Founded 120 years ago, the Oregon State University (OSU) College of Pharmacy is one of the oldest in the United States and has been a leader in natural products research since our predoctoral training program in Pharmaceutical Sciences began in 1952. Founded in 1973 by two-time Nobel Laureate Linus Pauling and housed in the state-of-the-art Linus Pauling Science Center on the OSU campus, the Linus Pauling Institute (LPI) remains focused on using micronutrients, phytochemicals and dietary supplements to prevent disease and maintain human health. Our graduates occupy leadership positions in academia, industry and government in the United States and throughout the world. Historically, natural products have accounted for over half of all therapeutic agents, and today are still the inspiration of nearly 40% of new drugs. Training young scientists for careers in natural products and dietary supplements research is a core mission of our College of Pharmacy and the LPI and will be the focus of this training grant. To address the need to train a new generation of experts in research concerning natural products drug discovery and in the safety and efficacy of dietary supplements, we propose to establish a new training grant program that will enroll 5 predoctoral trainees at a time. Currently, there is no training grant based in the OSU College of Pharmacy or the LPI. Our mentor team includes faculty with expertise in marine, microbial and botanical natural products and dietary supplements as well as natural product genomics, cancer therapy, chemoprevention, pharmacology, dietary supplements, organic synthesis, and biosynthesis. Our leadership team includes co-Program Leaders with experience leading a T32 training program (Dr. van Breemen) and experience serving as a director of graduate studies for our department (Dr. Mahmud). Finally, our training program will be enhanced by exceptional institutional commitment in the forms of administrative support from the OSU College of Pharmacy, the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences and the LPI and financial support from the OSU Graduate School as partial tuition waivers.
The majority of drugs and supplements in use today are derived from natural products. This training grant will support the doctoral education of the next generation of scientists who will be responsible for establishing the safety and efficacy of dietary supplements and for the discovery of new therapeutic agents from natural product sources.