July 9, 2020
Theodore Jennaro

Theodore Jennaro, 2nd year graduate student in Clinical Pharmacy Translational Sciences at the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy, has earned an American Foundation for Pharmaceutical Education (AFPE) Regional Fellowship.

The AFPE fellowship program is designed to positively impact patient and public health by supporting high performing students who possess the skill and aptitude to become outstanding scientists and leaders in the pharmaceutical industry, academia, and the government/nonprofit sectors. 

Before starting his studies at the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy in 2019, Dr. Jennaro earned his PharmD from the University of Wisconsin - Madison. His research focus includes using pharmacometabolomics and other principles of precision medicine to better understand variable drug response and heterogeneous outcomes in sepsis, a life-threatening organ dysfunction that results from a bloodstream infection.

“The individual response to sepsis is highly variable, and the precise reasons why it resolves in some individuals and is deadly in others is poorly understood,” says Dr. Jennaro. “Sepsis is a 'catabolic crisis' and the body alters energy utilization pathways and perturbs metabolism to meet the rising energetic demand. I plan to apply statistical and bioinformatic approaches to understand metabolic changes over time in septic patients, which are related to mortality and drug response,” continues Dr. Jennaro. “I will use bioinformatic software to map these findings back to known biochemistry and molecular biology to inform rational drug discovery. I will also seek to explain interpatient variability in response to a promising, targeted sepsis-therapeutic, levocarnitine, using patient-level data.”

Dr. Jennaro plans to continue this line of research post-graduation. “Long term, I hope to conduct impactful translational research and utilize principles of precision medicine to improve drug response and understanding of the underlying mechanisms of critical illness,” explains Dr. Jennaro.