Dr Helena Rodríguez Caro
Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics
DPhil, MSc (Oxon), BSc, Dip. Research Training Programme Biochemistry and Biomedicine (Navarra, Spain)
I am deeply interested on the plasticity of the human body through its reproductive life. Currently, my research focus on understanding the adaptation of the vascular system in the maternal gastrointestinal tract during pregnancy. This project aims to characterize the physiological adaptation undergone by the maternal lymphatics to support the increasing nutritional demands, to elucidate the signals fine-tuning this process, and to investigate the association with pregnancy-disorders.
I obtained my PhD in Women’s and Reproductive Health at the University of Oxford (Oxon. 2019), after completing the MSc in Clinical Embryology (2015) also at Oxon., as well as the BSc in Biochemistry (2014) and the Dip. Research Training Program in Biochemistry (2014) at The University of Navarra. During my PhD, I studied the role of seminal fluid extracellular vesicles in human endometrial receptivity and was awarded the Rafael del Pino Postgraduate Scholarship (Rafael del Pino Foundation, Spain) and the Gustav Born Scholarship in Biomedical Sciences (St Peter’s College, Oxon).
I then did a short postdoc with Dr Christina Aye (Oxon.) to work on the OxWATCH project, a cohort study aiming to understand the effect of maternal health before and during pregnancy in the development of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. Afterwards, I joined Prof Sarah de Val’s group (Oxon.) as a postdoctoral research scientist to study the role of NFAT transcription factors and their cognate enhancers during transcriptional regulation of arteriovenous patterning. Alongside this post, I was honoured to join Kellogg College as a Junior Research Fellowship at Kellogg College (Oxon.), I was also awarded the COVID-19 Rebuilding Research Momentum Fund (John Fell Fund, Oxon.)
Currently, I have received an SNSF Swiss Postdoctoral Fellowship (Marie Curie Transitional Measures, 2023) to follow my scientific interests as part of Prof Tatiana Petrova’s group at the University of Lausanne.
Alongside, I remain affiliated to The Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics (Oxon.) and Kellogg College (Oxon.) as Visiting Fellow.