Stan Gee Louie, PharmD
Director of Clinical Experimental Therapeutics Program
- 1. Drug development targeting viral infection and cancer.
- 2. Developing novel drug therapy to inhibit chronic inflammation in cancer, diabetes, and neurodegenerative disease.
- 3. Metabolomic approaches to dissecting the molecular mechanism(s) driving pharmacologic responses.
Chronic inflammation is a hallmark to a number of diseases that include viral infections, cancers, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), neurodegenerative diseases, and traumatic brain injuries. Through basic mechanistic interrogation, we have identified druggable target(s). In each of these disease states, we have developed therapeutic strategies in hopes to advancing them into human testing. Each of these disease models have separate and distinctive approaches, where some are small molecule-based therapeutics, while other consist of small molecule that are based on bioactive lipids.
Our research efforts begin by understanding the disease state and determining whether there are novel strategies that will lead to curative modalities. We have taken existing knowledge and further understand the precise mechanism(s) that drive the pathogenic sequelae as seen in the clinical disease. The therapeutics that are developed are evaluated on the bases of molecular impact on the disease, pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics. Each drug platform will have their specific set of challenges where this laboratory takes a team approach in solving these issues. We have employed metabolomics, molecular biological and pharmacological approach in understanding and optimizing these therapeutic strategies. Most recently, our team have extended our approach to include nanocarriers to delivering adequate concentrations of the active agents to the affected site that is activated by near infrared (NIR) light emitting diode (LED). This approach allows the team to use unprecedented chemistry and light activation to specifically deliver the drug to the disease site while maintaining a systemic safety profile that is compatible with the patient.
To be maximally effective, our laboratory has wide spectrum of collaborators who are able to contribute to the therapeutic development. Our laboratory interfaces molecular biology with pharmacology and drug development to accomplishing our goals. To this end, we have design and validated a board spectrum of assays to understand the impact of our therapeutics on the disease. Working closely with industrial partners, we have developed and advanced a number of therapeutic platforms in preclinical or clinical evaluation.
Dr. Stan Louie is a clinical and translational pharmacologist with over two decades of clinical and drug development experience. His research focus has been drug development for inflammatory diseases which include viral infections, cancer, diabetes, traumatic brain injuries, and neurodegenerative diseases. His activities have included dissecting fundamental causes to diseases and developing drug therapies to manage these conditions.
A graduate of UCSF in 1987, Dr. Louie continued his clinical training at California Pacific Medical Center (CPMC). After his residency training, Dr. Louie accepted a position at University of Southern California, where he began his academic career investigating cancer therapy and bone marrow transplantation. He later transition to serve patients with viral-mediated disease at which time he joined the Rand Schrader HIV Clinic where he is currently serving as a clinical pharmacist.
In addition to his clinical activities, he is a translational scientist who advances new chemical and biological candidates through preclinical in vitro and animal evaluation, which ultimately progress these programs into human clinical trials. Currently the leader for the Center in Drug Discovery and Development (CD3) at USC, he is forging efforts to translate basic science discovery into clinical reality. For these efforts, he has developed screening methods for each platform, and developed strategies to iteratively optimize the lead candidates into compounds possessing a balance between maximized stability, safety and pharmacokinetic profile.
His laboratory focuses on drug development for the treatment of virally linked diseases such as HIV and virally linked tumors (e.g. HTLV-linked leukemia, Kaposi’s sarcoma). Efforts in the laboratory crosses a number of therapeutic areas include 1) drug development for viral infections and cancer, 2) new chemical entity development targeting cellular adaptive mechanisms such as autophagy and endoplasmic reticulum stress and 3) development of light activated drug (nanocaged) for the treatment of traumatic brain injury and ophthalmologic injury, and 4) modulators of chronic inflammation using bioactive lipids.
Dr. Louie is a member of the National Institute of Health funded AIDS Clinical Trials Group (ACTG) and the Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG). In addition, he is leading the PharmacoAnalytical Laboratory that can provide GLP bioanalytical studies for collaborators who are working on IND enabling studies. Additionally, he is developing clinical biomarkers to evaluate the impact of new therapeutics candidates in humans.