As part of the CU Anschutz Graduate School, all PhD students in good academic standing are guaranteed financial support.

All regular full-time departmental faculty in the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences are formal members of the pharmaceutical sciences graduate program and can take students into their laboratories if appropriate.

On average, students in this program earn their PhDs in 5.5 years.

The normal requirements for admission to the graduate program in pharmaceutical sciences include a bachelor of arts or science degree from an accredited institution, as well as an academic record which satisfies the minimum admission requirements established by the CU Graduate School. Admissions are for the fall semester only.

An undergraduate degree in pharmacy, chemistry, biology, or chemical engineering is excellent preparation for graduate training in pharmaceutical sciences; however, no specific undergraduate major is required. All applicants for the program should have completed a year of study in the following subjects: general chemistry, organic chemistry, calculus, biology, and physics. In addition, courses in the following subjects will be highly recommended to supplement the student’s background: biochemistry, statistics, cell biology, physical chemistry, computer science, and immunology. Under special circumstances, deficiencies in important areas may be made up within the first year after entrance into the program.

Normally, admission to the program will be dependent upon an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better. Students applying with a GPA less than 3.0 may be considered individually on a provisional basis. If you do not have a degree from a U.S. or Canadian institution, your official transcript will be evaluated by the Office of International Affairs.

The admission deadline for completed applications to be received at the School of Pharmacy is Dec. 1. Given that admission to the program is very competitive, it is impossible to evaluate your qualifications for admission (test scores, grades) until the selection committee assesses the entire applicant pool.

Admission to the program includes financial support via a stipend awarded on a 12-month basis. Based on the rules of the CU Anschutz Graduate School, all PhD students in good academic standing are guaranteed financial support.

Although a priority of the School of Pharmacy is to provide financial support to our graduate students, payment of stipend, tuition and any fees by the School of Pharmacy or by grants, contracts or gifts to the School of Pharmacy faculty is contingent upon satisfactory academic progress (as defined by the graduate school’s Pharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Student Handbook) and completion of required teaching duties, core courses, research rotations, seminars, and examinations (as listed on the progress report form). We also reserve the right to review and adjust our funding policies at any time. All students are expected to work full-time toward program requirements for 12 months of the year.

Required Pharmaceutical Sciences Program Courses

PHSC 7310Fundamentals of Pharmaceutical Sciences3 credits
PHSC 7320Physical Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences3 credits
PHSC 7400Ethical Issues in Toxicology and Pharmaceutical Sciences1 credit
PHSC 7650Research Rotation in Pharmaceutical Sciences (two required)1 credit
PHSC 7568Seminar in Pharmaceutical Sciences (each semester)1 credit
PHSC 7330Development of Drugs and Biologics2 credits
PHSC 8990Doctoral Thesis≥30 credits

Representative Elective Courses

PHSC 7608Molecular Interactions3 credits
PHSC 7609Biophysics and Spectroscopy2 credits
PHSC 7651/CHEN 5838Pharmaceutical Biotechnology3 credits
PHSC 7345Nanotechnology and Drug Delivery2 credits
PHSC 7353Protein Formulation2 credits
PHSC 7660Liposome-based Drug Delivery2 credits
PHSC 7665Pharmacokinetic Principles and Applications3 credits

Through the pharmaceutical sciences graduate program, our goal is to educate pre-doctoral students to develop independent research careers in pharmaceutical sciences with a basic, clinical or pharmaceutical outcomes emphasis. Upon completion of the graduate program, our students use their training to make a difference in academia, industry or government. The learning objectives for the graduate program are:

  1. Demonstrate a basic knowledge of central concepts in the biomedical sciences.
  2. Understand the current concepts in basic and clinical pharmaceutical sciences.
  3. Read and critically evaluate the scientific literature.
  4. Formulate hypotheses based on current concepts in the field and design, conduct, and interpret their own research projects.
  5. Present research results in peer-reviewed publications and in a dissertation.
  6. Communicate research results effectively through oral presentations at scientific seminars, conferences, and other venues.

School of Pharmacy Graduate Degree Requirements

The following are specific rules approved by the graduate faculty of the School of Pharmacy for graduate studies leading to doctor of philosophy degree in toxicology. All other requirements for these degrees will follow the guidelines of the Graduate School, which can be found in the Pharmaceutical Sciences Graduate Student Handbook. The student carries the major responsibility of meeting the rules of the School of Pharmacy and the Graduate School. Failure to meet the following rules and guidelines may result in delay of graduation. ​

Dan-LaBarbera

Daniel LaBarbera PhD

Professor Director CU AMC Center for Drug Discovery, Co-Director, Drug Discovery and Development Shared Resource (D3SR)
  • Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Email Address:daniel.labarbera@cuanschutz.edu

Primary Phone:303-724-4116

Mailing Address:
  • CU Anschutz

Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences Building

12850 East Montview Boulevard

Second Floor Room 2101

Aurora, CO 80045

Dr. LaBarbera’s laboratory is engaged in multidisciplinary cancer drug discovery and development, including high-throughput and high-content screening (HTS/HCS); drug design and medicinal chemistry; cancer biology and lead drug mechanism of action determination, and in vitro and in vivo pharmacology. His research program has been continually funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Defense Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP), the State of Colorado, and other significant foundation grants.

