UCSF

2017 News

spoon of sugar and sugar cubes on a table
“UCSF has put its stake in the ground on exposing industry manipulation of science.”
staff member holds one water filter and a thank you note.
Burchard Lab colleagues step up to help residents of the island get fresh water.
closeup of human eye
A tiny implant promises to simplify how glaucoma drugs are administered, making life easier for aging patients.
Kroon
Pharmacists are going to be more integral to health care teams in the future.
supercomputers
A pioneering public/private consortium is poised to turn the marathon of drug discovery into a team relay, maybe even a short one.
graphic model of molecule
For decades, scientists have wanted to be able to study dopamine receptors one by one. The brain’s dopamine receptors are responsible for a variety of behaviors, such as reward seeking, and are also involved in psychiatric illnesses like schizophrenia. There are five types of dopamine receptors, and psychiatric drugs usually affect multiple receptors at once, often producing debilitating or even dangerous side effects.
device alongside a quarter to show size
A UC San Francisco-created, insulin-generating implant that utilizes nanotechnology is closer to becoming a real treatment for diabetes, after being acquired by a San Francisco-based startup. The biotechnology company Encellin acquired exclusive worldwide rights to the technology, originally developed in the laboratory of Tejal Desai, PhD, chair of the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, a joint department of the UCSF Schools of Pharmacy and Medicine.
Cruz
Ana Cruz knew, when she was very young, exactly what she wanted to do when she grew up, she told the UCSF doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) Class of 2021 at their White Coat ceremony. She wanted the same job as the woman in white. Now, Cruz is a PharmD student in the Class of 2018, and was the student speaker at the event, held Friday, October 13, in Cole Hall on the Parnassus campus.
student Leung with vice dean Youmans
For the UCSF doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) Class of 2021, October 13 was the day they officially entered the profession. In a ceremony on the Parnassus campus, each student donned a white coat, a symbol of health care professionals for more than 100 years.
Roy and Oruganti
Kidney failure is a debilitating and ultimately deadly illness, and a health policy crisis. With 468,000 people on dialysis in the U.S., costing the government $31 billion dollars a year, very little money is spent on researching alternatives to current treatments.
Smith with Bhat, McCann, Khoderchah
Somewhere between the pleasant September evening in San Francisco, the lively conversation about the profession of pharmacy, and the excellent wine, there were potential long-term professional connections in the making.
Koreic, Trinh, Patel
The newest UCSF doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) class gathered for the first time on Wednesday, September 20, in San Francisco’s foggy Golden Gate Park. Although it was their first time meeting in person, class members have been getting to know each other online for months.
Guglielmo
Strategic plan progress report. Research: Driving the development of innovative and precise drugs, medical devices, and diagnostic tests. Flu treatments; Tackling antimalarial resistance; Attacking hard targets; Plotting cell maps; Safer opioid pain killer; Cellular construction; New products through bioengineering; Regulatory science leadership; Tobacco burden in vulnerable populations; Economics of disease; Precision medicine.
Giacomini
Kathy Giacomini, PhD, a leader in the field of pharmacogenomics, has been named the 2017 recipient of the North American Scientific Achievement Award, presented by the International Society for the Study of Xenobiotics (ISSX). ISSX is an international association of scientists that promotes the understanding of the interactions of medicines and chemicals with living systems. “What makes it so special to me is that I was nominated by friends and colleagues,” Giacomini says.
Ryu in the lab
The common lab practice of adding antibiotics to cell cultures to prevent contamination can actually induce genetic changes in the cells, a paper senior-authored by Nadav Ahituv, PhD, found. Ahituv is a faculty member in the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, a joint department of the UCSF Schools of Pharmacy and Medicine.
Wang
Ching C. Wang, PhD, a beloved UCSF School of Pharmacy researcher and professor, known for bringing molecular biology and biochemistry to parasitology, and for his work on the antiparasitic medicine ivermectin, died last week at the age of 80. To his wide circle of colleagues and friends, he was known simply as “C.C.”
Shoichet
Many of the medicines we depend on to treat disease—and even to save our lives—pose potentially serious risks along with their benefits. Data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that about 40,000 deaths yearly in the United States may be attributable to the side effects of drugs, a number that rivals the toll of traffic accidents.
kids building bottle rocket
Every good scientific exploration starts with questions, and at UCSF’s 2017 Summer Science Camp, the recent “bottle rocket engineering and launch day” was no different. The camp’s nearly 50 fifth- and sixth-graders started the morning in a classroom on the Parnassus campus, discussing pictures displayed on the large screen: a car with a sloped roof and a rear spoiler, a kite aloft, a runner with an open parachute tied to his back.
Edward Leong Way at birthday celebration
Edward (Eddie) Leong Way, PhD, UCSF School of Pharmacy alumnus, UCSF faculty member, and dear friend, died peacefully at home in San Francisco on June 12, 2017, four weeks before his 101st birthday. Eddie mentored generations of UCSF PhD students and taught scores of pharmacy students during his tenure as a professor in the UCSF School of Medicine, from 1949 to 1978. He was a member of the UCSF emeritus faculty since 1987.
