Meet our PhD students & Postdocs

Work package: Parenteral Drug Delivery

Work package: Oral Drug Delivery

Work package: Pulmonary Drug Delivery

Marcus Wanselius, PhD student

Researcher bio  Marcus Wanselius wrote his master thesis at the Department of Pharmacy, Uppsala University and got his Master of Science in Pharmacy from Uppsala University 2014. Marcus started his PhD studies within Pharmaceutical Physical Chemistry at Uppsala University in the spring of 2018, after working as a pharmacy manager for several years.

Research project  Physiochemical Aspects of Subcutaneous Administration of Drugs

Project aim  To investigate how active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) in subcutaneously administered drug formulations interact with the components of the extracellular matrix in the subcutaneous adipose tissue (hypodermis).

A special focus is on pharmaceutical products based on biologics. The investigations provides a basis for the development of novel in vitro methods to model the behavior of pharmaceutical products administered subcutaneously.

Contact

Marcus WanseliusMarcus Wanselius, PhD student
Department of Medicinal Chemistry
marcus.wanselius@ilk.uu.se

Yassir Al-Tikriti, PhD student

Researcher bio  Yassir Al-Tikriti is a pharmacist with a B.Sc. degree in pharmacy from Baghdad University. In 2012, Yassir earned a Master's degree in pharmaceutical science from Uppsala University, with the main field of the study being in drug discovery and development.

Research project Amphiphilic drugs in microgels

Project aim  To improve the fundamental understanding of the drug-aggregation inside microgels and to derive release models that contribute to the development of novel drug release systems.

Contact

Yassir Al-TikritiYassir Al-Tikriti, PhD student
Department of Medicinal Chemistry
yassir.al-tikriti@ilk.uu.se

Vahid Forooqi Motlaq, PhD student

Researcher bio  Vahid Forooqi Motlaq completed his Bachelor’s program at Baháʼí Institute for Higher Education in applied chemistry. His Master’s degree was in polymer and colloid science at the department of chemistry, University of Oslo. In 2018, Vahid started his PhD studies at Uppsala University’s pharmaceutical physical chemistry group.

Research project  Amphiphilic properties of drug molecules and their self-assembly in presence of phospholipids

Project aim  To investigate the self-assembly properties of amphiphilic drugs in presence of cell membrane components e.g. phospholipids, receptor proteins, cholesterol etc., and finding the correlation between the chemical structure of drug molecules and their aggregates properties.

Determining the influence of the presence of the amphiphilic drug on the structural deformation of the bilayer membrane is another part of my PhD project.

Contact

Vahid Forooqi motlaq, PhD studentVahid Forooqi Motlaq, PhD student
Department of Medicinal Chemistry
vahid.motlaq@ilk.uu.se

Agnes Rodler, Postdoctoral position

Researcher bio  Agnes Rodler conducted her PhD in a bioprocess science and engineering group at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences in Vienna where she graduated in 2017. During her PhD Agnes Rodler gained experience in polymer chemistry at the nanoscale as a user at the Molecular Foundry, at Berkeley Labs, USA. From that work, she qualified as a finalist of Merck Millipore’s Life Science award in Bioseparations (Europe) in 2015. In spring 2018 she joined as a postdoc in the Pharmaceutical Physical Chemistry group at Uppsala University.

Project  Novel in vitro models for subcutaneous administration of drugs

Project aim  By developing a physiologically relevant model of the extracellular matrix the project aim to improve the mechanistic understanding of subcutaneous injection to facilitate the innovation and development of formulations with high bioavailability of the active pharmaceutical ingredient and small variability between patients.

This model targets to identify biophysical factors which affect molecular transport through the interstitial space and to elucidate to which extent drug-extracellular matrix interactions are size- or charge related.

