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Updated May 24, 2019

The Auburn Pharmacist Online is an electronic newsletter providing news, events and updates from the Harrison School of Pharmacy. Have something you would like included? Email


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Student wearing HSOP products

Catch the Spirit in the HSOP School Store

The Harrison School of Pharmacy has launched a school store in partnership with the Auburn University Bookstore. Apparel, drinkware, and other items are available for purchase online. All proceeds from the HSOP store will be used to support student success through various programs. To learn more, click HERE or visit

Dr. Steven Davis speaks at graduation

HSOP Celebrates the Class of 2019

The Harrison School of Pharmacy Class of 2019 celebrated its commencement on May 6 with students receiving the doctor of pharmacy, master of science, and doctor of philosophy degrees. In all, HSOP awarded 147 Doctor of Pharmacy degrees, one Master of Science degree and 15 Doctor of Philosophy degrees. Read more about the ceremony and see a full listing of graduates.

Dr. Amber Hutchison with the HSOP Ambassadors

HSOP Hands Out Annual Awards

Outstanding Harrison School of Pharmacy students, staff and faculty members were recognized in ceremonies on April 5, May 3 and May 6 as part of the 59th Annual Hargreaves Awards Program. In all, more than 60 awards were presented to more than 100 recipients, ranging from students, graduate students, faculty, staff, and community members. Check out the full list of awards winners along with photos.

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Auburn and ADMH Partner to Create Opioid Training Institute

Alabama is one of the most affected states in the country when it comes to the opioid crisis. Because of that, the Harrison School of Pharmacy and the Alabama Department of Mental Health have partnered to create the Opioid Training Institute, a series of 16 training sessions across the state from May through September. Read more about the OTI on the HSOP website and visit to find the location nearest you and register.

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57 HSOP Graduates Accepted to Residencies

Each year, hospitals, clinics and medical centers look for the best and brightest to fill out their residency programs. This year, 57 Harrison School of Pharmacy graduates will find their place among them. It marks the third consecutive year for HSOP to log 50 or more residency matches, including a record-setting 43 in the Class of 2019. Read more and see where the recent graduates are moving on to.

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Class of 2021, Team 11 Take Top Hargreaves Day Honors

The annual Hargreaves Day took place March 27 on the Auburn and Mobile campuses. In Auburn, it was the Class of 2021 taking the win with Team 11 finishing first in Mobile. Hargreaves Day is named after former HSOP professor George W. Hargreaves, a faculty member at Auburn from 1926-73. Hargreaves spent 47 years at Auburn, passing away in 1975 and taught “every subject in the pharmacy curriculum with the exception of dispensing pharmacy.” More than a professor, he was a friend and mentor to so many. Through Hargreaves Day, his memory lives on and keeps giving to future generations of Auburn pharmacists.

This year in Auburn, teams competed in pentathlon, garb up/garb down, matching drug card relay, tug of war, volleyball, kickball, triathlon, hula hoop, and canned food drive. In Mobile, teams competed in kickball, volleyball, cornhole, dodgeball, triathlon, and tug of war. Check out photos and video from the day's events.

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Auburn Pharmacist Spotlight: Dr. Martin Jernigan

J. Martin Jernigan, RPh, Ph.D., a native of Montgomery, Alabama, was recently hired as the president and chief operating officer of RG+A, a consulting and marketing research firm based in New Hope, Pennsylvania. After earning his Bachelor of Pharmacy degree from Auburn in 1988, Jernigan went on to the University of Mississippi where he earned a Ph.D. in healthcare business administration in 1991. Since then, he has built a distinguished career in the pharmaceutical industry with companies such as Sanofi Aventis, Johnson & Johnson, Novo Nordisk and now RG+A. Learn more about Jernigan in this month's Auburn Pharmacist Spotlight.

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Joe Dalton Nominated to Auburn Alumni Association Board of Directors

Joe Dalton, a member of the HSOP Class of 1982, was recently nominated as a candidate for the Auburn University Alumni Association Board of Directors. The results of the election will be announced at the alumni association’s annual meeting on Sept. 13. A native of Slocomb, Alabama, Dalton is the director of pharmacy at Flowers Hospital and the owner of six retail pharmacies in the area. He is a life member of the Auburn Alumni Association; and is a member of the 1856 Society, Shug Jordan Society, Petrie Society, Auburn Alumni Association Circle of Excellence, Pharmacy Prescription Club, Foy Society; Pharmacy Dean’s Advisory Council, and Wiregrass Auburn Club President.

