Andreia Teixeira-Castro

  • Aging
  • Neurodegeneration
  • Ataxia
  • Serotonin
  • Proteostasis
  • Protein aggregation
  • Folding sensors
  • C. elegans
  • Advanced Microsopy

Andreia Teixeira-Castro obtained a B.Sc. in Biochemistry (2002) at the University of Porto, and a M.Sc. in Molecular Genetics (2007) and a Ph.D. in Health Sciences (2011) at the University of Minho, having developed her thesis and post-doctoral work at the Life and Health Sciences Research Institute (ICVS), University of Minho and at the Northwestern University, USA. During this period, Andreia established a drug discovery pipeline from C. elegans to mouse and to human cells and had the opportunity to collaborate with many scientists in different fields of expertise spanning from biochemistry, medicinal chemistry, automated behavioral analysis, high-throughput analysis laboratories and medicine.
Andreia is currently an Assistant Investigator at ICVS and an Assistant Professor at the School of Medicine, Univ. of Minho. Andreia has published 33 peer-reviewed papers. Andreia integrates the Translational Neurogenetics research team leading projects focusing on serotonergic signaling and protein homeostasis (aka proteostasis). She is currently supervising 2 PostDoctoral Researchers, 4 PhD students, and one Research technician, in addition to 30 supervisions concluded with success. Andreia has one patent (EP3069718A1) on “Citalopram or escitalopram for use in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases”, currently issued by the European Patent Office and in expansion worldwide. Andreia’s main research interest is to study the imbalance of proteostasis associated with neurodegenerative diseases and to understand how proteostasis adaptation and/or enhancement may be beneficial to age-related disorders and constitute important therapeutic approaches. Her team utilizes an integrated approach, going from molecules to model systems to human patients, using pharmacology, chemical genetics, molecular genetics, transcriptomics, proteomics and behavioral analysis.

Scientific Highlights

Jalles, A.*, Vieira, C.*, Pereira-Sousa, J., Vilasboas-Campos, D., Mota, A. F., Vasconcelos, S., Ferreira-Lomba, B., Costa, M. D., Da Silva, J. D., Maciel, P., & Teixeira-Castro, A. (2022). Aripiprazole Offsets Mutant ATXN3-Induced Motor Dysfunction by Targeting Dopamine D2 and Serotonin 1A and 2A Receptors in C. elegans. Biomedicines, 10(2), 370.

Pereira-Sousa, J., Ferreira-Lomba, B., Bellver-Sanchis, A., Vilasboas-Campos, D., Fernandes, J. H., Costa, M. D., Varney, M. A., Newman-Tancredi, A., Maciel, P., & Teixeira-Castro, A. (2021). Identification of the 5-HT1A serotonin receptor as a novel therapeutic target in a C. elegans model of Machado-Joseph disease. Neurobiology of disease, 152, 105278.

Esteves, S.*, Oliveira, S.*, Duarte-Silva, S., Cunha-Garcia, D., Teixeira-Castro, A., & Maciel, P. (2019). Preclinical Evidence Supporting Early Initiation of Citalopram Treatment in Machado-Joseph Disease. Molecular neurobiology, 56(5), 3626–3637.

Ashraf, N. S., Duarte-Silva, S., Shaw, E. D., Maciel, P., Paulson, H. L., Teixeira-Castro, A., & Costa, M. D. C. (2019). Citalopram Reduces Aggregation of ATXN3 in a YAC Transgenic Mouse Model of Machado-Joseph Disease. Molecular neurobiology, 56(5), 3690–3701.

Teixeira-Castro, A.*, Jalles, A.*, Esteves, S.*, Kang, S., da Silva Santos, L., Silva-Fernandes, A., Neto, M. F., Brielmann, R. M., Bessa, C., Duarte-Silva, S., Miranda, A., Oliveira, S., Neves-Carvalho, A., Bessa, J., Summavielle, T., Silverman, R. B., Oliveira, P., Morimoto, R. I., & Maciel, P. (2015). Serotonergic signalling suppresses ataxin 3 aggregation and neurotoxicity in animal models of Machado-Joseph disease. Brain: a journal of neurology, 138(Pt 11), 3221–3237.

Funding and Awards
Fundação Luso-America para o Desenvolvimento (FLAD) Long term Fellowship (2006)
Rafael Hervada Award (2010)
National Ataxia Foundation (NAF) Research Award (USA) (2016, 2018, 2021)
Ataxia UK Research Award (2022)

“Citalopram or escitalopram for use in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases” (EP3069718A1)


Serotonin signaling and proteostasis

This project addresses an unmet medical need- the lack of effective treatment for any of the aging-associated neurodegenerative diseases. Due to the worldwide aging of the population, by 2050 it is expected that over 135 million people…

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