Christopher Surratt

Christopher Surratt


Professor and Dean

Dean, College of Pharmacy
Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Professional Summary

NOTE: Dean Surratt is fully engaged with his administrative duties and does not maintain an active research lab at this time.

Dr. Surratt's Ph.D. work helped clarify the mechanism of tRNA processing by RNaseP and its ribozyme component M1 RNA.  As a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, Berkeley, he studied bacterial RNA polymerase MOA and discovered a novel transcriptional proofeading activity.  At the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), NIH, he participated in cloning some of the first opiate and psychostimulant receptor cDNAs and created some of the first site-directed mutants.  He continued opioid receptor research as well as studies on the dopamine transporter, the brain’s “cocaine receptor”, as a faculty member the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and then at Duquesne University.  His virtual (computational) and in vitro pharmacologic work with the dopamine and serotonin transporters has focused on discovering novel antipsychostimulant, antidepressant and anxiolytic medications.  


B.A. Chemistry: University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA,

Ph.D. Chemistry: University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA,

Positions and Work Experience

- Senior Staff Fellow, National Inst. Drug Abuse, NIH, Baltimore, MD

- Assistant Professor of Neuroscience & Psychiatry, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY

- Professor of Pharmacology, Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, PA

Research Support

Grant: #R21MH098127: Investigators:Cascio M, Lapinsky DJ, Surratt CK, 07-01-2013 -06-30-2015 NIMH, NIH. "Photoprobes for Identifying Potential Antidepressant and Antianxiety Medications", Role:co-I. $376,405

Grant: #R01DA027806: Investigators:Madura JD, Surratt CK, Lapinsky DJ, Cascio M, 07-01-2009 -06-30-2015 NIDA, NIH. “CRCNS: Computational and Experimental Study of Dopamine and Serotonin Transporters”, Role:co-I. $1,545,450

Grant: #5R01DA026530: Investigators:Surratt CK, Lapinsky DJ, 07-01-2009 -06-30-2012 NIDA, NIH. “Dopamine Transporter Structure and Function”, Role:PI. $627,250

Grant: #R03DA027081: Investigators:Lapinsky DJ, Surratt CK, 07-01-2009 -06-30-2011 NIDA, NIH. “Non-Tropane Irreversible Dopamine Transporter Ligands”, Role:co-I. $364,182

Grant: #2R15DA016604: Investigators:Surratt CK, 08-01-2007 -07-31-2010 NIDA, NIH. “Monoamine Transporter Structure-Function Studies”, Role:PI. $179,019

Grant: #1R15DA016604-01: Investigators:Surratt CK, 08-01-2003 -07-31-2006 NIDA, NIH. “Dopamine Transporter Structure-Function Studies”, Role:PI. $116,660

Grant: #1R15DA016604-01S1: Investigators:Surratt CK, 08-01-2003 -07-31-2006 NIDA underrepresented minority supplement. “Dopamine Transporter Structure-Function Studies”, Role:PI. $77,914


Peer Reviewed Publications

Yarravarapu N, Geffert L, Surratt CK, Cascio M, Lapinsky DJ (2018. ) Clickable photoaffinity ligands for the human serotonin transporter based on the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (S)-citalopram .Bioorg. Med. Chem. Lett., , 28: ,3431-5.

Wasko MJ, Witt-Enderby PA, Surratt CK (2018. ) DARK classics in chemical neuroscience: ibogaine .ACS Chem. Neurosci., , 9: ,2475-83.

Hong WC, Wasko MJ, Wilkinson DS, Hiranita T, Li L, Hayashi S, Snell DB, Madura JD, Surratt CK, Katz JL (2018. ) Dopamine transporter dynamics of N-substituted benztropine analogs with atypical behavioral effects .J. Pharmacol. Exp. Ther., , 366: ,527-40.

Jean B, Surratt CK, Madura JD (2017. ) Molecular dynamics of conformation-specific dopamine transporter-inhibitor complexes .J. Mol. Graph. Model., , 76: ,143-51.

Talbot JN, Geffert LM, Jorvig JE, Goldstein RI, Nielsen CL, Wolters NE, Amos ME, Munro CA, Dallman E, Mereu M, Tanda G, Katz JL, Indarte M, Madura JD, Choi H, Leak RK, Surratt CK (2016. ) Rapid and sustained antidepressant properties of an NMDA antagonist/monoamine reuptake inhibitor identified via transporter-based virtual screening .Pharmacol. Biochem. Behav., , 150-151: ,22-30.

