Cancer Biology Program
A clinical pharmacist with Sharp HealthCare in San Diego, Dr. Ashkan Khabazian works with hospital emergency department professionals to provide appropriate medication in the emergency room. Outside of the professional arena, Dr. Ashkan Khabazian contributes to multiple volunteer and charitable nonprofits, including St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
In addition to its direct care and educational initiatives, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital spearheads research efforts through five interdisciplinary programs. One of these programs is Cancer Biology, a St. Jude division that is dedicated to examining the essential processes of normal cellular regulation and the ways in which these processes are altered in transformed cells.
The members of the Cancer Biology program span 11 academic disciplines, creating a team that is capable of studying cellular pathways from a variety of angles. The program works in three different focus areas: cell stress and metabolism, signaling networks and therapeutics, and genome structure and function.
An experienced San Diego pharmacist, Dr. Ashkan Khabazian earned his doctor of pharmacy from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor and completed postdoctoral training at Scripps Mercy Hospital in San Diego. He has served as an emergency department clinical pharmacist with Sharp HealthCare since 2009. One of Ashkan Khabazian’s areas of professional interest is pharmacokinetics.
The field of pharmacokinetics examines the relationship between the human body and any drug that it ingests. Pharmacokinetics follows the movement of a drug from absorption to excretion. This field of study should not be confused with pharmacodynamics. While pharmacodynamics studies what drugs do to the body, pharmacokinetics studies what the body does to drugs.
By mastering pharmacokinetic principles, healthcare professionals can more effectively and rapidly prescribe appropriate medication in accurate dosages. In order to predict the pharmacokinetic parameters in a given population, pharmacokinetic researchers must consider patient-related factors such as age, sex, and general renal function.
Ashkan Khabazian provides expert assistance to doctors and patients in code blue situations as an emergency department clinical pharmacist with Sharp HealthCare in San Diego, California. Prior to accepting his present position, Ashkan Khabazian worked as clinical pharmacist for internal medicine at Scripps Mercy Hospital in the same city.
Through medical television shows watched by millions, the term code blue has entered the popular consciousness. People associate the term with medical emergencies that occur in a hospital setting, though they may be surprised to learn that, in the real world, code blue has no formal definition and functions more like slang.
Usually, code blue designates a situation in which a patient is undergoing cardiac arrest. Such patients require immediate medical care, usually in the form a code team that rushes to begin resuscitative procedures. Sometimes, hospitals use the term code red in place of code blue.
Besides cardiac arrest, healthcare facilities may rely on codes to designate non-medical threats. For instance, hospitals may use code yellow or code black in the event of a bomb threat or if a patient goes missing.