David H. Farb, PhD
Professor
Boston University School of Medicine
Dept of Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics

PhD, Brandeis University



David H. Farb was appointed Professor and Chairman of the Department of Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics at Boston University School of Medicine in 1990. Dr. Farb is also Director of the university-wide NIGMS training program in Biomolecular Pharmacology. He has also served as a member of the Drug Development Work Group of Mass Insight, co-author of the Massachusetts Technology Road Map for Drug Discovery, and a consultant for a number of small to large pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and patent litigation companies. He is regularly interviewed by local, national and international media.

As head of the Laboratory of Molecular Neurobiology, he focuses on the identification of pharmacological treatments for mental disorders of learning and memory. His research integrates existing electrophysiological, behavioral, pharmacological, and molecular genetic technologies in a novel systems-level platform for assessing the impact of cognitive enhancers such as neuroactive steroids upon fundamental hippocampal systems for pattern separation (encoding), and pattern completion (retrieval) that are believed to be essential for cognition in all mammals, including man. Deficits in aspects of episodic memory dependent on hippocampal function are evident in a variety of mental disorders, including schizophrenia, autism, Alzheimer’s Disease, and normal aging. Existing pharmacotherapies are limited and carry substantial risk of adverse effects. In search of new approaches for discovery, high-density electrophysiological recordings in awake behaving rats are being used to identify deficits in hippocampal function that underlie cognitive deficits exhibited by aged animals and animals reared in social isolation, the latter being a model for environmental stress during development. Drug delivery via nanoparticles encapsulating hydrophilic or hydrophobic molecules are being engineered for delivery across the blood brain barrier. Nanoparticle composition is being tailored to better deliver drug to specific target sites. Neuroactive drugs and proteins, biomarkers for novel diagnostics, sensitive dyes for neural mapping, and many other applications are envisioned. The major advantage of this technique is the noninvasive delivery of molecules to the CNS via a peripheral injection.

A multidisciplinary approach that includes the techniques of neurophysiology, molecular biology, patch-clamp electrophysiology, cell biology, and molecular neuroanatomy are combined to elucidate the mechanisms and modalities of cognitive enhancers and the discovery of therapeutic treatments for disorders or diseases of the nervous system.

Chair of Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics
Boston University School of Medicine
Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics


Graduate Faculty (Primary Mentor of Grad Students)
Boston University School of Medicine, Division of Graduate Medical Sciences



2014 NIH/NIGMS Institutional Predoctoral Training, CSR: Special Emphasis Panel and Site Visitor
2013 NIH, CSR: Emerging Technologies and Training in Neuroscience, Special Emphasis Panel
2013-2013 NIH/NIGMS, CSR: NIGMS Institutional Predoctoral Training, BRT-A Subcommittee
2013 US-India Chamber of Commerce: BioPharma Summit, Panel Member on Industry Academia Collaborations
2009 The NorthEast Under/graduate Research Organization for Neuroscience (N.E.U.R.O.N.): Steering Committee
2006-2007 Boston University Office of Technology Transfer: Ignition Award for Research Leading to the Development of Novel Analgesics
2005-2007 American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics (ASPET): President, New England Pharmacologists Chapter
2005 NTRC: Study Section
2005 IUPHAR (International Union of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology) : GABAB Committee
2004 NIAAA: Brain Resiliency and Repair Workshop, Future Directions Panel
1999 Wellcome Trust Infrastructure Fund: Chair, Review Committee
1998 NIGMS ZGM1 PS-5 (1) Site Visit, Ad Hoc Committee: Chair
1997 NIMH Future Directions Conference: Panel Member
1997-2003 Tufts University School of Medicine, Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics: External Advisory Board
1989-1990 MRC Molecular Genetics Unit at Cambridge University: Fogarty Senior International Fellow with Dr. Sydney Brenner


Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology
07/01/2016 - 06/30/2018 (PI)
NIH/National Institute of General Medica
5T32GM008541-20

Intergrovernmental Personnel Agreement for Clara Velazquez-Sanchez
09/28/2015 - 09/27/2016 (PI)
Department of Veterans Administration, B

Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology
07/01/2013 - 06/30/2016 (PI)
NIH/National Institute of General Medica
3T32GM008541-18S1

Personnel agreement for research services of Kendra Kobrin
06/01/2013 - 05/31/2016 (PI)
VA Boston Healthcare System

Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology
07/01/1997 - 06/30/2013 (PI)
NIH/National Institute of General Medica
5T32GM008541-15

Outline of In Vitro Studies in Recombinant GABAa Receptors
08/13/2004 - 08/12/2009 (PI)
DOV Pharmaceutical Inc

Steroids - Functional Modulators of Amino Acid Receptors
07/01/1992 - 05/31/2009 (PI)
NIH/National Institute of Mental Health
5 R01 MH49469 15

Pre Doctoral Fellowship in Pharmacology/Toxicology
01/01/2007 - 12/31/2008 (Dept Sponsor)
Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America Foundation (PhRMA Foundation)

