinary research.

The disciplines of pharmacology and physiology touch on virtually every scientific discipline and clinical area within the biomedical sciences, providing students with a range of opportunities to explore disease mechanisms and altered physiological processes, new pharmacological tools and new medications.

We are unique in offering educational programs not only in the basic sciences of pharmacology and physiology but also in drug discovery and development, which provides students with a wealth of advantages in considering career opportunities within academic, biopharmaceutical and pharmaceutical settings.

Our faculty pursue a wide variety of research interests in the areas of neurological and neuroinflammatory disorders, cancer therapeutics, pain, cardiovascular and renal physiology, drug addiction and HIV infection/neuropathology. These efforts are intertwined with a strong education and research program in Drug Discovery and Development, including an active component of Medicinal Chemistry. This translational approach is at the basis of our work, firmly rooted in the concept of promoting a seamless and continuous transition between the basic and the clinical sciences.

We invite you to explore the research interests of our faculty and inquire if you have questions. Additional information about the faculty — such as publications and laboratory information — can be found on their biography pages.

Drug Discovery and Development Program at Drexel University College of Medicine

A new comprehensive program offering a Master of Science in Drug Discovery and Development.

Learn more about the program

News and Announcements

September 2016

Mary Hoffman Shaw

Mary Shaw Memorial Travel Award

In 2005, the Department of Pharmacology & Physiology established the Mary Shaw Memorial Travel Award in honor of Dr. Mary Hoffman Shaw, assistant professor of pharmacology and physiology, who passed away on May 20, 2004, after a battle with metastatic breast cancer.

As a faculty member, Dr. Shaw devoted the bulk of her efforts to the education of medical and graduate students, and served as co-director of the first-year Medical Physiology and Graduate Physiology courses. The travel award provides support for up to four graduate students in the department to present their research at a national meeting.

Congratulations go out to the following individuals who received awards this year:

  • Bradley Nash, PhD student (Dr. Olimpia Meucci, mentor)
  • Jennifer Ross, PhD student (Dr. Elisabeth Van Bockstaele, mentor)

Please contact Carmen Cruz-Adames,, for more information on the application process.

Anyone interested in making a contribution to the Mary Shaw Memorial Travel Award Fund should contact Liz Kopen at

Welcome New Students!

The department is pleased to welcome the following students to our programs in 2016:

Pharmacology & Physiology PhD Program
Yixiao Mei
Emily Nickoloff
Gordon Hill (MD/PhD Program)
Catherine Theilen (MD/PhD Program)

Pharmacology & Physiology MS Program
Maggie Johnson
Xiaonan Liu

Drug Discovery & Development MS Program
Mariam Archer
Tyler Bernadyn
Guangyou Lu
Ziyan Ma
Qianman Peng

See all news

Upcoming & Recent Events

November 8:
Dr. Sergi Ferre: Topic TBA

November 29:
Dr. Fadi Akar: Arrhythmia Mechanisms and Therapies in Large Animal Models of Advanced Heart Failure

See full seminar calendar

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Olimpia Meucci, MD, PhD, Professor & Chair, Department of Pharmacology & Physiology

Olimpia Meucci, MD, PhD
Professor & Chair