School of Pharmacy

Research Structure & Facilities

Research Ethos

Structures & Facilities

Our research is organised under two divisions or clusters - Pharmaceutical Science and Practice, and Molecular Therapeutics. Both clusters have a number of key themes and associated research programmes which are mainly funded by UK and European Government sources, leading medical charities and the pharmaceutical industry.

Pharmacy is a multidisciplinary subject; hence you will see that we are working on aspects of social sciences, clinical sciences, physicochemical sciences and even engineering!  As a Pharmacy school, we focus on drugs to prevent, alleviate or cure diseases and our research programmes range from drug design and discovery, to formulation and delivery, and on to action and use. Increasingly, many aspects of our research are carried out in collaboration with world leading colleagues and research centres in Europe, Asia and North America.

Our research is organised under two divisions or clusters - Pharmaceutical Science and Practice, and Molecular Therapeutics.


Molecular Therapeutics

Our research focuses on the validation of drug targets and the development of experimental therapeutic agents.  Principle Investigator groups within the cluster bring together a broad expertise in molecular and cellular biology, chemical biology, medicinal chemistry and peptide proteomics.  This provides the basis for four  key themes of research with the cluster:

  • Chemical Biology and Medicinal Chemistry
  • Experimental Therapeutics
  • Natural Drug Discovery
  • Proteases and Inhibitors

Research within the cluster is sponsored by the major UK Research Councils, MRC, EPSRC and BBSRC. Additionally, we are also funded by major charities such as Cancer Research UK, Breast Cancer Campaign and the Prostate Cancer Charity.

In addition to our basic research, the cluster has a strong track record in the commercialisation of our work. Intellectual property arising has been out-licensed to industry for the development of both diagnostics and therapeutics.

Details of our research are contained within the summaries to each theme. Additional information and exemplar publications  may also be found on individual staff pages. 

For futher information contact: Prof Chris Scott, Director of Research:


Pharmaceutical Science and Practice

Welcome to the web pages for the Pharmaceutical Sciences and Practice cluster. Our research ranges from basic and applied pharmaceutical sciences  to the development of new health care models that can be implemented in a variety of settings.  Principal Investigators within the cluster bring together a broad expertise in bioactive biomaterials, advanced drug delivery systems, clinical pharmacy and applied clinical microbiology, and health services research pertinent to pharmacy and primary care.   This provides the basis for four key themes of research within the cluster:

  • Bioactive Biomaterials and Infection Control
  • Clinical Pharmacy
  • Drug Delivery
  • Primary Care

Research within the cluster is sponsored by the major UK research councils, including the MRC, EPSRC and BBSRC, as well as international funders such as the NIH, the Gates Foundation and European Framework programmes.  Additionally, we have also funding from major charities such as the Wellcome Trust, Cystic Fibrosis Trust and the Alzheimer’s Society.

The cluster has a strong track record in the commercialisation of our work and working closely with health policy and clinical colleagues to produce research that has direct applications to clinical care.

For further information contact: Carmel Hughes, Director of Research, 


Research Facilities

World Class Technologies

Our commitment to research has resulted in high levels of investments in a number of leading research facilities and equipment.


The School of Pharmacy is located across four adjacent buildings on the Medical Biology Centre (MBC) site, a short distance from the main University campus. The administrative centre for the School is situated in the McClay Research Centre (main access via Jubilee Road). The School's main undergraduate teaching facilities are located in the McClay Research Centre (Pharmacy Lecture Theatre and MG12/13), the adjoining Darcy Building (Clinical and Pharmacy Practice teaching facilities), and the Medical Biology Centre (Laboratory G30 MBC). These buildings, as well as the neighbouring Whitla Medical Building, also house our extensive research facilities.


The School has more than 20 research laboratories sited across its various buildings. A description of the laboratory facilities and their equipment is described below.

Microbiology Laboratory

Tissue Culture Suite

Thermal Analysis

Microscopy Suite

Solid Dosage Suite


Instrument Analysis 

Pharmaceutical Polymer 

Drug Delivery 

IPM Unit (Microbicides)

Injection Moulding Unit

Natural Drug Discovery 

PK/PD Unit

Biomolecular Science 

John A. King Medicincal 
Chemistry Laboratory



In addition to research facilities located in the School of Pharmacy, other Schools and Units within the University provide access to key research facilities.