Dr. Linda Dwoskin
Dr. Dwoskin is an Endowed Professor in Pharmaceutical Education at the University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy. She received her B.S. (1974) in psychology from Syracuse University, and Ph.D. (1983) from the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Minnesota. She was a postdoctoral fellow in endocrinology at the Oregon Health Science Center and in the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Colorado Health Science Center. Dr. Dwoskin joined the faculty at the University of Kentucky in 1988 as an assistant professor. She currently holds several other academic appointments including: professor, Department of Behavioral Sciences; adjunct faculty, University of Kentucky Graduate Center; associate, University of Kentucky Center on Drug Abuse Translation; associate, Multi-disciplinary Research Center on Drug and Alcohol Abuse; and associate, Center of Membrane Sciences. Dr. Dwoskin has been awarded the University of Kentucky Wethington Award for Meritorious Performance in Research (2002-2016). She was chosen in 2005-2006 for a University Research Professorship, recognizing her outstanding research and her distinguished record of achievement in her field. Her research has resulted in over 249 peer-reviewed research articles, 352 abstracts of research presentations and 110 patents and patent applications. Dr. Dwoskin's major research focus is drug discovery in neuropharmacology, i.e., the development of novel therapeutic candidates for the treatment of psychostimulant abuse, specifically for nicotine and methamphetamine abuse. In particular, her focus is the design and discovery of subtype-selective neuronal nicotinic receptor antagonists as novel tobacco smoking cessation agents and of modulators of vesicular monoamine transporter function as novel treatments for methamphetamine abuse. In her collaborators labs, promising therapeutic candidates are also tested in locomotor activity assays and drug discrimination assays to determine if they inhibit the stimulant effects and interoceptive cues associated with psychostimulant use, as well as in intravenous self-administration assays to determine if they inhibit the rewarding effect of these drugs of abuse. Another focus of Dr. Dwoskin's research is to determine the role of environmental and genetic factors as determinants of individual responsiveness to drugs of abuse and as determinants of an individual's potential for abuse liability. Using an animal model, the relationship between dopaminergic function (release, reuptake and metabolism) in striatum, nucleus accumbens, medial prefrontal cortex and orbital prefrontal cortex and an individual's behavior in novelty-seeking, psychostimulant self-administration and delay-discounting assays are evaluated as predictors of an individual's responsiveness to drugs of abuse. Several drugs discovered in her laboratory at the University of Kentucky are currently in various phases of clinical development. Dr. Dwoskin has graduated 1 Ph.D. student and 1 graduate students in her laboratory currently. She has trained 20 postdoctoral fellows in her laboratory.