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Renowned pharmaceutical scientist to speak on precision medicine

Why do two people react so differently to the same medication? Can a person’s DNA predict how they will respond? Does disease, food or beverages or co-administered medications affect transport proteins in our body that make a difference in how people respond to medications?

A University of North Carolina professor has some answers for these questions and will share them at a free lecture in Founders Recital Hall in the Oscar Larson Performing Arts Center on the South Dakota State University campus. Kim Brouwer will discuss “Advancing Precision Medicine with the Science of Drug Transporters” at 3:30 p.m. Oct. 24.

Her talk is the keynote address for the annual Keo Glidden Smith Fall Convocation for the College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions at SDSU.

Brouwer, who has been a School of Pharmacy faculty member at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill since 1986, is currently the Kenan Distinguished Professor in the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics and associate dean for research and graduate education in the UNC Eshelman School of Pharmacy.

She specializes in pharmacokinetics, the branch of pharmacology concerned with the movement of drugs within the body. Brouwer’s particular interest is the science of drug transporters, proteins that play key roles in the absorption, distribution and excretion of many medications—and contribute to the variable response that patients have to medications.

Aiming to accurately predicting drug excretion through the liver, Brouwer co-invented B-CLEAR®, a reliable method to measure and predict how drugs are handled by the liver to help ensure that they are safe for use before they go to clinical trials and the market. The B-CLEAR® technology was licensed from UNC to Qualyst Inc., which Brouwer co-founded. She served as chair of the scientific advisory board of this UNC spin-off company. In August 2017, Qualyst Transporter Solutions was acquired by BioIVT, a global leader in drug and diagnostic development.

For her work, Brouwer was named Carolina’s Inventor of the Year during the University of North Carolina’s Celebration of Inventorship in 2019. In 2020, she received the prestigious Volwiler Research Achievement Award from the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, and in 2022 the American College of Clinical Pharmacology recognized her translational research contributions with their Distinguished Investigator Award.

The fall convocation was named after Keo Glidden Smith in 1996. A 1937 graduate from the SDSU College of Pharmacy, she did pharmacy relief work until 1987. In 1989, she created an endowment to fund the fall gathering.
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