Research Overview

Since its inception, Purdue University has emphaized programs in the STEM curricula (e.g. chemistry, engineering, mathematics, biology, and the pharmaceutical sciences) that underpin drug discovery.  Second, the university has openly encouraged its faculty to pursue the practical value in their discoveries, i.e. to not simply make great discoveries, but to also ask "how can I use my discovery to help mankind".  For faculty interested in the health sciences, this focus on "application" has spawned a passion for exploiting science to design drugs that address major health deficiencies.  Third, Purdue has historically promoted a culture of interdisciplinary collaboration that has fostered translatin of basic discoveries into molecules with commercial potential.  And finally, the university hsa identified Drug Discovery as one of its two "Major Moves", established the Purdue Institute for Drug Discovery and then funneling significant resources into: i) attracting leading faculty in drug discovery to Purdue University, ii) expanding and enhancing current facilities that support drug discovery (e.g. whole animal imaging, high through screening, high content screening, intravital microscopy, high throughput crystallography, etc., iii) constructing a Drug Discovery Building and an annex to the Bindley Bioscience Center devoted exclusively to drug discovery, iv) establishing the "Foundry" to assist faculty with commercialization of their inventions (greater than 100 new startup companies have been spun off from Purdue in the last 5 years), and v) formation of an advisory board comprised of Big Pharma executives to advise faculty in the translation and commercialization of Purdue drugs.  

Research Strengths

While drugs in the University's preclinical and clinical pipeline cover a broad range of areas, our major strengths primarily encompass oncology (with 90 faculty), neurological disorders/CNS diseases (41 faculty), and infectious diseases (57 faculty).  Other programs earmarked for rapid expansion also include obesity and metabolic diseases, autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, and cardiovascular diseases.  Importantly, to aid in this expansion, Purdue committed $250 million to the strengthening of faculty and associated instrumental facilities in the life sciences.