Laboratory of Microglia and Myelin Biology
Myelin sheaths facilitate fast, saltatory conduction of action potentials and contributes to axon metabolic supply. Oligodendrocytes myelinate CNS axons by an orchestrated and precisely regulated process. Myelination involves distinct stages of progenitor activation, recruitment (proliferation and migration) and differentiation into mature myelin-sheath-forming oligodendrocytes. New data suggest that myelination is more plastic than previously though and that experience and neuronal activity can induce dynamic changes in myelination during development and in adult life. Our research goal is focused in designing new strategies to improve the endogenous brain capacity for myelination/remyelination. We are characterizing two different approaches to modulate myelination: i) Targeting microglia signaling pathways controlling its phagocytic function and its contribution to myelin repair, particularly the Irf5-P2X4 signaling axis, and ii) Targeting directly oligodendrocytes by chemogenetics to determine its impact on myelin plasticity and on CNS physiology and pathology.
Our group uses a state-on-the-art techniques to analyze myelination and its impact in physiology and pathology including cellular and molecular biology, chemogenetics, AVV viral injections, STED confocal, two-photon imaging, electrophysiology, behavior and lipidomics and transcriptomics analysis.