Astrid E. Cardona, Ph.D.
Professor and Department Chair
Areas of Specialization
- Neuroinflammation and Mechanisms of Tissue Damage in Diabetic Retinopathy and Multiple Sclerosis
- Neuroprotective Approaches via Modulation of Innate Immune Function
Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology; University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
B.S. in Biology; University of Antioquia, Medellin
Neuroinflammation-Microglia and neuronal communication in autoimmunity
Dr. Cardona's research is focused in understanding the mechanisms of tissue damage in Multiple Sclerosis and Diabetic retinopathy.
- Clarifying the protective and detrimental roles of the innate immune system
- Determining the origin of tissues injury and factors that account for disease progression
- Testing neuroprotective therapies via modulation of innate immune cell function
Dr. Cardona's lab focuses on the functional interactions between immune cells, microglia, neurons, and blood vessels, utilizing experimental mouse models of disease, immunological assays, flow cytometry, fluorescent activated cell sorting, microscopy and molecular biology approaches.
Motivated trainees with a clear interest for a career in biomedical science have opportunities to participate in Dr. Cardon's research via independent study, thesis/dissertations, and work-study. Training is provided to acquire experience in how to choose, design, and expedite new experiments. An important goal is also to develop excellent communication skills, written and oral. This involves becoming an engaged lab member who can present his/her own work, and actively participate in the execution of research, lab meetings, seminars, journal clubs, scientific conferences, and in generation of written reports and scholarly products.