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David L

- Research Program Mentor

PhD candidate at University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill (UNC Chapel Hill)


Pain and opioid neuroscience, pharmacology, neuropharmacology


My name is David, and I am a third-year Pharmacology PhD Candidate at UNC Chapel Hill. My primary research focuses on pain and opioid neuropharmacology, where I aim to better understand opioid receptor dynamics and alternative targets for pain treatment. I am extremely passionate about neuroscience, molecular biology, drug discovery, and bioentrepreneurship. In my free time, I like to watch sports, play guitar, and spend time outdoors. Additionally, I am interested in biotechnology startups, where I spend time applying my scientific knowledge to assist founders, form teams, and spin out companies.

Project ideas

Project ideas are meant to help inspire student thinking about their own project. Students are in the driver seat of their research and are free to use any or none of the ideas shared by their mentors.

Understanding novel non-opioid pain therapies

Opioids, though very affective in managing specific pain states, are extremely dangerous and often lead to overdose. The dual chronic pain and opioid epidemic outline the need for novel, non-opioid therapies to treat pain. Here, students will understand current opioid shortcomings, the landscape of emerging pain therapies, and the future of pain management in the United States.

Teaching experience

UNC Summer Research Program mentor, in-lab mentorship, and frequent neuroscience classroom panel presentations/mentorship



Pennsylvania State University (Penn State)
BS Bachelor of Science (2019)
Molecular Biology, Neuroscience
University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill (UNC Chapel Hill)
PhD Doctor of Philosophy candidate
Pharmacology, neuropharmacology

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