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Beyond The Lab Video Series from Alums of Pharmacology

This video series, from the BRET Office of Career Development, focuses on Vanderbilt Ph.D. and Postdoctoral alumni about their career path. View the links below to see the videos from Pharmacology alums.

Harold Olivey, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Biology, Indiana University Northwest

Nicole Speed, Ph.D., Strategic Consultant


Recent News and Updates

Dr. Robert C. Speth Receives Prestigious Provost’s Research and Scholarship Award from Nova Southeastern University


Photo caption (left to right): Ralph V. Rogers Jr., Ph.D., NSU executive vice president and provost; Robert C. Speth, Ph.D., recipient of NSU’s 6th Annual Provost’s Research and Scholarship Award; Lisa Deziel, Pharm.D., Ph.D., dean, NSU College of Pharmacy; Stanley Cohen, Ed.D., nominator of Dr. Speth; and George L. Hanbury II, Ph.D., NSU president & CEO.

FORT LAUDERDALE-DAVIE, Fla. – In recognition of his significant contributions to Nova Southeastern University (NSU), Robert C. Speth, Ph.D., was named the recipient of the Sixth Annual Provost’s Research and Scholarship Award. Dr. Speth is a researcher and professor of pharmaceutical sciences in NSU’s College of Pharmacy.

Ralph V. Rogers Jr., Ph.D., NSU executive vice president and provost, made the special announcement at the university’s External Funding Recognition Reception, hosted by Gary S. Margules, Sc.D., NSU vice president of Research and Technology Transfer, at which faculty members from all disciplines across the university are recognized for their commitment to advancing their fields of study.

The Provost’s Award honors a faculty member who has demonstrated significant achievement in support of NSU's mission to foster scholarship, intellectual inquiry, and academic excellence. Research and scholarship are two of NSU's eight core values, and excellence in these areas enhances education, patient care, and public service, and develops superior scholarship.

“Dr. Speth has distinguished himself as a researcher, an educator, and a staunch supporter of the NSU community,” said Dr. Rogers. He has truly demonstrated what this award is meant to recognize: innovative and sustained activities in support of NSU's mission to foster intellectual inquiry, academic excellence, research and a dynamic learning environment.”

“This is the greatest honor that has ever been bestowed upon me,” said Dr. Speth. What makes it even greater is the fact that there are so many other incredibly talented faculty members in the NSU family who are also deserving of this recognition. I dedicate this award to my mentor Hank Yamamura who taught me to always make the best interests of my students my highest priority, and it is those very same students who paved the way for me to receive this honor.”

Dr. Speth is widely recognized for his research on how angiotensin acts in the brain to regulate the cardiovascular system. In the course of his career, he has secured more than $1 million in funding for his research through 22 externally-funded projects.

Dr. Speth is a regular contributor to a variety of national publications and has served or is currently serving on the editorial boards of prestigious journals, includingRegulatory Peptides, the Journal of Pharmacology & Clinical Toxicology and the International Journal of Peptides. He has served as an ad-hoc reviewer for 39 journals, including Science. He has also served the field as a grant reviewer for organizations including the American Heart Association, National Institutes of Health and National Science Foundation.

Dr. Speth manages to be a leader in the research field while also offering countless hours to teaching endeavors. In addition to his classroom commitments, he has mentored countless high-school, undergraduate and graduate students, along with junior faculty members, working with him in his lab on various projects.

Dr. Speth and his wife, Janet, are Bronze members of NSU’s Fellows Society which recognizes individuals, corporations, and trusts who have made cumulative gifts of $100,000-$249,999. This demonstrates Dr. Speth’s investment in the advancement of NSU through the largest philanthropic campaign in its history, Realizing Potential, which aims to raise $250 million for student, faculty and 21st century education initiatives, with research integral to all three priorities.

Dr. Speth has received multiple honors, including election as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He earned his Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, his Master of Arts degree in Physiological Psychology from Connecticut College in New London, and his Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology and Psychology from Western Maryland College in Westminster (now McDaniel College).


Pharmacology pioneer Allan Bass remembered as leader, innovator

bass2.jpegAllan D. Bass, M.D., an outstanding administrator, scientist and educator, credited by many as being the architect for Vanderbilt's international reputation in pharmacology, died Friday, January 14, 2005. He was 94.

Dr. Bass, professor and chairman of the Department of Pharmacology at Vanderbilt for two decades, was known both as a strong leader and a caring man who, along with his wife, Sara, a 1940 graduate of the Vanderbilt School of Nursing, took graduate students under their wings. Together they treated the students like family, inviting them to dinners at their home, listening to their concerns and helping with their needs. He built the department from a relatively small department in the 1950s to one that has achieved international stature today. By the early 1990s, the Department of Pharmacology was ranked among the top five departments nationally in research dollars. Read more.


Remembering: B.V. Rama Sastry, Ph.D.

sastry2.jpegB.V. Rama Sastry, Ph.D., professor of Pharmacology, Emeritus, died Wednesday, Feb. 23, 2005. He was 77.

Dr. Sastry was born in Andhra, India, and received his bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in Chemical Technology from Andhra University. For his pharmacology training, Dr. Sastry came to the United States in 1956, where he received his M.S. in Pharmacology from Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1959 and his Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Vanderbilt University in 1962. After completing his Ph.D., Dr. Sastry joined the Vanderbilt faculty as assistant professor of Pharmacology, rising through the ranks to full professor in 1971. He served as professor of Pharmacology from 1971-1995 and professor of Anesthesiology from 1989-1995. His studies revealed the molecular basis for the toxic effects of insecticides, herbicides, toxic metals and components of tobacco smoke. Dr. Sastry also investigated the impact of smoking on amino acid transport in the human placenta and the impact of maternal tobacco smoking on the induction and functioning of these transport mechanisms. Reflecting his commitment to graduate education, Dr. Sastry also served as director of Graduate Studies in Pharmacology from 1965-1989. Read more.