B.S. in Biomedical Engineering, Antioquia School of Engineering & Health Sciences Institute, Colombia, 2003
M.S. in Biology, University of Antioquia, Colombia, 2009
Ph.D. in Physiology, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, 2014
“Activity-dependent plasticity in the cochlear hair cell stereocilia cytoskeleton and its effect on mechanotransduction”
Stereocilia – the sensory organelles of the inner ear hair cells – have a remarkably stable morphology. We recently found that this stability depends on the ability of stereocilia to detect sound-induced vibrations via the activation of mechano-sensitive channels. Our preliminary results indicate that stereocilia shorten in response to a decrease in “mechano-sensation”, and later regrow upon the recovery of their mechano-sensitivity. This project will explore the changes in stereocilia morphology (in live cells and at nanoscale resolution) and their impact on the mechanical sensitivity of the hair cells.
The results of this study will provide insight into the mechanisms controlling stereocilia maintenance and the mechanical tuning of the hair cells. In addition, these results may provide a deeper understanding of the mechanisms involved in certain types of pathological stereocilia degeneration (for example, after noise exposure or in certain types of congenital deafness).
-2017/Nov - New publication in The Hearing Journal.
-2016/Dec - Finalist for the 2016 Kaluza Prizes for Excellence in Graduate Research by the American Society for Cell Biology
- 2016/Nov - New Grant by the American Hearing Research Foundation!
- 2016/May - Postdoctoral spotlight by the UK Office of Biomedical Education
- 2015/Dec - Second Place at the UK College of Medicine Postdoctoral Poster Competition
- 2013/Apr - One of the winners at the pilot version of the 3-Minute Thesis Competition at the University of Kentucky.
- Mechanotransduction current is essential for stability of the transducing stereocilia in mammalian auditory hair cells. Vélez-Ortega AC, Freeman MJ, Indzhykulian AA, Grossheim JM, Frolenkov GI. eLife. 2017; 6. PMID: 28350294
- Angular Approach Scanning Ion Conductance Microscopy. Shevchuk A, Tokar S, Gopal S, Sanchez-Alonso JL, Tarasov AI, Vélez-Ortega AC, Chiappini C, Rorsman P, Stevens MM, Gorelik J, Frolenkov GI, Klenerman D, Korchev YE. Biophysical journal. 2016; 110(10):2252-65. PMID: 27224490
- Visualization of Live Cochlear Stereocilia at a Nanoscale Resolution Using Hopping Probe Ion Conductance Microscopy. Vélez-Ortega AC, Frolenkov GI. Methods in molecular biology (Clifton, N.J.). 2016; 1427:203-21. PMID: 27259929
- [Common variable immunodeficiency: Clinical and immunological characterization of patients and homogeneous subgroup definition by means of B lymphocyte subpopulation typing]. Vélez AC, Castaño DM, Gómez RD, Orrego JC, Moncada M, Franco JL. Biomedica : revista del Instituto Nacional de Salud. 2015; 35(1):101-16. PMID: 26148039
- Enhanced generation of suppressor T cells in patients with asthma taking oral contraceptives. Vélez-Ortega AC, Temprano J, Reneer MC, Ellis GI, McCool A, Gardner T, Khosravi M, Marti F. The Journal of asthma : official journal of the Association for the Care of Asthma. 2013; 50(3):223-30. PMID: 23259774
- Generation of induced regulatory T cells from primary human naïve and memory T cells. Ellis GI, Reneer MC, Vélez-Ortega AC, McCool A, Martí F. Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE. 2012; (62). PMID: 22525890
- TRPA1-mediated accumulation of aminoglycosides in mouse cochlear outer hair cells. Stepanyan RS, Indzhykulian AA, Vélez-Ortega AC, Boger ET, Steyger PS, Friedman TB, Frolenkov GI. Journal of the Association for Research in Otolaryngology : JARO. 2011; 12(6):729-40. PMID: 21879401
- Somatic mosaicism caused by monoallelic reversion of a mutation in T cells of a patient with ADA-SCID and the effects of enzyme replacement therapy on the revertant phenotype. Moncada-Vélez M, Vélez-Ortega A, Orrego J, Santisteban I, Jagadeesh J, Olivares M, Olaya N, Hershfield M, Candotti F, Franco J. Scandinavian journal of immunology. 2011; 74(5):471-81. PMID: 21671975
- Peripherally induced human regulatory T cells uncouple Kv1.3 activation from TCR-associated signaling. Reneer MC, Estes DJ, Vélez-Ortega AC, Norris A, Mayer M, Marti F. European journal of immunology. 2011; 41(11):3170-5. PMID: 21834013