Dr. Smith earned both his B.A. (Psychology) and Ph.D. (Neuroscience) at The Ohio State University, and continued his training in pharmacogenomics as a postdoctoral scientist and research faculty in the Department of Pharmacology at OSU. Prior to joining the faculty in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Iowa in 2017, Dr. Smith was a scientist in the patient tailoring and neuroscience divisions of Eli Lilly and Company where he both served on and lead strategic efforts in genomics, patient tailoring, and drug discovery in chronic pain.
Dr. Smith's laboratory studies mechanisms of RNA regulation, focusing on spatial and temporal dynamics of RNA expression. A major aim of the laboratory is to identify functional polymorphisms that modulate RNA expression. These polymorphisms are substrate for a number of downstream applications, including genetic association studies in complex genetic disorders and pharmacogenetic analyses, novel drug target identification and validation, and studies on evolutionary selection pressures. The Smith Laboratory also uses transgenic animal models to study fundamental mechanisms of RNA expression and to identify cell type-specific and subcellular RNA expression profiles in central nervous system tissues.