Hong WC, Kopajtic TA, Xu L, Lomenzo S, Jean B, Madura JD, Surratt CK, Trudell ML, Katz JL (2016. ) 2-Substituted 3ß-aryltropane cocaine analogs produce atypical effects without inducing inward-facing dopamine transporter conformations .J. Pharmacol. Expt. Ther., , 356: ,624-34.

Surratt CK, Madura JD (2016. ) In silico modeling of brain receptors for antidepressants, psychostimulants, and other CNS-active drugs .Front. Pharmacol., , 6: ,302.

Wasko MJ, Pellegrene KA, Madura JD, Surratt CK (2015. ) A role for fragment-based drug design in developing novel lead compounds for central nervous system targets .Front. Neurol., , 6: ,197.

Leak RK, O’Donnell LA, Surratt CK (2015. ) Using active learning to teach pharmacology graduate students how to write an NIH grant proposal .Am. J. Pharmaceu. Educ., , 79: ,Article 138.

Nolan TL, Geffert LM, Kolber BJ, Madura JD, Surratt CK (2014. ) Discovery of novel-scaffold monoamine transporter ligands via in silico screening with the S1 pocket of the serotonin transporter .ACS Chem. Neurosci., , 5: ,784-92.

Immadisetty K, Geffert LM, Surratt CK, Madura JD (2013. ) New design strategies for antidepressant drugs .Expert Opin. Drug Discov., , 8: ,1399-414.

Manepalli S, Surratt CK, Madura JD, Nolan TL (2012. ) Monoamine transporter structure, function, dynamics and drug discovery: a computational perspective .Am. Assoc. Pharmaceu. Sci. J., , 14: ,820-31.

Lapinsky DJ, Yarravarapu N, Nolan TL, Surratt CK, Lever JR, Tomlinson M, Vaughan RA, Deutsch HM (2012. ) Evolution of a compact photoprobe for the dopamine transporter based on (±)-threo-methylphenidate (Ritalin, Concerta) .ACS Med. Chem. Lett., , 3: ,378-82.

Lapinsky DJ, Aggarwal S, Nolan TL, Surratt CK, Lever JR, Acharya R, Vaughan RA, Pandhare A, Blanton MP (2012. ) (±)-2-(N-tert-butylamino)-3’-[125I]-iodo-4’-azidopropiophenone: a dopamine transporter and nicotinic acetylcholine receptor photoaffinity ligand based on bupropion (Wellbutrin, Zyban) .Bioorg. Med. Chem. Lett., , 22: ,523-6.

Manepalli S, Geffert LM, Surratt CK, Madura JD (2011. ) Discovery of novel selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors through development of a protein-based pharmacophore .J. Chem. Inf. Model., , 51: ,2417-26.

Nolan TL, Lapinsky DJ, Talbot JN, Indarte M, Liu Y, Manepalli S, Geffert LM, Amos ME, Taylor PN, Madura JD, Surratt CK (2011. ) Identification of a novel selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor by coupling monoamine transporter-based virtual screening and rational molecular hybridization .ACS Chem. Neurosci., , 2: ,544-52.

Lapinsky DJ, Velagaleti R, Yarravarapu N, Liu Y, Huang Y, Surratt CK, Lever JR, Foster JD, Achayra R, Vaughan RA, Deutsch HM (2011. ) Azido-iodo-N-benzyl derivatives of threo-methylphenidate (Ritalin, Concerta): rational design, synthesis, pharmacological evaluation, and dopamine transporter photoaffinity labeling .Bioorg. Med. Chem., , 19: ,504-12.

Kopajtic TA, Liu Y, Surratt CK, Donovan DM, Newman AH, Katz JL (2010. ) Dopamine transporter-dependent and –independent striatal binding of the benztropine analog JHW 007, a cocaine antagonist with low abuse liability .J. Pharmacol. Exp. Ther., , 335: ,703-14.

Surratt CK, Kamal KM, Wildfong PLD (2011. ) Research funding expectations as a function of faculty teaching/administrative workload .Res. Social Adm. Pharm., , 7: ,192-201.

Van Amburgh JA, Surratt CK, Green J, Gallucci RM, Colbert J, Zatopek SL, Blouin RA (2010. ) Succession planning in U.S. pharmacy schools .Am. J. Pharm. Educ., , 74: ,Article 86.

Indarte M, Liu Y, Madura JD, Surratt CK (2010. ) Receptor-based discovery of a plasmalemmal monoamine transporter inhibitor via high-throughput docking and pharmacophore modeling .ACS Chem. Neurosci., , 1: ,223-33.

Gedeon P, Indarte M, Surratt CK, Madura JD (2010. ) Molecular dynamics of leucine and dopamine transporter proteins in a simulated cell membrane lipid bilayer .Proteins, , 78: ,797-811.

