The PhD programs in pharmacy at the Ohio State University offer advanced education in all aspects of pharmaceutical sciences. Pharmaceutical sciences extends well beyond the medication dispensing function of pharmacy and includes all aspects of the discovery, development, and use of medicines. Thus, the graduate program in pharmacy includes courses and research associated with discovery and evaluation of new drugs, determination of the mechanisms by which medicines exert both beneficial and harmful effects, and optimization of drug delivery to specific organs requiring treatment. It also includes studies and research on the ways in which human behavior influences the purchase and consumption of medicines and seeks to improve the delivery of medicine and health care information to all patients, with particular emphasis on those who are currently serviced inadequately.
The goal of activities within the pharmaceutical sciences is to improve health through the use of medicines. This includes finding and developing new and better drugs, using existing drugs more efficiently, and lowering cost of therapy by improving production, distribution, and marketing. These goals are accomplished through research in industry, academic, and hospital settings and by training of health care providers. Graduates of MS and PhD programs in pharmacy have integral roles in these functions.
Because the scope of pharmaceutical sciences is so broad, our graduate program has five specialty areas of emphasis:
The pharmaceutical administration discipline focuses on issues related to the pharmaceutical care delivery system, pharmacoeconomics, pharmacoepidemiology, drug distribution and public policy, strategic planning for pharmaceutical organizations, and medication use, safety, and outcomes. A subspecialty within pharmaceutical administration is the master of health-system pharmacy administration. The major focus of this program is to educate and train pharmacists to conceptualize, plan, coordinate and evaluate pharmaceutical care in organized health care settings. The medicinal chemistry and pharmacognosy discipline focuses on the interdisciplinary application of chemical, biochemical, and molecular principles to the identification and development of therapeutic agents. This includes both synthesis of new chemical entities and isolation of medicinal agents from natural sources (pharmacognosy). The pharmaceutics area focuses on pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics, with a special emphasis on drug delivery and targeting systems. The pharmacology area focuses on determination of biochemical and physiological mechanisms by which drugs exert their effects. The Translational Science discipline is that which ultimately translates research from the laboratory bench to the patient as well as the reverse. It is conducting studies at the interface between the laboratory and the clinic.