Pharmacology students in matching vests

The Pharmacology and Molecular Medicine Training Program currently has 35 students enrolled in the PhD Program. Of the current students, 6 entered the program as MD/PhD (MSTP) students; and 8 others entered the program from the umbrella Biomedical Science Program (BSP). The Pharmacology Graduate Training Program consistently matriculates students from all three potential sources: direct recruiting, the BSP, and the MSTP.

Our students represent a broad and diverse geographic distribution as well as a variety of undergraduate majors including: biology, molecular biology, biochemistry, chemistry, physics, pharmacy and psychology. Over the last ten years, the average size of the matriculated class of Pharmacology and Molecular Medicine Training Program students has been 4.6 and the average time to degree is ~5.2 years. The retention rate, that is students who complete the program with their PhD is (37/49) or 76% over the last 10 years. Another 8 students completed the program with MS degrees. Thus, the overall percentage of a students graduating with an advanced degree is (45/49) 92%.


 Student Name, Degree, and Undergraduate Institution
Lorena Alamillo

Lorena Alamillo
BS, Biochemistry, Metropolitan State University of Denver, Denver, CO, 2019
Mentor: Eisenmesser, Elan Z.
Elucidating the molecular motions promoting SortaseA swap-dimerization 

Chase BarkerMadison Barker 
BS, Biochemistry, University of Colorado, Denver, CO, 2021
Mentor: Bayer, Ulli
Exploring CaMKII's role in synaptic plasticity, structure-function relationships, and its therapeutic potential for diseases.
Dillon BoultonDillon ​Boulton
BS, Biology, Rowan Univ., Glassboro, NJ, 2016
Mentor: Caino, M. Cecilia
Elucidating the role of Mitochondrial Rho-like GTPase, Miro2, in the regulation of mitochondrial dynamics and turnover
Brian Brady Picture

Brian Brady
BS, Psychology, Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA, 2018
MS, Molecular Neuroscience, University of Bristol,  2021

Nicole Brown

Nicole Brown
BA, Neuroscience, Univ. of Colorado, Boulder, CO, 2016
Mentor: Bayer, Ulli
I study how LTP vs LTD crosstalk occurs between subunits within the CaMKII 12-meric holoenzyme
Nicole Brown's Publications on NIH

Amelia BurchAmelia Burch
BS, Neuroscience, Emory Univ., Atlanta, GA, 2015
Mentor: Herson, Paco
The role of the TRPM2 ion channel in synaptic and cognitive dysfunction following focal cerebral ischemia
Amelia Burch's Publications on NIH
Nan ChenNan Chen
BS, Pharmacy, China Pharmaceutical Univ., 2014; M.S., Drug Discovery and Development, Drexel Univ., 2016
Mentor: Doebele, Robert C.
Investigating how EGFR mediates early adaptive resistance to tyrosine kinase inhibitors in NSCLC driven by oncogenic fusion kinases
Nan Chen's Publications on PubMed
Ralf DagdagRalf Dagdag
BS, University of Alaska, Anchorage, 2016; MS, University of Alaska, Anchorage, 2022
Mentor: Gixnoux, Chris R. 
Elucidating the causal relationship between germline and somatic mutations in prostate cancer aggression
Cailin Deiter
Cailin Deiter
BS, Molecular Biology, University of Wyoming, 2019
Mentor: Costello, C. James
Characterizing adaptations to therapeutic autophagy inhibition in human prostate cancer
Fainelli, Shelby PictureShelby Fainelli
BS, Cell and Molecular Neuroscience, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 2022
Lily FeldmanLily Elizabeth Feldman
BS, Biochemistry, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, 2020
Mentor: Costello, C. James
Characterizing novel chemoresistance mechanisms in human bladder cancer
Hannah Ferris

Hannah Ferris
BA, Biochemistry, Hamilton College, Clinton, NY, 2016; MS., Medical Science, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT,  2017
Mentor: Dabertrand, Fabrice
Elucidating the molecular basis for cerebral microvasculature dysfunction

