Bioengineering and the Health Sciences

Health sciences at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) and bioengineering at the University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP) already have a rich collaborative relationship in both research programs and graduate student programs.

Major areas of partnership between the School of Pharmacy at UMB and the Fischell Department of Bioengineering at UMCP include jointly taught graduate courses, joint faculty, and research collaborations. Now this relationship has been strengthened by the creation of the Maryland Center of Excellence in Regulatory Science and Innovation (M-CERSI), a collaborative partnership between the two universities focused on modernizing and improving the ways drugs and medical devices are reviewed and evaluated. It is funded by a three-year, $3 million grant from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This partnership also has resulted in Curtis Gallagher, a PhD graduate student in molecular medicine in the UM School of Medicine, winning the University’s first America’s Got Regulatory Science Talent student competition at the UM School of Pharmacy.

Researchers from the Baltimore and College Park campuses work with FDA staff to support the development of new tools, standards, and approaches to assess the safety, efficacy, quality, and performance of FDA-regulated products using rapidly emerging areas such as genomics, tissue engineering, and bioinformatics. The first M-CERSI conference was held last September in College Park and attracted 150 scientists, educators, and administrators.

A joint master’s degree and a certificate program are in progress, allowing us to provide educational offerings to the many regulatory agencies situated in Maryland.

Other goals include creating new joint appointments for faculty in the health-related professional schools, the UMB Center for Biomedical Engineering and Technology (BioMET), and the Fischell Department of Bioengineering at UMCP. Formal mechanisms are being developed to incorporate the many UM Ventures programs with bioengineering and the health sciences faculty to explore joint degrees and to develop new collaborative research programs and transform them into commercial ventures. This will supplement the already rich research environment.


Contact the following for more information:

William Bentley, PhD, Professor and Chair, the Fischell Department of Bioengineering, A. James Clark School of Engineering, UMCP

James Polli, PhD, Professor, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Pharmacy, UMB