Our Expertise

The University of Florida Health Precision Medicine Program is led by faculty in the UF College of Pharmacy and is part of the UF Clinical and Translational Science Institute. Through implementation research, we are working to advance methods for using evidence-based genomic information as a routine part of clinical care, starting with pharmacogenomics. Our program brings together experts from the UF College of Pharmacy with a large and multidisciplinary team that provides the complementary clinical, informatics, laboratory medicine, and administrative expertise required to implement genomic medicine. In addition to their work with the UF Health Precision Medicine Program, our faculty members lead pharmacogenomics research that is helping to build the evidence base for future clinical implementations.

Program Investigators & Research Interests

  • Julie A. Johnson, PharmD: (Program Director): Dr. Johnson’s research programs focus on inter-patient variability in drug response, particularly cardiovascular drug pharmacogenomics, and the influence of race/ ethnicity on drug response and pharmacogenomics. The majority of her research centers on the pharmacogenomics of antihypertensive drugs and drugs used to prevent clot formation. She is dean of the UF College of Pharmacy.
  • Larisa Cavallari, PharmD: (Associate Program Director): Dr. Cavallari’s research involves discovery of genetic variants related to cardiovascular drug response and precision medicine. Dr. Cavallari is the Director of the UF Center for Pharmacogenomics.
  • Kristin Weitzel, PharmD: (Associate Program Director): Dr. Weitzel’s research involves assessment of factors influencing clinical implementation of pharmacogenetics and educational strategies for precision medicine. She is an Entrepreneurship Faculty Fellow in the Warrington College of Business Administration.
  • Taimour Langaee, MSPH, PhD:  Dr. Taimour Langaee‘s research focus is on pharmacogenetics in cardiovascular and auto-immune diseases as well as developing microarray-based technology methods to facilitate disease diagnosis, genotyping of patients and discovering disease-gene associations.  Dr. Langaee is the Director of the UF Center for Pharmacogenomics Genotyping Core Laboratory.
  • David Nelson, MD:  Dr. David R. Nelson’s area of clinical expertise is hepatology with an emphasis on the management of viral hepatitis and liver cancer. His translational research interests focus on the immunopathogenesis and treatment of chronic hepatitis C and hepatocellular carcinoma. Dr. Nelson is the Director of the UF Clinical and Translational Science Institute.
  • Michael Clare-Salzler, MD Dr. Michael J. Clare-Salzler’s interest is in basic and clinical research in type 1 diabetes pathogenesis, with a major research focus is on the role of antigen-presenting cells in the immunopathogenesis of this disease and how these cells guide the development of either T-cell tolerance or immunity.  
  • Rhonda Cooper-DeHoff, PharmD, MS, FAHA, FACC: Dr. Cooper-DeHoff’s research interests include hypertension, metabolic syndrome and diabetes.  She is the Associate Director of the UF Center for Pharmacogenomics.
  • Reginald F. Frye, Pharm.D., PhD: Dr. Frye’s research focuses on identifying factors that contribute to variability in drug response, with an emphasis on drug-metabolizing enzymes that contribute to pharmacokinetic variability observed with many drugs and natural products. He is chair of the department of Pharmacotherapy and Translational Research in the UF College of Pharmacy.
  • Yan Gong, PhD: Dr. Gong’s research focuses on cardiovascular drug pharmacogenomics, disease-gene association that may be relevant to pharmacogenomics, and the influence of ethnicity on pharmacogenomics. She specializes in analysis for pharmacogenomics associations in experimental and observational studies, including genome-wide association studies (GWAS).
  • Caitrin W. McDonough, PhD: Dr. McDonough is an investigator in the UF Center for Pharmacogenomics and plays a central role in developing educational programming for the UF Health Precision Medicine Program.
  • Alberto Riva, PhD:  Dr. Alberto Riva is a bioinformatician with a background in computer science, artificial intelligence, medical informatics, and computational biology.   He is an expert in the design, development and use of computational tools for genomics, genetics, and biomedical research.  Dr. Riva is currently an Associate Scientist in the Bioinformatics Core at the Interdisciplinary Center for Biotechnology Research (ICBR) at the University of Florida. 
  • Roger Fillingim, PhD: Dr. Fillingim’s research investigates biological, social, and psychological factors that may influence the experience of pain. Dr. Fillingim is the Director of the University of Florida Pain Research and Intervention Center of Excellence (PRICE).
  • Steven M. Smith, Pharm.D. MPH, BCPS:  Dr. Smith’s research and clinical practice are in the area of cardiovascular pharmacotherapy and hypertension. Dr. Smith has been selected as the 2014-16Institute of Medicine Anniversary Fellow in Pharmacy.
  • Siegfried O.F. Schmidt, MD, PhD: Dr. Schmidt has participated in numerous grants and has delivered over 250 international, national, regional, and statewide presentations with one area of research focused in pain management. He has been instrumental in creating the Pain Management Program within our Residency Program at Main Street.  Dr. Schmidt is the Medical Director of UF Health Family Medicine at Hampton Oaks.

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