Department Seminar

Systems Approach to Tissue and Cell Drug Targeting; Device and Nanoparticle enabled applications

Speaker Details:

Prof. Rodney Ho

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

Lecture Details:

January 9, 2014
12:30 – 1:30pm
Foege N130A, Wallace H. Coulter Seminar Room


Drug target distribution in the body and its relationship to effects on most diseases are not fully understood. In HIV infections, recent advances have provided a fuller mechanistic understanding of pathological consequences and time and space interactions in the human host. Based on in vitro and in vivo studies, Dr. Ho has provided the rationale for a systems approach to anti-HIV drug delivery and localization to target HIV-infected tissues and cells in an effort to improve efficacy and safety. He has completed proof-of-principle studies using a combination of in vitro and in vivo models to elucidate target tissues and cells. Building on this understanding, he has successfully developed a number of drug delivery innovations including device and nanoparticle-enabled approaches to target drugs to tissues and cells harboring residual viruses in HIV patients. This seminar will also focus on his recent work with a device-enabled approach to enhance drug effects in the central nervous system through preferential olfactory deposition through nasal drug administration. The key parameters that relate to drug deposition in the olfactory and penetration into the brain for pharmacologic action will be discussed.

Speaker Bio:

Dr. Rodney JY Ho is a professor, leader in pharmacy education and is one of the inaugural presidential entrepreneurial fellows of the University of Washington. He holds appointments at Institutes for Translational Health Sciences and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. He is an advocate for promoting public understanding of biotechnology, nanotechnology, pharmacy and public health. Dr. Ho’s research on basic and translational sciences intends to improve the therapeutic efficacy and safety of drugs, medical diagnostic agents and vaccines.

He is an elected fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences (Publisher of Science) and the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS). His research programs aim to improve understanding of the relationship between drug target distribution and its relationship to disease development in cancer, AIDS, and neurological disorders. Building on this understanding, he systematically developed device and nanomedicine technologies that are selective for drug targets within cells and tissues in the body. He is an expert on lipid-drug and -protein interactions, liposomes, lipid nanoparticles, pharmacokinetics, and the interplay between tissue targets and drug penetration. His innovative research has led to enhanced HIV, cancer, and pain medication potency and safety. In addition, he has developed the Drug Delivery Clinical Trials and the PhRMA Pharmacokinetics Prediction Databases as a “Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences” editor, and the book, “Biotechnology and Biopharmaceuticals: Transforming Proteins and Gene into Drugs” (2nd edition is in press). He is also a scientific and board advisor to private and government organizations, including the National Institutes of Health. He received a number of honors including the AACP’s Paul Dawson Biotechnology life-time achievement award and the AAPS Biotechnology Research achievement award, one of the highest AAPS’s recognition.

Dr. Ho received BS in Biochemistry from University of California, Davis, MS and PhD from University of Tennessee, Knoxville. He completed an Infectious Diseases Fellowship at Stanford University, Stanford, CA.