Dr. Loyda M. Meléndez, MT, MS, Ph.D.

Dr. Loyda M. Meléndez

Contact Info

  • Department of Microbiology and Zoology,
    University of Puerto Rico-School of Medicine,
    P.O. Box 365067
    San Juan, P.R. 00936-5067
  • 787) 758-2525 xt 2816 xt Lab 2817


  • S. Medical Technology, University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras and Medical Sciences Campus , P.R.1979
  • S. Microbiology, University of Georgia, 1981
  • D. Exp. Path/Immunology, Emory University and CDC, Altanta, GA, 1990
  • Post-doctoral training in Immunohematology/Cytometry, Emory University Pathology Dept, Altanta, GA, 1991 ; and in Pediatrics Infectious Diseases: Role of the placenta in HIV transmission, Emory University Pediatrics, Altanta, GA, 1992


Laboratory Mission

To prepare undergraduate and graduate students in the field of Viral Innate Immunity focusing on the role of macrophages in HIV infection and pathogenesis. To apply proteomics to uncover the molecules and signaling pathways activated by viruses (HIV, Zika, SARSCoV2) to find targets for diagnosis and therapy against viral diseases.

Field of Interest: 

Viral Innate Immunity, Neurosciences, and Proteomics

Active collaborations and projects

Ongoing Research Support

  • U54MD007600-29 (Fernandez-Repollet, PI) 1.2 cal mo  8/01/22-7/31/2025
    RCMI Translational Proteomics Center- Research Capacity Core
    The major goals of this activity are to expand our research core capabilities in Clinical and Basic Science Proteomics that would lead to improved diagnosis and therapeutic monitoring in health disparities.
    Role: Activity Director
  • NCRR-P20 RR016470 Rodriguez-Medina (PD) 1.2 cal mo 8/01/21 – 5/30/2026
    Advancement of Biomedical Research Excellence (INBRE)
    Clinical Proteomics Discovery Core Facility at University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus provides new resources for the Advancement of Biomedical Research Excellence. This activity provides funds for developing workshops for faculty and students in the island of Puerto Rico.
    Role: Core Leader

Completed Research Support (Last 5 years)

  • U54MD007600-29 (Fernandez-Repollet 1.2 cal mo 8/01/17-7/31/2022
    RCMI Translational Proteomics Center
    The major goals of this activity are to expand our research core capabilities in Clinical and Basic Science Proteomics that would lead to improved diagnosis and therapeutic monitoring in health disparities.
    Role: Activity Directo
  • UPR  0.5 cal mo  Melendez (PI) 8/01/2020-12/31/2021
    Host factors associated with COVID-19 disease severity.
    The major goals of this project are to define the genetics determinants and innate defenses impact COVID-19 disease severity.
  • SC1GM113691-04 (NIGMS) Melendez (PI)   6.0 cal mo  5/01/15-4/30/2021
    Targeting Monocyte/macrophage cathepsin B interactome in HIV-1 neurocognitive disorders.
    This project explored the role of neurotoxic proteins from macrophages in the development of HIV-neurotoxicity and their expression in in patients treated with combined antiretroviral therapy or cART. HIV.



Name of Past and Current Students Undergraduate or Graduate Student Period of Time Mentored Current Status
Past Students      
1.Marinés Plaud (G)MS 1993-1996 (Georgia, US)
2.Jessicca Renta (G) MS 1994-1997 Research Associate-UPR MSC
3.Johana Meléndez (G) MS 1996-1998 Flow CytometryAssistant Director-Moffit Cancer Center
4.Fernando Soto (UG) 1994-1995 MD
5.Monica Grafals (UG) 1995 MD
6.Gill Nieves (UG) 1996-1997 MD
7.Zulma Carrasquillo (UG) 1997 PhD
8.Robert Bowles (UG) 1999 MD
9.Mariela Agosto (UG) 2000 MD
10.Yaritza Puig (UG) 2000 MD
11.Gisela Torres Harvard Medical Student 1999-2000 MD
12.Zulma Sánchez (UG) 2000-2001 PhD
13.Rafael Contreras (UG) 2000-2001 PhD
14.Sylvia Berríos (UG) Summer-2001 MD
15.Johanna Méndez (UG) Summer-2001 MD
16.Miguel Arroyo (G)PhD 1996-2001 Coronel and Researcher

