Rebecca Miranda Romero, PhD
Faculty Directory

Rebecca Miranda RomeroPhD

Rebecca Miranda RomeroPhD

Lecturer, Pharmacology and Pharmaceutical Sciences

Department of Pharmacology and Pharmaceutical Sciences

Rebecca Romero received her PhD from the Keck School of Medicine at USC in biochemistry and molecular biology with an emphasis in computational chemistry. She is a lecturer in the Department of Pharmacology and Pharmaceutical Sciences, and her focus is to teach and help coordinate graduate and pharmaceutical courses for students in the USC School of Pharmacy. Romero’s lecture topics have included: functional group chemistry, acids and bases, buffer solutions, kinetics and stability of pharmaceuticals, biopharmaceutics, dissolution, absorption and permeability, pharmaceutical formulations (solutions, emulsions and tablets), aerosols, intestinal drug transporters, ointments, creams and lotions, and transdermal delivery, liposomes, biologics, nanoparticles/microparticles, polymers, nasal and pulmonary delivery, nucleic acids, docking to protein targets, basic pharmacokinetics and drug design.

Romero is also interested in integrating the basic science courses and has been active in helping to convert the basic science PharmD curriculum from the lecture-only format to a more learner-centered, project-based approach.

Areas of Expertise

  • In Silico Pharmacokinetics
  • Biochemistry
  • Computational Chemistry
  • Pharmaceutical Formulations
  • Education

    Keck School of Medicine of USC

    PhD

  • Links
  • Research Focus

    Pharmacokinetics

    Simulation of Pharmacokinetics in Silico

    Dr. Romero's current research interests are in pharmacokinetics and the simulation of pharmacokinetics in silico. Previous research interest includes analysis of the structure of DNA and trinucleotide repeat DNA associated with Fragile X syndrome, a genetic disease that results in mental impairment. She is also interested in nucleic acid structures and the design of nucleic acid-based therapeutics using computational approaches and experimental work involving electrophoresis and chemical probing.

  • Selected Articles

    Evaluation of in-class and online discussion meetings in a biopharmaceutics problem-based learning class

    Currents in Pharmacy Teaching and Learning

    2016 To evaluate faculty-led discussion meetings (with about eight students) conducted face-to-face (in-class) or by synchronous, real-time videoconference (online), in a biopharmaceutics course taught in a facilitated problem-based learning (PBL) format.

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    Evaluation of in-class and online discussion meetings in a biopharmaceutics problem-based learning class

    Currents in Pharmacy Teaching and Learning
    Asma El-Magboub, Ian S. Haworth, Brian T. Sutch, Rebecca M. Romero

    2016 To evaluate faculty-led discussion meetings (with about eight students) conducted face-to-face (in-class) or by synchronous, real-time videoconference (online), in a biopharmaceutics course taught in a facilitated problem-based learning (PBL) format.

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    Biological targets and pharmacology of curcumin

    Book Chapter
    Asma El-Magboub ,Pornchai Rojsitthisak, Chawanphat Muangnoi, Wisut Wichitnithad, Rebecca M. Romero, Ian S Haworth

    2014 Curcumin is the major component of the yellow dye of turmeric, an Indian spice that is extracted from the rhizome of the tropical plant Curcuma longa, which belongs to the Zingiberaceae family. In this chapter, we discuss the pharmacological activities of curcumin and explore the molecular bases for these activities. We then review the proven and potential clinical uses of curcumin. Curcumin is well known historically as a curative agent, but its mechanism of action is intricate. The pharmacological effects of curcumin appear to be the result of a synergism of networks of weak biochemical interactions with multiple biological targets in interrelated signaling pathways. These targets include enzymes such as cyclooxygenase, lipoxygenase and protein kinases, and transcription factors such as NF-κB, STAT and Nrf2. Modulation of these molecules influences downstream affectors that produce the antiinflammatory, antioxidant, chemopreventive, anticancer, and antimicrobial activities of curcumin. These effects have been examined in clinical trials of curcumin for pain and inflammatory diseases, cancer, Alzheimer disease, cardiovascular diseases, and diabetes. The trials have used variable doses of curcuminwith different frequencies and duration, with the general conclusion that high doses of curcumin at the level of grams are required to obtain therapeutic effects.

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    Curcumin: Synthesis, Emerging Role in Pain Management and Health Implications

    Book Chapter

    2014 Examples of plant-derived pharmaceuticals that have become the focus of continuous and exponential research and development interest have, to date, been somewhat scarce. After a long period, the last two decades have been characterized by a 100-fold increase in the number of scientific articles published annually that are of relevance to the use of curcumin in biomedicine.

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    Design, synthesis and biological activities of curcumin prodrugs

    Book Chapter
    Asma El-Magboub ,Pornchai Rojsitthisak, Chawanphat Muangnoi, Wisut Wichitnithad, Rebecca M. Romero, Ian S Haworth

    2014 Curcumin has many potential pharmacological effects and may have therapeutic applications in many disease states, as discussed in detail in the previous chapter. However, the potential clinical efficacy of curcumin is limited by its physicochemical properties of poor water solubility and instability, which result in low bioavailability. Prodrugs of curcumin offer an approach to improvement of the biopharmaceutical and pharmacokinetic properties, and may allow exploitation of the pharmacological effects of curcumin. In this chapter, we first review the physicochemical and pharmacokinetics of curcumin. We then describe the design of curcumin prodrugs with enhanced water solubility and increased chemical stability that can be converted back to free curcumin upon bioactivation in vivo. We highlight recent achievements in this area, with a focus on the design, synthesis and evaluation of prodrugs based on promoieties including amino acids, fatty acids, nucleic acids, dicarboxylic acids, and polymeric materials such as hyaluronic acid and polyethylene glycol. This chapter provides the basis for optimization of the physicochemical and biopharmaceutical properties and the biological activities of curcumin prodrugs, with the goal using of these curcumin derivatives in clinical applications.

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    Information intervention in the pharmaceutical sciences

    Med Ref Serv Q

    2012 Professional guidelines state that higher-order thinking skills are a desirable outcome of pharmacy education. In this context, courses in pharmaceutics at the University of Southern California are taught in a learner-centered manner that requires use of chemical reference sources and interpretation of physicochemical information for drug molecules.

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