Pharmacy, Natural & Health Sciences

Pharmacy - Faculty Profiles

Portrait of Wei Lei

Wei Lei, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences & Pharmacogenomics

Dr. Wei Lei earned his BS and MS degrees in veterinary sciences and regulatory sciences from Hunan Agricultural University and the University of Arkansas Pine Bluff. He received his Ph.D. in nutritional immunology from the University of Missouri and finished his postdoctoral training in Pharmacology at the University of Arizona. Prior to joining Manchester University, Dr. Lei was an Assistant Professor at the Presbyterian College School of Pharmacy. Dr. Lei’s research goal is to discover novel approaches for improving pain management. By using the animal pain models, Dr. Lei’s laboratory currently focuses on 1) investigating the modulatory activities of some proteins, such as activator of heat shock protein 90 ATPase 1 (Aha1) and glutaminase, on opioid and pain signaling; 2) measuring the analgesic effects of botanicals (i.e., Arnica). If you are interested in Dr. Lei’s research projects, please contact him regarding the available openings.   

Selected Publications

  • Lei W; Kliebe VM, Chen X. An Investigation into the Impact of a Glutaminase Inhibitor, Compound 968, on Nrf2 Signaling. Future Pharm., 2021, 1, 41–47.
  • Smith A, Miles V, Holmes D, Chen X, Lei W. Clinical Trials, Potential Mechanisms, and Adverse Effects of Arnica as an Alternative Medication for Pain Management. Medicines, 2021, 8, 58.
  • Chen X, Drew J, Berney W, Lei W. Neuroprotective Natural Products for Alzheimer’s Disease. Cells, 2021; 10(6):1309.
  • Miles VN, Patel RK, Smith AG, McCall RP, Wu J, Lei W. The Effect of Heat Shock Protein 90 Inhibitor on Pain in Cancer Patients: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Medicina, 2021, 57(1), 5.
  • Vekariya R, Lei W, Ray A, Sainai S, Zhang S, Molnar G, Barlow D, Karlage K, Bilsky E, Houseknecht K, Largent-Milnes T, Streicher J, and Ananthan S. Synthesis and Structure-Activity Relationships of 5’-Aryl-14-alkoxypyridomorphinans: Identification of a Mu Opioid Receptor Agonist/Delta Opioid Receptor Antagonist Ligand with Systemic Antinociceptive Activity and Diminished Opioid Side Effects. Journal of Medical Chemistry, 2020, 63 (14):7663-7694.
  • Stine C, Flohrschutz AT, Mishra S, Blagg BS, Lei W, and Streicher JM. Heat Shock Protein 90 Inhibitors Block Cancer Pain Management by Opioid Drugs in Mouse Chemotherapy-Induced Neuropathy and Cancer Bone Pain Models. Pain, 2020 Aug;161(8):1798-1807.
  • Duron DI, Lei W, Mishra S, Blagg B, and Streicher JM. Inhibition of Heat Shock Protein 90 in the Spinal Cord Strongly Promotes Morphine Anti-Nociception by Increasing ERK MAPK Activation. Science Signaling, 2020, 13: 630.
  • Lei W, Duron D, Stine C, Mishra S, Blagg BS, and Streicher JM. The Alpha Isoform of Heat Shock Protein 90 and the Co-Chaperones p23 and Cdc37 Promote Opioid Anti-Nociception in the Brain, Frontier in Molecular Neuroscience, 2019, 12:294.
  • Lei W, Vekariya RH, Ananthan S, and Streicher JM. The mu/delta opioid dual agonist SRI22141 demonstrates increased anti-nociceptive efficacy with decreased tolerance and dependence in neuropathic pain models. Journal of Pain, 2019, S1526-5900(19)30745-X.
  • Stefanucci A, Lei W, Pieretti S, Novellino E, Dimmito M, Manzoli F, Streicher JM, and Mollica A. On resin click-chemistry-mediated synthesis of novel encephalin analogues with potent anti-nociceptive activity. Scientific Reports, 2019, 9(1):5771.
  • Stefanucci A, Lei W, Pieretti S, Novellino E, Dimmito M, Streicher JM, and Mollica A. Novel cyclic biphalin analogues by Ruthenium-catalysed ring closing metathesis: in vivo and in vitro biological profile. ACS Medicinal Chemistry Letters, 2019, 10(4):450-456.
  • Shah N, Kumar S, Zaman N, Pan CC, Bloodworth JC, Lei W, Streicher JM, Hempel N, Mythreye K, and Lee NY. Regulation of Microtubule Acetylation and Intracellular Transport by TGF-β Activated Kinase 1 (TAK1). Nature Communication, 2018, 9(1):1696.
  • Lei W, Mullen N, McCarthy S, Brann C, Richard P, Cormier J, Edwards K, Bilsky EJ, and Streicher JM. Heat Shock Protein 90 (Hsp90) Promotes Opioid-Induced Anti-Nociception by an ERK Mitogen Activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) Mechanism in Mouse Brain. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2017 292(25): 10414-10428.
  • Stefanucci A, Lei W, Hruby VJ, Streicher, JM, and Mollica A. Evaluation of Opioid Peptide Cyclic Analogues of Biphalin and DPDPE with a Fluorescein-Maleimide Linker as Fluorescent Labeled Bioconjugates. Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry, 2017, 9(9): 859-869.
  • Olson KM, Lei W (Co-First Author), Keresztes A, LaVigne JE, Streicher JM. Novel Molecular Strategies and Targets for Opioid Drug Discovery for the Treatment of Chronic Pain. Yale Journal of Biology & Medicine, 2017, 90, pp.97-110.
  • Lei W, Browning JB Jr, Eichen PA, Rottinghaus GE, Folk WR, Sun GY, Lubahn DB, and Fritsche KL. An Investigation into the Immunomodulatory Activities of Sutherlandia frutescens in Healthy Mice. PLoS ONE, 2016, 11(8): e0160994.
  • Lei W, Browning JB Jr, Eichen PA, Rottinghaus GE, Folk WR, Sun GY, Lubahn DB, and Fritsche KL. Immuno-stimulatory activity of a polysaccharide- enriched fraction of Sutherlandia frutescens occurs by the toll-like receptor-4 signaling pathway. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 2015, 172: 247-253.
  • Lei W, Browning JB Jr, Eichen PA, Brownstein KJ, Folk WR, Sun GY, Lubahn DB, Rottinghaus GE, and Fritsche KL. Unveiling the anti-inflammatory activity of Sutherlandia frutescens using murine macrophages. International Immunopharmacology, 2015, 29(2): 254-262.