Walter Reed Army Research Institute

17.Manuel Santiago (UG) 2000-2001 MS-School of Public Health
18.Johanna Díaz (G)PhD Summer-2001 PhD
19.Aksim G. Rivera (UG) 2001 MD
20.Lynnette López (UG) 2001 PhD
21.Lourdes Rodriguez (UG) Summer 2004 MD
22.Edwin Sánchez (G)PhD 1998-2003 Research Scientist

Abbott Labs

23.Pedro Vélez (G)MS 2001-2003 MD
24.Dianedis Toro (G)PhD 2001-2008 Assistant Professor UPR Bayamón
25.Claribel Luciano (G)PhD 2003-2008 Assistant Professor

Escuela Medicina SJ Bautista

26.Ixane Velazquez (G)MS 2005-2008 Becton Dickinson
27.Juliana Perez Laspiur, PhD Postdoc 2006-2015 Associate Professor

UPR Aguadilla

28.Lynette Bosques (UG)MDPhD Summer 2006 MD, Pediatrician, Manati Medical Center
29.Stephanie Dorta (UG)PhD 2006-2007 Assistant Professor UPR-MSC

Dept of Microbiology

30.Katia Garcia (G)PhD 2003-2009 FDA Scientist
31.Rafael Romeu (UG) 2009-2010 MD, Podiatric Specialist
32.Christian Avilés (UG) 2010-present MD
33.Maria del Carmen Lopez (UG) 2010-present MD
34.Eillen Rodriguez (G)PhD 2007-2011 Research Manager AMGEN
35.Silvia Kares Lawyer 2010-2011 MD
36.Carolina Currais (UG) 2010-2011 MD, Pediatrician, UPR Pediatric Hospital
37.Viviana Melendez-Muñiz (UG) Summer 2011 MD-Family Medicine
38.Raymond Quiles (UG) 2011-present Graduate School US
39.Gisela Delgado (UG) 2011-present MD San Juan Bautista
40.Frances Zenón (G) 2010-2014 Ph.D. Faculty
41.Mariangeline Gonzalez (UG) 2013-2014 MD- Researcher at UPR-MSC
42.Linda Rivera, PhD Postdoc 2009-2014 Faculty, UAGM-Carolina
43.Israel Mendez (UG) 2013-2014 MD UPR-MSC
44.Natalia Hernandez (UG) 2013-2014 MD UPR- MSC
45.Frances Acevedo (UG) 2013-2015 Ph.D. U. of Michigan Graduate School
46.Karla Pagán (UG) 2014-2016 MD
47.Alexandra Ogando (UG) 2014-2016 MD, Resident, Washignton DC
48.Krystal Colon (G)PhD 2009-2015 Research Scientist, Pfizer
49.Yisel Cantres (G)PhD &

Post doc



Assistant Professor, Department of Microbiology, UPR-MSC
50.Kristal M. Delgado Serrano (UG) Summer 2015 MD
51.Nicole Marzán Rivera (UG)PhD Researcher, Amgen
52.Eraysy Machin (UG) 2016-2017 MD, Health Care Education
53.José Sanchez (UG) 2017-2018 MD
54.Manuel Alvarez (UG)PhD 2017-2018 Software Engineer at Google
55.Aemil Santos (UG) 2017-2018 MD student St. Kits
56.Camille Zenón (G)MS 2014-2019 Research Assistant, CCC
57.Omar Vélez (G)PhD 2014-2019 PhD Assistant Professor UPR-Ponce
58.Estheysy Roman Pagan (UG) 2018-2019 MD
59.Adriadna Ramirez (UG) 2019-2020 MD
60.Jean Perez Vargas (UG) 2019-2020 MD
61.Andrea Gonzalez (UG) 2019-2020 MD
62.Julio Rosado-Philipi (UG) 2019-2021 MD
63.Lester Rosario (G)PhD 2015-2021 NIH F99/K00, ex-RISE, Doctoral student
64.Luis Garcia Requeña (UG) 2019-2021 MD
65.Luz Cartagena (UG) 2018-2021 MD
66.Juan C Fipo Cuadrado (UG) 2018-2020 MD
67.Gabriel Borges (G)PhD 2015-2023 Postdoc CCC
68.Veronica Rivera Nieves (UG) 2020-2023 MS student, Public Health
Present students
Alexandra Rosa (UG) 2022-present Biol 4990


