Mitch A. Phelps

Mitch Phelps

Mitch A. Phelps, PhD

Associate Professor
Unit / Department / Division
Pharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Chemistry
612 Riffe Building
Email Address
Phone Number

Professional Interests

Professional Interests
Dr. Phelps is a tenured Associate Professor and Vice Chair of the Division of Pharmaceutics within The Ohio State University College of Pharmacy. He also holds an appointment within the College of Medicine, Department of Biological Chemistry and Pharmacology and serves as Director of the Comprehensive Cancer Center Pharmacoanalytical Shared Resource. After earning his Bachelor’s degree in Physics from Ohio Wesleyan University in 1992, Dr. Phelps spent approximately 8 years in private industry as a chemist before returning to school full-time in 2000 and ultimately earning his doctorate in Biophysics from The Ohio State University in 2005.

Dr. Phelps’ research focuses on translational therapy development for cancer. In particular, he has pursued enhanced understanding of exposure-response relationships and has used this information to inform critical decisions for preclinical and clinical development projects. Current funded research in his lab includes an NIH grant aimed at developing an immunoliposomal formulation of a phosphatase activator in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (R01CA197844, Phelps, multi-PI). Dr. Phelps’ group is pioneering the characterization of this novel targeted strategy for overcoming typical barriers in drug development of small molecules, including narrow therapeutic windows and poor drug-like pharmacokinetic properties. Also at the preclinical stage, Dr. Phelps is developing engineered exosomes loaded with therapeutic micro-RNA for treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma (UH3TR000914, Phelps multi-PI). A third grant on which Dr. Phelps serves as multi-PI aims to understand the mechanisms involved in development of resistance to the immunomodulatory therapies and overcoming this resistance in multiple myeloma (R01CA201382, Phelps multi-PI). In this grant, Dr. Phelps’ group is working to identify drug transporters involved in IMiD resistance and how these may play a role in plasma cells resistant to the immunomodulatory drugs, lenalidomide and pomalidomide. Dr. Phelps also serves as multi-PI on an internal OSU grant where he and collaborators are working to individualize high-dose melphalan therapy. On this project, Dr. Phelps’ group is applying statistical modeling and simulation approaches to facilitate better dose decisions in myeloma patients undergoing autologous stem cell transplant.

Beyond these currently funded projects where Dr. Phelps has a lead role, he also has a rich history of funding as a PI or as a co-I on translational projects aimed at development of new therapies for cancer. He previously served as PI on funded projects to develop novel STAT3 inhibitors for pancreatic cancer (R21CA173473, Phelps PI) and for quantitative pharmacology characterization of TG02, a novel cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor, in patients with B-cell malignancies (Contract GRT00034112, Phelps, PI). He currently serves as Co-I on institutional and programmatic grants with the goals of evaluating new agents or new combinations in early phase clinical trials (UM1CA186712, Phelps Co-I), identifying and developing natural products as potential anti-cancer agents (P01CA125066, Phelps Co-I), supporting investigators pursuing translational research projects though OSU’s Center for Clinical and Translational Science (UL1TR001070, Phelps Co-I), and supporting researchers needing expertise in bioanalytical assay development/validation or PK/PD experimental design and data analysis (P30CA016058, Phelps Co-I).

Dr. Phelps’ research is published in 101 journal articles, including 90 research articles and 11 reviews or technical bulletins. He is first or senior author on 25 of these, including articles published in top journals in pharmacology and other high-impact journals such as the Journal of Clinical Oncology (current impact factor, 20.98), Blood (11.84), Clinical Cancer Research (9.62), and Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics (7.90). His Google Scholar H-index is 25 with 3,036 citations (Mitch A. Phelps).

With respect to mentoring and teaching, Dr. Phelps has served as primary advisor for 5 PhD students, 2 MS students, 4 postdoctoral researchers, and 3 Research Associates. He currently advises and mentors 1 PhD student, 2 Research Scientists, 2 Research Specialists, and 3 Research Associates. His primary mentees have assumed scientist positions within private industry, scientist or reviewer positions with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and post-doctoral positions in academia. Overall, Dr. Phelps has served as advisor or co-advisor for approximately 50 students and has mentored an additional approximately 15 Research Associates and Research Scientists.

Dr. Phelps' teaching includes courses at the bachelors, professional PharmD, and graduate levels with a primary focus on drug development and pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics. He previously or currently served as course director for graduate courses focused on PK/PD data analysis, modeling and simulation (PHR8020, Pharmacokinetics and PHR8025, Pharmacometrics), a graduate level course in applied preclinical and clinical PK/PD (PHR 7584, Applied Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics), a professional PharmD course focused on analytical methodology applied in clinical and research laboratories (PHR6260, Laboratory and Diagnostic Testing), and an undergraduate level survey course in pharmaceutical research (PHR 4320, Drug Discovery and Development).

Dr. Phelps’ professional service record includes serving on reviewer panels for internal grants at OSU, international funding agencies, and the NIH. He also serves as ad hoc reviewer for several pharmacology and cancer focused journals, as guest-editor for a previous oncology focused edition of Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics, and most recently he has accepted positions on the Editorial Boards of Current Cancer Therapy Reviews and Current Pharmacogenomics & Personalized Medicine. Dr. Phelps is a member of several professional organizations focused on drug development and pharmacology, and he has served in supportive and leadership roles within some of these organizations.

Overall, Dr. Phelps' research has been recognized for its merit through expert peer review as demonstrated in his grant funding through NIH and other funding institutions and publication record in top pharmacology and high impact journals. He has been active as an instructor, receiving positive student and peer reviews for teaching, and he has served in numerous service roles at his institution and among his peers in professional organizations, manuscript and grant review panels. In summary, Dr. Phelps has been highly active and has made significant contributions as an Assistant and Associate Professor in research, teaching and service.


  • 2005, Ph.D., Ohio State University, The
  • 1999, None Indicated, Ohio State University, The
  • 1992, B.A., Ohio Wesleyan University


  • Outstanding Graduate Student Award, 2005
  • Predoctoral Fellowship, 2004
  • Predoctoral Fellowship, 2003 - 2004
  • Ray Travel Award, 2003
  • Hazel Brown Teaching Award, 2001