Adjunct Associate Professor of Molecular Pharmacology, Physiology and Biotechnology


Dr. Robert Campbell is currently co-developing a new sophmore seminar with Brown undergraduates. This course, "Precision Medicine or Privileged Medicine?: Addressing disparities in biomedical research" (BIOL-094-E), will focus on the representativeness of biomedical research for people and treatment settings in Rhode Island. The limited inclusiveness and community partnership in biomedical research have been prioritized by NIH and FDA as risks that can undermine who benefits from innovations in precision medicine. This course will launch in September 2018.

Bob has extensive experience with drug discovery and development in industry and academic settings, and was involved in successful global development of 10 new medicines. In addition to his teaching he currently co-leads the Expedited Approvals subteam of the Drug Information Association's Adaptive Design and Bayesian Scientific Working Groups, and is a Whitman Associate at the Marine Biological Labotatory in Woods Hole, MA.

In Spring 2017 he launched a new course at Brown that builds on his experience with evidence and decisions over the life of a therapeutic product. This course, BIOL-2125, focuses on stakeholder needs and the integration of molecular and clinical data to improve decision-making and meet these needs.

Bob worked for 28 years in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry as a scientist, project leader and executive. Successes from his work include development of 10 medicines now used in oncology, cardiovascular, metabolic, endocrine and reproductive medicine. Throughout his years in industry Bob was an active part of leadership teams that made licensing and go/no go decisions for hits, leads, drug candidates and new technologies. Roles included review of clinical sections for New Drug Applications, and presentation of biotechnology products to the US Food and Drug Association and other regulatory agencies. As a bench scientist Bob was an inventor of new protein engineering platforms that combine multiple pharmacological activities into one protein. As a leader he managed molecular biology, reproductive biology, bioinformatics and protein engineering departments; US research, and global pipelines. In 2013-2014 Bob was a deputy delegate to the EFPIA Research Directors Group that implements the strategic agenda for the European Union's Innovative Medicines Initiative - an experience that led him to the multistakeholder orientation of his current teaching and research.

In parallel to his industry career, Bob was active in academic research and teaching. Areas of specialization include protein engineering and molecular pharmacology of glycoprotein hormones (1990s-2000s collaboration with William Moyle at Rutgers) and comparative genomics and repurposing of drug target chemistry to neglected tropical diseases (2000s-present). The latter work has been pursued as a faculty member in the Josephine Bay Paul Center at the Marine Biological Laboratory with the support of NIH (R01) and Foundation funding. In 2003 Bob created a new graduate-level course to engage students at the Rabb School of Brandeis University in drug discovery research for malaria and trypanosomiasis, and subsequently taught at Brandeis from 2003-2010.

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