Photo of Alejandro Lomniczi

Alejandro Lomniczi

  • (503) 346-5495
    • Research Assistant Professor Oregon National Primate Research Center
    • Affiliate Scientist, Primate Genetics Oregon National Primate Research Center

Dr Lomniczi is a Research Assistant Professor in the Division of Neuroscience and an Affiliate Scientist in the Primate Genetics Program at ONPRC-OHSU. He received his PhD degree from the University of Buenos Aires, Argentina in 2001. In 2002 he moved to Dr. Sergio Ojeda’s Lab to perform his postdoctoral training in Neuroendocrinology and Reproductive Biology at the Division of Neuroscience, ONPRC-OHSU. Dr. Lomniczi has mentored several students and postdoctoral fellows. He is a member of the editorial board of Neuroendocrinology and has been invited to give numerous lectures at national and international meetings. In addition, he has participated in diverse Neuroendocrine and Epigenetic related courses. His work has been cited more than 1500 times.

The Lomniczi Laboratory specializes in neuroendocrinology and cell biology, with emphasis in genetic and epigenetic mechanisms that control physiological responses. The primary focus of the Lab is to unveil how epigenetic landscapes of neurons and glial cells change in response to external conditions such as diet manipulation, stress, changes in circadian patterns, or exposure to endocrine disruptors that modulate cellular function.

Recent studies from the Lomniczi Lab have revealed that an epigenetic mechanism of transcriptional repression operating in the hypothalamus plays a vital role in timing female puberty. Dr. Lomniczi’ s results strongly suggest that the epigenetic control of puberty involves lifting of a transcriptional repressive tone exerted by the Polycomb group (PcG) of transcriptional silencers, with the simultaneous recruitment of a group of transcriptional activators from the Trithorax family. This dynamic Yin-Yang of repression vs activation is imposed on a regulatory system (epitomized by the Kiss1 gene) directly involved in the stimulatory control of GnRH secretion ultimately controlling reproductive function.

Currently, the Lomniczi Laboratory is exploring the role of epigenetics in conveying nutritional status information to the cellular networks involved in the hypothalamic control of GnRH secretion. They use a combination of multiple techniques including RNA-seq, ChIP-seq genome-wide DNA methylation analysis, and a battery of histological and physiological methods.


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Areas of interest

  • Reproductive Neuroendocrinology
  • Genetic and Epigenetic Programming
  • Brain Development
  • Puberty and Adolescence


  • B.A., University of Buenos Aires Argentina 1997
  • Ph.D., University of Buenos Aires Argentina 2002

Memberships and associations

  • Editorial Board of Neuroendocrinology
  • Endocrine society, member
  • Society of Neuroscience, member


Selected publications

  • Lomniczi A, Ojeda SR. The Emerging Role of Epigenetics in the Regulation of Female Puberty. Endocr Dev. 2016;29:1-16. doi: 10.1159/000438840. Epub 2015 Dec 17. Review. PubMed PMID: 26680569; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4955615.

  • Lomniczi A, Wright H, Castellano JM, Matagne V, Toro CA, Ramaswamy S, Plant TM, Ojeda SR. Epigenetic regulation of puberty via Zinc finger protein-mediated transcriptional repression. Nat Commun. 2015 Dec 16;6:10195. doi: 10.1038/ncomms10195. PubMed PMID: 26671628; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4703871.

  • Lomniczi A, Wright H, Ojeda SR. Epigenetic regulation of female puberty. Front Neuroendocrinol. 2015 Jan;36:90-107. doi: 10.1016/j.yfrne.2014.08.003. Epub 2014 Aug 27. Review. PubMed PMID: 25171849.

  • Topaloglu AK, Lomniczi A, Kretzschmar D, Dissen GA, Kotan LD, McArdle CA, Koc AF, Hamel BC, Guclu M, Papatya ED, Eren E, Mengen E, Gurbuz F, Cook M, Castellano JM, Kekil MB, Mungan NO, Yuksel B, Ojeda SR. Loss-of-function mutations in PNPLA6 encoding neuropathy target esterase underlie pubertal failure and neurological deficits in Gordon Holmes syndrome. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2014 Oct;99(10):E2067-75. doi: 10.1210/jc.2014-1836. Epub 2014 Jul 17. PubMed PMID: 25033069; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5393493.

  • Castellano JM, Wright H, Ojeda SR, Lomniczi A. An alternative transcription start site yields estrogen-unresponsive Kiss1 mRNA transcripts in the hypothalamus of prepubertal female rats. Neuroendocrinology. 2014;99(2):94-107. doi: 10.1159/000362280. Epub 2014 Mar 28. PubMed PMID: 24686008; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4111975.

