wotringDr. Virginia Wotring
Human Performance in Space


BS in Chemistry and Biochemistry, Florida State University, Tallahassee FL USA

Ph.D., Pharmacological and Physiological Science, Saint Louis University, St. Louis, MO, USA. “Antagonism in inhibitory members of the ligand gated ion channel superfamily”. Advisor: Kong-Woo (Peter) Yoon, M.D.

Post-graduate research at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, AL USA centered on structure, function and pharmacology of ligand-gated ion channels of the nervous system.


Associate Professor, Center for Space Medicine and Department of Pharmacology & Chemical Biology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX USA

Deputy Director and Chief Scientist, Translational Research Institute for Space Health Houston, TX USA

Science and Technology Integration Manager, National Space Biomedical Research Institute, Houston, TX USA

Discipline Lead, Pharmacology, NASA Johnson Space Center, Houston TX USA

Research and Teaching Interests

My current research involves examining the changes in physiology and pharmacology that occur in the confined, closed, microgravity, elevated radiation environment of a space mission, one example of an extreme environment. My work ranges from the molecular level to that of the whole human, and includes a wide variety of techniques and collaborations. A recent research project aboard the International Space Station collected and examined medication use data directly from crewmembers during space flight. Other projects include studying women’s health treatments during spaceflight missions, and examination of genes and proteins altered when organisms live in a spaceflight environment. Some background research on pharmacology in space has been published in book form: Space Pharmacology (2012) Springer.

Recent Publications


RS, Bayuse TM, Daniels VR, Wotring VE, Suresh R, Mulcahy RA, Antonsen EL. Supplying a pharmacy for NASA exploration spaceflight: challenges and current understanding. NPJ Microgravity. 2019

Blue RS, Chancellor JC, Antonsen EL, Bayuse TM, Daniels VR, Wotring VE. Limitations in predicting radiation-induced pharmaceutical instability during long-duration spaceflight. NPJ Microgravity. 2019;5:15.

Biomedical findings from NASA's Project Mercury: a case series. NPJ Microgravity. 2018;4:6.

Wotring V, Smith L. Dose Tracker: an iOS app for collection of medication use data from volunteer crewmembers on the International Space Station. Frontiers Physiology. 2018.

Kast J, Yu Y, Seubert CN, Wotring VE, Derendorf H. Drugs in space: Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics in astronauts. Eur J Pharm Sci. 2017 Nov 15;109S:S2-S8.

Jain V, Wotring VE. Medically induced amenorrhea in female astronauts. NPJ Microgravity. 2016;2:16008.

Wotring VE. Chemical Potency and Degradation Products of Medications Stored Over 550 Earth Days at the International Space Station. AAPS J. 2016 Jan;18(1):210-6.

Wotring VE. Medication use by U.S. crewmembers on the International Space Station. FASEB J. 2015 Nov;29(11):4417-23.