Mirela Olympia Fagarasan Palmer, Phd
Editor in Chief
Mirela Olympia Fagarasan Palmer, Phd
Professor of Neuropharmacology

University of Southern California
Los Angeles, California, USA
Phone: (619) 204-3342
E-mail: olympiapalmer@yahoo.com


  • 1982 – 1986 Ph.D., Neurobiology and Neuroscience, Graduated with Honors Institute of Medicine and Pharmacy, Cluj, Romania
  • 1987 – 1987 Pharmacokinetics USUHS, Bethesdda, MD, USA
  • 1987 – 1992 Ph.D, Neurochemistry National Institute of Health. FAES Graduate School, Bethesda, MD, USA



Mirela Olympia Fagarasan Palmer works in academia as an internationally recognized neuropharmacology and neuroimmunology researcher. She published more than 500 scientific reports in the field of neuropsychopharmacology and signal transduction.

She is leading a laboratory interested in understanding the fundamental neurobiological mechanisms of neuropsychiatric disorders to contribute at development of new pharmacological treatments. Uses genetic, neuroendocrine and neurochemical methods. She recognized the role of the immune system in modulating neuropsychiatric diseases and we are developing in vitro cellular models and in vivo animal models to study the neuro-immune interactions under normal and disease states.

She has successfully combined research, teaching, administration and clinical care and continue to work on advancing and understanding the cause of serious mental illness.

Research Interest

Neuropsychopharmacology, Aging,Alzheimer's Disease, Neurodegeration, Regeneration, Signal Transduction.

Professional Activities:

  • Senior Scientist National Institute of Mental Health September 1987 – September 1992
  • Senior Scientist George Washington University, Dept.of Biochemistry September 1992 – September 1994
  • Senior scientist Mount Sinai School of Medicine, Dept. of Psychiatry September 1994 – September 1996
  • Professor Neuropharmacology University of Southern California September 1996 – Present



Honors and Awards

Honors and Awards

  • Romanian National Merit Scholar, 1971.
  • Fellowship Visiting Scientist Karolinska Institute, Sweden, Dept. of Psychiatry, 1980.
  • Fogarty  Felowship Visiting Scientist, NIH, 1987-1992
  • Invited Speaker: The Fifth International Conference on Phenothiazines,ACNP  Meeting 1986
  • International Congress on Distress, Neuroimmunomodulation and Ontogeny, Italy 1989.
  • Invited Speaker, Fidia, Washington, DC,1987, 1989,  1990.
  • Invited Speaker, National Institute on Aging, Baltimore, MD, 1990, 1995
  • Invited Speaker, Hoechst Celanese Corporation, Sommerville, NJ, 1990.
  • Invited Professor, Institute of Medicine and Pharmacy, NCI, Romania, 1991.
  • Invited Speaker, Neuropsychiatry Branch, NIMH, Washington, DC,1990, 1992, 1993.Invited Speaker, Department of Pharmacology, University of North Texas, Fort   Worth,TX, 1994.
  • Invited Speaker, Molecular Oncology Branch, NCI, 1994.
  • Invited Speaker, American Red Cross, Washington, DC, 1994.
  • Invited Speaker, Clinical Brain Disorders Branch, NIMH, Washington, DC, 1994.
  • Invited Speaker, Molecular Oncology Laboratory, NCI, 1994.
  • Chair Symposium, Neurobiology of Interleukin-1, XIX CINP Congress, Washington DC, 1994.
  • Chair Panel, Interleukin-1: Relation to Neurodegenerative Process, Winter Neuropeptide
  •  Conference, Breckenridge, Colorado, 1995.
  • Invited Speaker, Parke-Davis, Ann Arbor, MI, 1996.
  • Invited Guest and Presentor - ACNP,  1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992,
  • 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996 1997, 2002.
  • Invited Speaker, UCSD, CA 1997
  • Member CINP
  • Member, Society for Neuroscience


