Welcome to CienciaPR, an expert and resource network for all who are interested in science and Puerto Rico.
Work: - AAAS 2012 - 2013 Roger Revelle Fellow in Global Stewardship with a joint appointment at the Office of the Scientific Adviser, United States Department of State and the Division of Development, Security and Cooperation, The National Academies of Science. - Associate Professor, Department of Biology, University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez. - Adjunt Professor, Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology, University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus.
Education: - Ph.D., 2005, Department of Cell and Strctural Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
As a research professor at the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez my research program aims to understand the in vivo molecular and cellular dynamics that have major impacts on the process of synapse formation. We use the fruit fly (Drosophila) embryonic neuromuscular synapse is used as a an in vivo model system to study synaptogenesis initiation.
Taking advantage of the single identifiable nature of the Drosophila neuromuscular system, we are developing and validating nanoparticles as suitable biomarkers to monitor cell activities in vivo with the ultimate goal of non-invasive intraembryonic manipulation of the neuromuscular junction. Our work will also help us answer a fundamental question in cell and developmental neuroscience: which cell (neuronal axon or muscle) determines the site of synapse formation.
When I started my research program at UPRM, I had only one primary goal: research. However, I had to adapt those research goals and ambitions to best serve the needs of the local student population. Thus, my research program now aspires to prepare professionals for lifetime science learning with the capability of communicating their knowledge by strengthening their learning environments and providing them with the skills and knowledge to obtain and enjoy a successful and rewarding scientific career. In keeping with my primary goal, I have expanded my research interests to include studies on how to best develop talent among students with high potential, but lacking experience and exposure to research.
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