Pharmacology is critical for developing new drugs to help fight diseases, to improve the effectiveness of drugs, and to reduce their potential side effects. Our work is increasingly relevant in this current age of personalized medicine where pharmacologists are working to understand how individual patients or subsets of patients react differently to different drugs. At the Department of Pharmacology and Molecular Therapeutics, our mission is to ensure our students have a comprehensive understanding of how drugs work, their side effects, and how they can best be used to treat our soldiers and their families.

The Department of Pharmacology and Molecular Therapeutics, established by Dr. Louis Aronow in 1976, teaches both medical and graduate students in the actions and therapeutic uses and toxicity of drugs and other chemical agents and conducts research on pharmacological issues, with many projects addressing critical questions impacting the health and well-being of military personnel.



The Division of Neuropharmacology emphasizes studies on the adaptive responses of the nervous system, behavioral responses to chronic and aversive stresses or chronic drug exposures, and to the amelioration of neural injuries caused by traumatic brain injury. Accurate study design, implementation and interpretation of behavioral pharmacology studies are of fundamental importance in drug development and determining disease pathophysiology.

Faculty: Dr. Caroline Browne, Dr. Brian Cox, Dr. Ying-Hong Feng, Dr. Kari Johnson, Dr. Irwin Lucki, Dr. Fereshteh Nugent, Dr. Aviva Symes


The Division of Molecular Pharmacology addresses critical questions in immunopharmacology, cancer pharmacology, and the role of protein aggregation in neurological and other disorders. These studies are focused on defining genetic and biochemical mechanisms of normal and altered signal transduction pathways in yeast, rodent, and human cell systems, with the goal of developing new, targeted therapeutics.

Faculty: Dr. Regina Day, Dr. Ying-Hong Feng, Dr. Jacob Keller, Dr.Robert Kortum, Dr. Sergey Iordanskiy, Dr. Andrew Snow, Dr. Aviva Symes


The Division of Radiation Countermeasures is concerned with understanding the consequences of radiation injury in order to develop drugs to protect the population in the event of high dose radiation exposure. These include radioprotectants that can be given to protect people from an imminent radiation exposure and radiation mitigants as therapeutics to treat acute radiation sickness and long term consequences of high dose radiation exposure.

Faculty: Dr. Catherine Davis-Takacs, Dr. Regina Day, Dr. Sergey Iordanskiy, Dr. Vijay K. Singh