UM Pharmacy Faculty Member Wins AACP New Investigator Award

Rahul Khanna

Rahul Khanna

… Award provides start-up funding for his autism research

A University of Mississippi faculty member is among 18 recipients of New Investigator Awards announced today by the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy.

Rahul Khanna, assistant professor of pharmacy administration and research assistant professor in the Research Institute of Pharmaceutical Sciences, will use the award to study the relationship between the health and well-being of caregivers of autistic children and the emotional and physical stress they experience.

“I am very excited about receiving this award,” Khanna said. “The awards are very competitive. Only one in 10 applicants are successful, so being a recipient validates the nature of my work. I’m confident I’m going in the right direction, and I am thankful for the support I have received from my colleagues in the department and school.”

The AACP awards support new faculty research in such areas as the biological sciences, chemistry, pharmaceutical sciences, pharmacy practice and the social and administrative sciences. This year’s recipients are investigating topics as diverse as medication self-management, treatment for cocaine addiction and withdrawal, and the impact of Medicare payment cuts on treatment choices and patient outcomes.

“The NIA program at AACP provides seed money for new faculty investigators to establish their very first independent pilot research project,” said Vincent Lau, vice president of research and graduate education at AACP.

“The award supports new faculty interested in generating meaningful research data and also provides them with the initial funding they need to approach other potential funders to support their research,” Lau said. “This year, we were pleased to have an exceptionally strong field of applicants. We believe that each of the award-winning projects has great potential to inform pharmacy science and improve health care.”

“We are very proud of Dr. Khanna,” said Donna West-Strum, chair of pharmacy administration. “He is a talented young investigator with lots of potential, as indicated by the competitive nature of the AACP awards program. We look forward to collaborating with him as he continues to develop his scientific career.”

Khanna, who joined the UM School of Pharmacy faculty in 2010, obtained his bachelor’s degree in pharmacy from Delhi University and Master of Business Administration from the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade. He obtained his master’s and doctoral degrees from West Virginia University, both of which involved health outcomes research.

“Our pharmacy school is known nationally for providing our talented and promising young faculty members with the resources and mentoring they need to become highly successful,” said David D. Allen, UM pharmacy dean. “It’s extremely rewarding to see one of them take the initiative to seek external funding for his research, and I have little doubt that Dr. Khanna will soon be contributing significantly to maintaining our school’s No. 1 ranking (among 125 U.S. pharmacy schools) for extramural funding.”

Founded in 1900, AACP represents the interests of pharmacy education and educators at the country’s 124 accredited colleges and schools of pharmacy. Its members include more than 6,000 faculty and 60,000 students. For more information about AACP, visit

For more information, visit the UM School of Pharmacy, call 662-915-7265.