Juan Carlos Álvarez Pérez

GENYO. Centro de Genómica e Investigación Oncológica, Pfizer / Universidad de Granada / Junta de Andalucía - Area de Oncología Genómica


At present, I am a Marie Curie postdoctoral researcher working at the Biochemistry and Molecular Biology department I of the School of Sciences at University of Granada since June 2017. I develop my research inside the Pedro Medina’s group of Gene Expression Regulation and Cancer (CTS-993), located in the Center for Genomics and Oncology Research (GenyO).
I undertook a Master of Science in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in Santiago de Compostela University (1999-2004). In 2005, I joined Felipe Casanueva’s laboratory (School of Medicine. Santiago de Compostela University) as a Ph.D. candidate. During that time, I was trained in neuroendocrine control of energy homeostasis and developed projects aimed to understand the actions of Ghrelin, a hormone secreted by the stomach with orexigenic functions acting in the hypothalamus. In March 2010, I completed my Ph.D. in Endocrinology and Metabolism, Santiago de Compostela University, Department of Endocrinology.
In February 2011, I joined Adolfo Garcia Ocana’s group at the University of Pittsburgh where I participated in several projects targeted at uncovering hormones, growth factors and signaling pathways that can increase the growth, function and survival of the pancreatic β-cell. In particular, I studied the importance of HGF and PKC ζ in β-cell growth and function discovering that HGF action is required for β-cell regeneration using genetically modified mice with disruption of the HGF receptor in the pancreas and stablishing that HGF overexpression is capable of overcoming the detrimental effects of insulin resistance (IRS2 deficiency) by normalizing β-cell mass and improving glucose homeostasis.
In October 2012, I moved to New York and join Mount Sinai School of Medicine. It’s in this Institution where I was promoted to Instructor of Medicine in July 2015 and became Mount Sinai Hospital’s staff. From October 2012 to May 2017, I developed research projects working in the Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism Institute, inside Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Above all, I showed the importance of PKC ζ activity for pancreatic β-cell replication during insulin resistance by regulating mTOR activation and cyclinD2 expression, analyzed the effects of Harmine, a Dyrk1a inhibitor, in human β-cell proliferation and function in vivo in human islets transplanted in immunocompromised mice and revealed that BAD phosphomimetics increase the survival and function of human islets transplanted in diabetic NOD/SCID mice.






Universidad de Granada


GENYO. Centro de Genómica e Investigación Oncológica, Pfizer / Universidad de Granada / Junta de Andalucía - Area de Oncología Genómica

Investigation Group

Gene Expression Regulation and Cancer Group (CTS-993)

Lines of investigation

Gene edition in lung cancer
Epigenetic control of tumor development

The most notable result of your research

Discovering Harmine’s properties as the first inductor of human β cells proliferation

How did you come to science and why are you still here?

I got to science and I'm still in it because of the passion in discovering how our body works

A scientific desire

Be able to provide quality of life to cancer patients


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