  1. Melendez-Guerrero LM, Nicholson JK, and MacDougal JS. 1990. In vitro infection of monocytes with HIVBa-L. Effect on cell surface expression of CD4, CD14, HLA-DR, and HLA-DQ. AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 1990 Jun;6(6):731-41.PMID:1694679
  2. Melendez-Guerrero L, Nicholson J, and MacDougal S. 1991. In vitro infection of Human Monocytes with HIV-1Ba-L. Effect on Accessory Cell Function for T-Cell Proliferation In Vitro. AIDS Res and Human Retroviruses 7(5): 465-474. PMID: 1873081.
  3. Melendez-Guerrero L, Holmes R, Backé E, Pollioti B, Ibegbu C, Lee F, Panigel M, Schwartz D, Huddleston J, and Nahmias A. 1994. In vitro infection of Hofbauer cells with a monocyte-tropic strain of HIV-1. Trophoblast Research 8:33-45.
  4. Renta JY, Cadilla CL, Vega ME, Hillyer GV, Estrada C, Jiménez E, Abreu E, Méndez I, Gandía J, Meléndez-Guerrero LM. 1997. Longitudinal studies on maternal HIV-1 variants by biological phenotyping, sequence analysis and viral load. Cell Mol Biol 43(7):1097-114. PMID: 9449544
  5. Torres G, García V, Sánchez E, Segarra A, Patterson BK, Meléndez-Guerrero LM.Expression of the HIV-1 co-receptors CCR5 and CXCR4 on placental macrophages and the effect of IL-10 on their expression. Placenta. Suppl A:S29-33. PMID: 11312625.
  6. Plaud-Valentin M, Delgado R, Garcia V, Zorrilla C, Gandia J, Meléndez-Guerrero LM. HIV infection of placental macrophages: effect on the secretion of HIV stimulatory cytokines. Cell Mol Biol (Noisy-le-grand). 1999 Jun;45(4):423-31. PMID: 10432189.
  7. Sanchez-Carrasquillo E, García V, Rivera CE, Febo I, Melendez-Guerrero LM. 2000. CCR5 and beta-chemokines in HIV-1 infected children. P R Health Sci J. 19(4):345-51. PMID: 11300123
  8. Melendez-Guerrero LM, Arroyo MA, Vega ME, Jimenez E, Hillyer GV, Cadilla CL. 2001. Characterization of HIV isolates from Puerto Rican maternal-infant pairs reveal predominance of non-syncytium inducing (NSI) variants with CCR5 genotype. Cell Mol Biol (Noisy-le-grand). 47; 39-47. PMID: 11936872
  9. Torres G, García V, Sánchez E, Segarra A, Patterson BK, Meléndez-Guerrero LM.Expression of the HIV-1 co-receptors CCR5 and CXCR4 on placental macrophages and the effect of IL-10 on their expression. Placenta. Suppl A:S29-33. PMID: 11312625.
  10. Meléndez J, García V, Sánchez E, Delgado R, Torres G, Meléndez-Guerrero LM. 2001. Is decreased HIV-1 infectivity of placental macrophages caused by high levels of beta-chemokines? Cell Mol Biol (Noisy-le-grand). 47 OL51-9. PMID:11936874
  11. Arroyo MA, Tien H, Pagán M, Swanstrom R, Hillyer GV, Cadilla CL, Meléndez-Guerrero LM. 2002. Virologic risk factors for vertical transmission of HIV type 1 in Puerto Rico. AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 18(6):447-60. PMID: 11958688.
  12. Luo X, Carlson KA, Wojna V, Mayo R, Biskup TM, Stoner J, Anderson J, Gendelman HE, Meléndez LM. Macrophage proteomic fingerprinting predicts HIV-1-associated cognitive impairment. Neurology. 2003 Jun 24;60(12):1931-7. PMID:12821735.
