The faculty from the School of Pharmacy has identified and actively pursues scholarly activities in collaboration with the students and faculty from other institutions of Puerto Rico and other countries in the areas of teaching, discovery, integration, application and artistic creativity.  The teaching and research laboratories, the Center for Drug Information and Research, the Museum of Pharmacy and Medicinal Plants and the pharmacy practice sites at the community and institutional settings provide a rich environment to pursue research.

We invite you to explore our School of Pharmacy WEB SITE, meet our faculty, view other research facilities at the Medical Sciences Campus, and learn about research and scholarship at the University of Puerto Rico – School of Pharmacy.



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New drugs are discovered from two main sources: natural products and laboratory synthesis of compounds. The research performed in the Drug Discovery Laboratory involves the screening of local flora for potential biological activity that could be useful in combating disease. The other research performed in laboratory is in the area of chemical synthesis as to generate compounds with biological activity.  Two examples are: (1) synthesis of cyclic disulfides as inhibitors of enzymes with active-site cysteines and (2) novel Rac inhibitors as therapeutic agents for breast cancer metastasis.


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Research in the design and development of novel drug products from preformulation, formulation, up to production including stability,  quality and in-vitro in-vivo correlation, is performed. Solids, liquids and semisolids dosage form technology; pharmaceutical material characterization and performance; process analytical technology (PAT); controlled release and novel delivery systems such as nanotechnology, microspheres, liposomes, implants,  microcapsules and mucoadhesives are studied.


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Cancer Research is conducted to understand the biological principles underlying tumor development and the study of in vitro cancer cell systems to determine the signaling pathways involved in the cellular responses to novel caner therapeutic treatments.  Emphasis is given to study the role of neuregulins in the regulation of the epidermal growth factor receptor gene.  The ultimate aim is to contribute in providing novel treatment alternatives to cancer patients.

Diabetes and cardiovascular diseases the insulin receptor (IR) pathway controls several important biological functions, such as regulation of glucose metabolism, stimulation of lipogenesis, inhibition of lipolysis, and stimulation of amino acid transport into cells, growth, DNA synthesis, and cell replications. The molecular basis for these effects remains poorly understood. Studies in this laboratory are designed to investigate the intracellular interactions and dynamics of the insulin receptor signaling pathway affected by the serious medical conditions observed in Type 2 diabetes.



Current research goals encompass the areas of clinical trial simulations and population pharmacokinetic data analysis, and modeling of high-dose intravenous vitamin therapy in healthy volunteers and cancer patients in order to improve drug efficacy. Another area of interest is in pharmacogenomics translational research as to better understand the genetic basis of the observed variability in the response to medications in Puerto Ricans, including adverse and desired effects, as well as drug metabolism.


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The Pharmaceutical Sciences Research Support Unit responds directly to the Chair of the Pharmaceutical Sciences Department. Its mission is to promote research by making available to offering our investigators instruments such as HPLCs, GC-MSs, NMR, among others and facilitating physical complementary spaces.  These areas include a fully equipped laboratory dedicated to chemical and biological research, graduate student offices, a small conference room, and a general documentation and administration room.

Center for Drug Information and Research

In 2009, as a response to the increased access to drug information throughout mass media services, and as a need to operationalize research activities already provided by its faculty, the University of Puerto Rico, School of Pharmacy, decided to expand the scope of the services provided by School of Pharmacy’s Drug Information Center (DIC). As a result, the Center for Drug Information and Research (CDIR) was created.

The CDIR serves as the focal point for drug information, research, education, and service within the University of Puerto Rico School of Pharmacy. The CDIR is the first academic-based research center in Puerto Rico solely dedicated to answer drug related information inquiries, provide health service research support consultations, and the development, implementation and evaluation of pharmacy educational programs. The mission of the CDIR is to improve drug therapy in Puerto Rico through drug information services, and educational, clinical and novel research initiatives.

The CDIR replaces the School of  Pharmacy’s  Drug Information Center, founded in 1973. The CDIR continues to offer the drug information services provided by the DIC since its inception, which consists of providing up-to-date drug information to health care professionals and students in Puerto Rico and abroad. However, the CDIR expands its drug information services spectrum by providing specialized talks to the community in Puerto Rico. In addition to the drug information services, the CDIR pursues its mission by implementing educational, clinical and novel research initiatives.

The educational initiatives offered by the Center seeks to provide students, practitioners and patients with up-to-date and accessible information on the best practices in pharmacotherapy. The clinical initiatives strengthen the ties between education and practice by giving faculty and pharmacy students the opportunity to apply principles of pharmaceutical care to patients in various settings, and the research initiatives focus on generating new scientific knowledge with practical application in improving access to and outcomes of pharmaceutical care for patients in Puerto Rico.

The CDIR is located at the 5th floor of the Conrado Asenjo Medical Sciences Campus Library, University of Puerto Rico. For additional information, please contact:

José Josue Hernández Muñoz, RPh, MPH, MS, PhD
Center for Drug Information and Research
PO Box 365067
San Juan, Puerto Rico 00936-5067
787-758-2525 ext. 1516