Lapinsky DJ, Aggarwal S, Huang Y, Surratt CK, Lever JR, Foster JD, Vaughan RA (2009. ) A novel photoaffinity ligand for the dopamine transporter based on pyrovalerone .Bioorg. Med. Chem., , 17: ,3770-4.

Indarte M, Madura JD, Surratt CK (2008. ) Dopamine transporter comparative molecular modeling and binding site prediction using the LeuTAa leucine transporter as a template .Proteins, , 70: ,1033-46.

Surratt CK, Desselle SP (2007. ) Pharmacy students’ perception of a teaching evaluation process .Am. J. Pharm. Educ., , 71: ,Article 06.

Ukairo OT, Ramanujapuram S, Surratt CK (2007. ) Fluctuation of the dopamine uptake inhibition potency of cocaine, but not amphetamine, in mammalian cells expressing the dopamine transporter .Brain Res., , 1131: ,68-76.

Surratt CK, Witt-Enderby PA, Johnson DA, Anderson CA, Bricker JD, Davis VL, Firestine SM, Meng WS (2006. ) Development of a neuroscience oriented “methods” course for graduate students of pharmacology and toxicology .Cell. Biol. Educ., , 5: ,188-96.

Surratt CK (2006. ) Creation of a graduate oral/written communication skills course .Am. J. Pharm. Educ., , 70: ,Article 05.

Desselle SP, Surratt CK, Astle J, White LA, Yacovelli L, Barnhisel G, Jewell M, Shippen H, Holmes E (2005. ) Evolution of a required service-learning course: lessons learned and plans for the future .J. Pharm. Teaching, , 12: ,23-40.

Surratt CK, Ukairo OT, Ramanujapuram S (2005. ) Recognition of psychostimulants, antidepressants and other inhibitors of synaptic neurotransmitter uptake by the plasma membrane monoamine transporters .Am. Assoc. Pharmaceu. Sci. J., , 7: ,Article 74.

Surratt CK, Drennen JK, Bricker JD (2005. ) The "research track" concentration, a new PharmD elective option .Am. J. Pharm. Educ., , 69: ,Article 90.

Ukairo OT, Bondi CD, Newman AH, Kulkarni SS, Kozikowski AP, Pan S., Surratt CK (2005. ) Recognition of benztropine by the dopamine transporter (DAT) differs from that of the classical dopamine uptake inhibitors cocaine, methylphenidate and mazindol as a function of a DAT transmembrane 1 aspartic acid residue .J. Pharmacol. Exp. Ther., , 314: ,575-83.

Surratt CK, Adams WR (2005. ) G protein-coupled receptor structural motifs and their application to opioid receptor activation .Curr. Topics Med. Chem., , 5: ,315-24.

Surratt CK, Desselle SP (2004. ) "The Neuroscience Behind Drugs of Abuse", a PharmD service-learning project .Am. J. Pharm. Educ., , 68: ,Article 99.

Surratt CK (2004. ) Increasing the PharmD student's interest in a required neuropharmacology course .Am. J. Pharm. Educ., , 68: ,Article 33.

Wang W, Sonders MS, Ukairo O, Scott H, Kloetzel MN, Surratt CK (2003. ) Dissociation of cocaine high affinity binding and dopamine uptake inhibition at the dopamine transporter .Mol. Pharmacol., , 64: ,430-9.

Spivak CE, Beglan CL, Zöllner C, Surratt CK (2003. ) Beta-funaltrexamine, a gauge for the recognition site of wild-type and mutant H297Q mu-opioid receptors .Synapse, , 49: ,55-60.

Wang D, Surratt CK, Sadee W (2000. ) Calmodulin regulation of basal and agonist-stimulated G protein coupling by the mu opioid receptor (OP3) in morphine pretreated cells .J. Neurochem., , 75: ,763-71.

Zöllner C, Johnson PS, Wang JB, Roy Jr AJ, Layton KM, Wu JM, Surratt CK (2000. ) Control of mu opioid receptor expression by modification of cDNA 5’- and 3'-noncoding regions .Brain Res. Mol. Brain Res., , 79: ,159-62.

Deng HB, Yu Y, Pak Y, O’Dowd BF, George SR, Surratt CK, Uhl GR, Wang JB (2000. ) Role for the C-terminus in agonist-induced mu opioid receptor phosphorylation and desensitization .Biochemistry, , 39: ,5492-9.

Zhang P, Johnson PS, Zöllner C, Wang W, Wang Z, Montes AE, Seidleck BK, Blaschak CJ, Surratt CK (1999. ) Mutation of human mu opioid receptor extracellular "disulfide cysteine” residues alters ligand binding but does not prevent receptor targeting to the cell plasma membrane .Brain Res. Mol. Brain Res., , 72: ,195-204.