  13. Wojna V, Carlson KA, Luo X, Mayo R, Meléndez LM, Kraiselburd E, Gendelman HE. 2004. Proteomic fingerprinting of human immunodeficiency virus type 1-associated dementia from patient monocyte-derived macrophages: A case study. J Neurovirol. 2004;10 Suppl 1:74-81. PMID:14982743.
  14. Kamara P, Melendez-Guerrero L, Arroyo M, Weiss H, Jolly P. 2005. Maternal plasma viral load and neutralizing/enhancing antibodies in vertical transmission of HIV: a non-randomized prospective study. Virol J. 2:15. PMID:15730556.
  15. Wojna V, Skolasky RL, Hechavarría R, Mayo R, Selnes O, McArthur JC, Meléndez LM, Maldonado E, Zorrilla CD, García H, Kraiselburd E, Nath A. 2006. Prevalence of human immunodeficiency virus-associated cognitive impairment in a group of Hispanic women at risk for neurological impairment. J Neurovirol. 2006 Oct;12(5):356-64. PMID:17065128
  16. Wojna V, Skolasky RL, McArthur JC, Maldonado E, Hechavarria R, Mayo R, Selnes O, Ginebra T, de la Torre T, Garcia H, Kraiselburd E, Melendez-Guerrero LM, Zorrilla CD, Nath A. 2007. Spanish validation of the HIV dementia scale in women. AIDS Patient Care STDS. 2007 Dec;21(12):930-41. PMID:18154490.
  17. Nieves DM, Plaud M, Wojna V, Skolasky R, Meléndez LM. Characterization of peripheral blood human immunodeficiency virus isolates from Hispanic women with cognitive impairment. J Neurovirol. 2007 Aug;13(4):315-27. PMID: 17849315.
  18. Rozek W, Ricardo-Dukelow M, Holloway S, Gendelman HE, Wojna V, Melendez LM, Ciborowski P. 2007. Cerebrospinal fluid proteomic profiling of HIV-1-infected patients with cognitive impairment. J Proteome Res. 2007 Nov;6(11):4189-99. Epub 2007 Oct 12. PMID: 17929958.
  19. Wojna V, Robles L, Skolasky RL, Mayo R, Selnes O, de la Torre T, Maldonado E, Nath A, Meléndez LM, Lasalde-Dominicci J. 2007. Associations of cigarette smoking with viral immune and cognitive function in human immunodeficiency virus-seropositive women. J Neurovirol. 2007 Dec;13(6):561-8. PMID:18097887.
  20. Laspiur JP, Anderson ER, Ciborowski P, Wojna V, Rozek W, Duan F, Mayo R, Rodríguez E, Plaud-Valentín M, Rodríguez-Orengo J, Gendelman HE, Meléndez LM. CSF proteomic fingerprints for HIV-associated cognitive impairment. J Neuroimmunol. 2007 Dec;192(1-2):157-70. Epub 2007 Oct 22. Erratum in: J Neuroimmunol. 2008 Dec 15;205(1-2):161. PMID:17950469.
  21. Luciano-Montalvo C, Ciborowski P, Duan F, Gendelman HE, Meléndez LM. Proteomic analyses associate cystatin B with restricted HIV-1 replication in placental macrophages. Placenta. 2008 Dec;29(12):1016-23. PMID: 18951626
  22. Luciano-Montalvo C, Meléndez LM. Cystatin B associates with signal transducer and activator of transcription 1 in monocyte-derived and placental macrophages. Placenta. 2009 May;30(5):464-7. PMID: 19342095.
