Skip Navigation

COVID-19 Update

Due to interest in the COVID-19 vaccines, we are experiencing an extremely high call volume. Please understand that our phone lines must be clear for urgent medical care needs. We are unable to accept phone calls to schedule COVID-19 vaccinations at this time. When this changes, we will update this website. Our vaccine supply remains limited. Read all COVID-19 Vaccine Information.

Patient Care Options | Visitor Guidelines | Coronavirus Information | Self-Checker | Get Email Alerts

James C. Barrow, Ph.D.

Headshot of James C. Barrow
  • Associate Professor of Pharmacology and Molecular Sciences

Research Interests

Pharmacology; medicinal chemistry; and drug discovery in oncology and neuroscience. Voltage-gated ion channel and enzyme inhibitors. more


Dr. James C. Barrow is an associate professor of pharmacology and molecular sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His research focuses the discovery of new drugs for disorders of neurodevelopment.

Dr. Barrow received a B.S. in chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Ph.D. from Harvard University. He then moved to the medicinal chemistry department at Merck Research Laboratories in West Point, working on a variety of drug discovery projects for cardiovascular and central nervous system disorders.

Dr. Barrow has authored or co-authored numerous peer-reviewed articles in the field. He currently sits on the Editorial Advisory Board of the journal ACS Chemical Neuroscience. more


  • Associate Professor of Pharmacology and Molecular Sciences
  • Associate Professor of Oncology

Departments / Divisions

Centers & Institutes



  • Ph.D.; Harvard University (Massachusetts) (1996)
  • B.S.; University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill) (North Carolina) (1991)

Research & Publications

Research Summary

Dr. Barrow’s laboratory is focused on medicinal chemistry approaches to address diseases of neurodevelopment such as schizophrenia. Biological activity and structure-based drug design are used to drive chemistry target selection, and we are developing synthetic methods to efficiently prepare those targets. These efforts are tightly coupled with in vitro and in vivo testing and analysis, in collaboration with other research groups and core facilities at Johns Hopkins University or externally.

At the core, the lab is engaged in the design and synthesis of molecules for a given biological target, analysis of in vitro and in vivo results, as well as further refinement through multiple cycles of synthesis and testing. Advances in reaction methodology, reagent availability, parallel synthesis, and purification technology now allow preparation of compounds in an efficient manner so that we can quickly drive structure-activity relationship studies and identify advanced leads. These advanced leads will have good potency and selectivity for the target of interest, and will be used to test biological hypotheses both in vitro and in vivo to determine if modulating the target is indeed a viable therapeutic strategy. By executing on medicinal chemistry programs, the lab will drive translational science from target and pathway discovery to novel medicines for patients.

Selected Publications

View all on PubMed

Colis L, Ernst G, Sanders S, Liu H, Sirajuddin P, Peltonen K, DePasquale, M, Barrow JC, Laiho, M. Design, Synthesis, and Structure−Activity Relationships of Pyridoquinazolinecarboxamides as RNA Polymerase I Inhibitors. J. Med. Chem. 2014; 157: 4950.

Rao F, Xu J, Fu C, Cha J, Gadalla M, Xu R, Barrow JC, Snyder SH. Inositol pyrophosphates promote tumor growth and metastasis by antagonizing liver kinase B1. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 2015; 112: 1773. PMID: 25617365

Harrison ST, Poslusney MS, Mulhearn JJ, Zhao Z, Kett NR, Schubert JW, Melamed JY, Allison TJ, Patel S, Sanders JM, Sharma S, Smith RF, Hall DL, Robinson RG, Sachs NA, Hutson PH, Wolkenberg SE, Barrow JC. Synthesis and Evaluation of Heterocyclic Catechol Mimics as Inhibitors of Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT). ACS Med. Chem. Lett. 2015, 6, 318.

Uslaner JM, Smith SM, Huszar SL, Pachmerhiwala R, Hinchliffe RM, Vardigan JD, Nguyen SJ, Surles NO, Yao L, Barrow JC, Uebele VN, Renger JJ, Clark J, Hutson PH. T-type calcium channel antagonism produces antipsychotic-like effects and reduces stimulant-induced glutamate release in the nucleus accumbens of rats. Neuropharmacology 2012:62:1413

Calcaterra NE, Hoeppner DJ, Wei H, Jaffe AE, Maher BJ, Barrow JC. Schizophrenia-Associated hERG channel Kv11.1-3.1 Exhibits a Unique Trafficking Deficit that is Rescued through Proteasome Inhibition for High Throughput Screening. Sci Rep. 2016, 6, 19976.

Contact for Research Inquiries

John G. Rangos Sr. Building
855 N. Wolfe Street
Baltimore, MD 21205 map
Phone: 410-955-0894
Fax: 410-955-3023

Activities & Honors


  • Phi Beta Kappa, University of North Carolina, 1986
  • Predoctoral Fellowship, National Science Foundation , 1991
  • Eli Lilly Predoctoral Fellowship, 1995


  • American Chemical Society, 1991
  • NIH Peer Review Committee: Drug Discovery for the Central Nervous System, 2008
  • Society for Neuroscience, 2009
Is this you? Edit Profile
back to top button