Dr. Amina Ferraz

Dr. Amina Ferraz

Principal Lecturer in Recruitment and Retention

School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences

Maudland Building, MB240

+44 (0) 1772 89 5835

aferraz@uclan.ac.uk

Subject Areas: Pharmacy

Dr Amina Ferraz is a Principal Lecturer in Recruitment and Retention and the Admissions Lead for Pharmacy (MPharm) Hons at the School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences.  She also teaches Pharmaceutics to both Undergraduate and Postgraduate students. She graduated from UCL School of Pharmacy, University of London, with an MPharm before completing a PhD in Pharmaceutical Science at the same school. She worked as a Senior Scientist at Pfizer before joining UCLan and is a fully registered pharmacist with the GPhC. She is experienced in the field of development, scale-up, process validation and technology transfer of inhaled formulations, as well as leading on patient-focused research I the area of pulmonary drug delivery.

Amina is research active within the area of pharmacy and biomedical sciences and is a member of the Drug Design and Development Research Centre and the Translational Clinical Sciences Group.

Full Profile

Dr Amina Ferraz is a Principal Lecturer in Recruitment and Retention at the School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences with a clinical pharmacy background and industrial experience.

She graduated in Pharmacy from UCL School of Pharmacy, University of London, with an MPharm degree before completing a PhD in pharmaceutical science, in collaboration with AstraZeneca, at the same school. Her PhD work involved the production of a stable pressurised metered dose inhaler (pMDI) system, which forms a drug carrier upon delivery from the pMDI.

She then worked at Pfizer, as a Senior Scientist, where she was responsible for the development of new inhaled products; including the development of novel dry powder inhaled products and progressing them to Phase I / Phase II studies and coordinating clinical trials. She became experienced in development, scale-up, process validation and technology transfer of inhaled formulations, including device-based products. She has a broad pharmaceutical background in areas of formulation development, materials science and manufacturing.

She is also a fully registered pharmacist working closely with other healthcare professionals to develop new and existing services in line with the needs of the patients and providing outstanding care, with a real passion for improving their therapy and quality of life.

PhD, Pharmaceutical Science, UCL School of Pharmacy, University of London, in collaboration with AstraZeneca.

MPharm, Pharmacy, UCL School of Pharmacy, University of London.

Memberships

A registered pharmacist with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC)

Research Activities

The lung is the target organ for the treatment of local respiratory diseases and is a potential administration route for systemic treatments, which makes it an attractive organ for drug delivery. However, pulmonary delivery is a complex and challenging process, as it requires a safe and efficacious drug, a carrier system, the design and engineering of a device and its correct use by the patient.

Amina's research interests within the pulmonary drug delivery area are twin-tracked; She is interested in drug targeting using liposomal pressurised metered dose inhaler (pMDI) and (dry powder inhaler) DPI systems, and inhaled formulation ex vivo investigations.

 

Pulmonary drug delivery of liposome-entrapped drugs can prolong drug residence in the respiratory tract which may prolong the therapeutic effects within the lung and reduce systemic side effects. Unfortunately, liposomes as aqueous dispersions are very unstable and are difficult to manufacture on a large scale when formulated by the conventional method. Therefore, her work aims at entrapping drugs within spontaneously formed liposomes in vitro and within the aqueous environment of the respiratory tract in vivo, and achieving a controlled release profile as a means for drug targeting using liposomal pMDIs and DPIs.

Many patients use their inhaled therapy incorrectly achieving variable lung deposition. Specifically, patients with asthma and COPD do not achieve best use of their inhalers. Some patients cannot breathe strongly enough to release the drug and others struggle to handle the device. The difference between an ‘effective’ and less effective aerosolisation profile in terms of airway penetration remains to be investigated, and it is unknown what the correct formulation/device combination is for patients therefore Amina is interested in studying the relationship between in vitro / in vivo data, understanding patient parameters, inter-patient variability for passive DPIs, and developing a better understanding of the interaction between formulation, device and patient.