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Michael Doschak, MSc, PhD

Associate Professor

Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences | Medicine & Dentistry

Biomedical Engineering | Dentistry and Dental Hygiene

About Me

Dr. Michael Doschak is an Associate Professor with the Faculty of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada. He received his Ph.D. (2004) in the Medical Sciences with the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Calgary, where his research centered on the mineral binding effects of the bisphosphonate drug family during the pathogenesis of Osteoarthritis. He completed his initial Postdoctoral Fellowship in Drug Delivery under the supervision of Professor Hasan Uludag at the University of Alberta, followed by an Industrial Fellowship with the Canadian biotech company Millenium Biologix Corporation Biologics Division labs in Mississauga, where he worked as part of a team developing conjugative strategies to effectively dope biomaterial surfaces with bioactive peptide biologics, before his academic recruitment to the University of Alberta. 

His academic research program involves advanced drug delivery strategies, to effect the targeting and controlled release of drugs and peptide biologics with bone tissues, for orthopaedic, orthodontic (dental) and biomaterials applications. To achieve that end, he further operates and manages the Pharmacy Micro-Computed Tomography imaging lab to quantitatively assess the mineralized tissues of small laboratory animals, non-invasively and at very high resolution after drug intervention. Due to his expertise with non-invasive imaging modalities and industrial biomaterials experience, he also serves as an Adjunct Associate Professor with the Department of Biomedical Engineering, and as an Adjunct Associate Professor with the Department of Orthodontics, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry. 

He is the author of 44 peer-reviewed manuscripts and over 60 research abstracts, and serves as a member of the Editorial Board with the Journal of Anatomy, Drug Delivery Translational Research (DDTR) and the Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology. He was the recipient of a 2008 Young Investigator Award with the International Society for Clinical Densitometry (ISCD), and the 2013 Teaching Excellence Award with the Faculty of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences at the University of Alberta. He has served with the Controlled Release Society as the Canadian Chapter President (2011-13), the 2014 Nominating Committee, the International Committee (2014-15), and was recently elected to the CRS Board of Scientific Advisors for a 3 year term (2015-2018).


Research

Dr. Doschak’s bone drug delivery research has been funded federally by the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR), the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI), Mitacs Canada, the Canadian Arthritis Society (TAS), the Sylvia Fedoruk Canadian Centre for Nuclear Innovation (CCNI), and provincially by Alberta Innovates – Health Solutions (AIHS), Alberta Innovates – Technology Futures (AITF), and recently by a philanthropic donation from the Pure North S'Energy Foundation (PNSEF) to document and optimize the beneficial effects of Vitamin D upon bone health. 

Dr. Doschak's translational efforts in bone drug delivery have helped establish a novel platform of bone-targeting drugs, notably for the peptide hormones calcitonin, parathyroid hormone – and recently for MRI-based SPION contrast agents capable of detecting dynamic bone turnover without the use of radionuclides. That research has resulted in 4 patents and the establishment of the University of Alberta spin-off company Osteometabolix Pharmaceuticals Inc., who are developing a novel suite of proprietary bone-targeting therapeutics capable of reducing the pain and suffering attributed to Bone Diseases such as Osteoporosis, Arthritis and bone pain secondary to cancer metastases. 


Teaching

UNDERGRADUATE

 PHARM 321 - PHARMACEUTICAL BIOTECHNOLOGY & IMMUNOLOGY 

 (Fall 2006 – ongoing annually; 38 hr lecture - 0 hr lab - 0 hr seminar)

I serve in the dual role of course coordinator and lecturer in this course for first yr undergrad pharmacy students (class of 131 students).

 As the principal lecturer for this undergraduate course, I lecture 30 hr of content. I introduce students to Introductory Molecular Biology, and its relevance in drug discovery, biologic drug design and synthesis. I then introduce the students to Introductory Immunology for the Pharmacist, with particular emphasis on the key pharmacy related topics of allergy, hypersensitivity, and vaccines. 


 PHARM 437 - BONE & JOINT MODULE 

 (Winter 2007 – ongoing annually; 24 hr lecture - 4 hr lab - 4 hr seminar) 

I serve in the dual role of course coordinator and lecturer in this therapeutics course on the Rheumatological conditions for third yr undergrad pharmacy students (class of 125 students). I lecture 10 hr of content.


 GRADUATE LEVEL COURSES

 PHARM 573 - Analytical Techniques in Pharmaceutical Sciences (contributor)

PHARM 566 - Cellular Aspects of Drug Delivery and Targets (contributor)

PHARM 610 – Advanced Drug Delivery Systems (contributor)

BME 513 - Biomedical Imaging (Biomedical Engineering)(contributor)