October 2019 Student Trainee Profile

Author: [AUTHOR] Published on 10/1/2019 12:00:00 AM

Paul R. Malik, PharmD, University of Waterloo, Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

Dr. Malik is currently a pharmacist and doctoral researcher in the pediatric pharmacokinetics of macromolecular drugs under the direction of Dr. Andrea Edginton at the University of Waterloo. Dr. Malik describes the University of Waterloo as Canada's most innovative university.

Dr. Malik began his studies in the nanotechnology engineering department. Growing up he was an avid table tennis player, and he entered that program with the plan of engineering materials for table tennis rackets at the nanoscale level so they would be faster and more durable. A few months into the program, Dr. Malik became acquainted with the potential for nanomedicines and protein‐based drugs to be used as targeted therapies against cancer. He explains that “it has always been one of my fears that I would look back on my pursuits with regret that I had not dreamed big enough.” When he discovered the opportunities in the field of nanomedicines, he changed his plans and began pursuing pharmacology.

Dr. Malik studied at the School of Pharmacy and at the time felt somewhat removed from the research community while receiving training as a pharmacist. He believes had it not been for his connection with Dr. Edginton he would still be a pharmacist rather than training for more. He joined her research team for his undergraduate thesis studying monoclonal antibody trastuzumab. He worked closely with Dr. Colin Phipps to explore the mechanistic drivers of interindividual variability in trastuzumab exposure using physiologically‐based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) modeling. This work has special significance for him, as his aunt had been diagnosed with breast cancer and treated with trastuzumab the same year. From undergraduate studies he went straight into graduate studies and continues to work on research in pediatric pharmacokinetics and nanomedicine. He and his colleagues are developing pediatric PBPK models for macromolecular drugs that can be used to translate understanding of adult pharmacokinetics to children.

The most exciting part about the field of pharmacology for Dr. Malik has been the opportunity to change lives and to see those changes right in front of him. He specifically points to members of his own immediate family who are benefiting from the long‐acting injection products that use the technology developed by Dr. Robert Langer, who he saw as the State of the Art Speaker at the ASCPT 2019 Annual Meeting. Much like Dr. Langer, Dr. Malik dreams of becoming a professor leading an innovative macromolecular drug and formulation development team with many techniques and decisions guided by modeling and simulation. In the meantime, he finds practicing community pharmacy fulfilling. He enjoys the unique role he plays in advancing health care around the world with his fellow clinicians and researchers.

As a frequent reader of Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics, Dr. Mailk became acquainted with ASCPT and then was referred to join the Society by his doctoral supervisor, Dr. Edginton. When he attended his first Annual Meeting, he knew that he had found the research community where he belonged. He presented his own work in 2019, which he considered to be an honor. He received excellent questions from the audience that sparked the idea for the most recent manuscript that he submitted to CPT:PSP. He plans to return to the ASCPT Annual Meeting as often as he can to present his research and to continue to benefit from the enthusiasm and input he has gained from other members.

Dr. Malik has been a member of ASCPT since 2017. At the ASCPT 2019 Annual Meeting, he was recognized as a Presidential Trainee.

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