My career both as a clinical pharmacist and a research scientist has focused on understanding and preventing unintended harmful effects of medication use in children. My PhD bench research focused on mechanisms of attenuation of parenteral nutrition associated liver disease by omega-3 polyunsaturated long-chain fatty acids. Additionally, I have contributed to several studies evaluating drug dosing and efficacy in pediatric patients and other special populations including patients with cancer. My current research is focused in determining genetic causes that may impact medication efficacy and toxicity in children. My previous training offers a unique perspective of having both basic research knowledge and the skill sets of a clinician. My training as a clinical pharmacist has provided me with an extensive knowledge base in drug absorption and my fellowship training in nutrition support and PhD in Cell Biology and Biochemistry has provided me with a strong understanding of the effects of medications and nutrients on both the intestines and liver and how these are affected with metabolism, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacogenomics. These skill sets make me highly qualified and uniquely suited to conduct research on adverse drug reactions. I am currently a Co-Investigator for two NHGRI funded trials for the Implementing GeNomics In pracTicE (IGNITE) Network (5U01 HG010245-02 Dexter/Skaar and 3U01HG010245-02S1 (Skaar/Dexter), yet have not secured my own independent R01 funding. I have one foundation grant currently under review and plan to submit my first R01 application in December. My long-term goal is to optimize therapeutics in children while minimizing unwanted adverse events, while my research is not specific to only cancer patients, due to the number and intensity of cancer therapeutics, these patients are at high risk for adverse drug reactions.
Ph.D. - University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, TN 12/2013
Fellowship - Le Bonheur Children's Hospital, Memphis, TN 06/2011
Residency - Le Bonheur Children's Hospital, Memphis, TN 06/2008
Pharm.D. - Butler University, Indianapolis, IN 05/2007