UKNow is highlighting the University of Kentucky’s 2022-23 University Research Professors. Established by the Board of Trustees in 1976, the professorship program recognizes excellence across the full spectrum of research, scholarship and creative endeavors at UK.
LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 3, 2022) — Daniela Moga, M.D., Ph.D., assistant dean for research in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Kentucky, has been named one of 14 University Research Professors.
Moga is an associate professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Science, and affiliated faculty member in the Institute for Pharmaceutical Outcomes and Policy, and holds the Larry Spears Endowed Chair in Pharmacology. She is also jointly appointed as associate professor in the Department of Epidemiology in the College of Public Health and serves as faculty associate with the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging.
The 2022-23 University Research Professorship Awards honor faculty members who have demonstrated excellence that addresses scientific, social, cultural and economic challenges in the Commonwealth, across the region and around the world.
Individuals who displayed merit in research and scholarly activity within their area of expertise were nominated based on criteria developed by college leadership. Each University Research Professor receives a one-year award of $10,000.
When Moga came from Romania to the U.S. to pursue her doctorate in 2007, she was surprised by the number of television ads for drugs aimed at older adults.
As a medical doctor with interest in pharmacoepidemiology, Moga found the ads deceptive and potentially dangerous.
Since then, she has made it her ambition to help older adults monitor and reduce the number of medications they take so they cut the risk of detrimental drug interactions.
Moga's areas of interest include geriatric pharmacoepidemiology and health outcomes research. Currently, her focus is on evaluating the use and health effects of potentially inappropriate medications by older adults with multiple comorbid conditions. Additionally, her research aims at developing interventions to deprescribe inappropriate medications and optimize treatment in older adults.
Moga recently served as the lead investigator for a large study evaluating the effect of a patient-centered medication therapy management team intervention aiming to bolster cognitive reserve by increasing medication appropriateness in older adults.
“To me, saying that being selected as one of the UK Research Professors has been a great honor is simply an understatement. I am thankful for the opportunities that come with this acclaim, inspired by the wonderful researchers that have been selected throughout the years, and I am humbled by the recognition of the importance of our work in the area of medication use optimization and deprescribing,” said Moga. “I know I would not be here if it wasn’t for those that helped me along the way. I am truly grateful for our study participants, my collaborators, and the support from my department, college, and the UK community as a whole.”
Moga’s patient-centered deprescribing research highlights the importance of a pharmacist-clinician team approach to optimize medication use in older adults and improve on their outcomes. She has published dozens of peer-reviewed papers including a recent publication which shows that optimizing medication use improves cognitive outcomes in patients at risk for Alzheimer’s disease. Her work on this topic has also been featured by multiple national media outlets and she has presented some of her findings at places like the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference and the US Deprescribing Research Network Annual Meeting.
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