  23. García K, García V, Pérez Laspiur J, Duan F, Meléndez LM. Characterization of the placental macrophage secretome: implications for antiviral activity. Placenta. 2009 Feb;30(2):149-55. PMID: 19070362
  24. Velázquez I (Mentee, LM), Plaud M, Pérez-Laspiur J, Skolasky R, Wojna V and Meléndez LM. 2009. Antioxidant enzyme dysfunction in monocytes and CSF of Hispanic women with HIV-associated cognitive impairment. J Neuroimmunol 209:206-211
  25. García-Crespo K, Cadilla C, Skolasky R, Meléndez LM. Restricted HIV-1 replication in placental macrophages is caused by inefficient viral transcription. J Leukoc Biol. 2010 Apr;87(4):633-6. PMID: 20042472
  26. Toro-Nieves D, Perez Laspiur J, Ciborowski P, Duan F, Wojna V, Meléndez LM. 2009. Proteomic analysis of HIV-1 infected monocyte-derived macrophage following infection with primary viral strains isolated from Hispanic women with cognitive impairment”. J NeuroVirology 1:36-50.
  27. Kraft-Terry S, Gerena Y, Wojna V, Plaud-Valentin M, Rodriguez Y, Ciborowski P, Mayo R, Skolasky R, Gendelman HE, Melendez LM. Proteomics analysis of monocytes from Hispanic women with HIV-associated dementia show depressed antioxidants. J. Proteomics and Clinical Applications 4:710-714. PMID:21137088
  28. Peters J, Dieppa-Perea L, Melendez LM*, Quirk GJ. 2010. Induction of fear extinction with hippocampus infralimbic BDNF. Science 238:1288-1290. PMID: 20522777.
  29. Melendez LM, Colon K, Rivera L Rodriguez-Franco E, and Toro-Nieves D. (Invited Review) 2011. Proteomic analysis of HIV-infected macrophages. J Neuroimmune Pharmacol. 6:89-106. PMID: 21153888.
  30. Rivera-Rivera L, Perez-Laspiur J, Colon, K, and Melendez, LM. Inhibition of interferon response by cystatin B: Implication in HIV replication of macrophage reservoirs. J Neurovirology 18:20-9. PMID: 22147503.
  31. Rodriguez E, Cantres Y, Plaud M, Romeu R, Rodriguez Y, Skolasky R, Melendez V, Cadilla C, and Melendez LM*. 2012. Dysregulation of macrophage-secreted cathepsin B contributes to HIV-1-linked neuronal apoptosi PLoS ONE 7(5): PMID: 22693552.
  32. Cantres-Rosario Y, Plaud-Valentin M, Gerena Y, Skolasky R, Wojna V, Meléndez LM*. Dysregulation of cathepsin B and its inhibitor cystatin B in monocytes and CSF from women with HIV-associated neurocognitive impairment. AIDS 27:347-356. PMID: 23291538.
  33. Rivera LE, Colon K, Cantres YM, Zenon FM, and Melendez, LM. Macrophage derived cystatin B/cathepsin B in HIV replication and neuropathogenesis. Current HIV Research 12: 111-120. PMID:24862331.
  34. Agsalda-Garcia M, Shiramizu B, Melendez LM, Plaud M, Liang C-Y, Wojna V. Different levels of HIV DNA copy numbers in cerebrospinal fluid cellular subsets. Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 24(4) Suppl 8-16 doi: 10.1353/hpu.2014.0010. PMID: 24241256; PMCID: PMC3844931.