Contact

Agnes Rosdler, PostdocAgnes Rodler, Postdoctoral position
Department of Medicinal Chemistry
agnes.rodler@ilk.uu.se

Julia Parlow, PhD student

Researcher bio  Julia Parlow graduated from the master program in Pharmacy at Uppsala University in the spring of 2017. After that she worked at a pharmacy and since autumn 2018 she is a PhD student in the Pharmaceutical Physical Chemistry resarch group at Uppsala University

Project  Novel In Vitro Models for Subcutaneous Administration of Drugs: Transport Properties

Project aim  To develop methods to study the transport of drug molecules in biorelevant synthetic models of human SC extracellular matrix, and to use the methods to clarify the key factors governing the transport with respect to interaction with the constituents of the matrix and the interstitial fluid.

Contact

Julia Parlow, PhD StudentJulia Parlow, PhD student
Department of Medicinal Chemistry
julia.parlow@ilk.uu.se

Martin Lord, Researcher

Researcher bio  Martin Lord is a researcher in the field of immuno-oncology in the group of Sara Mangsbo at Uppsala University. Martin has his background is in biotechnology and cancer research, in which area he holds an MScEng in molecular biotechnology at KTH, and a PhD in tumor biology/lymphoma at Karolinska Institutet.

Martin Lord’s current research interests center around immunotherapy and the development of biological drugs, particularly in the context of bladder cancer, including biomarker discovery and bioinformatics.

Project aim  To investigate a set of synthetically produced peptides harbouring HLA-specific T cell epitopes with respect to their immunogenicity (in vitro and in vivo) and physical profile (secondary structure, electrostatic charge, and hydrophobicity).

An extracellular matrix hydrogel developed within SweDeliver will be used to study how the physical profile of the peptides influences non-cellular transportation and drug drainage in the ECM. Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic studies of the peptides in different formulations will also be conducted.

Contact

Martin Lord, ResearcherMartin Lord, Researcher
Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences
Martin.Lord@farmbio.uu.se

Ellen Brunzell, PhD student

Researcher bio  Ellen Brunzell received her master of science degree in pharmacy from Uppsala University summer of 2020. She wrote her master thesis at Uppsala University in the pharmaceutical physical chemistry research group, and in autumn 2020, Ellen joined the same group as a PhD student

Project  Self-Assembly of therapeutic peptides

Project aim  To characterize the structure of self-assembled peptides by using small-angle scattering measurements, mainly X-ray and neutron scattering. By comparing our results with in vivo methods, the structure of peptide aggregates and its correlation with biological effects can be investigated.

Contact

Ellen Brunzell, PhD studentEllen Brunzell, PhD student
Department of Medicinal Chemistry
ellen.brunzell@ilk.uu.se

Staffan Berg, PhD student

Researcher bio  Staffan Berg studied pharmacy first at Åbo Akademi (BSc) and later at University of Helsinki (MSc). His Master’s Thesis was on a targeted anticancer drug delivery system performed at the University of Utah. After graduation Staffan Berg joined a rotational ­trainee program at AstraZeneca where he did placements in biopharmaceutics, project management, and early phase formulation. Before joining the Drug Delivery group Staffan Berg worked as a senior scientist in biopharmaceutics at AstraZeneca.

Research project  Investigation of the interplay between permeation enhancers, GI physiology and macromolecular drugs to facilitate design of oral dosage forms

Project aim  Oral delivery of macromolecules using permeation enhancers is currently held back by the large intra- and inter-individual variability typically seen when delivering biologics via the oral route. We are trying to better understand what drives this variability.

Ultimately, our goal is to design formulations that can reduce the variability. In a current study we explore the impact of formulation composition and presentation on the absorption of model compounds in a rodent absorption model.

Contact

Staffan Berg, PhD studentStaffan Berg, PhD student
Department of Pharmacy
staffan.berg@farmaci.uu.se

Vicky Barmpatsalou, PhD student

Researcher bio  Vicky Barmpatsalou is a pharmacist, holding a MPharm and a MSc in Industrial Pharmacy from the National University of Athens. Vicky conducted her MPharm research project focusing on the gastrointestinal transfer at the Drug Delivery & Disposition lab at KULeuven and carried out her MSc thesis at Astellas Pharma, where she was involved in the validation of a novel in vitro gastrointestinal transfer setup.