Hertema
As a first-year UCSF PharmD student, Heather Hertema, PharmD ’10, had a big idea: a free summer camp for kids who might not otherwise be exposed to the creative problem-solving and making-things-explode fun of science.  Hertema put together a grant proposal and approached the UCSF School of Pharmacy dean at the time, Mary Anne Koda-Kimble, PharmD, hoping to secure classroom space on campus. She walked out with the green light for space—and a promise of $10,000 in funding.
kids raising hands
Ten years ago, at the inaugural UCSF Summer Science Camp, 10-year-old Najwa Anasse held a human brain in her hands—an “Aha!” experience that set her career path. “I thought, ‘Oh my god, I want to study this.’ I was so excited,” says Anasse, who grew up in San Francisco’s Excelsior District and was a fifth grader at Alice Fong Yu Elementary School at the time.
Kishi at podium
“Find a need and fill it” was a popular slogan that graced the side of pink Kaiser Cement trucks around the San Francisco Bay Area in the 60s and 70s. But Donald Kishi, PharmD ’68, took the motto as his professional mantra.
Guglielmo and graduate
The UCSF School of Pharmacy conferred the doctor of pharmacy (PharmD) degree on 120 graduates at its 2017 commencement on May 19 at Louise Davies Symphony Hall in San Francisco. Dean B. Joseph Guglielmo, PharmD, addressed a gathering that included more than 1,000 of the graduates’ family, friends, and colleagues, as well as School faculty members and special guests. In his remarks, he celebrated the graduates’ diversity, breadth of experience, empathy, and perseverance.
Nordberg
Michael Nordberg, MPA/HSA, was honored for his enduring professional accomplishments with the 2017 Chancellor Award for Exceptional University Management. He received accolades from peers and an award certificate from Chancellor Sam Hawgood, MBBS, during UCSF’s Founders Day Awards luncheon ceremony held on the Parnassus campus on May 12, 2017. Nordberg is the UCSF School of Pharmacy associate dean of administration and finance.
Craik
Charles S. Craik, PhD, joins the 237th class of newly elected members of the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Sciences who will be inducted on October 7, 2017 at a ceremony in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Craik is a faculty member in the School’s Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry and director of the Quantitative Biosciences Consortium (a consortium of five UCSF PhD degree programs).
Guglielmo
How do we give patients ready access to the expertise of pharmacists? How do we empower patients with medication knowledge?
UCSF Schools are #1 in National Institues of Health research funding, School of Pharmacy, School of Nursing, School of Dentistry, School of Medicine, with School of Pharmacy in bold text
For the 37th consecutive year, the UCSF School of Pharmacy has received more funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) than any other pharmacy school in the United States. School researchers were awarded $28.2 million in grants during NIH’s 2016 fiscal year, from October 1, 2015 to September 30, 2016. Among the top-funded researchers was Kathy Giacomini, PhD, a faculty member in the School’s department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences.
Frear
With a pharmacist dad and a degree in biochemistry, Meghan Frear was certain that pharmacy school was a perfect fit for her. However, she says, “When I first entered UCSF, I could not have articulated for you that I wanted to be a systems-level pharmacist.” “In undergrad I took an economics of health care course, which sounds so nerdy,” Frear recalls.
Ling
Tina Ling was born in a refugee camp in Thailand after her parents fled the genocide in Cambodia. Growing up in Southern California in an immigrant-rich community, she saw her parents and many of their neighbors struggle with their new country’s language, culture, and economics—including access to health care and health literacy.
Pong Dahl
After earning her PharmD, Pong Dahl completed a year-long residency at the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center, focusing her elective rotations in ambulatory care. She is now the supervisor for ambulatory care pharmacy services for the John Muir Physician Network (part of John Muir Health), which includes more than 1,000 primary and specialty care physicians in the East Bay.
Guglielmo
Nation debates possibility of dramatically new directions for health care coverage, science funding, immigration, education; Revealing malaria/HIV drug interactions in children; Decreasing cancer drug toxicity while increasing dose; Engineering safer opioids; Evidence for comprehensive medication management; Medicare Part D as a learning model for pharmacy education—impact 10 years out; New genetic insights into diabetes drug response; Annotating the ‘dark genome’; Epigenetics of ethnicity; New
Drysdale
“What really got me into pharmacy,” says Troy Drysdale, “was when I realized the role of the pharmacist was bigger and more expansive than anything I’d ever experienced personally.”
student talking with patient
Gina Ko, in a crisp white lab coat, sits in a San Francisco clinic office across the desk from Rose, a low-income senior on Medicare, talking with Rose about how she can get the medications she needs at a price tag she can afford.
Koda-Kimble
Recipients of the UCSF School of Pharmacy 2017 Mary Anne Koda-Kimble Seed Award for Innovation will explore ideas ranging from possible new ways to treat obesity to new ways of accessing antibiotic-producing microbes found in soil. Five projects are being funded in this, the third round of awards since the fund was established in 2012.
Fujimori
Since Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin in 1940, countless lives have been saved by antibiotics. But their effectiveness is severely compromised by the emergence of antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria, accelerated by the over-prescription of antibiotics and their widespread use as growth promoters in livestock farming.
Zuckerberg
Fifteen UC San Francisco faculty members have been named to the first cohort of Chan Zuckerberg Biohub Investigators, including five from the School of Pharmacy.
students wearing white coats and walking
To honor and build on a lifetime of giving and charitable service by the late Helen Diller, the Helen Diller Foundation has granted $500 million to UC San Francisco, a university to which Helen was both generous and devoted.