David J Kroll, PhD, is a biomedical educator and natural products cancer pharmacologist focusing on the discovery of novel compounds from diverse natural sources, including botanical dietary supplements. He is currently Professor and Chair of the Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences at North Carolina Central University (NCCU). Dr. Kroll is also guest faculty and graduate advisory board member for the MS program in Science and Medical Journalism at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Dr. Kroll holds a BS in Toxicology and a PhD in Pharmacology & Therapeutics. He originally launched his NIH- and American Cancer Society-supported independent academic research program studying the mechanisms of chemotherapeutic drug resistance. As more than half of anticancer drugs are derived from plants, microbes, or marine organisms, Dr. Kroll has always held high regard for nature as a source of chemical diversity in the discovery of drugs for a variety of therapeutic areas and worked at one point with the co-discoverers of Taxol (paclitaxel). In 1995, his historical curiosity and role as a pharmacology professor for pharmacy, medical, and nursing students led him to develop educational modules on the truth and fiction behind herbal remedies and non-botanical supplements. Demand for this objective information extended to the public and Dr. Kroll became a widely sought expert source on supplement quality and misinformation for the print and broadcast media.
Dr. Kroll has grown increasingly dismayed at the bastardization of his research field by an industry that often distorts and misappropriates the peer-reviewed natural products research literature in product marketing. His professional relationships with academic centers for integrative medicine have left him largely discouraged that such lofty institutions also promote questionable approaches in the name of medicine, yet he is encouraged by a handful of investigators in a few centers that truly subscribe to science-based medicine in the rigorous evaluation of therapeutic natural products.
Dr. Kroll is currently funded by the NIH National Cancer Institute to identify and characterize anticancer and chemopreventive pure compounds from milk thistle (Silybum marianum). He also serves on the NCI’s Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine Physician’s Data Query Editorial Board.
Dr. Kroll’s posts for SBM are archived here.
Disclaimer: The views expressed by Dr. Kroll are his alone and do not represent the policies or viewpoints of his department, institution, or research funding agencies. As Dr. Kroll is a PhD basic scientist and not a licensed physician, the information provided is for educational purposes only and should never be used as a replacement for consultation with a licensed and properly accredited medical professional.
Disclosure: Dr. Kroll’s maintains a 12-month faculty appointment that is funded solely by a combination of state funds and NIH research grants. However, his academic duties involve the education and placement of students in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries.