ertara, the global leader in model-informed drug development and regulatory science, announced a $1 million gift in June to endow a professorship at the University of Florida College of Pharmacy’s Center for Pharmacometrics and Systems Pharmacology. The professorship will strengthen the relationship between the college’s academic program and industry to drive innovation and enhance the application of leading-edge science to solve current challenges.
“Drug development has become increasingly complex, with a higher risk of failure, greater uncertainty and increased expense. Advancements in innovative therapeutics, while promising, have driven a need to better understand how a drug works mechanistically and how it is processed in the body across both broad and special populations,” said Certara Chief Executive Officer Edmundo Muniz, M.D., Ph.D. “Sophisticated pharmacometrics and systems pharmacology, or modeling and simulation, can play a critical role in enhancing our ability to address those issues, becoming an integral part of the drug development process.”
Modeling and simulation technologies have been adopted by biopharmaceutical companies and regulatory agencies around the world, creating a growing demand for graduate and postgraduate scientists with that specific expertise. As a leader in this discipline, Certara views training the next generation of scientists to be a vital part of the company’s mission.
“We decided to combine our skills with that of another industry leader — the UF College of Pharmacy — to develop premier programming that will combine quantitative sciences with hands-on technical experience and empower students to answer clinically relevant questions,” Muniz said.
“There is a growing demand for expertise in pharmacometrics and systems pharmacology, particularly as the Food and Drug Administration and the pharmaceutical industry are under pressure to find more cost-effective and efficient methods for drug development,” said Julie Johnson, Pharm.D., dean and distinguished professor at the UF College of Pharmacy. “The partnership with Certara allows us to advance our mission in this high-impact area of research, furthering the scientific work of the center and advancing the opportunities for scientific training.”
Certara will build upon the successful partnership it has established with UF’s Center for Pharmacometrics and Systems Pharmacology during the past several years. The center’s researchers excel at using modeling and simulation to study drug activities, targets and clinical effectiveness in virtual patients, making many expensive and time-consuming clinical trials unnecessary.
Certara’s endowed professor will work with the center’s researchers to make drug development even more precise and drug dosing more personalized, helping to ensure that the right drug is delivered to the right patient at the right time. Endowed professorships are among the most significant awards conferred to a UF faculty member, and Certara’s gift will enable the UF College of Pharmacy to recruit or retain a preeminent professor to lead world-class scholarship and instruction.