Adjunct Professor of Pharmacology
Buenos Aires University, Argentina
Psychiatry Boards, 1970
Buenos Aires University, Argentina
(202) 687-8968 office
(202) 687-0755 fax
Current Research: Juan M. Saavedra, MD is an Adjunct Professor at the Department of Pharmacology and Physiology, Georgetown University Medical Center. Dr. Saavedra graduated from Medical School in 1965 and obtained his board certification in Psychiatry in 1970, from Buenos Aires University, Argentina. In 1971 he joined the Section on Pharmacology at the National Institute of Mental Health in Bethesda, Maryland as a Visiting Fellow. Under the supervision of Julius Axelrod, PhD, 1970 Nobel Prize winner in Medicine, Dr. Saavedra developed novel biochemical micromethods to study neurotransmitters in the brain, and was awarded tenure at NIH with a Civil Service Excepted Appointment in 1975. From 1989 to 2013 Dr. Saavedra was Chief of the Section on Pharmacology at the National Institute of Mental Health Intramural Program. At the NIH, Dr. Saavedra’s research interests included molecular and physiological aspects of endocrine and cardiovascular regulation, and more recently mechanisms of neuroprotection in stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, mood disorders and Traumatic Brain Injury. The main objective of the research was to find novel therapies for inflammatory, degenerative, mood and traumatic disorders of the brain. In September 2013 Dr. Saavedra transitioned from NIH to Georgetown University, where he joined the Department of Pharmacology and Physiology. In his new laboratory, Dr. Saavedra continues his work to advance his more recent finding, the observation that a novel class of compounds, the sartans, previously used for the treatment of cardiovascular and metabolic disorders, are potent neuroprotective agents and may be of significant therapeutic relevance for the treatment of neurodegenerative, mood and traumatic brain disorders. Dr. Saavedra has been Editor of Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology since 1983.
- Elkahloun AG, Rodriguez Y, Alaiyed S, Wenzel E, Saavedra JM. Telmisartan Protects a Microglia Cell Line from LPS Injury Beyond AT1 Receptor Blockade or PPARγ Activation. Mol Neurobiol. 2018 Aug 13.
- Kabba JA, Xu Y, Christian H, Ruan W, Chenai K, Xiang Y, Zhang L, Saavedra JM, Pang T. Microglia: Housekeeper of the Central Nervous System. Cell Mol Neurobiol. 2018 Jan;38(1):53-71.
- Wang Y, Huang Y, Xu Y, Ruan W, Wang H, Zhang Y, Saavedra JM, Zhang L, Huang Z, Pang T. A Dual AMPK/Nrf2 Activator Reduces Brain Inflammation After Stroke by Enhancing Microglia M2 Polarization. Antioxid Redox Signal. 2018 Jan 10;28(2):141-16.
- Wang Y, Ruan W, Mi J, Xu J, Wang H, Cao Z, Saavedra JM, Zhang L, Lin H, PangT. Balasubramide derivative 3C modulates microglia activation via CaMKKβ-dependent AMPK/PGC-1α pathway in neuroinflammatory conditions. Brain Behav Immun. 2018 Jan;67:101-117.
- Zhou J, Burns MP, Huynh L, Villapol S, Taub DD, Saavedra JM, Blackman MR. Temporal Changes in Cortical and Hippocampal Expression of Genes Important for Brain Glucose Metabolism Following Controlled Cortical Impact Injury in Mice. journal.
- Saavedra JM, Armando I. Angiotensin II AT2 receptors contribute to regulate the sympathoadrenal and hormonal reaction to stress stimuli. Cell Mol Neurobiol. 2018 Jan;38(1):85-108.
- Saavedra JM. Beneficial effects of Angiotensin II receptor blockers in brain disorders.. Pharmacol Res. 2017; 125: 91-103.
