More than $20 million in National Institutes of Health funding have propelled the University of Arizona R. Ken Coit College of Pharmacy to No. 5 in American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy rankings.
The AACP represents pharmacy education in the United States and partners with the 142 schools of pharmacy across the nation to ensure quality education and training.
A transformational $50 million gift from alumnus R. Ken Coit in 2021 bolstered the college’s recent rise through the creation of six endowed chairs and four professorships.
The infusion of funding has helped invigorate research endeavors of faculty throughout the college.
“It’s indicative of an energized, collaborative and growing research enterprise,” said Nathan Cherrington, PhD, ATS, associate dean for research within the Coit College of Pharmacy. “The hard work of our faculty is bringing to light cutting-edge approaches to healthcare challenges and positioning us as a leader among our peers.”
A recent example of this success is Assistant Professor Jianqin Lu, BPharm, PhD, who joined the Coit College of Pharmacy in 2019. His work using nanotechnology for drug delivery to treat aggressive tumors has garnered national attention.
In July, he was awarded a $1.9 million NIH grant and his research was recognized with the 2022 AACP Pharmaceutics Research Award.
The goal is a more targeted and efficacious drug treatment platform with less harmful side effects.
Dr. Lu said the NIH funds serve as a stable source of financial support, but also as a means for retaining and recruiting top talent to work in his lab.
The impact of NIH funding is far reaching as students have the unique opportunity to rub shoulders with Dr. Lu and other world-renowned researchers.
“Our rise is demonstrative of our commitment to advancing the pharmaceutical sciences and ensuring current and future students gain hands-on experience from the best in our field,” said Dean Rick G. Schnellmann, PhD.
The American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy NIH grant rankings are based on information compiled from the NIH Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tool and includes all funded research grants awarded to principal investigators in U.S. at colleges and schools of pharmacy.