Equity and Excellence in the Pharmaceutical Sciences (UW-EEPS)

About The Program

UW-EEPS provides research opportunities for undergraduate students who are:

  • Thinking about graduate school in the pharmacological or biomedical sciences
  • Committed to enhancing equity and inclusion in the sciences
  • Looking to gain hands-on research experience in areas of the basic biological and physical sciences such as:
  • drug metabolism
  • pharmacokinetics
  • cellular and molecular pharmacology
  • molecular biophysics
  • microbiology

UW-EEPS hosts undergraduate students selected from a national pool of applicants as well as those enrolled at the UW. Participants benefit from intensive research experience, close mentorship, and professional development activities. Participants will receive a generous stipend, food allowance, paid accommodations, and (if necessary) a transportation allowance for travel to & from UW Seattle.

Seattle-area participants may have the option to extend their research experiences on a case-by-case basis.

The application deadline is Sunday, March 27, 2022.

The University of Washington welcomes applications from all eligible students, including members of communities underrepresented in the pharmacological sciences due to factors including (but not limited to) race, ethnicity, mental or physical disability, socioeconomic background, 1st generation college student status, sexual orientation, or gender identity.


The Program is open to U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and DACA recipients.  Application deadline for 2022: March 21, 2022.  Program dates are June 21 – August 19, 2022. Students must be able to commit to these dates in order to apply and be considered for acceptance into the Program.

Please note: The Program will proceed as planned in the Summer of 2022 if the state of the COVID-19 pandemic allows us to do so in a safe and reasonable manner. However, if necessary we may be forced to suspend or cancel the Program for this year. We sincerely apologize for the uncertainty. More information, and application instructions, can be found on the Information for Applicants page.

About Seattle

Outside of research and the lab, students have the opportunity to explore the sights of Seattle and experience the local culture. For more information, visit the UW’s Visitor Center page.


Participating Faculty

Department of Medicinal Chemistry

Atkins, William M. Structure-function mechanism of glutathione S-transferases and cytochrome P450; protein engineering of supramolecular aggregates. Website

Bhardwaj, Gaurav (Institute for Protein Design) Computational Peptide design for targeted therapeutics; designing new antibiotics and antivirals; targeting chronic pain with non-opioid macrocycles; Integrating de novo peptide design with the high-throughput peptide library synthesis Website

Guttman, Miklos
 Characterizing the structures and biophysical properties of complex antigen-antibody interactions; development of methods for glycosylation analysis.

Lee, Kelly K.
 (Biological Physics Structure and Design) Biophysical studies of conformational dynamics in viruses. Influenza Hemagglutinin: Structure, Dynamics and Cooperativity During Fusion. Website

Nath, Abhinav
 Protein aggregation in neurodegenerative diseases; protein-based therapeutics; single-molecule fluorescence methods; computational modeling. Website

Rettie, Allan E.
 Drug metabolism: Structure-function relationships and pharmacogenetics of P450.

Totah, Rheem A.
 Endogenous and exogenous functions of CYP2C8 and CYP2J2 and their role in extrahepatic toxicity. Website

Xu, Libin
 Mechanism of lipid oxidation and metabolism and their roles in human diseases; the interface of Organic Chemistry, Molecular and Cellular Biology, and Mass Spectrometry. Website

Department of Pharmaceutics

Thummel, Kenneth E.
 Mechanisms of inter-individual variability in CYP3A expression and catalytic activity; pharmacokinetic modeling of human intestinal and hepatic drug metabolism and drug-drug interactions.

Hu, Shiu-Lok
 Structure and function of Viral antigens; vaccine and therapy against primate immunodeficiency viruses (SIV, HIV-1 and HIV-2).

Isoherranen, Nina
 Metabolism, disposition and biological effects of Retinoic acid; Role of P450 enzymes in fetal development; Drug disposition and safety during pregnancy; Pharmacokinetic modeling and molecular mechanisms of drug-drug interactions.

Lin, Yvonne
 Drug Interactions, Mass Spectrometry, Pediatrics, Pharmacokinetics/Pharmacodynamics.

Mao, Qingcheng
 ABC protein-mediated drug transport; structure, function and molecular mechanisms of ABC transporters; Role of ABC transporters in drug disposition during pregnancy.

Unadkat, Jashvant
 Mechanisms of transport and metabolism of drugs used in the treatment of AIDS and AIDs-associated opportunistic infections.

Wang, Joanne
 Mechanism of drug transport and disposition in the CNS; Role of membrane transporters in drug elimination in the kidney.

Department of Pharmacology

Bajjalieh, Sandra M.
 Molecular basis of neurotransmission, the role of Synaptic Vesicle Protein 2 in modulating neurotransmitter release, and the role of lipid modifying enzymes in neuronal function.

Chavkin, Charles (Center for Drug Addiction Research) Molecular signal transduction mechanisms mediating the addictive properties of drugs of abuse: morphine and cocaine. Website

McKnight, G. Stanley (Population Research Center) Cyclic AMP mediated signal transduction. Website

Ong, Shao-En Quantitative proteomics to investigate protein complexes in cell signaling and gene regulation. Website

Scott, John (Howard Hughes Medical Institute) Specificity of signal transduction events that are controlled by anchoring proteins, regulation of signal transduction in time and space. Website

Stella, Nephi  (Psychiatry & Behavioral Science) Cells and receptors controlling neuroinflammation. Website

Wang, Edith H. Control of gene expression in cell proliferation, muscle differentiation and human disease. Website

Yadav, Smita (Institute for Stem Cell & Regenerative Medicine) The role of kinases and their downstream targets in neuronal development and disease.  Website

Zheng, Ning Structural biology of protein ubiquitination and protein degradation. Website

Department of Microbiology

Mitchell, Patrick Our research is focused on understanding the basic principles that govern host-microbe interactions. We are particularly interested in how host cells detect and respond to microbes that make us sick (called pathogens). We combine approaches from evolution, genetics, biochemistry, immunology, and microbiology to determine how various host-pathogen interactions influence host immunity and disease. Website

Mougous, Joseph Our lab works to understand how bacterial cells compete with each other, for example in the gut microbiome. Projects in our lab use a wide range of techniques from genetics, to biochemistry and bioinformatics in order to characterize the offensive and defensive strategies they emloy. We also develop new technologies that take advantage of the unique capabilities of some of the interbacterial antagonism factors we have uncovered. Website

Reniere, Michelle The Reniere lab is interested in understanding how bacteria sense the host environment during infection. We study Listeria monocytogenes, which causes the deadly foodborne disease listeriosis, and Staphylococcus aureus, which can infect every organ in the human body. Both pathogens use complex signaling networks to sense their environment and activate the appropriate disease-causing pathways.

Sherman, David Mycobacterium tuberculosis (TB) infects 30% of all people and kills more than any other bacterium. The Sherman Lab focuses on how TB adapts to new environments, evades our immune systems and avoids being eliminated by drugs. We execute projects where we grow bacteria, make mutants, and study closely how they behave, using tools of microscopy, genetics and RNA sequencing.

Smith, Jason The Smith lab is studies how viruses cause disease, with a current focus on viruses that infect the intestinal tract. A likely project would be to create a molecular clone of a new virus relevant to an ongoing project in the lab. You would then learn how to propagate your new virus in host cells and understand how its characteristics inform one of the hypotheses under investigation in the lab.