This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 956146.

Donnia Robins

Donnia Robins

Scientific breakthroughs are a result of creativity, collaboration, and perseverance. It is a pleasure to be a part of responsible research with like-minded individuals, in an effort to improve lives using technology.

ESR 10: Application of PBB/PBPK software tools to predict oral drug absorption in older people and geriatric patients and development of an absorption risk calculator to assess the probability of adverse effects in older people due to altered pharmacokinetics

Host institution: Merck Healtcare KGaA, Germany
Supervisors: S. Hansmann (Merck), A. Lehmann (Merck), K. Krollick (Merck), M. Vertzoni and C. Reppas (NKUA; secondment)

Research project in AGePOP

The purpose of the project is to analyse and apply physiologically based biopharmaceutic (PBB) and pharmacokinetic (PBPK) methods to better predict oral drug absorption in older people and geriatric patients. There are three main objectives, beginning with the evaluation of current models as they pertain to this target group. Secondly, using a combination of theoretical data from the literature and the experimental data obtained from other AGePOP projects, these PBB/PBPK models will be refined and optimised. The last objective is to build and implement a calculator capable of estimating the associated risk of side effects for potential use during the formulation phase of the drug development lifecycle.

Scientific background

Donnia Robins obtained her BSc from Beloit College, USA in 2014 with a double major in Applied Chemistry and Health and Society. Having a desire to combine her knowledge of both fields, she pursued practical training in the pharmaceutical industry, working as a chemist in both the quality control and research & development sectors. She obtained her MSc in Science, Technology and Health from the École Nationale Supérieure des Mines d’Albi-Carmaux, France in 2020 as part of the ADPHARMING (Advanced Pharmaceutical Engineering) program. She also completed an internship at the University of Technology of Compiègne in the Biomechanics and Bioengineering department, where she studied in-silico the mass release from liposomes as a targeted therapy for tumours using FORTRAN. 

About Donnia Robins

Donnia Robins grew up on the tiny island of New Providence in The Bahamas. Admiring the pharmaceutical industry as the backbone of modern medicine, she left her hometown in order to pursue a career in the field. Having the opportunity to work at major pharmaceutical companies after obtaining her BSc, she was inspired to continue her education leading her to the Advanced Pharmaceutical Engineering master in France. It was in this program that she studied and became intrigued by the obstacles to optimal bioavailability encountered by oral formulations, and the use of various types of models to address these difficulties. Donnia Robins observed first-hand the great potential of informatics to complement and support studies that are often constrained due to their tedious physical nature. As a member of the AGePOP network, she is excited to be a part of a project developing new tools in PBPK modelling with respect to the older population.