- Yuan Xu, Yazhou Xu, Yurong Wang, Yunjie Wang, Ling He, Zhenzhou Jiang, Zhangjian Huang, Hong Liao, Jia Li, Juan M Saavedra, Luyong Zhang, Tao Pang. Telmisartan prevention of LPS-induced microglia activation involves M2 microglia polarization via CaMKKβ-dependent AMPK activation. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity. 2015.
- Villapol S, Balarezo MG, Affram K, Saavedra JM, Symes AJ. Neurorestoration after traumatic brain injury through angiotensin II receptor blockage. Brain: A Journal of Neurology. 2015, doi:10.1093/brain/awv172
- Villapol S, Saavedra JM: Neuroprotective effects of Angiotensin receptor blockers. Am J Hypertens. 28:289-99, 2015
- Wang J, Pang T, Hafko R, Benicky J, Sanchez-Lemus E, Saavedra JM: Telmisartan ameliorates glutamate-induced neurotoxicity: Roles of AT1 receptor blockade and PPARγ activation. Neuropharmacology. 79C:249-261, 2013
- Sohn YI, Lee NJ, Chung A, Saavedra JM, Scott Turner R, Pak DT, Hoe HS : Antihypertensive drug Valsartan promotes dendritic spine density by altering AMPA receptor trafficking. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 439:464-70.2013
- Hafko R, Villapol S, Nostramo R, Symes A, Sabban EL, Inagami T, Saavedra JM : Commercially available angiotensin II At₂ receptor antibodies are nonspecific. PLoS One. 8:e69234. 2013
- Nostramo R, Tillinger A, Saavedra JM, Kumar A, Pandey V, Serova L, Kvetnansky R, Sabban EL : Regulation of angiotensin II type 2 receptor gene expression in the adrenal medulla by acute and repeated immobilization stress. J Endocrinol. 215:291-301. 2012
- Villapol S, Yaszemski AK, Logan TT, Sánchez-Lemus E, Saavedra JM, Symes AJ : Candesartan, an angiotensin II AT₁-receptor blocker and PPAR-γ agonist, reduces lesion volume and improves motor and memory function after traumatic brain injury in mice. Neuropsychopharmacology. 37:2817-29. 2012
- Benicky J, Hafko R, Sanchez-Lemus E, Aguilera G, Saavedra JM : Six commercially available angiotensin II AT1 receptor antibodies are non-specific. Cell Mol Neurobiol. 32:1353-65. 2012
- Saavedra JM : Angiotensin II AT(1) receptor blockers as treatments for inflammatory brain disorders. Clin Sci (Lond). 123:567-90. 2012
- Sánchez-Lemus E, Honda M, Saavedra JM : Angiotensin II AT1 receptor blocker candesartan prevents the fast up-regulation of cerebrocortical benzodiazepine-1 receptors induced by acute inflammatory and restraint stress. Behav Brain Res. 232:84-92. 2012
- Chen J, Evans AN, Liu Y, Honda M, Saavedra JM, Aguilera G : Maternal deprivation in rats is associated with corticotrophin-releasing hormone (CRH) promoter hypomethylation and enhances CRH transcriptional responses to stress in adulthood. J Neuroendocrinol. 24:1055-64. 2012
- Pang T, Wang J, Benicky J, Saavedra JM : Minocycline ameliorates LPS-induced inflammation in human monocytes by novel mechanisms including LOX-1, Nur77 and LITAF inhibition. Biochim Biophys Acta. 1820:503-10. 2012
- Pang T, Benicky J, Wang J, Orecna M, Sanchez-Lemus E, Saavedra JM : Telmisartan ameliorates lipopolysaccharide-induced innate immune response through peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ activation in human monocytes. J Hypertens. 30:87-96. 2012
- Saavedra JM : Angiotensin II AT(1) receptor blockers ameliorate inflammatory stress: a beneficial effect for the treatment of brain disorders. Cell Mol Neurobiol. 32:667-81. 2012