More recently we showed that a sperm-egg fusogen from plants (HAP2/GCS1) is sufficient to promote cell fusion when expressed in mammalian cells or in viruses. We then found that although divergent in primary sequence GCS1(HAP2) shows high structural similarity with C. elegans’ fusogens and class II viral fusion proteins (e.g. zika, dengue and Semliki forest viruses), all these fusogens belong in the same structural class defining the FUSEXINS, a family of fusogens essential for exoplasmic merger of plasma membranes and sexual reproduction in eukaryotes. We aim to determine the mechanisms of cell fusion in vivo as well as in simpler in vitro systems. Recently we identified candidate cell fusion proteins (fusexins) in archaea, bacteria and mammals. These discoveries are the basis for studying the functions of fusexins in the origin of eukaryotic cells.
1991 Ph.D. in Cell Biology. Yale University, USA. “Reconstitution of receptor-mediated endocytosis and recycling of transferrin in permeabilized cells”. Doctoral thesis. Yale University. USA. pp. 185. 1991. Ira Mellman’s lab.
1986 B.Sc. in Chemistry, Bacteriology and Parasitology. Instituto Politécnico Nacional (IPN). Mexico City, Mexico. “Partial reactions of the oxygenic photosynthesis in Spirulina maxima. Use of specific inhibitors of the b/f segment”. Research Thesis. National School for Biological Sciences IPN. Mexico. pp. 122. 1986. Carlos Gomez Lojero’s lab.