Jesus Tejero, PhD
Dr. Tejero received his degree in Organic Chemistry at the University of Zaragoza, Spain in 1998 and earned his PhD in Biochemistry at the University of Zaragoza in 2004 with the thesis “Redesign of the coenzyme specificity of the ferredoxin-NADP+ reductase from Anabaena PCC 7119” under Prof. Carlos Gómez-Moreno and Dr. Milagros Medina. He moved to the United States in 2005 as research fellow at the lab of Dr. Dennis Stuehr at the Cleveland Clinic, Lerner Research Institute. His work there focused on the structure and function of nitric oxide synthases. He joined Dr. Gladwin lab at the University of Pittsburgh Vascular Medicine Institute as a research associate in May, 2009. Dr Tejero is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine.
Dr. Tejero’s research is focused on the biology of heme proteins. His main research goals include: i) to understand and characterize the chemical and kinetic features of the reactions of nitrite with hemoglobin, myoglobin, cytoglobin and neuroglobin, ii) to elucidate the cytoprotective mechanisms of the six-coordinate globins neuroglobin and cytoglobin, and iii) the development of heme-based antidotes for carbon monoxide poisoning.
Nitrite–heme reactions. The nitrite-heme reactions are of growing interest because of its role in nitric oxide signaling pathways and can play a significant role in physiological and pathological situations. The ability of heme proteins to produce NO under hypoxia and anoxia can be instrumental to cell survival through the activation of soluble guanylate cyclase, and the inhibition of cytochrome c oxidase and other heme proteins.
Cytoprotective mechanisms of neuroglobin and cytoglobin. Neuroglobin and cytoglobin are two proteins with important, yet unclear roles in cellular protection. Our work is aimed to determine the functions of neuroglobin and cytoglobin that regulate cell survival. By understanding how neuroglobin and cytoglobin protect the cells, this work can help to develop therapies that harness the protective effect of these proteins.
Heme-based antidotes for CO poisoning. We have recently characterized a neuroglobin mutant with very high affinity towards CO. The use of this protein in a mouse model of lethal CO poisoning has shown a significant decrease in mortality. We are working on further development of neuroglobin mutants and other heme-based molecules for the treatment of CO poisoning.
Education and Training
PhD, Biochemistry, University of Saragossa, Spain, 2004
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