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Rene Barro - Soria Ph.D


Ph.D., Physiology,  University of Regensburg, Germany,

Master of Science  Biochemistry University of Havana, Cuba.

Bachelor of Science Biochemistry University of Havana,  Cuba.


Rene Barro-Soria received his Ph.D. degree from the University of Regensburg, Germany, where he worked on identifying the molecular entity of the Ca2+-activated Cl- channel in epithelia. Thereafter, he studied chemosensory transduction in taste buds and ion channel function in the retina and cerebellum. In 2011, he joined the lab of Dr. H. Peter Larsson to study conformational changes in ion channels. There he learned techniques for studying structure-function relationships of ion channels. In 2016 he was promoted to research assistant professor in the department of Physiology and Biophysics at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. In 2017 he was recruited to Department of Medicine at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine as a research assistant professor of medicine.

Dr. Barro-Soria’s research interest is to understand the physical principles underlying ion channel function and modulation within both physiological and pathophysiological contexts. His research has focused on molecular mechanisms by which Kv channelopathies cause disorders in excitable cells (e.g. cardiac arrhythmias, epilepsy), and designing small molecules for treating these diseases. Using single molecule fluorescence approaches and electrophysiology, he has made fundamental discoveries concerning the gating of KCNQ1 channels. He also studies how KCNQ channel mutations lead to malfunction of, pancreatic beta cells, cardiac cell and neurons and designing drugs for correcting these mutations. He also uses human induced pluripotent stem cell-derived neurons and cardiomyocytes bearing mutations in KCNQ channels to test the efficacy of small molecules in restoring their electrical properties.

His postdoctoral research has been funded by the American Heart Association. He is also a recipient of the CURE EPILEPSY Taking Flight Award for young investigators, which provided funds towards the development of an independent research career. In 2017, Dr. Barro-Soria received the Faculty Development Award in Neuroscience Research (KO1) from the NIH to explore molecular mechanisms of epilepsy-causing mutations and pharmacology in KCNQ channels

Dr. Barro-Soria’s has also devoted effort to graduate and medical school teaching. Graduate teaching included lectures in Principles of Membrane Physiology and Biophysics. Medical school teaching included facilitating small group conferences in Cell Physiology/Membrane Biophysics and Cardiovascular Physiology for both MD and MD/MPH students.