Education and experience
I have received a BS in Industrial Analysis from Sichuan Institute of Light Industry and Chemical Technology, a MS in Applied Chemistry from East China University of Science and Technology, and a PhD in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of Kentucky. Prior to my current position, I have worked as a lead formulator for drug development at Novartis Pharmaceutical Corporation for four years.
Teaching areas and interests in pharmacy and the pharmaceutical sciences:
Prior to joining to the UNT Health Science Center, I initiated and led a training program (as a part of global training program) in Department of Pharmaceutical and Analytical at Novartis Pharmaceutical Corporation, mainly focused on education of basic knowledge on drug product development and improvement of communication within Technical Research & Development at Novartis. I also had opportunity to mentor summer extern students through Novartis Summer Externship Program. Since I joined the College of Pharmacy, I have been teaching PHAR 7313 (Pharmaceutics I), PHAR 7323 (Pharmaceutics II), PHAR 7217 (Pharmacy Skills Lab) and PSPT 6400 (Principles of Drug Discovery and Development) and have been course director for several courses. I have mentored 3 high school students through the HSC Explore Summer Research Internship, 3 undergraduate students through the DoD prostate cancer HBCU-STP program and the Summer Research Internship Program, 7 PhD students for research rotation, two PhD students for PhD dissertation research, and 16 PharmD students through PHAR 7375. In my lab, I emphasize not only scientific experiments but also independent research and writing and presentation skills. With my mentorship and the research opportunities provided from my lab, several students ended up with first-authored publications in the peer-reviewed journals and the poster presentations in the internal and external conferences.
Professional activities & awards
I am a member of American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists and also a regular member of American Association of Immunologists. I am a co-inventor in several pending patents. In 2008, I was selected as one of six students nationwide to participate in the 2008 AAPS Graduate Student Symposium in Drug Delivery and Pharmaceutical Technology sponsored by Bristol-Myers Squibb. I was awarded Faculty of the Year in College of Pharmacy in 2017. I am a grant reviewer for multiple funding agencies such as NIH, European Research Council and the Dutch Research Council. Additionally, I am an active reviewer for various prestigious journals such as Science Translational Medicine, ACS Nano, Advanced Science, Small, Nano Letters, and Journal of Controlled Release.
My research has focused on drug delivery and formulation development. The first project in my lab focuses on cancer drug delivery and immunotherapy. Finding novel delivery systems and immunotherapy strategies to efficiently treat cancers is the goal for this research. I have special interest in personalized medicine for cancer treatment. The second project focuses on novel oral solid dosage forms. I recently discovered novel in situ self-assembly nanoparticles (ISNPs) to formulate various drugs to improve stability, bioavailability and palatability for oral solid dosage forms. We have published several peer-reviewed research articles about the ISNP nanotechnology. In this aspect, I am particularly interested in converting intravenous chemotherapy drugs to oral drug formulations by using out ISNP nanotechnology. In addition, I obtained great experience on drug product development and manufacturing. The projects I had worked at Novartis covered the development stages from pre-clinical to clinical Phase III. Thus, my research interests also include translating pharmaceutical research into commercial products. The novel ISNP nanotechnology has great potential in this aspect. In-vitro cell study and in-vivo animal studies including efficacy, pharmacokinetics and tissue distribution are essential, and the studies of the underlying mechanisms about why and how the novel delivery systems enhance therapeutic outcomes are emphasized in my lab. We are actively collaborating with groups of drug discovery to provide the support on formulation development of novel compounds and in-vivo drug evaluation The ultimate goal of my research is to provide more medication options for patient benefits and make best contribution on healthcare improvement.