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New Vice Provost for Research: Perry Molinoff

Perry Molinoff

Dr. Perry Molinoff, a renowned neuroscientist and the former chairman of the department of pharmacology, has been named Vice Provost for Research, effective immediately, according to an announcement by Provost Robert L. Barchi. Dr. Molinoff was the A.N. Richards Professor and Chairman of Pharmacology from 1981 until 1995.

Dr. Molinoff is an expert on the structure and function of cell membrane receptors involved in signal transduction. His early research focused on the receptor for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, but he has published extensively on other important receptor molecules that respond to amino acids or to biogenic amines such as dopamine. Much of this research has had significant clinical relevance for understanding and treating diseases ranging from heart failure to depression, schizophrenia, and Parkinson's disease.

"President Rodin and I are thrilled that Perry will be heading Penn's extensive research efforts," said Provost Barchi. "His depth of experience in both academe and the private sector makes him perfectly suited to guide our research operation. Perry has been widely praised both for his personal research accomplishments and for his academic leadership abilities. These superior academic credentials, coupled with his experience in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries will serve us well."

As the new Vice Provost for Research, Dr. Molinoff will have policy and administrative oversight for the University's $600 million research enterprise. He will also deal directly with policy issues relating to the conduct of research, including animal and human research and clinical trials. He will also play a central role in the strategic planning for research and will coordinate the development of new research facilities.

Dr. Molinoff received his B.S. from Harvard College and received his medical degree from Harvard Medical School in 1967. He subsequently undertook postdoctoral and fellowship training with Julius Axelrod at the National Institute of Mental Health and as a Guggenheim Fellow at the department of biophysics at University College London. Dr. Molinoff spent 10 years in the department of pharmacology at the University of Colorado. In 1981 he came to Penn's Medical School where he was the A.N. Richards Professor and chairman of Pharmacology. While Dr. Molinoff served as chairman of this department, the NIH ranking for grants received moved from 70th place (of 119), to sixth in the country.

Upon leaving Penn in 1995, Dr. Molinoff became vice president of Neuroscience and Genitourinary Drug Discovery at the Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute. He was responsible for directing and implementing the Institute's research efforts in these two therapeutic areas. Dr. Molinoff established a multidisciplinary structure to facilitate rapid development of therapeutic targets across a broad spectrum of neurologic, psychiatric and genitourinary diseases, including stroke, depression, sleep disorders, obesity, Alzheimer's disease, analgesia and neuropathic pain, urinary incontinence and male erectile dysfunction. He was also a member of the leadership team responsible for the licensing and development of aripiprazole, a novel antipsychotic being marketed by Bristol-Myers and Otsuka Pharmaceuticals.

Dr. Molinoff has most recently been EVP for Research and Development at Palatin Technologies in Cranbury, New Jersey, where he serves as a member of the board of directors. At Palatin, Dr. Molinoff has been responsible for early discovery programs in sexual dysfunction, obesity, neurodegenerative disease and cancer diagnosis and treatment. He has also been responsible for the clinical development of a diagnostic imaging agent as well as the clinical and preclinical development of a novel centrally acting melatonergic agonist that has recently completed phase 2 clinical trials for the treatment of male erectile dysfunction.

Dr. Molinoff said that he is excited to be returning to Penn. "Enormous changes have taken place both within the institution and with regard to its interaction with the greater Philadelphia community," Dr. Molinoff said. "I have many warm memories of Penn and have stayed in touch with many former and soon-to-be current colleagues. It is a real honor to be given the opportunity to contribute to the future growth of this great institution."

Dr. Molinoff has numerous affiliations with scientific societies including the American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics; American Society of Biological Chemists; American Society for Neurochemistry; American Association for the Advancement of Science; Society for Neuroscience; Research Society on Alcoholism; The New York Academy of Sciences; and the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology.

He is, or has been a member of multiple editorial advisory boards, including Molecular Pharmacology; The Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics; The Journal of Neurochemistry; Molecular Neuropharmacology; Current Opinion in CNS Drugs; Molecular Interactions; and Journal of Studies on Alcohol. He has also been the author, coauthor, or editor of six books, including Basic Neurochemistry and Goodman and Gilman's Textbook of Pharmacology, and of over 225 publications.

 

 


  Almanac, Vol. 50, No. 11, November 4, 2003

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