Plough Center Personnel

faculty/staff photo
Harry Kochat, PhD


There is a relatively small segment of natural leaders in the pharmaceutical business world; individuals who seem able to build relationships, trust, and rapport with almost anyone, and then are able to broker the relationships and make connections between people, creating partnerships, collaborations and alliances, and motivating forward momentum to ‘get things done.’ Dr. Kochat stands at the forefront of this fastest changing pharmaceutical science technology paradigm with proven executive management track record with increasing role of responsibilities with exponential levels of success. 

As a calculated risk-taker with compassionate mindset and deep drug development knowledge Dr. Kochat has championed all phases of drug discovery and development focusing to meet the clinical unmet needs of patients discovering life changing medicines to give terminally ill human being a second chance to live with dreams and hopes. He is recognized with plus quarter century for discoveries, designing innovations, landing and leading critical business development strategies and incubating corporate success oriented new business models. He has served in senior executive role for a fast grown pharmaceutical company based in Texas for over 17 years with verifiable year-after-year success achieving corporate achievements, and business growth objectives within start-up, turnaround, and rapid-change environments.

Embracing the core values of integrity, team building leadership and in-depth knowledge and experience to bridge scientifically sound and technically innovative ideas, Dr. Kochat has over 400 issued domestic and international patents and over 60 peer journal scientific publications under his belt. Dr. Kochat holds a Ph.D. degree in organic chemistry while working at Purdue University as an exchange international scholar and 6 years of additional postdoctoral fellowships between Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN and William Marsh Rice University, Houston, TX. He also passionately served recently as drug development advocate in KOL role assisting multiple corporations developing generic and orphan drugs for animal health as well as human health treatment indications from laboratory bench scale to patient bedside.  

faculty/staff photo
Nivesh K. Mittal, PhD

Senior Research Specialist

Dr. Mittal has more than five years research experience in the field of nanotechnology based targeted drug delivery systems, development of lyophilization cycles for parenteral drug products, and pre-formulation and formulation development of poorly soluble drug molecules. He has a number of publications including a pending patent for liposomes for hematological malignancies. He has industrial experience in the development of novel drug delivery systems and is a validated fill team member for the sterile manufacturing of aseptic drug products under cGMP for pre-clinical and Phase I and Phase II clinical studies. He trains professionals from industry in the development of validated HPLC assay’s for analytical and stability testing of parenteral drug products. He also instructs on how aseptically manufactured drug products can be evaluated for their sterility. Dr. Mittal’s experience and expertise of formulation, manufacturing and analysis of sterile drug products make him an essential part of the team at The Plough Center.

faculty/staff photo
Bivash Mandal, PhD

Senior Research Specialist

Dr. Mandal has more than 5 years of experience in Research & Development, Manufacturing, and Quality Control of parenteral drug products for preclinical and clinical trial supplies at the Plough Center. He has pharmaceutical industry R & D experience in formulation, process development and scale up. He is a validated fill team member of the cGMP manufacturing facility at Plough Center. He has experience in formulation, aseptic fill-finish operations, filtration, lyophilization, HPLC, stability studies, and sterility testing. He has expertise in the environmental monitoring techniques for the cleanrooms. He has over 8 years of academic research experience in nanotechnology based parenterals for malignant and infectious diseases. He instructed Pharm D students on aseptic processing and sterile compounding techniques. He has a number of scientific journal publications, US patent application, and conference presentations. In November 2014, he received the prestigious AAPS Graduate Research Award in FDD sponsored by Bristol-Myers Squibb Company.

faculty/staff photo
Gwen Stornes

Senior Research Specialist
Plough Center for Sterile Drug Delivery Systems

Stornes has more than 33 years of experience at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, with more than 25 of those years in the former Parenteral Medications Laboratory - now Plough Center for Sterile Drug Delivery Systems. She has over 25 years experiience in instructing/training pharmaceutical industry personnel in procedures used in aseptic preparation and processing of sterile product. She is a validated team member of the sterile parenteral products manufacturing team. She is responsible for environmental monitoring and all other routine monitoring and testing required for the operation of the Plough Center for Sterile Drug Delivery Systems cleanroom facility. She also has the role of research support in the Plough Center.

staff image
Frank P. Horton, II

Senior Research Specialist

Frank Horton has extensive experience in the development and validation of steam sterilization and dry heat processes as well as the validation of lyophilization processes.  He has more than 20 years experience in training personnel in aseptic processing of parenteral dosage forms in both industry as well as academia.  He is a validated fill team member and is involved in all contract manufacturing for Phase I clinical trials.  He previously was involved in educating pharmacy students in aseptic techniques and processing.  He is a lab instructor in the “Hands-On Training program in aseptic Processing”.  His background work involved developing and implementing in-vivo and in-vitro methods to test product efficacy in the areas of Skincare, Suncare and Gastrointestinal products.  In addition, using transdermal drug delivery, he was involved in developing a screening model to evaluate the effects of marketed and experimental products for specific skin conditions.

faculty/staff photo
Howard Nguyen

Quality Specialist

Mr. Nguyen has over 15 years of technical experience in a pharmaceutical and manufacturing environment with an emphasis on research & development, laboratory facility space and requirements, quality control, and production. At GTx Inc., he has maintained and overseen assigned laboratory equipment and facilities in compliance with all applicable regulatory requirements (EPA, OSHA, and FDA) which include equipment calibration and maintenance and environmental monitoring. He has extensive knowledge in qualification and validation, industry specific laboratory software & hardware, and GxPs regulatory safety measures. He also provided technical guidance in area of expertise as well as drafting and review of technical GxPs documentation such as investigations and SOPs. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience on regulatory requirements to the GMP facility at UTHSC.

Contact Us

Harry Kochat, PhD
Phone: (901) 448-1440
Cell: (210) 378-3068
Fax: (901) 448-6092