  35. Vázquez-Santiago F, García Y, Rivera-Román I, Noel RJ Jr, Wojna V, Meléndez LM, Rivera-Amill V. Longitudinal Analysis of Cerebrospinal Fluid and Plasma HIV-1 Envelope Sequences Isolated From a Single Donor with HIV Asymptomatic Neurocognitive Impairment. J Virol Antivir Res. 2015;4(1). doi: 10.4172/2324-8955.1000135. PMID: 26167513. July, 2015
  36. Zenón F, Cantres-Rosario Y, Adiga R, Gonzalez M, Rodriguez-Franco E, Langford D, Melendez LM. HIV-infected microglia mediate cathepsin B-induced neurotoxicity. J Neurovirol. 2015 Jun 20. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 26092112.
  37. Zenón F, Jorge I, Cruz A, Suarez E, Segarra AC, Vázquez J, Meléndez LM, Serrano H. O18 proteomics reveal increased Human Apolipoprotein CIII in Hispanic HIV-1 positive women with HAART that use cocaine. Proteomics Clin Appl. 2015 Aug 10. doi: 10.1002/prca.201400204. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 26255783.
  38. Colon K, Perez-Laspiur J, Quiles R, Rodriguez Y, Wojna V, Shaffer SA, Leszyk J, Skolasky RL Jr, Melendez LM. Macrophage secretome from women with HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders. Proteomics Clin Appl. 2015 Jul 29. doi: 10.1002/prca.201400203. [Epub ahead of print PMID: 26220577.
  39. Colon K, Vázquez-Santiago F Rivera-Amill V, Delgado G, Massey SE, Wojna V, Noel RJ Jr6 and Meléndez LM. 2015. HIV Gp120 Sequence Variability Associated with HAND in Hispanic Women. J Virology and Antiviral Research. doi: 10.4172/2324-8955.1000135. Epub 2015 Oct 6.
  40. Cantres-Rosario YM, Hernandez N, Negron K, Perez-Laspiur J, Leszyk J, Shaffer SA, Melendez LM. Interacting partners of macrophage-secreted cathepsin B contribute to HIV-induced neuronal apoptosis. 2015 Jul 23. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 26208400.
  41. Delgado-Velez M, Baez-Pagan C, Gerena Y, Quesada O, Santiago-Perez L, Capo-Velez C, Wojna V, Melendez L, Leon-Rivera R, Silva W, and Lasalde-Dominicci JA. The a-7nicotinic receptor is upregulated in immune cells from HIVseropositive women: Consequences to the cholinergic anti-inflammatory response. Clin and Translational Immunology 4, e53. Dec, 2015
  42. Rivera LE, Kraiselburd E, Meléndez LM. Cystatin B and HIV regulate the STAT-1 signaling circuit in HIV-infected and INF-β-treated human macrophages. J Neurovirol. 2016 Oct;22(5):666-673. PMID: 27137788. Epub 2016 May 2.
  43. Cantres-Rosario YM, Acevedo-Mariani FM, Pérez-Laspiur J, Haskins WE, Plaud M, Cantres-Rosario YM, Skolasky R, Méndez-Bermúdez I, Wojna V, Meléndez LM. Microwave & magnetic proteomics of macrophages from patients with HIV-associated cognitive impairment. PLoS One. 2017 Jul 26;12(7):e0181779. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0181779. eCollection 2017.
  44. Martínez-Rivera FJ, Pérez-Laspiur J, Santiago-Gascot ME, Alemán-Reyes AG, García-Santiago E, Rodríguez-Pérez Y, Calo-Guadalupe C, Otero-Pagán I, Ayala-Pagán RN, Martínez M, Cantres-Rosario YM, Meléndez LM, Barreto-Estrada JL. 2017. Differential protein expression profile in the hypothalamic GT1-7 cell line after exposure to anabolic androgenic steroids. PLoS ONE Jul 18;12(7): e0180409. PMID: 28719635.
