‘The Blood-Brain Barrier: Target or Obstacle for Drug Delivery to the Brain,’ Nov. 16

“The Blood-Brain Barrier: Target or Obstacle for Drug Delivery to the Brain, will be addressed by Thomas P. Davis, PhD, professor of medical pharmacology with the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson, on Wednesday, Nov. 16, noon to 1 p.m., in DuVal Auditorium, University of Arizona Medical Center – University Campus, 1501 N. Campbell Ave., Tucson. The lecture, which is free and open to the public, also will be broadcast live and archived on the Internet at http://streaming.biocom.arizona.edu (Please note: There is a parking fee of $1.50 per hour in The University of Arizona Medical Center – University Campus visitor/patient parking garage.)
 
Dr. Davis’ research program is studying the delivery of drugs across the blood-brain barrier to the central nervous system in such disease states as diabetes, pain, hypoxic/ischemic brain injury and stroke. (The blood-brain barrier refers to the vast protective network of blood vessels lined with cells that prevent toxins from reaching the brain.) His research interests also include targeting the blood-brain barrier for new drug development.
 
Recently, his laboratory was one of the first in the world to demonstrate that the blood-brain barrier actually changes permeability in disease states, and that the degree of porosity is influenced by disease, hormones, medications, inflammation and pain. These findings have implications in the delivery of pain medications, anti-viral and anti-fungal medications and cancer treatments, and in the study of stroke and other conditions.
 
Dr. Davis is the recipient of the college’s 2011 Faculty Science Forum Founders Day Award, to be presented during the event. The Founders Day lectureship was established in 1979 to recognize and honor UA College of Medicine faculty for their scientific accomplishments. Each year, faculty members select one of their peers to provide a presentation to commemorate the founding of the College of Medicine – Tucson, which was dedicated Nov. 17, 1967. The award recipient is a faculty member who embodies a model of an investigator whose research work has a continuous thread of significance and who can effectively present that research with enthusiasm, vigor and inspiration.
 
A UA College of Medicine faculty member since 1980, Dr. Davis is director of the Laboratory of Blood-Brain Barrier Research (http://davislab.med.arizona.edu). His laboratory has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health since 1981. Many of his graduate students have established laboratories of their own studying the blood-brain barrier at other institutions worldwide.
 
Dr. Davis also is a member of the UA BIO5 Institute. He received his bachelor’s degree in biology from Loyola University of Los Angeles, his master’s in physiology from the University of Nevada and his doctorate in physiology/analytical biochemistry from the University of Missouri-Columbia. Prior to joining the UA College of Medicine, he completed postdoctoral studies at Abbott Laboratories in N. Chicago, Ill.