Maria Croyle

Professor of Molecular Pharmaceutics and Drug Delivery/Glaxo Wellcome Professor • University of Texas at Austin

Dr. Croyle graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 1992 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Pharmacy and is a licensed pharmacist.  Prior to entering the Pharmaceutics graduate program at the University of Michigan, she worked as a formulation scientist for Merck Research Laboratories.  During her graduate training, she developed novel methods to preserve and deliver viruses that carried therapeutic genes to the intestinal tract.

In 1997, Dr. Croyle received a National Research Service Award from the National Institutes of Health for training in gene therapy at the University of Pennsylvania.  There, she developed and patented novel technology to mask the immune response to viruses used for gene transfer.

In 2000, Dr. Croyle joined the Pharmaceutics Division of The University of Texas at Austin as a Professor and was also appointed as an adjunct faculty member of the Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology.  Research in Dr. Croyle’s lab focuses on the characterization of the physical stability, large-scale production and formulation of recombinant viruses in the context of using them as medicinal products.

Her group studies the effect of viral infection on the expression and function of key enzymes involved in drug metabolism located in the liver and kidney.  Her expertise in these areas has been recognized at the national and international levels as she has served as a scientific advisor for over 14 biotech companies located in the United States and Europe.  She has also served on expert review panels for the United States National Institutes of Health, the Academy of Finland and is part of the United States Pharmacopeia Cell and Gene Therapy Expert Committee.

Dr. Croyle and her research team completed pre-clinical testing of a quick acting, long lasting, needle-free vaccine against Ebola.  Her group and the technology that they developed and patented for this application were featured in the National Geographic Breakthrough series in an episode on Pandemics.

During her tenure at The University of Texas at Austin, Dr. Croyle has shared her knowledge of drug delivery, virology, cell biology and immunology with more than 100 undergraduate and graduate students in the pharmacy and basic science programs through mentored research projects in her lab.  Her group has authored over 50 peer-reviewed manuscripts, book chapters and invited reviews describing their contributions in the area of gene therapy, drug metabolism and vaccine development.

In the spring of 2012, she was nominated for The University of Texas at Austin Senate of College Councils prestigious Professor of the Year award and, in 2014, won the College of Pharmacy’s Excellence in Teaching award in praise for the “real world situations” she places pharmacy students in while teaching the course “Physical and Chemical Principles of Drug Action” and for her practical approach to team-based problem solving in her graduate course “Pharmaceutical Biotechnology”.

Off campus, you may see Dr. Croyle running through Austin as she prepares to run another marathon (she has completed 20 full marathons, so far). Besides numerous races in and around Austin, she has completed the Boston, the New York and the Nike San Francisco marathons and also served as a marathon coach for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training Program.

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