Julio Ayala, PhD
Molecular Physiology & Biophysics
Dr. Ayala earned a BS in Chemistry from Duke University and a PhD in the Department of Molecular Physiology & Biophysics at Vanderbilt University studying regulation of gene transcription by insulin in the laboratory of Dr. Richard O’Brien. He stayed at Vanderbilt as a post-doctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. David Wasserman where he focused on in vivo regulation of glucose fluxes using tracer techniques. During this time he also worked with the Vanderbilt Mouse Metabolic Phenotyping Center (MMPC) to establish state of the art techniques and standard operating procedures for metabolic phenotyping studies in mice. In 2009, Dr. Ayala was recruited to Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute as an Assistant Professor and established an independent research program focusing on metabolic regulation by the gut hormone Glucagon-like peptide-1 (Glp1) via actions in the brain. In 2017, Dr. Ayala was recruited back to Vanderbilt as an Associate Professor where he continues to work on brain Glp1 actions that control feeding behavior and body weight in response to a variety of environmental conditions. He is also Director of the MMPC Body Weight Regulation Core.