Research project  Exploring the impact of the Gastrointestinal Mucus on drug absorption: Characterization and development of novel predictive tools

Project aim  To provide novel insights regarding the nature of the gastrointestinal mucus of preclinical species, with an end goal to develop in vitro models that will enable the assessment of the permeation behavior of poorly soluble drugs through the colonic mucus.

The acquired knowledge is expected to serve as the basis of the development of novel in vitro tools that can be later used to predict the diffusion profile of advanced drug delivery systems within the colonic mucus. These in vitro models will contribute to the reduction of animal usage in the early stages of drug development.

Contact

Vicky Barmpatsalou, PhD studentVicky Barmpatsalou, PhD student
Department of Pharmacy
vicky.barmpatsalou@farmaci.uu.se

Ilse Dubbelboer, Postdoctoral position

Researcher bio  Ilse Dubbelboer is a pharmacist from the Netherlands. She did her PhD in pharmacokinetics, biopharmaceutics and physiologically based pharmacokinetic modelling.

Research project  Modified release formulations enabling colonic absorption of poorly solubles.

Project aim  With focus on the intestinal mucus and the composition thereof, Ilse Dubbelboer is working with collection of intestinal mucus and analysis of –omics data, with in vitro diffusion and dissolution studies on the side.

The aim is to develop and use physiologically relevant in silico and in vitro models and thereby increase the understanding of important physiological aspects affecting colonic release and absorption of poorly soluble compounds.

Contact

Ilse Dubbeldoer, Postdoctoral positionIlse Dubbelboer, Postdoctoral position
Department of Pharmacy
ilse.dubbelboer@farmaci.uu.se

Rosita Kneiszl, PhD student

Researcher bio  Rosita Kneiszl holds her master of science degree in pharmacy from Uppsala University, 2016. Rosita performed her Master's degree project at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's hospital, Boston, US, autumn 2015. After graduating, she was a leadership trainee in one of Sweden's largest retail pharmacies, and worked as a quality control pharmacist. In January, 2019, Rosita returned to academia and became a PhD student at Uppsala University.

Research project  Mechanistic modeling of peptide drug permeability

Project aim  Studying the interactions between oral peptide drugs, permeation enhancers, and biological model membranes with the use of computational tools, the aim is to quantify and characterize binding and transport of peptide drugs across lipid bilayers.

Contact

Rosita Kneiszl, PhD studentRosita Kneiszl, PhD student
Department of Pharmacy
rosita.kneiszl@farmaci.uu.se

Benyamin Naranjani, PhD student

Researcher bio  Benyamin Naranjani is a PhD student in the Drug Delivery group at Uppsala University, Sweden. With an engineering background, his research interest focuses on numerical simulations of fluid flow.

Research project  Combined computational modeling at different scales to understand peptide drug and excipient co-localization

Project aim  To develop a model for multiscale analysis of intestinal motility-driven fluid transport. This method will be implemented to scrutinise improvement of biologics absorption through colocalisation with permeation enhancers.

Contact

Benyamin Naranjani, PhD student
Department of Pharmacy
benyamin.naranjani@farmaci.uu.se

Ann-Christin Jacobsen, Postdoctoral position

Researcher bio  Ann-Christin Jacobsen holds a PhD degree from the University of Southern Denmark (2020). The focus of her PhD project was developing novel tools to evaluate the oral performance of enabling formulations of poorly soluble drugs with emphasis on combined dissolution/permeation approaches. She is a pharmacist by training and received the master’s degree from the University of Southern Denmark in 2017. During her studies, she stayed four months at AbbVie Germany for an industrial internship.

Research project  Local intestinal generation of transient permeability enhancers by digestion of lipid formulations

Project aim  Development and evaluation of lipid-based formulations such as self-emulsifying drug delivery systems (SEDDS) for oral delivery of biologics such as peptides and proteins.

Transient permeation enhancers (e.g. medium chain fatty acids) enable oral delivery of biologics. The efficiency of this approach is limited by the rapid intestinal absorption of the permeation enhancer and by suboptimal co-localization of drug and enhancer. This project investigates if local intestinal generation of permeation enhancers by digestion of lipid-based formulations comprising medium chain lipids can improve the efficiency of permeation enhancer-based delivery systems.