Negative Modulators of GABAA Receptor Subunit Isoforms for Cognitive Enhancement Using HTEP
03/02/2006 - 03/01/2007 (PI)
Helicon

Neuroactive Steroids, Dopamine and Cocaine Sensitization
05/01/2002 - 04/30/2006 (PI)
NIH/National Institute on Drug Abuse
5 R01 DA13724 03

Showing 10 of 15 results. Show All Results



Yr Title Project-Sub Proj Pubs
2016 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 4T32GM008541-19 59
2015 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 3T32GM008541-18S1 59
2014 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 5T32GM008541-17 59
2013 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 2T32GM008541-16 59
2012 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 5T32GM008541-15 59
2011 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 5T32GM008541-14 59
2010 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 5T32GM008541-13 59
2009 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 3T32GM008541-12S1 59
2009 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 5T32GM008541-12 59
2008 Training in Biomolecular Pharmacology 2T32GM008541-11 59
Showing 10 of 63 results. Show All Results
Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

  1. Robitsek J, Ratner MH, Stewart T, Eichenbaum H, Farb DH. Combined administration of levetiracetam and valproic acid attenuates age-related hyperactivity of CA3 place cells, reduces place field area, and increases spatial information content in aged rat hippocampus. Hippocampus. 2015 Dec; 25(12):1541-55.View Related Profiles. PMID: 25941121; PMCID: PMC4633399; DOI: 10.1002/hipo.22474;.
  2. Ratner MH, Farb DH, Ozer J, Feldman RG, Durso R. Younger age at onset of sporadic Parkinson's disease among subjects occupationally exposed to metals and pesticides. Interdiscip Toxicol. 2014 Sep; 7(3):123-33.View Related Profiles. PMID: 26109889; DOI: 10.2478/intox-2014-0017;.
  3. Farb DH, Ratner MH. Targeting the modulation of neural circuitry for the treatment of anxiety disorders. Pharmacol Rev. 2014 Oct; 66(4):1002-32.View Related Profiles. PMID: 25237115; DOI: 10.1124/pr.114.009126;.
  4. Smith CC, Martin SC, Sugunan K, Russek SJ, Gibbs TT, Farb DH. A role for picomolar concentrations of pregnenolone sulfate in synaptic activity-dependent Ca2+ signaling and CREB activation. Mol Pharmacol. 2014 Oct; 86(4):390-8.View Related Profiles. PMID: 25057049; PMCID: PMC4164982; DOI: 10.1124/mol.114.094128;.
  5. Smith CC, Gibbs TT, Farb DH. Pregnenolone sulfate as a modulator of synaptic plasticity. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2014 Sep; 231(17):3537-56. PMID: 24997854; PMCID: PMC4625978; DOI: 10.1007/s00213-014-3643-x;.
  6. Gutiérrez ML, Ferreri MC, Farb DH, Gravielle MC. GABA-induced uncoupling of GABA/benzodiazepine site interactions is associated with increased phosphorylation of the GABAA receptor. J Neurosci Res. 2014 Aug; 92(8):1054-61. PMID: 24723313; DOI: 10.1002/jnr.23387;.
  7. Farb DH. An interview with David H Farb, Section Editor for Basic Pharmacology. BMC Pharmacol Toxicol. 2013; 14:42. PMID: 24001169; PMCID: PMC3846662; DOI: 10.1186/2050-6511-14-42;.
  8. Saha S, Hu Y, Martin SC, Bandyopadhyay S, Russek SJ, Farb DH. Polycomblike protein PHF1b: a transcriptional sensor for GABA receptor activity. BMC Pharmacol Toxicol. 2013; 14:37.View Related Profiles. PMID: 23879974; PMCID: PMC3734045; DOI: 10.1186/2050-6511-14-37;.
  9. Kostakis E, Smith C, Jang MK, Martin SC, Richards KG, Russek SJ, Gibbs TT, Farb DH. The neuroactive steroid pregnenolone sulfate stimulates trafficking of functional N-methyl D-aspartate receptors to the cell surface via a noncanonical, G protein, and Ca2+-dependent mechanism. Mol Pharmacol. 2013 Aug; 84(2):261-74.View Related Profiles. PMID: 23716622; PMCID: PMC3716320; DOI: 10.1124/mol.113.085696;.
  10. Desbiens S, Farb DH. Development of Therapeutic Agents, Shayne Gad, Editor. Chapter 1: Medicine and Pathology – Current Needs for New Therapeutic Agents and Discovery Strategies – A Systems Pharmacology Approach. Hardcopy version of Desbiens and Farb, 2010. John Wiley & Sons. 2012. View Publication
Showing 10 of 99 results. Show More

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Bar chart showing 96 publications over 35 distinct years, with a maximum of 7 publications in 1988

YearPublications
19801
19813
19831
19843
19852
19865
19871
19887
19893
19904
19913
19923
19933
19943
19953
19961
19973
19982
19993
20005
20012
20022
20033
20043
20053
20062
20072
20084
20092
20102
20112
20121
20133
20145
20151
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72 E. Concord St Instructional (L)
Boston MA 02118
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