The Department of Pharmacology offers one of the country's top-rated graduate programs, teaches undergraduate students, and conducts high-impact research.

What is Pharmacology? - With Department Symbol

Pharmacology explores the mechanisms that drugs use to cause therapeutic effects.

The basic principle of pharmacology is that therapeutic agents are effective because they mimic or block molecules that regulate natural processes like blood pressure, organ development, and pain perception.


We Are An Inclusive Community

The Department of Pharmacology welcomes people of all backgrounds, nationalities, and ethnic groups. We support and welcome diversity, and know that diversity makes us stronger. We can only accomplish our goals by valuing a wide variety of perspectives and ideas.


Education Programs

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We provide high quality teaching of the principles of pharmacology and the application of pharmacology to the biomedical sciences.


Research & Discovery

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The Department of Pharmacology at the University of Minnesota conduct's high-impact research that advances the fundamental knowledge of drug action.


Seminars & Events

Pharmacology Thesis Defense

"Use of Oncolytic Adenovirus expressing IFN Alpha as a tool to improve IFN-based chemoradiation regimen to treat pancreatic cancer"

Monday, February 26
1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
2-101 Nils Hasselmo Hall

Amanda Salzwedel
Doctoral Candidate
Department of Pharmacology

Advisor: Dr. Masato Yamamoto

Pharmacology Seminar

"Role of Neurexins and Neuroligins in Synapse Development and Maintenance"

Wednesday, February 28
2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
2-101 NHH

Lulu Chen
Postdoctoral Research Associate
Stanford University

Pharmacology Seminar Series

"Hitting the PA-Nic switch: a new optical approach for nicotinic receptor studies"

Friday, March 2
10:00 am - 11:00 am
2-101 NHH

Ryan Drenan
Associate Professor
Department of Pharmacology
Northwestern University

Pharmacology Seminar

"Circumnavigating the RNA World: Circular RNA Immunity"

Thursday, March 8
2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
2-101 NHH

Grace Chen
Postdoctoral Fellow
Stanford University


News Highlights

Dr. Steven Graves has joined the Department of Pharmacology!

Steven Graves

We are pleased to welcome Dr. Steven Graves as a new tenure-track Assistant Professor in the Department of Pharmacology! The recruitment of Dr. Graves was made possible with generous support from the Medical Discovery Team on Addiction and the Institute for Translational Neuroscience. Dr. Graves applies techniques in behavioral pharmacology, electrophysiology, biochemistry, two-photon imaging, and optogenetics to understand mechanisms underlying the neurotoxic effects of drugs like methamphetamine, the neuroadaptations that support addictive behaviors, and circuit dynamics associated with motor dysfunction in Parkinson's disease. 

Dr. Sade Spencer has joined the Department of Pharmacology and the Medical Discovery Team on Addiction!

Sade Spencer Headshot

Please join us in welcoming Dr. Sade Spencer to the Department of Pharmacology! Dr. Spencer is a joint hire between the Medical Discovery Team on Drug Addiction and the Department of Pharmacology. Dr. Spencer joins the University of Minnesota from the Kalivas lab at the medical University of South Carolina.

Read the full press release