CONTACT

Ann-Christin Jacobsen, Postdoctoral position
Department of Pharmacy
ann-christin.jacobsen@farmaci.uu.se

Ires van der Zwaan, PhD student

Researcher bio  Irès van der Zwaan received her master degree in Bio-Pharmaceutical Sciences in 2017 from Leiden University. She started her PhD in March 2018 at Uppsala University.

Research project  Development of A Novel Pulmonary Controlled Release Drug Delivery System

Project aim  To create a new controlled release system for drug delivery in the lung by surveying and evaluating the dissolution of several promising controlled release options as well as novel systems.

Different methods will be used to evaluate existing and novel drug delivery systems such as deposition of inhalation powders using a modified Andersen cascade impactor and dissolution in a Transwell system.

Contact

Ires van der Zwaan, PhD studentIres van der Zwaan, PhD student
Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences
ires.vanderzwaan@farmbio.uu.se

Sohan Sarangi, PhD student

Researcher bio  Sohan Sarangi completed his BS-MS Dual Degree, majoring in Physics from Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Pune. In his thesis, he worked on computational fluid dynamics method development and application. He has also worked on computational biomechanics of decubitus ulcers.

Research project  Particle Dynamics and Multiscale Modelling of Adhesive Mixtures for Inhaled Medicines

Project aim   Studying the interactions between the drug and carrier particles and its aggregates in an adhesive mixture for inhalation using a particle based modelling approach, the research aim to contribute to the knowledge of adhesive mixtures during general handling and transportation and addresses generic issue on powder flow.

Contact

Sohan Sarangi, PhD studentSohan Sarangi, PhD student
Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences
sohan.sarangi@farmbio.uu.se

Maryam Tofiq, PhD student

Researcher bio  Maryam Tofiq received her Master of Science degree in Pharmacy at Uppsala University with a degree project in Pharmacokinetics. She started her doctoral studies at Uppsala University in September 2018.

Research project  Microstructure-property relationships of agglomerates formed by dry granulation

Project aim  With focus on how the microstructure and mechanical properties of agglomerates formed by dry granulation can be controlled by formulation measures, a central part of Maryam’s project is the assessment of the compression mechanics of agglomerates and if such compression parameters can be used to predict the tabletability of the granules.

Contact

Maryam Tofiq, PhD studentMaryam Tofiq, PhD student
Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences
maryam.tofiq@farmbio.uu.se

Anna Simonsson, PhD student

Researcher bio  Anna is a pharmacist and got her Master of Science in Pharmacy from Uppsala in 2015. Anna wrote her master thesis in pharmacognosy at the School of pharmacy in London, and has been working as a pharmacy manager in both Norway and Sweden. In October 2020 Anna joined the Pharmaceutics research group at Uppsala University, as a PhD student. 

Research project. Blend state-blend property relationships of adhesive mixtures for inhalation powders.

Aim. The aim of the project is to investigate effect of carrier morphology on blend state-blend dispersibility relationships. The aim is further to investigate the role of the mixing process for blend state and blend state-blend dispersibility relationships. Finally, the possibility to develop screening methods for assessing dispersibility and segregation will be explored.

CONTACT

Anna Simonsson, PhD student
Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences
anna.simonsson@farmbio.uu.se

Marilena Marinaki, PhD student

Researcher bio  Marilena Marinaki has a Diploma in Environmental Engineering from the Technical University of Crete. After her studies, she was working as a research assistant in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering of Uppsala University. In December 2020, she joined the Pharmaceutics research group at Uppsala University, as a PhD student. 

Research project  Understanding the compression–decompression cycle for pressure shaping of agglomerates.

Project aim  The aim of the project is to provide an understanding at the particle scale of the processes that control the structure and properties of granules formed by application and subsequent removal of pressure. The goal is to first develop protocols for analytical powder compression focusing on the unloading stage and secondly to develop contact models and modelling procedures that enable the full loading–unloading cycle to be simulated at the particle scale.

Contact

Marilena Marinaki, PhD student
Department of Pharmaceutical Biosciences
marilena.marinaki@farmbio.uu.se

Last modified: 2021-10-18