School of Pharmacy

Research

Plein Center faculty, students, and postdocs conduct translational science related to the health and wellbeing of older adults and their care partners.

The current research areas of emphasis among Plein Center faculty include:

Falls

Falls are unfortunately common among older adults and compromise their independence. Medications are a modifiable risk factor for falls. We conduct intervention and observational research to better understand how to reduce the risk of falls in older adults through deprescribing high risk medications.

Dementia

Certain medications are thought to increase or decrease risk of future dementia. In addition, older adults with dementia are at increased risk for medication-related problems. We conduct pharmacoepidemiologic research to better understand how to safely use medications in older adults to reduce their risk of dementia, and conduct basic science research to better understand the role of protein aggregation in neurodegenerative conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease.

Transitions of Care

Transitions of care are risky for older adults due to changes in medication regimens and opportunities for miscommunication. We conduct research to improve the safety and quality of older adults’ medication regimens as they transition across care settings by elevating the role of the pharmacist.

Epilepsy

Older adults with Alzheimer’s disease experience a higher rate of seizures than those without. We conduct basic science research to better understand age-related changes in susceptibility to seizure onset and anti-seizure drug efficacy in Alzheimer’s disease.

Drug Transport

Many older adults take medications that work in the central nervous system (CNS). We conduct pharmacological research on drug transport at the interface between the blood and the CNS.