Education

Nephrology

The 2-year residency/fellowship program in nephrology is aimed to provide the fellow with skills necessary to be a clinical scientist through clinical and laboratory research experiences in nephrology pharmacotherapeutics. Clinical experiences in various settings pertinent to nephrology pharmacy practice will be provided during the initial phase (residency) of the program. The majority of time in the fellowship program will focus on research in nephrology therapeutics and pharmacology.

Research
Acquiring experiences in conducting scientific investigations is a vital part of the fellowship program. After basic skills in clinical and/or laboratory research are acquired, the fellow will identify a research area to obtain specialized and in-depth experience. The specific focus of the program will be developed according to the professional goals of the fellow. The skills necessary to be an independent investigator is expected to be acquired upon completion of the program.

Examples of current and recent research projects include the following:
(1) Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics in renal diseases

  • Effect of hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis and hemofiltration on pharmacokinetics and drug therapy
  • Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of investigational agents in patients with renal dysfunction
(2) Clinical evaluation of investigational agents for renal diseases
  • Vitamin D analogs, phosphate binders and calcimimetic for renal osteodystrophy
  • Erythropoietin, darbepoetin and CERA for anemia
  • Gene polymorphism and its effects on drug therapy and outcomes
  • Iron replacement strategies for hemodialysis patients
  • Drugs for treatment of hypertension, proteinuria and improvement of nutritional status
(3) Laboratory evaluation of mechanisms of diseases and novel drug targets
  • Role and molecular mechanisms of apoptosis (programmed cell death) in renal diseases and injury
  • Role and molecular mechanisms of apoptosis in cellular acid-base transport
  • Genomic polymorphism and the effect on pharmacotherapy and patient outcome

The fellow will select the focus of his/her research effort (e.g. clinical v.s. laboratory) based on his/her professional objectives. Research projects completed by the fellow will be published in major scientific journals and will also be presented at national and/or international pharmacy and medical meetings. Pertinent research courses offered by the university are available to the fellows.

Teaching opportunities
There are ample opportunities to acquire teaching experiences in different settings. The fellow will receive a faculty appointment at the College of Pharmacy, University of Illinois at Chicago.

Requirements
The candidate must hold a Doctor of Pharmacy degree and have completed a pharmacy practice residency or equivalent. Eligibility for licensure in the State of Illinois is also required. The stipend is competitive.

For additional information, please contact the program director:

Alan Lau, PharmD, FCCP
Professor
Department of Pharmacy Practice (M/C 886), College of Pharmacy
The University of Illinois at Chicago
833 South Wood Street, Room 164
Chicago, IL 60612
Phone: (312) 996-0894
Fax: (312) 996-0379
E-mail: alanlau@uic.edu