Dr. Lisette Leyton Biography

Dr. Lisette Leyton trained as a Biochemist in the Faculty of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Chile. Dr. Leyton obtained her PhD in Sciences in the Faculty of Basic Sciences, University of Chile (1989), trained then as a postdoctoral fellow at Duke University, North Carolina, USA (1990-1993) and at the University of Lausanne, Epalinges, Switzerland (1994-1998).

She is currently a Full Professor in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Chile and also member of the Committee of the Ph.D. Program in Biomedical Sciences of the same Faculty. Her current research interests focus on understanding factors and pathways modulating astrocyte-neuron communication.

Research lines

Dr. Leyton is an expert in various areas of cell biology and biochemistry, currently focused on solving problems involving cell adhesion and migration: how they capture signals from their environment to change their shape, modifying their actin cytoskeleton to move to different locations. All of these are key events for cells to participate in wound repair, control of metastasis, formation of new blood vessels. Her current research interests focus on understanding factors and signal transduction pathways that modulate communication between astrocytes and neurons, as well as that between tumor cells and the endothelium.

Selected references

  1. Ortiz, R., Díaz, J., Díaz, N., Lobos-Gonzalez L, Cardenas, A., Contreras, P., Díaz, MI, Otte, E., Cooper-White, J., Torres, V., Leyton, L *. And Quest, A.F.G *. Extracellular matrix-specific caveolin-1 phosphorylation on tyrosine 14 is linked to augmented melanoma metastasis but not tumorigenesis. Oncotarget 7(26), 40571-40593 (2016). * Corresponding authors (equal contribution).
  2. Alvarez, A., Lagos-Cabré, R., Kong, M., Cardenas, A., Burgos-Bravo, F., Schneider, P., Quest, AFG, Leyton L. Integrin-mediated transactivation of P2X7R via Hemichannel-dependent ATP release stimulates astrocyte migration. BBA-Mol Cell Res. 1863: 2175-2188 (2016)
  3. Maldonado, H., Calderon, C., Burgos-Bravo, F., Kobler, O., Zuschratter, W., Ramirez, O., Härtel, S., Schneider, P., Quest, AFG, Herrera- Molina, R. *, Leyton, L. *. Astrocyte-to-neuron communication through integrin-engaged Thy-1 / CBP / Csk / Src complex triggers neurite retraction via the RhoA / ROCK pathway. BBA-Mol Cell Res. 1864: 243-254 (2016). * Corresponding authors (equal contribution).