Dr. LaBarbera is the founding Director of the Center for Drug Discovery (CDD) established in 2020. The mission of the CDD is to lead a Colorado-wide drug discovery “grassroots” initiative based at CU AMC while encompassing other academic institutions and industries in Colorado. The CDD’s objectives are to facilitate drug discovery and development and become a central hub for drug discovery in Colorado. A major research goal of the CDD is to harness the diverse biology and disease models at CU AMC and throughout Colorado for HTS/HCS drug discovery. Recent funding of the CDD has led to the comprehensive drug discovery and development shared resource (D3SR) that is affiliated with the CDD and the CU Cancer Center. The D3SR features new custom equipment from PerkinElmer, including an Explorer G3 Workstation, Opera Phenix Plus HCS system, a Janus G3, EnVision multimode plate reader, and a custom BioSpot (Tek-Matic/BioFluidix).

Education, Licensure & Certifications

 Dr. LaBarbera received his BS degree in biochemistry from Arizona State University (ASU) where he conducted research in the area of cancer drug discovery and medicinal chemistry that was funded by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He continued his education at ASU as a medicinal chemistry PhD graduate student with Professor Edward B. Skibo focused on the synthesis and mechanistic studies of antitumor agents from nature. Dr. LaBarbera completed a postdoctoral fellowship with Professor Chris M. Ireland at the University of Utah and the Huntsman Cancer Institute focused on marine natural products drug discovery and multidisciplinary cancer research, receiving a National Research Service Award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Cancer Institute (NCI). 

Affiliations

  • Founding Member CU AMC Center for Drug Discovery (CDD)
  • Full Member CU Cancer Center, Member of the American Chemical Society (ACS)
  • Member of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR)
  • Member of the Society of Biomolecular Imaging and Informatics (SBI2) 
  • Adjunct Faculty, Department of Ophthalmology, School of Medicine
  • Faculty Member, Structural Biology and Biochemistry Graduate Program
  • Faculty Member, University of Colorado Denver, Chemistry Graduate Program 

For questions regarding graduate school programs contact:

Jackie Milowski - 303-724-7263, Jackie.Milowski@CUAnschutz.edu​​​​​

Dan-LaBarbera

Daniel LaBarbera PhD

Professor Director CU AMC Center for Drug Discovery, Co-Director, Drug Discovery and Development Shared Resource (D3SR)
  • Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Email Address:daniel.labarbera@cuanschutz.edu

Primary Phone:303-724-4116

Mailing Address:
  • CU Anschutz

Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences Building

12850 East Montview Boulevard

Second Floor Room 2101

Aurora, CO 80045

Dr. LaBarbera’s laboratory is engaged in multidisciplinary cancer drug discovery and development, including high-throughput and high-content screening (HTS/HCS); drug design and medicinal chemistry; cancer biology and lead drug mechanism of action determination, and in vitro and in vivo pharmacology. His research program has been continually funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Department of Defense Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP), the State of Colorado, and other significant foundation grants.

Dr. LaBarbera is the founding Director of the Center for Drug Discovery (CDD) established in 2020. The mission of the CDD is to lead a Colorado-wide drug discovery “grassroots” initiative based at CU AMC while encompassing other academic institutions and industries in Colorado. The CDD’s objectives are to facilitate drug discovery and development and become a central hub for drug discovery in Colorado. A major research goal of the CDD is to harness the diverse biology and disease models at CU AMC and throughout Colorado for HTS/HCS drug discovery. Recent funding of the CDD has led to the comprehensive drug discovery and development shared resource (D3SR) that is affiliated with the CDD and the CU Cancer Center. The D3SR features new custom equipment from PerkinElmer, including an Explorer G3 Workstation, Opera Phenix Plus HCS system, a Janus G3, EnVision multimode plate reader, and a custom BioSpot (Tek-Matic/BioFluidix).

Education, Licensure & Certifications

 Dr. LaBarbera received his BS degree in biochemistry from Arizona State University (ASU) where he conducted research in the area of cancer drug discovery and medicinal chemistry that was funded by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He continued his education at ASU as a medicinal chemistry PhD graduate student with Professor Edward B. Skibo focused on the synthesis and mechanistic studies of antitumor agents from nature. Dr. LaBarbera completed a postdoctoral fellowship with Professor Chris M. Ireland at the University of Utah and the Huntsman Cancer Institute focused on marine natural products drug discovery and multidisciplinary cancer research, receiving a National Research Service Award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Cancer Institute (NCI). 

Affiliations

  • Founding Member CU AMC Center for Drug Discovery (CDD)
  • Full Member CU Cancer Center, Member of the American Chemical Society (ACS)
  • Member of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR)
  • Member of the Society of Biomolecular Imaging and Informatics (SBI2) 
  • Adjunct Faculty, Department of Ophthalmology, School of Medicine
  • Faculty Member, Structural Biology and Biochemistry Graduate Program
  • Faculty Member, University of Colorado Denver, Chemistry Graduate Program