Kelly M. Hines, Ph.D., senior fellow in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry (Libin Xu lab), is one of three recipients of the 2015-2016 Global Fellowship by the United States Pharmacopeial Convention (USP). This award, in the amount of $30,000, will support Dr. Hines’s project, using Ion Mobility-Mass Spectrometry (IM-MS) to screen standards of approximately 2,000 drug compounds available from the UW and create a database of drug purity information.
IM-MS is a rapid and orthoganal gas-phase separation technique based on molecular structures, requiring only milliseconds per analysis. The technique thus has several advantages over conventional liquid chromatography-based UV or MS methods: its rapid separation nature and determination of the structural information at the same time. Dr. Hines plans to use this technique to define the structure-mass relationship of drugs, excipients (extra material combined with the drug — e.g., to make a pill) and impurities, which would provide high-confidence identifications and purity assessments of drugs (including dietary supplements).
The USP is a scientific nonprofit organization that sets standards for the identity, strength, quality, and purity of medicines, food ingredients, and dietary supplements manufactured, distributed, and consumed worldwide. Dr. Hines’ USP mentor for this project is Shankari Shivaprasad, scientific liaison with USP’s Chemical Medicines Department.
Congratulations, Kelly, on this well-deserved award!