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Serving Those Who Serve Our Country

After completing pharmacy school, most graduates look forward to starting their new career path, whether in a hospital, retail pharmacy, an office or a lab. Among the details in starting the new job is a new white coat, this one emblazoned with “Dr.” before their name and the logo of their new employer. For Dr. Tyrome Brown, a member of the Harrison School of Pharmacy Class of 2019, his new coat will come along with fatigues and a uniform. Read more about Dr. Brown and the next step in his career.

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HSOP Alums Open Pharmacy in East Montgomery

Three recent HSOP alums recently came together to open a new pharmacy in Montgomery. Dr. Ashish Patel ’15, Dr. Hetalben Patel ’17, and Dr. Iral Patel ’09 have opened a iKare Pharmacy in the Peppertree Plaza Shopping Center. Learn more about the trio in this story from the Montgomery Advertiser.

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Boaz Drugs Celebrates 50 Years

For more than 50 years, Boaz Drugs has been serving the people of sand Mountain. Since 1972, HSOP graduate Dale Johnson has been an integral part of that, first as a co-owner and eventually as full owner. Read more about Johnson, a member of the Class of 1969, in this story from the Sand Mountain Reporter.

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We Want to Hear from You

One of our favorite things around the Harrison School of Pharmacy is when we hear from our alumni and friends. We would love to hear from you with updates on your practice, career, or life in general. Please send any updates or news items you have to

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Sharay Setti uses a plunger in the lab

Setti Searching for Early Markers of Alzheimer’s

For many suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, alterations in the brain can begin 10 or more years before the appearance of symptoms and a diagnosis. Early detection in Alzheimer’s is critical and the search for those early markers drives the research of Harrison School of Pharmacy graduate student Sharay Setti. Read more about her potentially life-saving work.

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Davis Named UAB CCTS Scholar

Brandy Davis, a graduate student in the Health Outcomes Research and Policy option, was recently selected as a scholar with the Center for Clinical and Translational Science Pre-Doctoral Clinical/Translational Research Program (TL1) at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. The program provides a stipend, tuition support, and project expenses for one year of mentored research training.

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Cannabis Research Featured by Various News Outlets

A study authored by graduate student Priyanka Das Pinky garnered national attention last week for its subject matter of marijuana use by pregnant women. The research was presented at the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics annual meeting during the 2019 Experimental Biology meeting and was titled “Mechanism of Prenatal Cannabinoid Exposure Mediated Memory Loss in Adolescent Offspring: Opportunities for Identifying Therapeutic Target.” The study looked at the rising rates of marijuana use by pregnant women as a therapy for morning sickness and found that cannabis could damage the brain of the fetus. The research was featured in outlets such as Newsweek, Health News Digest, Neuroscience News, Science Daily, and others. Co-authors included graduate students Jenna Bloemer, Sharay Setti, Ryan Heslin, and Warren Smith; and HSOP faculty Dr. Miranda Reed and Dr. Vishnu Suppiramaniam.

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Mishuk Earns PhRMA Foundation Fellowship

Ahmed Ullah Mishuk, a graduate student in the health outcomes research and policy option, was recently awarded a pre-doctoral fellowship by the PhRMA Foundation. The award provides support to promising students during advanced stages of training and thesis research and for the career development of scientists prepared to engage in health outcomes research. The PhRMA Foundation supports young scientists in disciplines important to the pharmaceutical industry by awarding them competitive research fellowships and grants at a critical decision point at the outset of their careers.

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Davis and Heard Named Walmart Scholars

Brandy Davis and Glady’s Tucker Heard were recently selected as 2019 Walmart Scholars. Davis is a graduate student pursuing the health outcomes research and policy option while Heard is a member of the Pharm.D. Class of 2019. The pair was two of just 85 recipients nationwide of the awards. The Walmart Scholars Program provides $1,000 scholarships to students to attend the 2019 American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy Annual Meeting and Teachers Seminar in Chicago, Illinois from July 13-17 with a faculty mentor. Davis’ mentor is Dr. Kimberly Garza while Heard’s is Dr. Taylor Steuber.

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Three HSOP Students Receive AFPE Awards

Three Harrison School of Pharmacy students recently received awards from the American Foundation for Pharmaceutical Education (AFPE). The three are among just 34 award recipients nationwide.

