Bi Botti "Celestin" Youan, Pharm.D., Ph.D.


UMKC School of Pharmacy
2464 Charlotte St.
HSB 4240
Kansas City, MO 64108


Phone: 816-235-2410

Youan_Celestie web


Research Interests:
My laboratory research interest is focused on the theoretical and experimental development and evaluation of bioactive agents loaded nanomedicine platforms intended for spatial and temporal controlled release of drug for optimal delivery and targeting to various tissues such as brain, pulmonary, topical routes in the search of better strategy to treat or prevent diseases of high priority in public health. For example, in the first area of novel topical drug delivery system, the work in progress (funded by NIH/NIAID) relates to microbicide loaded biocompatible nanomedicine intended for HIV/AIDS prevention. The second major research area of interest (funded by NIH/NIGMS) is the noninvasive delivery of bioactive macromolecules such as low molecular weight heparin based on the bioengineering of biocompatible microparticles with desirable aerodynamic/general features for controlled release into the alveolar region of the lung. Poor aerosol formulations and delivery systems are the two limitations to improving drug bioavailability through the pulmonary route. Improved particle engineering and various other approaches are being investigated to improve pulmonary bioavailability of bioactive macromolecules. Finally, novel delivery systems and emerging pharmaceutical technologies (e.g. nano/micro-engineering) are also investigated for controlled drug delivery into the brain with potential application to pharmacoresistant epilepsy patients (funding: New Therapy Grant, Epilepsy Research Foundation of America).

Research Objectives:
The long term research goal is focused on three primary areas: 1) Microbicide loaded nanomedicine for HIV/AIDS prevention 2) Intracerebral Delivery of Anticonvulsants-Loaded Nano/Microparticles, and 3) Heparin Containing Nano/Microparticles for Pulmonary Delivery. Moreover, as indicated below by our group members, we genuinely seek to enhance diversity in biomedical research (aligned with NIH and UMKC missions).
-Microbicide loaded Nanocarrier for HIV/AIDS prevention:
HIV/AIDS remains a major public health concern. There is no efficacious vaccine at this point in time. In this research endeavour is intended to investigate alternative drug delivery methods using nanomedicine platform for topical prevention of the disease transmission. This work is currently funded by NIH/NIAIDS R21 research grant.
-Intracerebral Delivery of Anticonvulsants-Loaded Nano/Microparticles:
This research has been supported by Epilepsy Research Foundation of America (New Therapy Grant). For the first time phenytoin loaded microparticles are engineered and an implantable microdialysis probe is used to deliver anticoagulant and to monitor drug level in the brain in situ. The master formula will be tested for efficacy and safety in kainate induced seizure animal model.
-Heparin Containing Nano/Microparticles for Pulmonary Delivery:
This is another major area of research currently being supported by National Institutes of Health/National Institutes of General Medical Sciences (NIH/NIGMS). The objective of this work is to bioengineer (in a preclinical study) heparin loaded biocompatible microparticles for improved and controlled anticoagulant therapy through the pulmonary route.

Teaching Interest:
Our teaching interest lies mainly in the area of pharmaceutics, the science of dosage forms/drug delivery systems in the undergraduate and graduate programs. Specifically in the undergraduate program, we contribute to UMKC Pharmacy 7202 and Pharmacy 7203 and other related elective courses. The UMKC Pharmacy 7202 course and laboratory relate to the fundamental physicochemical principles basis underlying dosage forms design and performance. The Pharmacy 7203 course relates to the dosage form’s composition, manufacturing, evaluation and biopharmaceutical properties for all major routes of drug administration. In the graduate program, our teaching interest focuses on novel drug delivery systems design and the underlying physical pharmacy equilibria and mathematical basis (Phar 5531).