  45. Rosario-Rodriguez LJ, Colón K, Borges-Vélez G, Negrón K,Meléndez LM. Dimethyl fumarate prevents HIV-induced lysosomal dysfunction and cathepsin B release from macrophages. J Neuroimmune Pharmacol. 2018 Jul 9. doi: 10.1007/s11481-018-9794-5. [Epub ahead of print] PMID:29987592.
  46. Rosas-Vidal L, Lozada V, Cantres-Rosario Y, Vega-Medina A, Melendez L, and Quirk G. 2018. Alteration of BDNF in the medial prefrontal cortex and the ventral hippocampus impairs extinction of avoidance. Neuropsychopharmacology. Manuscript #NPP-17-1265RR
  47. López, O. V., Gorantla, S., Segarra, A. C., Norat, M. C. A., Álvarez, M., Skolasky, R. L., & Meléndez, L. 2019. “Sigma-1 Receptor Antagonist (BD1047) Decreases Cathepsin B Secretion in HIV-Infected Macrophages Exposed to Cocaine”. Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology, 1-15.
  48. Cantres-Rosario, YM. Santos A, Ortiz-Rodriguez S., Santos A, Plaud M, Negron K, Cotto B, Langford D, and Melendez LM. HIV-infected macrophages induce extracellular cathepsin B uptake and damage to neurons. Nature Sci Rep. May 29;9(1):8006. doi: 10.1038/s41598-019-44463-1.
  49. Schmoker AM, Perez Pearson LM, Cruz C, Colon Flores LG, Branfeild S, Pagán Torres FD, Fonseca K, Cantres YM, Salgado Ramirez CA,Melendez LM, Ballif BA, Washington AV. Defining the TLT-1 interactome from resting and activated human platelets. J Proteomics. 2020 Mar 20;215:103638. doi: 10.1016/j.jprot.2020.103638. Epub 2020 Jan 8.PMID: 31923473
  50. Rosario-Rodriguez LJ, Gerena Y, Cuadrado JC, Cartagena LJ, and Meléndez LM. Cannabinoid receptor type 2 agonist JWH-133 decreases cathepsin B secretion and neurotoxicity from HIV-infected macrophages. Nature Sci. Rep. 2022 Jan 7;12 (1):233. PMID: 34996989
  51. Zenon-Melendez CN, Carrasquillo Carrión K, Cantres Rosario Y, Roman E, Roche Lima A, & Meléndez LM. Inhibition of cathepsin B and SAPC secreted by HIV-infected macrophages reverse common and unique apoptosis pathways. J of Proteome Research January 7. https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.jproteome.1c00187
  52. Borges-Vélez G, Rosado-Philippi J, Cantres-Rosario YM, Carrasquillo-Carrion K, Roche-Lima A, Pérez-Vargas J, González-Martínez A, Correa-Rivas MS, and Meléndez LM. Zika virus infection of the placenta alters extracellular matrix proteome. J Mol Histol. Jul 15. doi: 10.1007/s10735-021-09994-w. PMID: 34264436
  53. Borges-Velez G, Rosario-Rodriguez L, Rosado-Philippi JE, Cartagena LJ, Garcia-Requena L, Gonzalez A, Perez J, and Melendez LM. SARS-CoV-2: Biology,Detection, Macrophage Mediated Pathogenesis and Potential Treatments. Virol Immunol J. 4(2):242. doi: 10.23880/vij-16000242. Epub 2020 Jul 2.PMID: 34485853


