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The Translational Core commonly engages in assay development/validation/implementation, screening, hit identification, hit/lead candidate first in animal studies, preliminary in vitro and in vivo ADMET analysis, bioanalytical and preliminary formulation development, and/or basic PK and MTD studies. Screening activities in the core employ both commercially available libraries and our exclusive UK-based collections (see Compound Collections). In the context of translational research and lead development, the core provides experimental validation for computational models (Computational Core) and emphasizes studies to illuminate potential liabilities of early stage hits/leads and set the stage for in vivo evaluation in the relevant disease models. The core operates under the directorship of Professor Jon Thorson with a current staff of one Ph.D. level and one M.S. level scientist.

Core Services and Publications

Assay Development and Screening

  • Study design/consultation
  • Biochemical/cell-based/whole animal assay development/validation
  • Screens using in-house Compound Collections

Preliminary Formulation

  • Study design/consultation
  • Analytical methods development
  • Computational analysis of physical properties (see Computational Core)
  • Solubilization with a focus on accepted formulations
  • Stability studies

Maximum Tolerated Dose (MTD)

  • Study design/consultation
  • Single dose acute (20 mice)
  • Multiple dose (40 mice) varied schedules

Toxicology/Metabolism Screening

  • Study design/consultation
  • Hematology, toxicity
  • Microsomal stability

Animal Pharmacokinetics

  • Study design/consultation
  • Single IV, IP, PO dose (21 mice)
  • Serial sacrifice (n=3/time point)
  • PK analysis

Representative Publications


The Translational Studies Core welcomes inquiries from UK investigators with an interest in assay development, new ligand/probe discovery, and/or early preclinical evaluation of small molecules, delivery modalities, and/or biologics. For more information and to request services, please contact us.

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Funding Acknowledgment Statement

This work was supported by the Center for Pharmaceutical Research and Innovation (CPRI, NIH P20 GM130456) and the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (UL1 TR001998).

We wish to remember and honor those who inhabited this Commonwealth before the arrival of the Europeans. Briefly occupying these lands were the Osage, Wyndott tribe, and Miami peoples. The Adena and Hopewell peoples, who are recognized by the naming of the time period in which they resided here, were here more permanently. Some of their mounds remain in the Lexington area, including at UK’s Adena Park.

In more recent years, the Cherokee occupied southeast Kentucky, the Yuchi southwest Kentucky, the Chickasaw extreme western Kentucky and the Shawnee central Kentucky including what is now the city of Lexington. The Shawnee left when colonization pushed through the Appalachian Mountains. Lower Shawnee Town ceremonial grounds are still visible in Greenup County.

We honor the first inhabitants who were here, respect their culture, and acknowledge the presence of their descendants who are here today in all walks of life including fellow pharmacists and healthcare professionals.