  1. Fagarasan, M. O.; Galea, V.; Toader, S.: "Chronic poisoning with trifluoperazine in rats. Kinetics of metabolites and hematologic changes." Clujul Medical, 57(2): 143-146, 1984.
  2. Fagarasan, M. O Quai, I.; Popa, L.;.: "Histopathological neuronal changes in acute intoxications with psychotropic drugs." Probleme de Medicine Legala, 17-18: 206-209, 1985.
  3. Fagarasan, M. O.; Fagarasan, E.: "Determination of hydroxi-metabolites of amitriptyline by mass spectrometry. Revista de Chimie, 37 (8): 775-726, 1986.
  4. Fagarasan, M. O.; Eskay, R.; Axelrod, J.: "Interleukin 1 potentiates the secretion of beta-endorphin induced by secretagogues in a mouse pituitary cell line (AtT-20). Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 86: 2070-2073, 1989.
  5. Fagarasan, M. O.; Axelrod, J.: "Interleukin 1 amplifies the action of pituitary secretagogues via protein kinases.  International J. Neurosci., 51, 311-313, 1990.
  6. Fagarasan, M. O.; Bishop, J. F.; Rinaudo, M. S.; Axelrod, J.: "Interleukin 1 induces early protein phosphorylation and requires only a short exposure for late induced secretion of beta-endorphin in a mouse pituitary cell line." Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 87, 2229-2555, 1990.
  7. Fagarasan, M. O.; Aiello, F.; Muegge, K.; Durum, S.; Axelrod, J.: "Interleukin 1 induces beta-endorphin secretion via Fos and Jun in AtT-20 pituitary cells. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA,  87, 7871-7874, 1990.
  8. Fagarasan, M. O.; Axelrod, J.; Catt, J. K.: "Interleukin 1 potentiates agonist induced secretion of beta-endorphin in anterior pituitary cells." Biochem. and Biophys. Res. Comm. 173 (3): 988-993, 1990.
  9. Fagarasan, M. O.; Arora, P. V.; Axelrod, J.: "Interleukin 1 potentiates the secretion of b-endorphin induced by secretagogues: Dynamics of interleukin 1 internalization in pituitary cells. Prog. Neuro-Psychopharmacol. Biol. Psychiat., 15, 551-560, 1991.
  10. Fagarasan, M. O.: "Effects of IL-1 on AtT-20 cells: Methods and Overview. Neurobiology of Cytokines. Methods in Neurosciences, Vol. 16, Erol de Souza, (ed.) 327-341, 1993.
  11. Moody, T. W.; Fagarasan, M. O.; Zia, F.; Cesnjoy, M.; Goldstein, A. L.: "Thymosin Alpha 1 down regulates the growth of human non-small cell lung cancer cells in vitro and in vivo". Cancer Res., 53, 5214-5218, 1993.
  12. Moody, T.; W.;  Zia, F. Venugopal; R., Korman, L. ,Y.; Goldstein  A., L, Fagarasan, M. O.,: " Corticotropin -Releasing Factor  stimulate cyclic AMP, arachidonic acid release and growth of lung cancer cells." Peptides,  15, (2): 281-285, 1994.
  13. Zia, F.; Fagarasan, M. O.: Bitar, K.; Coy, D.,H., Pisegna, J.,R.; Wang, S., A., Moody, T.,W. " Pituitary adenilate cyclase activating peptide receptors regulate the growth of non-small lung cancer  cells" Cancer Research 55(21): 4886-91, 1995.
  14. Moody, T.,W.; Fagarasan, M. O.;  Zia, F., " Neuromedin B stimulates arachidonic acid release, c-fos gene expression and the growth of c6 glioma cells". Peptides, 16, (6), :1133-1140., 1995.
  15. Knight, M., Fagarasan, M. O.; Takahashi, K.,  Gebblaoui, A., Z., Ma,Y., Ito, Y. Separation and purification of peptides by high -speed counter-current chromatography." J.  Chromatogr. A, 702 (1-2) :207-214, 1995.
  16. Moody, T., W; Zia, F.; Venugopal, R.; Fagarasan, M. O.; Oie, H.; Hu, V. " GRP receptors are present in non small cell lung cancer cells"  J. of Cellular Biochemistry., Supplement , 24 : 247-56, 1996.
  17. Fagarasan, M. O,; Aisen, P. S.:  "IL-1 and Anti-inflammatory drugs modulate  Amyloid beta cytotoxicity in PC12 cells" . Brain Research 723, 231-234, 1996.
  18. Fagarasan, M. O.; Efthimioupolos, S.: " Mechanism of amyloid beta-peptide (1-42) toxicity in PC12 cells." Molecular Psychiatry 1, 398-403, 1996.
  19. Fagarasan, M. O.; Sevilla D.; Baruch B.; Santoto J.; Marin D.; and Aisen P.S.:  Plasma C3a levels in Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s Research 3, 137-140, 1997.
  20. Badamchian, M; Fagarasan, M.O.; Danner, R.L., Goldstein, A.L. : Thymosin beta 4 reduces lethality and down regulates inflammatory mediators in endotoxin-induced  septic shock. “Int. J. of Imm. Pharm”. 2003







Autoimmune Journal Flyer