To be nationally renowned for excellence in pharmacology research and scholarship, with the ultimate goal of improving human health


The Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology (a Joint Health Sciences or JHS Department in the School of Medicine) has been integral to the scientific, clinical and educational missions of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, since the medical center in Birmingham was established in 1945. The disciplines of pharmacology and toxicology span basic mechanisms of drug discovery, action, metabolism, and distribution, along with studies of the therapeutic or adverse effects that chemicals/drugs have on biological systems. Consequently, the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology integrates diverse basic and translational scientific investigations—across the UAB campus—around common research interests, providing unique capabilities to promote the discovery and development of new therapeutics and address the impact of environmental toxins. The department has actively participated in the strategic missions of the AMC21 Reload, the Comprehensive Cancer Center, the Center for Neurodegeneration and Experimental Therapeutics, and the Alabama Drug Discovery Alliance (ADDA). With a vibrant department and Division of Clinical Pharmacology, our strategic objectives are to provide a dynamic and diverse academic environment that fosters innovative, ground-breaking research in basic and clinical pharmacology, therapeutics and toxicology, promote strong evidence-based teaching and training for our students and trainees, and contribute to the AMC21 strategic mission. Along with Dr. Mary-Ann Bjornsti, PhD, as chair, and Dr. Ed Acosta, PharmD, as division director, our goals are to:

  • to expand our strengths in cancer and neuro pharmacology
  • to acquire new expertise in toxicology and drug metabolism
  • to promote interdisciplinary graduate and medical pharmacology education