  • Ojeda SR, Lomniczi A. Puberty in 2013: Unravelling the mystery of puberty. Nat Rev Endocrinol. 2014 Feb;10(2):67-9. doi: 10.1038/nrendo.2013.233. Epub 2013 Nov 26. Review. PubMed PMID: 24275741.

  • Lomniczi A, Loche A, Castellano JM, Ronnekleiv OK, Bosch M, Kaidar G, Knoll JG, Wright H, Pfeifer GP, Ojeda SR. Epigenetic control of female puberty. Nat Neurosci. 2013 Mar;16(3):281-9. doi: 10.1038/nn.3319. Epub 2013 Jan 27. PubMed PMID: 23354331; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3581714.

  • Lomniczi A, Garcia-Rudaz C, Ramakrishnan R, Wilmot B, Khouangsathiene S, Ferguson B, Dissen GA, Ojeda SR. A single-nucleotide polymorphism in the EAP1 gene is associated with amenorrhea/oligomenorrhea in nonhuman primates. Endocrinology. 2012 Jan;153(1):339-49. doi: 10.1210/en.2011-1540. Epub 2011 Nov 29. PubMed PMID: 22128021; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3249686.


  • "Gene networks, epigenetics and the control of female puberty" Research and Perspectives in Endocrine Interactions  2015
  • "New concepts on the control of the onset of puberty" Endocrine Development November 2009
  • "Puberty in 2013" Nature Reviews Endocrinology February 2014
  • "A contactin-receptor-like protein tyrosine phosphatase β complex mediates adhesive communication between astroglial cells and gonadotrophin-releasing hormone neurones" Journal of Neuroendocrinology November 2007
  • "Hypothalamic EAP1 (Enhanced at Puberty 1) is required for menstrual cyclicity in nonhuman primates" Endocrinology January 2012
  • "A single-nucleotide polymorphism in the EAP1 gene is associated with amenorrhea/oligomenorrhea in nonhuman primates" Endocrinology January 2012
  • "A system biology approach to identify regulatory pathways underlying the neuroendocrine control of female puberty in rats and nonhuman primates" Hormones and Behavior July 2013
  • "In vivo manipulation of gene expression in non-human primates using lentiviral vectors as delivery vehicles" ImmunoMethods September 2009
  • "Inhibitory pathways and the inhibition of luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone release by alcohol" Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America February 29 2000
  • "Effects of aminoguanidine and meloxicam on nitric oxide and prostaglandin E production induced by lipopolysaccharide in the hypothalamus and anterior pituitary of the rat" NeuroImmunoModulation  2001
  • "Epigenetic regulation of female puberty" Frontiers in Neuroendocrinology January 1 2015
  • "Expression of a tumor-related gene network increases in the mammalian hypothalamus at the time of female puberty" Endocrinology November 2007
  • "Transcription of the human EAP1 gene is regulated by upstream components of a puberty-controlling Tumor Suppressor Gene network" Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology April 4 2012
  • "Interaction among beta-endorphin, nitric oxide and prostaglandins during ovulation in rats" Reproduction April 1 2003
  • "Transcriptional regulation of the human KiSS1 gene" Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology August 6 2011
  • "A novel transcription complex that selectively modulates apoptosis of breast cancer cells through regulation of FASTKD2" Molecular and Cellular Biology June 2011
  • "Loss of NTRK2/KISS1R signaling in oocytes causes premature Ovarian failure" Endocrinology  2014
  • "Gene networks and the neuroendocrine regulation of puberty" Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology August 2010
  • "A role for glial cells of the neuroendocrine brain in the central control of female sexual development"   2009
  • "Control of salivary secretion by nitric oxide and its role in neuroimmunomodulation" Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences  2000
  • "Hypothalamic tumor necrosis factor-α converting enzyme mediates excitatory amino acid-dependent neuron-to-glia signaling in the neuroendocrine brain" Journal of Neuroscience January 4 2006
  • "Contribution of glial-neuronal interactions to the neuroendocrine control of female puberty" European Journal of Neuroscience December 2010
  • "Oxytocin facilitates female sexual maturation through a glia-to-neuron signaling pathway" Endocrinology March 2008
  • "Quantitative proteomics identifies a change in glial glutamate metabolism at the time of female puberty" Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology July 25 2006
  • "Enhanced at puberty 1 (EAP1) is a new transcriptional regulator of the female neuroendocrine reproductive axis" Journal of Clinical Investigation August 1 2007
  • "Neuroendocrinology of puberty"   2010
  • "Glial-gonadotrophin hormone (GnRH) neurone interactions in the median eminence and the control of gnrh secretion" Journal of Neuroendocrinology June 2008
  • "Neuroendocrine mechanisms controlling female puberty" International Journal of Andrology February 2006
  • "Effect of nutritional stress on the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal axis in the growing male rat" NeuroImmunoModulation  2002
  • "Glia-to-neuron signaling and the neuroendocrine control of female puberty" Annals of Medicine  2003

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