Spencer Hall

Spencer Hall
BS, Biology, University of Virginia, 2019
Mentor: Verneris, Michael; Davila, Eduardo
Investigating CAR T cell costimulatory domains for improved solid tumor treatment

Danielle Jeffrey

Danielle Jeffrey
BS, Cellular and Molecular Biology, California State Univ., Chico, CA, 2012; M.S., Biomedical Sciences, Regis Univ., Denver, CO, 2016
Mentor: Dabertrand, Fabrice
Investigating the role of mural cells in normal brain microcirculation in comparison to small vessel diseases.

Dean KareemoDean Kareemo
BS, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Univ. of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI, 2018
Mentor: Kennedy, Matt
Investigating the unique trafficking pathways of synaptic proteins

Mason KleinjanMason Kleinjan
BS, Biology, Univ. North Dakota, Grand Forks, ND, 2017
Mentor: Kennedy, Matthew J.
Investigating the Spine Apparatus and unconventional protein trafficking in neurons
Jiajun LiJiajun Li
BS, Biological Science, Ocean University of China, 2015; MS, Biology, Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, IL, 2017
Mentor: Lahm, Tim
Estrogen signaling effects on Right Ventricle during adaptive and maladaptive phases of Pulmonary Hypertension.
Jiajun Li's Publications on NIH
Tyler MartinezTyler Martinez
BA, Physics & French, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, NY, 2011
Mentor: Dell'Acqua, Mark L.
Synapse regulation by NFAT-dependent transcription.
New picture 8.10.22Carley Miller
BS, Neuroscience, Penn State University, State College, PA, 2018
Mentors: Aoto, Jason
Characterizing the role of the ventral pallidum in stress and drug use disorders
Carley Miller's Publications on PubMed
orman headshot

Michael Orman
BS, Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, 2015
MS Biotechnology, Northwestern Univ., Evanston, IL, 2018

Mentor: Costello, Jim
Investigating molecular drivers of metastatic prostate cancer

Patrick Pence PhotoPatrick Pence
BS, Biology, Saint Louis University, St. Louis, MO, 2020
Srinithi RanganathanSrinithi Ranganathan
BTech, Bioengineering, Shanmugha Art and Science University (SASTRA), Thanjavur, India, 2018; Msc, Cardiovascular Science, University of Goettingen, Gottingen, Germany, 2020
Madison RodriguezMadison Rodriguez
BA, Biochemistry, University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder, CO, 2019
Mentor: Bates, Emily A.
Phinea RomeroPhinea Romero
BS, Neurobiology, Psychology, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Madison, WI, 2021
Mentor: Dabertrand, Fabrice
Investigating the role of the cerebral microvasculature in neurodevelopmental and neuropsychiatric disorders
Ian SheltonIan Shelton
BA, Science and Management, Claremont McKenna College, Claremont, CA, 2017
Mentor: Jordan, T. Craig
Characterizing the role of leukemia stem cells to better understand the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms driving drug resistance in Acute Myeloid Leukemia
Emelia SmithEmelia Smith
BS, Molecular and Cellular Biology, Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL, 2019
Mentor: Ford, Heide
Investigating molecular crosstalk mechanisms between phenotypic clones within the heterogeneous tumor and how to target this intratumoral signaling to prevent drug resistance and progression towards metastatic disease
stokesEric Stokes
BS, Biology, Morehouse College, Atlanta, GA, 2018
Mentor: Aoto, Jason

Investigating Nrxn3a influence on synapse organization and transmission

Amber Truitt

Amber Stewart
BS, Chemistry, Towson University, MD, 2014
Mentor: Smith, Katharine R.
Investigating the nanoscale organization at inhibitory synapses and alterations during plasticity

Raul Vargas photoRaul Vargas
BS, Neuroscience, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH, 2020