At a Glance



Director of Graduate Studies
Dr. Colin Campbell

Graduate Program Assistant
Jim Shoemaker

Want more info?

The pharmacology program offers a variety of different options for you to gain experience and knowledge through a degree path that best fits your career goals:


The Pharmacology Ph.D program at the University of Minnesota is designed to provide a solid understanding of basic pharmacology and to prepare our graduates to pursue careers as independent scientists and pharmacologists.


Our M.S. program is designed to provide career-focused individuals with a highly individualized program of study. Graduates of this program will find that they have built a strong platform to reach towards their future goals.

Joint degrees

The Pharmacology Graduate Program participates in both the M.D./Ph.D. program and the J.D./Ph.D. Program provided by the university. Both of these joint degree programs allow motivated students to earn a dual degree in less time than it would normally take.

Research focus areas:medium spiny neurons in the nucleus accumbens

  • Cancer and infectious diseases: Researching the fundamental aspects of how cancer cells proliferate and metastasize, how inflammatory and immunological responses are modulated during infection and what the structural basis of virus host cell interaction are.  
  • Neuropharmacology and neurodegeneration: Innovative research directed at mechanisms of neuronal function under normal conditions and in neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease.
  • Cell signaling: Investigating a spectrum of cellular and molecular processes regulating the mammalian genome in healthy cells, as well as how they may go wrong in diseased conditions.  
  • Drug addiction and toxicology: Using multidisciplinary approaches involving cell and animal models to address drug addiction’s key questions: why some individuals transit from casual drug use to addiction, and why drug relapse is so common.

Faculty highlights: 

Colin CampbellColin Campbell

Studying mechanisms of DNA repair and genome instability in mammalian somatic cells.


Studying the molecular basis of the cytotoxicity of topoisomerase-targeted anticancer and antimicrobial drugs.

Anna LeeAnna Lee

Studying the neuropharmacological mechanisms of addiction to nicotine and alcohol.

Stan ThayerDr. Stan Thayer

Studying drugs that modulate neurotoxicity and neuronal signaling processes.

Kevin WickmanDr. Kevin Wickman

Studying the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying excitability in the brain and heart.

W. Gibson WoodDr. Gibson Wood

Studying the regulation and function of cholesterol in brain, its role in neurodegenerative diseases and neuroprotective mechanisms of cholesterol lowering drugs.

Greg ConnellGreg Connell

Studying RNA editing in trypanosomes and mammalian iron homeostasis.


Exploiting tissue homeostatic mechanisms to target tumor initiation and dormancy.

Horace LohHorace Loh

Studying the neurochemical mechanisms of opioids--major pain killers with addictive potential.

Dan RomeroDan Romero

Studying chromosome stability, telomerase structure and function, and gene amplification.

Tim WalsethDr. Tim Walseth

Studying the regulation of calcium mobilization by cyclic ADP-ribose and other nucleotides.

Dr. Li-Na WeiDr. Li-Na Wei

Studying the regulatory pathways and mechanisms for adipocyte and neuronal differentiation, and in metabolic diseases.


Studying the regulation of membrane-proximal signaling in hematopoietic cells.

Aaron LebeauAaron Lebeau

Studying the role of proteases as therapeutic targets and the use of antibodies as tumor imaging and anti-tumor agents.

Nick LevinsonNick Levinson

Studying allosteric regulation in cell signaling and cancer - Developing allosteric kinase inhibitors.

Jill SiegfriedDr. Jill Siegfried

Studying growth factor and hormone signaling in cancer.