Emily Peel, a rising fourth-year pharmacy student, received the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP)-AFPE Gateway Award. The award supports Pharm.D. and undergraduate students who are considering a career in research, and enables them to work with a faculty mentor on that mentor’s research project. Under the guidance of Dr. Kim Garza, Peel is working on a project titled “A critical appraisal of acute otitis media guidelines and systematic reviews using the AGREE II and AMSTAR instruments."

Logan Neel, a Ph.D. student pursuing the medicinal chemistry option, received a Pre-Doctoral Fellowship in Pharmaceutical Sciences. Under Dr. Forrest Smith, she is working on a project titled "Computational Design and Synthesis of Cannabinoid Receptor 2 Selective Agonists."

Warren Smith, a Ph.D. student pursuing the pharmacology option, received a Pre-Doctoral Fellowship in Pharmaceutical Sciences. Under Dr. Vishnu Suppiramaniam, he is working on a project titled "Novel intranasal pramlintide administration for the dissection of metabolic and cognitive outcomes of amylin-based therapies in a transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease."

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Wright Selected as President’s Award Winner

HSOP Class of 2019 member Lauren Wright was recently selected for the Auburn University President’s Award. The award recognizes one graduate in each school or college who has completed at least three semesters at Auburn with a minimum grade-point average of 3.40 and possesses outstanding qualities of leadership, citizenship, character and promise of professional ability.

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ACCP Clinical Pharmacy Challenge Team Selected

Following the local SCCP Clinical Pharmacy Challenge, the team of Michelle Uichanco, Ashley Aune, and Nick Harrison has been selected to represent HSOP at the 2019 ACCP Clinical Pharmacy Challenge. The ACCP Clinical Pharmacy Challenge is a team-based competition. Teams of three students will compete against teams from other schools and colleges of pharmacy in a “quiz bowl”–type format. The HSOP team will begin competing in the preliminary rounds of the national competition virtually in August and September. The quarterfinal, semifinal, and final rounds will be held live at the American College of Clinical Pharmacy (ACCP) Annual Meeting in New York, New York, October 26-29, 2019.

Nine HSOP Students Selected to Phi Kappa Phi

Nine HSOP students were recently initiated into Phi Kappa Phi, an honor society established to recognize and encourage superior scholarship without restriction as to area of study and to promote the "unity and democracy of education." The group included five P4s and four P3s. Class of 2019 members initiated were Jaclyn Connors, Abigail Grimm, Danielle Jackson, Lauren Speakman, and Christopher Wren. From the Class of 2020, it was William Medawar, Savan Patel, Savannah Rodriguez-Feo, and Michelle Uichanco.

Phi Lambda Sigma Initiates New Members

The HSOP chapter of Phi Lambda Sigma initiated its newest class in April. PLS was founded as the first and only pharmacy leadership society in the country on Auburn’s campus in 1965. It is now a national organization with chapters at more than 100 schools of pharmacy. Initiated into the class were P4s Matthew Holt, Samantha Rodriguez, Lauren Speakman, and Ricarrdo Spencer; P3s Ashley Aune, Emily Blaine, Rachel Chappell, Elleyna Clinton, Rachel Elston, Mary Pat Holder, William Medawar, Tulsi Patel, Quoc Pham, Andrew Prince, Samantha Sloan, Perry Thompson, and Sarah Vines. From the P2 class were Amanda Altstatt, Marion Colvin, Hannah Haynes, Caitlin Henderson, Madissen Patterson, Anna Lee Petit, Maddie Sheffield, and Alec Wesolowski.

Graduate Students Place at This is Research Symposium

Four HSOP graduate students came away with awards following the Auburn Research Student Symposium on April 18. Sharay Setti won Best Oral Presentation for her presentation titled “Effect of LEC-specific P301L Tau on synaptic transmission and learning and memory.” Warren Smith took second place in the poster presentation with his poster titled “Intranasal pramlintide administration for the dissection of metabolic and cognitive outcomes of amylin-based therapies in a transgenic mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease.” In the school-specific awards, Ihab Abdallah won Best Oral Presentation while Ahmed Alsaqr won Best Poster Presentation.

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Graduate Students Receive ISO Recognition

Five HSOP graduate students were recently recognized by the International Student Organization. Earning honors from ISO were Chao Li, Sweilem Al Rihani, Mohammed Majrashi, Kajal Patel, and Yilue Zhang. The group comes from across the globe with Li hailing from China, Al Rihani from Jordan, Majrashi from Saudi Arabia, Patel from Zambia, and Zhang from China.