Makman MH, Dobrenis K, Surratt CK (1998. ) Properties of mu3 opiate alkaloid receptors in macrophages, astrocytes, and HL-60 human promyelocytic leukemia cells .Adv. Exp. Med. Biol., , 437: ,137-48.

Spivak CE, Beglan CL, Seidleck BK, Hirshbein LD, Blaschak CJ, Uhl GR, Surratt CK (1997. ) Naloxone activation of mu opioid receptors mutated at a histidine residue lining the opioid binding cavity .Mol. Pharmacol., , 52: ,983-92.

Wang JB, Surratt CK (1997. ) Molecular cloning and characterization of receptors for drugs of abuse .Drug Addiction and its Treatment: Nexus of Neuroscience and Behavior, eds. Johnson BA and Roache J, Lippincott-Raven Publishers, Philadelphia, , 295-317.

Uhl GR, Miner L, Donovan D, Sharpe L, Johnson PS, Moriwaki A, Wang JB, Surratt CK (1995. ) Mu opiate receptor: expression, transgenic mice, and influences of C-terminal and 3'-untranslated regions .Analgesia, , 1: ,801-4.

Surratt CK, Johnson PS, Moriwaki A, Seidleck BK, Blaschak CJ, Wang JB, Yuhasz S, Uhl GR (1994. ) Mu opiate receptor structure/function relationships .Regulatory Peptides, , 54: ,289-90.

Surratt CK, Johnson PS, Moriwaki A, Seidleck BK, Blaschak CJ, Wang JB, Uhl GR (1994. ) Mu opiate receptor: charged transmembrane domain amino acids are critical for agonist recognition and intrinsic activity .J Biol Chem, , 269: ,20548-53.

Surratt CK, Wang JB, Yuhasz S, Amzel LM, Kwon HM, Handler JS, Uhl GR (1993. ) Sodium- and chloride-dependent transporters in brain, kidney, and gut: lessons from complementary DNA cloning and structure-function studies .Curr. Opin. Nephrol. Hypertension, , 2: ,744-60.

Persico AM, Schindler CW, Brannock MT, Gonzalez AM, Surratt CK, Uhl GR (1993. ) Dopaminergic gene expression during amphetamine withdrawal .NeuroReport, , 4: ,41-4.

Surratt CK, Persico AM, Yang XD, Edgar SR, Bird GS, Hawkins AL, Griffin CA, Li X, Jabs EW, Uhl GR (1993. ) A human synaptic vesicle monoamine transporter cDNA predicts post-translational modifications, reveals chromosome 10 gene localization and identifies Taq I RFLPs .FEBS Lett., , 318: ,325-30.

Surratt CK, Milan SC, Chamberlin MJ (1991. ) Spontaneous cleavage of RNA in ternary complexes of Escherichia coli RNA polymerase and its significance for the mechanism of transcription .Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, , 88: ,7983-7.

Surratt CK, Carter BJ, Payne RC, Hecht SM (1990. ) Metal ion and substrate structure dependence of the processing of tRNA precursors by RNase P and M1 RNA .J. Biol. Chem., , 265: ,22513-9.

Surratt CK, Lesnikowski Z, Schifman AL, Schmidt FJ, Hecht SM (1990. ) Construction and processing of transfer RNA precursor models .J. Biol. Chem., , 265: ,22506-12.

Roesser JR, Xu C, Payne RC, Surratt CK, Hecht SM (1989. ) Preparation of misacylated aminoacyl-tRNAPhe 's useful as probes of the ribosomal acceptor site .Biochemistry, , 28: ,5185-95.

Carter BJ, Surratt CK, Hecht SM (1988. ) Chemical processing of synthetic and natural tRNA precursors .FASEB J., , 2: ,4621.

Surratt CK, Carter BJ, Hecht SM (1988. ) Processing of a synthetic tRNA precursor model by E. coli RNase P and M1 RNA .Molecular Biology of RNA. UCLA Symposia on Molecular and Cellular Biology, New Series, ed. Cech TR, Allan R Liss Inc., New York, NY, , 94: ,79-88.

Surratt CK, Carter BJ, Hecht SM (1988. ) Synthetic "tRNA dimers": a novel approach to the study of transfer RNA biosynthesis .J. Cell. Biochem., , 12D: ,30.

Post Graduate Training and Education

Postdoctoral Fellow, Biochemistry and Molecular Cell Biology, University of California - Berkeley, , Berkeley, CA

Contact Information

Academic - Dean, College of Pharmacy