USF College of Pharmacy, Morphogenesis partner to produce next gen healthcare providers

Using a phrase often heard in classrooms and boardrooms to refer to successful team efforts, Morphogenesis' Regulatory Affairs Manager Dr. Chris Konig saya the company’s new affiliation with USF Health Taneja College of Pharmacy (TCOP) is "Forming, Storming, Norming, and Performing.''
 
According to information provided by Morphogenesis, a clinical-stage biotech company developing novel immunotherapies to treat patients with cancer, this affiliation with USF will offer opportunities for a number of new educational, scientific, and clinical endeavors, including graduate internships for Master of Science in Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology students, advanced experiential learning opportunities for Doctor of Pharmacy students, and pre-clinical and clinical research collaborations.

The new partnership also extends to Morphogenesis being named as Co-chair of the TCOP Industry Advisory Board alongside Dr. Shyam S. Mohapatra, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor and Associate Dean of Graduate Programs at the College of Pharmacy.

The advisory board, currently envisioned as being comprised of up to nine members, will represent a snapshot of bio-pharmaceutical and contract research development and manufacturing organizations.

Konig anticipates it will "Spearhead research by building a pipeline of product research and development. Those who are medical professionals know how to work with already approved products. This partnership will provide the opportunity for them to examine innovative products. ... Think of where they might fit in. It will encourage analytical thinking on the clinical research side.''
 
Calling this concept of breaking down the silos between the development of cutting edge therapies for cancer; the Morphogenesis side, and the training of future healthcare practitioners; the TCOP side, "A very exciting concept that is unique in the world,'' Dr. Konig says the partnership will maintain Morphogenesis' position as a leader in the field of cancer vaccine development while giving back to the community.
 
Not only is the Morphogenesis/TCOP partnership innovative, the technology and location are also state-of-the-art. The Taneja College of Pharmacy is situated within USF at Water Street Tampa, in the heart of the downtown Waterfront District. According to a statement on the USF website, “Locating the new USF Health Morsani College of Medicine and Taneja College of Pharmacy building in Tampa's urban core promotes the success of our students on their journey to becoming the doctors and pharmacists who will care for the citizens of our state and our nation in the coming decade.''

Also incorporated into the new location is Microsoft technology designed for integrating new approaches for teaching medicine. The partnership with USF was named Microsoft’s first-ever "Medical School of Innovation.''
 
Morphogenesis Co-founder and CEO Dr. Patricia Lawman regards the new affiliations as the coming together of the vision and mission she has always strived to achieve: To be able to discover, develop, and deliver innovative immunotherapies that will help patients manage cancer as a chronic illness and to eventually have a world without needless suffering.

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Read more articles by Pamela Varkony.

Pamela Varkony’s non-fiction topics range from politics to economic development to women's empowerment. A feature writer and former columnist for Tribune Publishing, Pamela's work has appeared in newspapers, magazines, and in PBS and NPR on-air commentaries. Her poetry has been published in the New York Times. Recognized by the Pennsylvania Women's Press Association with an "Excellence in Journalism" award, Pamela often uses her writing to advocate for women's rights and empowerment both at home and abroad. She has twice traveled to Afghanistan on fact-finding missions. Pamela was recently named the 2017 Pearl S. Buck International Woman of Influence for her humanitarian work. Born and raised in rural Bucks County, Pennsylvania, Pamela often weaves the lessons learned on those backcountry roads throughout her stories.
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