More than 90 Americans a day are dying from opioid abuse. Today’s guest, Dr. Christopher McCurdy, is at the forefront of research designed to help the U.S. deal with this drug overdose crisis.
Chris is a medicinal chemist and behavioral pharmacologist at the University of Florida who is internationally known as an expert on kratom, a botanical mixture that has been shown to help people struggling with addiction. He recently became president of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists, and has spent his career focusing on the design, synthesis and development of drugs to treat pain and drug abuse.
Chris earned his bachelor of science degree in pharmacy from Ohio Northern University, and a Ph.D. in medicinal chemistry from the University of Georgia College of Pharmacy in 1998.
He did his postdoctoral work at the University of Minnesota where he focused on opiate chemistry in relation to drug abuse and drug addiction. He joined the faculty at the University of Mississippi in 2001 where much of his research was successful in discovering unique and selective tools for sigma receptors, NPFF receptors and opioid receptors.
Dr. McCurdy accepted a post as a professor of medicinal chemistry at Florida in 2017 and became the director of the university’s Translational Drug Development Core.
Christopher McCurdy UF faculty page:
American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists:
Translational Drug Development Core:
Suspected Adulteration of Commercial Kratom Products with Hydroxymitragyine:
Self-treatment of Opioid Withdrawal Using Kratom:
Herbal Medicines for the Management of Opioid Addiction: