Mentor Scientist - Jake McDonald

Name:  Jake McDonald, PhD

Title:  Scientist, Director of Environmental Respiratory Health Program, Director of Chemistry and Inhalation Exposure Program

Organization: Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute

Phone: (505) 348-9455


Education: PhD (Environmental Chemistry and Toxicology) 2000, University of Nevada



Dr. McDonald currently is Senior Scientist as well as Director of the Chemistry and Inhalation Exposure Program and Director of the Environmental Respiratory Health Program. Dr. McDonald has 18 years of experience in chemical effects investigations and laboratory studies. He has published 106 manuscripts addressing inhalation exposure issues and research. His research programs examine environmental/occupational hazards, bioaerosols, toxins, radionuclide exposure, chemical threat agents, and new therapeutics. Moreover, his research involves the implementation of analytical chemistry and aerosol science to address questions of environmental relevance. Many of his specific studies have included characterization of dosimetry in animals and humans, assessment of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics in animal models, and intervention studies in animal models of disease and injury.



As a Scientist, Dr. McDonald conducts research that bridges his education and experience in analytical chemistry, aerosol science, and toxicology.  He has experience in the aerosolization/vaporization of gases and particles for a wide range of applications.  He has an interest in developing laboratory exposures that represent “real-world” conditions, and conducting characterizations of these exposures that allow toxicity results to be placed in context of human exposures to either environmental pollutants or drug products.  Dr. McDonald’s work spans from the study of complex mixtures, respiratory drug delivery, animal model development and metabolism in mammals.

Dr. McDonald has served as Principal Investigator or Study Director on studies utilizing a range of animal species.  The environmental research focuses on characterizing hazard of inhaled materials, with a broader scope of characterizing relationships between chemical/physical composition and physiological response.

Dr. McDonald has worked directly on inhalation models for COPD, inflammatory disease, mucous formation, and fibrosis.   These models are used to characterize mechanisms of disease response and to determine the efficacy of candidate therapeutics.


As Director of the Environmental Respiratory Health Program at LRRI, Dr. McDonald is actively involved in several studies assessing the absorption, disposition, metabolism, and excretion of environmental or pharmaceutical agents exposed by several routes of administration.  These studies require measurement of active compounds with and without radiolabels, and also involve identification of unknown metabolites by mass spectrometry and other tools.


As Director, Chemistry and Inhalation Exposure Program, Dr. McDonald oversees development and validation of chemical methods and inhalation exposures that are applied to drug delivery, environmental science, chemical/biological defense, and basic biology (mechanism of disease).


Research Interests

Aerosol Characterization



Inhalation Toxicology

View Publications

Jake McDonald Publications