Northwestern Events Calendar


Pharmacology Seminar Series: Gabriela Caraveo Piso, PhD

When: Monday, April 8, 2024
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM CT

Where: Ward Building, 5-230, 303 E. Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Melissa Daley  

Group: Department of Pharmacology Seminars

Category: Lectures & Meetings, Academic


Title: Astrocytes, lactate and octopamine: Implications for Lewy Body Dementias Abstract: Octopamine is a well-established neurotransmitter in invertebrates involved in flight or fight responses. In mammals, its function has remained elusive given that its role was replaced by epinephrine. Our laboratory found a unique function of octopamine in the mammalian brain as a key metabolite diving the switch from protective to toxic astrocytes by harnessing their metabolism toward aerobic glycolysis. Pathological alterations in octopamine levels have been found in α-synucleinopathies such as Parkinson’s disease, as well as a range of psychiatric diseases including depression and bipolar disorder. Therefore, our work has therapeutic implications since we show that pharmacological modulation of octopamine pathway protects neurons against α-synuclein neurodegeneration.

Gabrila Caraveo Piso, PhD
Assistant Professor of Neurology (Movement Disorders) and Pharmacology

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