University of Vermont

College of Medicine

Vermont Medicine Magazine

DEPARTMENT OF Pharmacology ~ 2014 Annual Report

Mark T. Nelson, Ph.D., Chair

The Department of Pharmacology, with its international reputation in neurovascular research continues to play important roles in the research and educational missions of the College of Medicine and the University. Our faculty have been honored as keynote and invited speakers at prestigious international meetings and universities around the world.

Research funded by Fondation Leducq and co-led by Mark Nelson, Ph.D., continues its efforts to uncover the mechanisms that cause small vessel disease (SVD) of the brain. Research includes CADASIL mice, a genetic model for SVD in non-hypertensive human adults. Dr. Nelson and network investigators presented their findings at the Second International Workshop on CADASIL, held in Paris, France.

This year the department hosted an International Symposium on Ion Channels at UVM with speakers from Sweden, Germany, Great Britain, Canada, and across the United States. Ninety attendees networked during a day long symposium and a poster session.

Assistant Professor Benedek Erdos, M.D., Ph.D., joined the department during this year. His research focuses on understanding how stress, obesity and aging affect neuroendocrine regulation of blood pressure with an aim to identify novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of hypertension and cardiovascular diseases.

Extramural support remains strong, with new grants and continued funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Cancer Institute, American Heart Association, foundations, and industries. The Totman Medical Research Trust continues its generous support for interdepartmental research to understand cerebrovascular function and disease.

We are committed to maintaining high quality teaching and mentoring efforts to medical, graduate, advanced undergraduate students, and our many postdoctoral fellows. Faculty efforts include one-on-one research mentoring, didactic lectures in pharmacology courses including the Medical Summer Pharmacology program, and virtually all courses in the Foundations level of the Vermont Integrated Curriculum at the College of Medicine.

The minor in Pharmacology for UVM undergraduates continues to grow in popularity. Twelve students graduated with a pharmacology minor in May of 2014. Currently there are 26 students enrolled, including 15 seniors. Thedepartment fosters communication and collaboration with faculty and postdoctoral fellows presenting current research in weekly journal clubs and monthly interactive research forums.

Pharmacology faculty serve on many grant review committees for the NIH, American Thyroid Association, and the American Heart Association; peer review committees for the American Cancer Society, and the America Heart Association; Program Committee for the American Thyroid Association; and on numerous editorial boards including the Physiological Reviews, Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism, American Journal of Physiology and Molecular Pharmacology. Our faculty serve important roles on UVM committees including the Faculty Standards Committee, the CMB Graduate Recruitment Committee, and several committees for the University of Vermont Cancer Center.

Last modified January 28 2015 02:59 PM