Undergraduate Students Earn HSOP Research Fellowships

Five undergraduate Auburn students have received summer research fellowships to conduct research at HSOP. All fellowships are co-funded by the AU Office of Undergraduate Research. Alison Beverly and Marissa Dogan will work under Dr. Miranda Reed in fellowships funded by the Department of Drug Discovery and Development (DDD). Kavon Diggs, who has been admitted as part of the Class of 2023, will work under Dr. Salisa Westrick in a fellowship funded by the Department of Health Outcomes Research and Policy and the College of Sciences and Mathematics (COSAM). Connor Jones will work under Dr. Forrest Smith in a fellowship funded by DDD and the College of Engineering. Shivani Rangari will work under Dr. Jay Ramapuram in a fellowship funded by DDD and COSAM.

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CCTS Receives Nearly $50 Million From NIH

Auburn University and HSOP will continue to reap the benefits of being a part of the Center for Clinical and Translational Sciences (CCTS) as the center’s funding from the National Institutes of Health has been renewed for another five years. The network works to accelerate the process of translating laboratory discoveries into treatments for patients, or moving research from bench to bedside, facilitates training of the next generation of clinical and translational researchers and engages communities in clinical research efforts.

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Li Places in LAUNCH

Dr. Feng Li, assistant professor in the Department of Drug Discovery and Development, recently took one of the top places in the LAUNCH Innovation Grant Program. The LAUNCH program is a competitive two-stage evaluation of proposals, followed by a live presentation before judges. Dr. Li’s project is called SMILE Plus: A Nanoparticle Drug Formulation for Cancer Therapy. It is a novel drug formulation to enable a new use of an approved drug against late-stage, drug-resistant cancers for which there is currently no treatment.

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Chen Mentors Engineering Student In Google Summer of Code

Auburn Engineering doctoral student Ye Wang was chosen to participate in the Google Summer of Code, a global program that allows students to immerse themselves in open-source software development. Focusing on biomedical data, Wang is being mentored by Dr. Li Chen, assistant professor health outcomes research and policy. Learn more about his innovative project.

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Qian Receives Research Contract From CareHere

Dr. Jingjing Qian, associated professor of the Department of Health Outcomes Research and Policy, was recently awarded a research contract with CareHere, LLC. The project is to evaluate the impact of the waived copay and onsite dispensing of generic medications on patients’ medication adherence and clinical outcomes using existing health insurance claims and pharmacy dispensing data. The CareHere Company was founded in 2004 and currently operates more than 200 locations throughout the United States to manage onsite health centers for employers. CareHere also has an Auburn connection as chief financial officer Sarah Houser is an AU graduate with a bachelor of science degree in business administration.

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Durham Receives Grant from ADPH

Dr. Spencer Durham, assistant clinical professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice, recently received $18,000 from the Alabama Department of Public Health for a continuing education program on antimicrobial stewardship. With the grant, HSOP will host the 2nd Annual Alabama Infectious Disease Society (AlIDS) Antimicrobial Stewardship Conference, July 20 in Birmingham. More information and registration can be found on the CE website.

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Jungnickel Receives AACP Award

Dr. Paul Jungnickel, associate dean for academic programs, was recently recognized by the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) with the Administrative Services Section Award for Sustained Contribution to Administrative Practice in Pharmacy Education. The award is presented by the Association’s Administrative Services Section, an interdisciplinary forum for pharmacy education faculty and staff in administrative positions. Jungnickel will formally receive the award during the Administrative Services section business meeting on July 14 at AACP’s Annual Meeting.

Faculty Published in American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education

Harrison School of Pharmacy faculty were recently published in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education. Dr. Jan Kavookjian, associate professor in Health Outcomes Research and Policy, and graduate student Gladys Ekong are listed as co-authors of the article titled “A Multi-School Validation of a Revised Scale for Assessing Cultural Competence in Pharmacy Students.” Also published were Drs. Paul Jungnickel and Lee Evans with the article “Incorporating ACPE Standards in a Holistic Approach to School Operations and Accreditation.”

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Calderon Presents on Botanical Drugs at FDA

Dr. Angela Calderon, associate professor in the Department of Drug Discovery and Development, recently gave an invited seminar at the United States Food and Drug Administration. On March 25, Calderon gave a presentation titled “Contributions of High Resolution Mass Spectrometry to Quality and safety Assessment of Botanical Dietary Supplements” as part of the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research Botanical Drug Seminar Series.

Last Updated: May 24, 2019