1. April 2024

On Their Way…

Each month, the editors of three of the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutic’s (ASPET) journals can choose who they call their Highlighted Trainee Authors. These early-career scientists are recognized for their innovative research published in The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, Drug Metabolism and Disposition, and Molecular Pharmacology. This feature showcases selected young scientists, demonstrates what drives them and reveals why pharmacology is important to them.

Letícia Salvador Vieira, PhD

Letícia Salvador Vieira

Letícia Salvador Vieira, PhD, is a research scientist who recently graduated from the University of Washington. Vieira was greatly influenced by her parents, her mother, a pharmacist, and her father, an academic professor. Her mother’s professional commitment to helping others sparked her curiosity and admiration for the field, while her father’s passion for academia inspired her to explore the possibilities of research and graduate education.

“I am eager to transition to a position in industry and I hope to play a role in the development of safer and more effective drugs,” Vieira said. “I am deeply interested in pharmacokinetics, drug metabolism and disposition, and I want to keep contributing to research in these areas.”

Vieira is especially interested in continuing to explore the impact that drug transporters can have in drug efficacy, toxicity and drug-drug interactions.

Vieira stressed that being published in Drug Metabolism and Disposition is an honor for herself and her co-authors. “ASPET’s journals are highly esteemed in our scientific community, and having two original research articles published in the April 2024 issue of the journal reflects the quality of our work,” she said. “Being recognized in DMD increases the visibility of our research and makes me feel really proud.”

Wenqiu Zhang

Wenqiu Zhang

Wenqiu Zhang is a PhD candidate in the Department of Pharmaceutics, University of Minnesota Twin Cities. She credits her parents’ influence for developing her interest in pharmaceutical sciences.

Her research on the central nervous system (CNS) tumor treatment has been largely inspired by the passion of her supervisor, Dr. William F. Elmquist. Zhang’s research project involves the investigation of the CNS delivery of selected histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors and their in vitro metabolism.

“The goal of my current studies is to use the preclinical data to inform rational preclinical and clinical study designs of the selected HDAC inhibitors as anti-CNS tumor drug candidates,” said Zhang.

She is honored that her research is published in The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics and will continue my research in the field of pharmacology and anticipate my work to contribute to the development of efficacious anti-cancer treatment.