Drug Research Doctoral Programme (DRDP)

DRDP training prepares for work in wide and demanding expert and development tasks in the field of drug development and research in academic, industrial and governmental organizations.

Doctoral researchers of DRDP carry out their doctoral studies in research groups with high scientific standards at the university and in companies. Each doctoral researcher focuses on a specific topic relevant for drug development, and the research project is planned with the supervisors for the application. 

DRDP serves as a postgraduate programme for graduates of the Master’s Degree Programme in Drug Discovery and Development at the University of Turku, but it is open to all applicants with a suitable M.Sc. level education and an interest in drug research.

DRDP training prepares for work in wide and demanding expert and development tasks in the field of drug development and research internationally. The graduates work in academic and commercial institutes, health care sector and as regulatory authorities. The DRDP training provides a general view of the drug development process, starting from molecular and mechanistic levels and continuing to preclinical and clinical drug research, pharmaceutical development, and pharmacoepidemiology as well as transferable skills relevant to drug development. In addition, it provides networking opportunities locally, nationally and internationally and supports career planning in the field of drug research. DRDP is part of a strong national FinPharmaNet network of drug research programmes in Finland.

Industrial PhD training in DRDP

Industrial PhD is an industrially focused doctoral thesis research project and PhD educational program that is carried out in collaboration of the university and a company. The aim is to train doctors with strong scientific thinking in combination with applied research expertise, and capabilities to work in both academic and industrial research environments as well as in their interface. 

Doctoral researchers on the iPhD track will carry out their research primarily (>75 % of total 4 years) in the industrial environment, and are supervised by both industrial and academic supervisors. The academic training will be composed of academic secondments (akateeminen työskentelyjakso, max 25 %), and the post-graduate education courses at the UTU.

 Research Areas:

  • Target identification and validation
  • Development and preclinical testing of novel drug molecules
  • Clinical drug research
  • Pharmacoepidemiology
  • Development of methods and diagnostics supporting drug research


Director Ullamari Pesonen

Vice director Urpo Lamminmäki

Coordinator drdp@utu.fi 

Sitaatti PhD DRDP Nagelli
The coursework, scientific sessions and annual meetings offered by the program prepare the candidates to develop a holistic approach to drug discovery from industrial, ethical and regulatory perspectives
Srikar Nagelli, Doctoral Researcher