About Diego E Rincon-Limas
Dr. Rincon-Limas received a bachelor degree on Biopharmaceutical Chemistry from the Autonomous University of Tamaulipas in Reynosa, Mexico. He also obtained a Master’s degree in Microbiology and a summa cum laude Ph.D. in Molecular Biology and Genetic Engineering at the Autonomous University of Nuevo Leon in Monterrey, Mexico. He then moved to Baylor College of Medicine in Houston to conduct his postdoctoral training in the Department of Human and Molecular Genetics, where he got training in Neurogenetics and Neurobiology. He got his first Faculty position in the Department of Neurology and the Mitchell Center for Neurodegenerative Disorders at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, and then moved to the University of Florida to join the Department of Neurology at the McKnight Brain Institute. He has a joint appointment in the Department of Neuroscience and is also a member of the UF Genetics Institute, the Center for Translational Research in Neurodegenerative Disease (CTRND), and the Center for Neurogenetics.
Neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementia, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and prion diseases, are some of the most dreaded conditions in our society. These conditions affect millions of people worldwide, represent a huge and increasing burden on the health-care system, and constitute one of the major challenges of modern medicine. Unfortunately, the pathogenic mechanisms underlying these debilitating disorders are poorly understood and, therefore, there are no effective therapies to avoid their fatal outcome.
My laboratory focuses on the development and application of new technologies to define the molecular pathways leading to neurodegeneration and to identify potential therapeutic targets. To do so, we utilize the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster to model molecular, biochemical and pathological aspects of human neurodegenerative conditions. This is achieved by disrupting homologous genes in Drosophila, or by expressing a human disease gene in this organism. Strikingly, the remarkable genetic conservation from flies to humans leads to neurological phenotypes that closely mimic the human disease. Once the model is validated, we apply a multidisciplinary approach combining Drosophila genetics, neurobiology, molecular biology, biochemistry, optogenetics and systems biology. My goal is to use this multidisciplinary effort to dissect unknown, fundamental events that mediate these devastating pathologies.