Luis G. Brieba de Castro, Ph.D.


Luis G. Brieba de Castro, Ph.D.
Professor, Howard Hughes International Scholar
National Genomics Laboratory for Biodiversity
Center for Research and Advanced Studies (CINVESTAV)
Edificio Langebio A, Laboratorio 4
Km 9.6 Libramiento Norte Carretera Irapuato-Leon
Irapuato, Guanajuato
[email protected]
Research field
Cell Biology; Structural Biology
Award year
Country of origin
Mentor name
Thomas E. Ellenberger, Ph.D.
Pew distinction
Innovation Fund investigator


My laboratory uses a multidisciplinary approach to understand the mechanisms for nucleic acid replication in plant organellar DNA (mitochondria and chloroplast). We have several interests including understanding how DNA rearrangements are formed and how DNA lesions are bypassed by replicative polymerases, and understanding from a structural perspective how replication occurs in plant organelles.

As an Innovation Fund investigator, Luis Brieba de Castro, Ph.D., is teaming up with Patricia Leon Mejia, Ph.D., to explore how the plastid, a key organelle in plants responsible for metabolism and producing nutrients, communicates with the nucleus to respond to external stressors. To maintain plastid homeostasis, communication signals from the nucleus to plastids are well documented; however, signals going from the plastid to the nucleus are not well understood. But recent evidence indicates that proteins called apocarotenoids play a role. The Leon Mejia lab will use expertise in apocarotenoid proteins coupled with Brieba de Castro’s research in protein folding and biochemistry to identify receptors that aid in the transport of these signaling molecules. Uncovering the details of this critical signaling pathway will shed light on how plants react to stress and introduce avenues to improve crop production and yield.

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