Carly Baehr is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pharmacology. She received her B.S. with a double major in Chemistry and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology (Terre Haute, IN) in 2011. Her graduate work in Molecular Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics at the Mayo Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (Rochester, MN) explored regulation of DNA damage repair in response to antimetabolites in cancer chemotherapy. Her post-doctoral work supported by the PharmacoNeuroImmunology program at UMN focused on vaccines and monoclonal antibodies against opioids in the laboratory of Dr. Marco Pravetoni. Currently, she works with Drs. Pravetoni and Michael Raleigh to advance murine and humanized anti-fentanyl monoclonal antibodies, and related projects to isolate antibodies against other drugs of abuse and toxic compounds.
Vaccines and monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) targeting small molecule drugs of abuse work by sequestering the target compounds in the bloodstream, preventing diffusion across the blood-brain barrier. Such mAbs against fentanyl are able to both prevent and reverse the effects of fentanyl in animal models, and enhance the efficacy of the opioid antagonist naloxone by reducing competition with fentanyl at opioid receptors. Highly specific mAbs can also be utilized for rapid detection of their target molecule in unknown samples. Our research focuses on elucidating the pharmacology of anti-fentanyl mAbs for reversal of fentanyl overdose, and on isolation of novel mAbs against other compounds of clinical interest.
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