The scientific interest of Dr. Alejandra Álvarez is focused on the study of the molecular mechanisms and the signaling pathways implicated in the degeneration of neurons. Her research seeks to understand the molecular events that cause neuronal cell death, neuronal cytoskeleton alterations, and the loss of synapses in neurodegenerative diseases. She is currently working on analyzing the role of the c-Abl kinase and p73 signaling pathway in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and other neurodegenerative diseases. The Cell Signaling Laboratory focuses its research on the search for drugs for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease using c-Abl kinase as a therapeutic target. Dr. Álvarez´s studies allow us to understand the role of c-Abl tyrosine kinase-mediated signaling in the genesis and progression of AD and also in Niemann-Pick disease, type C. Moreover, she has shown that c-Abl signaling regulates neuronal apoptosis via p73, the disruption of the neuronal cytoskeleton through cdk5 kinase, and the participation of c-Abl in suppressing neuronal genes through HDAC2 regulation. Concurrently, she has identified the receptor EphA4 as a new receptor that mediates disruption and loss of synapses induced by the amyloid beta peptide (Ab) in AD, and the mechanism by which c-Abl regulates the generation of Ab.
Investigator in charge: Alejandra Álvarez