Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Appoints New Senior Vice President of Research and Innovation

Lance McMahon, Ph.D.

Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) President Lori Rice-Spearman, Ph.D., announced today (Aug. 31) the appointment of Lance R. McMahon, Ph.D., as the new senior vice president of the Office of Research and Innovation. McMahon also will have an appointment in the Jerry H. Hodge TTUHSC School of Pharmacy. 

McMahon currently serves as professor and chair of the Department of Pharmacodynamics at the University of Florida College of Pharmacy and had a consistent record of successful research funding during his career. During his leadership as chair, the departmental faculty tripled in number and their external research funding quadrupled. Research success in the department was unanimous for several years, with all 11 of the tenured/tenure-track pharmacodynamics faculty members serving as principal investigators on at least one National Institutes of Health R-type grant during that time period. 

Rice-Spearman said he is committed to building strategic research partnerships at TTUHSC and will achieve excellence through fostering collegial spirit, a shared vision and strategic investment of university funds, equipment and space. 

“We are excited to welcome Dr. McMahon to fill this vital role at our university,” Rice-Spearman said. “His ability to work collaboratively with our schools and institutes will help in setting visionary and strategic priorities in research across the TTUHSC enterprise. Through his leadership, he will be able to promote TTUHSC values, mentor faculty, grow and transform research priorities and lead our university toward our vision to transform health care through innovation and collaboration.” 

Prior to his current role at the University of Florida, McMahon was a tenured associate professor of pharmacology at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. He obtained a Ph.D. in behavioral neuroscience from Texas A&M University and was a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston. 

McMahon’s record demonstrates commitment to building strategic research partnerships. Along with faculty colleagues, he created a multidisciplinary academic drug discovery and development platform focused on central nervous system (CNS) acting natural products and synthetic derivatives. McMahon provides active leadership and support for several research centers and institutes. He currently serves on the executive board of the McKnight Brain Institute and is scientific advisor for the Center for Addiction Research and Education at the University of Florida. The Center for Integrative Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases is housed within his home department, and his departmental colleagues play key roles in several institutes and centers including the Center for Natural Products Drug Discovery and Development, Cancer Center, Genetics Institute and Center for Pharmacometrics and Systems Pharmacology.

In addition to past and current faculty appointments in medicine and pharmacy, he has taught pharmacology and neuroscience to Ph.D., medical, pharmacy, dental, physician assistant and physical therapy students. He was funded by the NIH since 2003 as primary investigator of six R01 grants, one R21, and two U grants for a total of $21M in funding. 

He published 113 peer-reviewed papers focusing on CNS acting drugs. McMahon is a regular member of a NIH study section. He has served on division executive boards within the American Society of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, as programming committee chair for the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists and as editor for two peer-reviewed journals.

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