Spotlight on new faculty -- Ram Mahato, Ph.D.

by Kalani Simpson, UNMC public relations | June 24, 2013

Image with caption: Ram Mahato, Ph.D.

Ram Mahato, Ph.D.

Ram Mahato, Ph.D., the College of Pharmacy's new professor and chair of pharmaceutical sciences, has published 107 papers, holds two patents and has written and/or edited eight books and nine journal issues.

He has served on the editorial board on eight journals and just stepped down as editor of Pharmaceutical Research.

"Ram's own research program complements and adds to our existing strength in drug delivery and will help ensure that we continue to have one of the very best drug delivery and nanomedicine programs in the world," said Courtney Fletcher, Pharm.D., dean of the College of Pharmacy.

Dr. Mahato was born in Nepal, the land of Mt. Everest. While still in school, he worked closely with his entrepreneur brother to expand the family business.

He went to China to study at China Pharmaceutical University, a premier pharmaceutical institution. There, he met a professor who encouraged him to pursue a Ph.D. at his institution, the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland.

"The steam engine, the television," Dr. Mahato said, "you name it, it was invented at Strathclyde." And it was there he first learned the importance of taking inventions to the marketplace.

At a meeting, he would meet the man who would become his mentor: Vincent H.L. Lee, Ph.D., then at the University of Southern California. Dr. Lee, now director of the School of Pharmacy at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, brought Dr. Mahato to Los Angeles as a research assistant.

Dr. Lee then advised him on a career path that included stops at Kyoto University in Japan, to work in a lab interested in applying pharmaceutical sciences to gene therapy; at Gene Medicine, as a senior scientist; and at the University of Utah, to work on designing polymeric carriers for gene therapy.

Dr. Mahato attained independence at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, where he was professor of nanomedicines and drug delivery. He was in Memphis for 12 years.

Why did he want to come to UNMC?

Partly because of the caliber of science which is being and will be done here, especially with the recent groundbreaking for the Lozier Center for Pharmacy Sciences and Education and Center for Drug Discovery. But he was also eager to take the job because it is a unique position in which he could fully draw on his diverse experience in pharmaceutical research and education with scientists all over the campus.

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