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Washington State University

Finding health care solutions for medically underserved rural areas

In the United States there are 14 million people living in medically underserved areas where access to health care continues to be a chronic problem with no clear solutions. Many residents who live in rural areas don’t have access to doctors, nurses, or pharmacists, and getting medical attention often translates to a several hours drive to the nearest city. College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences (CPPS) Associate Professors of Pharmacotherapy Kimberly McKeirnan and Megan Undeberg are finding ways to bridge this health care gap.

“There is such a disparity of care for the rural sector,” said Undeberg, who also grew up on a farm … » More …

Medicine-carriers made from human cells can cure lung infections

By Sara Zaske, WSU News

SPOKANE, Wash. – Scientists used human white blood cell membranes to carry two drugs, an antibiotic and an anti-inflammatory, directly to infected lungs in mice.

The nano-sized drug delivery method developed at Washington State University successfully treated both the bacterial growth and inflammation in the mice’s lungs. The study, recently published in Communications Biology, shows a potential new strategy for treating infectious diseases, including COVID-19.

“If a doctor simply gives two drugs to a patient, they don’t go directly to the lungs. They circulate in the whole body, so potentially there’s a lot of toxicity,” said Zhenjia Wang, … » More …

December 2020 Updates



Allen I. White Distinguished Associate Professor of Pharmacotherapy Joshua Neumiller and co-authors published, “Incretin drugs in diabetic kidney disease: biological mechanisms and clinical evidence,” in the Nature Reviews November 2020 edition of the Nephrology Journal.

Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Associate (Z. Wang lab) Jin Gao, Pharmaceutical Sciences Associate Professor Zhenjia Wang and four co-authors published , “Co-delivery of resolving D1and antibiotics with nanovesicles to lungs resolves inflammation and clears bacteria in mice,” in the Communications Biology, a peer-reviewed open-access resource from the SpringerNature.

Pharmaceutical Sciences Associate Professor Bhagwat Prasad and two co-authors published, “Utility of Quantitative Proteomics for Enhancing the … » More …

WSU and Columbia Basin College set new path for pharmacy students

Students in the Tri-Cities area can now complete pre-requisite courses for the WSU Doctor of Pharmacy program at the cost of attending CBC. In a collaboration between Columbia Basin College (CBC) and Washington State University (WSU), students who complete the approved transferable Associate of Science-Transfer (AS-T) degree will be eligible for admissions into the WSU Doctor of Pharmacy program.

“As someone who grew up not too far from Tri-Cities, I’m proud that we can now offer students new opportunities and career pathways that did not exist before. This new collaboration fulfills WSU’s mission as a land-grant university, which is rooted in accessibility and public service,” … » More …

Native American Heritage Month Spotlight

November is Native American Heritage Month and it is a time for us to celebrate the rich and diverse cultures, traditions and histories of our First Americans and honor their important contributions to the community. First-year student pharmacist Estebon Hughes of the Spokane tribe shares some of the driving forces as to why he chose to work in health care and become a pharmacist.

What inspired you to become a pharmacist?
My mother works in health care and I have always looked up to her and the work that she does. I wanted to become a pharmacist so that I could help people … » More …

November 2020 Updates



Allen I. White Distinguished Associate Professor of Pharmacotherapy Joshua Neumiller and co-presenters lead a virtual town hall titled, “Focus on the evolving role of GLP-1 receptor agonists,” for Postgraduate Healthcare Education on October 15, 2020. The topic examined the role of GLP-1 receptor agonists in the management of Type 2 diabetes is continually evolving, challenging pharmacists to stay current with the latest science.


Josh Neumiller served on the Steering Committee for the IDEA 2.0: Innovating Decisions and Empowering Action in Diabetes Management program on use of continuous glucose monitors (CGM) sponsored by the American Association of Clinical Endocrinology (AACE).
» More …

Career advice and lessons learned in pharmacy

Vice Dean of External Relations Linda Garrelts MacLean is a veteran of the pharmacy community. As co-owner of Jones Pharmacy & Home Health Care Center for over 20 years, a past-president of the Washington State Pharmacy Association, past trustee for the American Pharmacists Association, and a recipient of the Bowl of Hygeia Award (the highest honor in the profession), Garrelts MacLean knows a thing or two about building a successful career, seeking out opportunities, and above all, caring for patients. In this video, she shares her lifelong experience working in community pharmacy, running a business, and working to advance the practice. » More ...

HealthChats: vaccines, flu season and COVID-19

The WSU College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences held an illuminating discussion on commonly asked questions about vaccines, this year’s flu season, and what that could mean for the eventual distribution of a COVID-19 vaccine. Kim McKeirnan and Nicole Rodin, who both teach in the Department of Pharmacotherapy at the college, shared their expertise on how vaccines get produced, and the push to get students certified so that they are ready to vaccinate for what is expected to be a busy flu shot season. » More ...

Students raise funds for virtual care in Yakima nursing homes

Nursing homes have been ground zero for the havoc caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. As of October 11, 60,491 of COVID-19 deaths were nursing home residents. That’s more than a quarter of all deaths nationwide caused by COVID-19. Several pharmacy students from Washington State University have decided to take matters into their own hands by providing virtual care to elderly patients in Yakima Valley nursing homes. While students will be creating videos to advise elderly patients, they need help to raise funds for tablets so that their patients are able to view these videos. The WSU College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences caught up … » More …