Dr. Virginia E. Wotring is the Science and Technology Integration Manager (STIM) within NSBRI Headquarters. Her responsibilities include the management of NSBRI’s diverse science and technology portfolio and coordination with NASA’s Human Research Program. Dr. Wotring is also an Assistant Professor within the Center for Space Medicine as well as the Department of Pharmacology at Baylor College of Medicine where she conducts research on the use and actions of medication in the unusual environment of spaceflight.
Virginia received her doctorate in Pharmacological and Physiological Science from Saint Louis University after earning a B.S. in Chemistry at Florida State University. She has published multiple studies on ligand gated ion channels in the brain and spinal cord. Her research experience includes drug mechanisms of action, drug receptor structure/function relationships and gene & protein expression. She became a spaceflight researcher in 2009, and in 2012, her book reviewing pharmacology in spaceflight was published by Springer: Space Pharmacology, Space Development Series.
Her currently funded NASA studies include the design and implementation of a new iOS-based app for iPad collection of medication use data directly from crewmembers during future missions and an examination of potential alterations in pharmacokinetics associated with the spaceflight environment. This pharmacokinetic (PK) study includes Dr. Hartmut Derendorf at the University of Florida and Dr. Laura Barger of Brigham & Women’s Hospital as collaborators in the areas of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of sleep medications, respectively.