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Lucas Pozzo-Miller

Lucas Pozzo-Miller Professor
University of Alabama

Professor Lucas Pozzo-Miller completed his undergraduate studies in Biology (MSc, 1986) and earned his graduate degree from (PhD, 1989). He trained as postdoctoral fellow at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland OH, with Dennis Landis (1990-1992), and at the Roche Institute of Molecular Biology, Nutley NJ, with John Connor (1992-1995). He performed research at the Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole MA, with Rodolfo Llinás (1994 Grass Foundation Fellow, and 1995 Lakian Foundation Fellow). He held a Senior Staff Fellow position at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda MD, in the laboratory of Tom Reese (1995-1998). He joined the faculty of the Department of Neurobiology at The University of Alabama at Birmingham in 1998, and is presently a tenured Professor of Neurobiology.

Professor Pozzo-Miller has studied CNS synapses and their plasticity using biochemical, morphological, and physiological approaches for the last 28 years. During the past 19 years, he has studied the role of BDNF on hippocampal synapses, and for the last 10 years focused his work on synaptic dysfunctions in a mouse model of Rett syndrome, an intellectual disability of genetic origin that is associated with mutations in MECP2, the gene coding for a methylated DNA-binding protein that regulates transcription of multiple genes, including Bdnf. His research career has exploited several experimental approaches, spanning from conventional and rapid-freezing electron microscopy, to simultaneous whole-cell recording and intracellular Ca2+ imaging, to synaptic vesicle recycling, voltage-sensitive dye imaging and laser-scanning confocal and multiphoton excitation microscopy, all applied to different preparations such as acute or cultured brain slices, and primary cultured neurons. To date, he has published 67 peer-reviewed research articles and reviews, 11 book chapters and editorials, and presented at 69 international meetings, totaling over 4,600 citations (h-index 33).

Professor Pozzo-Miller has been invited to speak presenting his work at 87 universities in the USA, Europe, China, and Latin America. He has reviewed scientific manuscripts for 65 different international scientific journals, and served and chaired committees reviewing research grants for the USA federal government (NIH-DHHS, VA), the National Science Foundation, as well as governmental international funding agencies (Israel, Italy, UK, New Zealand, France, Chile, Argentina, Holland, Canada, Switzerland), and private foundations (Alzheimer Foundation, International Rett Syndrome Association, The Wellcome Trust of the UK, Ontario Mental Health Foundation, The North Carolina Biotechnology Center). He has mentored 13 postdocs, 10 PhD graduates, and 15 undergraduate students, 8 of which have their own independent laboratories.

Professor Pozzo-Miller received numerous awards, including a Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Roche Institute of Molecular Biology (Hoffman LaRoche), the Grass Foundation Fellowship in Neurophysiology and the Lakian Foundation Fellowship both at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, the NIH Fellows Award for Research Excellence, and the McNulty Civitan Scientist Award from the Civitan International Foundation.

Professor Pozzo-Miller is an Associate Editor of The Journal of Neuroscience, and a member of the Editorial Boards of Journal of Neurophysiology, Neural Plasticity, Frontiers in Synaptic Neuroscience, Journal of Neurological Disorders, and World Journal of Pharmacology.

Research Interest

Spanning from conventional and rapid-freezing electron microscopy
Simultaneous whole-cell recording
Intracellular Ca2+ imaging
Synaptic vesicle recycling
Voltage-sensitive dye imaging
Laser-scanning confocal
Multiphoton excitation microscopy

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