Full Professor, Cellular Biology Department, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Universidad de Concepción Chile.
B.S. in Biochemistry and Ph.D. in Biological Sciences, with specialization in Molecular and Cellular Biology, Universidad de Concepción, Chile
Pasaje Harrington 287 Playa Ancha. Valparaíso, Chile.
Neurobiology of glia-neuron interactions in the hypothalamus, and how diets affect feeding behavior and neurogenesis. My research team consists of undergraduate and graduate students and national and international collaborators. Our principal aim is to elucidate the role of glial proteins in the sensing of nutrients and how their modulation affects feeding behavior. Specifically, we study the interaction of tanycytes with neuroendocrine hypothalamic neurons by focusing on nutrient transporters, metabolic pathways, and ion channels expressed in tanycytes, and transporters and receptors found in neurons. To this extent, we use cell imaging, biochemical, cellular, and molecular biology techniques to evaluate the function of these proteins, in combination with functional assays using electrophysiological recordings. We also evaluate the role of acute and chronic effects of fat and sugar rich diets in feeding behavior, analyzing neuroinflammation markers. Our long-term goal is to identify the molecular targets and generate modulators for preventing obesity. Currently our team is being financed by a Regular Fondecyt in international collaboration with Dr. Ricardo Araneda from the University of Maryland, USA and startup Fondecyt projects. We regularly carry out outreach to the community through an outreach project alimente-udec (Youtube, and others)
- Recabal A, Fernández P, López S, Barahona MJ, Ordenes P, Palma A, Elizondo-Vega R, Farkas C, Uribe A, Caprile T, Sáez JC, García-Robles MA. 2020. The FGF2‐induced tanycyte proliferation involves a connexin 43 hemichannel/purinergic‐dependent pathway. J 16. doi: 10.1111/jnc.15188.
- Elizondo-Vega R, Barahona MJ, Recabal A, Oyarce K, Ordenes P, Salgado M, Pincheira R, Luz-Cawford P, García-Robles MA. 2019. Inhibition of hypothalamic MCT4 and MCT1-MCT4 expression affect food intake and alter orexigenic and anorexigenic neuropeptide expression. Molecular Neurobiology 57 (2), 896-909. DOI: 10.1007/s12035-019-01776-6
- Recabal A, Elizondo-Vega R, Philippot C, Salgado M, López S, Palma A, Tarifeño-Saldivia E, Timmermann A, Seifert G, Caprile T, Steinhäuser C, García-Robles MA. 2018. Connexin-43 Gap Junctions Are Responsible for the Hypothalamic Tanycyte-Coupled Network. Front Cell Neurosci. 12:406. doi: 10.3389/fncel.2018.00406.
- Barahona MJ, Llanos P, Recabal A, Escobar-Acuña K, Elizondo-Vega R, Salgado M, Ordenes P, Uribe E, Sepúlveda FJ, Araneda RC, García-Robles MA. 2018. Glial hypothalamic inhibition of GLUT2 expression alters satiety, impacting eating behavior. Glia. 66(3):592-605. doi: 10.1002/glia.23267
- Orellana JA, Sáez PJ, Cortés-Campos C, Elizondo RJ, Shoji KF, Contreras-Duarte S, Figueroa V, Velarde V, Jiang JX, Nualart F, Sáez JC, García-Robles MA. (2012) Glucose increases intracellular free Ca(2+) in tanycytes via ATP. released through connexin 43 hemichannels. Glia. 60(1):53-68. doi:10.1002/glia.21246