  • Gendelman, H, Anderson E, Melendez, L, and Zheng, J. Chemokines and their receptors in HIV-1 neuropathogenesis. 2006. In Vivo Models of HIV Disease and Control. Eds H. Friedman, S. Specter, and M. Bendinelli. Springer. p. 45-80.
  • Melendez, L.M., Luciano, C. Mayo-Santana R., Wojna, V. Ethnicity and Neuro-AIDS Conditions in the HAART Era. 2009. In “The Spectrum of NeuroAIDS Disorders: Pathophysiology, Diagnosis, and Treatment”. ASM Press. p. 427-441.


  1. Fellowship from the government of Puerto Rico (Fomento Industrial) for studies leading to M.S in Industrial Microbiology, 1979-81.
  2. Minority Access Research Career faculty fellowship from NIH for doctoral studies, 1985-89.
  3. Co-investigator in an NIH funded R01 to study the mechanisms of transplacental transmission of HIV, 1991-92.
  4. Principal investigator in a two-year project entitled:  “Role of the placenta in HIV-1 vertical transmission”, 1993-95.  Sponsored by the Deanship of Academic Affair “CIDIC”.
  5. Activity coordinator in a NIH-RCMI funded research grant entitled: “HIV-1 Env Gene variation and tropism in vertical transmission, RR-03051, 1994-98.
  6. Travel Award from NIH to Keystone symposia entitled:  “NIH-AIDS Postdoctoral Fellows meeting”.  Albuquerque, New México, 1993.
  7. Travel Award from NIH-RCMI to First National HIV Meeting in Washington, D.C., 1993.
  8. Principal Investigator in a NIH-MBRS funded grant entitled:  “Role of the placenta in vertical transmission of HIV”.  SO6 GM08224.
  9. Award from the Dean of Biomedical Sciences and the Program of High School Teachers and Students (K-12 Program, 1995) for advising students in research projects during the summer.  Sponsored by NIH Grant #R25 RR 10852.
  10. Professional – Excellence Award from the Dean of Allied Health School. 1996.
  11. Travel Award for FASEB, Summer Research Conference on “Virus Assembly” Vermont, 1998.
  12. Glaxo-Welcome Research Award in the Category of Researcher with Experience.1999.
  13. Principal Investigator in NIH-SCORE Program funded research grant entitled:  “Role of Chemokine Receptors in HIV-1 infection across the placenta”.  2000-2004. SO6GM08224.
  14. Principal Investigator in NIH-SCORE Program funded research grant entitled:  ” Protein profiling of “putative” anti-retroviral factors in placental macrophages”. 2004-2008. S06GM008224.
  15. Principal Investigator in NIH-Specialized Neuroscience Research Program (SNRP) funded research grant entitled:  ” Monocyte Immunity and HIV Dementia”. 2001-2008
  16. Coordinator in the NIH-RCMI G12RR03051 activity entitled: “Clinical Proteomics Discovery Core Facility”-2006-2011.
  17. Elected Academic Senator from the School of Medicine 2008-2010.
  18. Principal Investigator in the NIH-RO1 entitled 1R01MH083516 – 01   Modulation of Cystatins and Cathepsins in HIV-1 Neuropathogenesis. 2009-2012.
  19. Honorary Mention for “Monocyte Immunity and HIV Dementia”. Merck Innovation Awards. 2009.
  20. NIH reviewer of a special emphasis panels. “Mechanisms of Drug Abuse Interactions with HIV Neuropathogenesis” and “Alcohol abuse Conference R13/U13 Grants” (2007-2009).
    1. Martin Delaney R01 proposals on HIV Reservoirs; HIV and Aging (2011-2012).
    2. NIMH P01 Novel NeuroAIDS Therapeutics: Integrated Preclinical/Clinical Program (March, 2014).
  21. Key Proteomics Director in the NIMHHD 8G12-MD007600 activity entitled: “Translational Proteomics Center. 2006-2016.
  22. Invitations to present research at RCMI meeting 2012 and Temple University Oct 2012.
  23. HiREC Advisory Committee (2013-present)
  24. Research Advisory Committee to the Chancellor (2010-2014)
  25. Search Committee for a new Dean of the School of Medicine (August- October, 2014).
  26. Principal Investigator in NIH-NIGMS SC1 “Targeting Macrophage derived cathepsin 1 in HIV neurocognitive disorders” May 2015-January 2019.
  27. Invitation for an oral presentation. 2nd International Conference on Retroviruses and Novel Drugs. South Africa, June 30, 2016.
  28. Elected Council of the Society for Neuroimmune Pharmacology- April 2017-2022
  29. RISE Program Progress Report Reviewer May 2014-present
  30. INBRE Program Pilot Proposal Reviewer May 2016-present
  31. INBRE Proteomics Core Facility Coordinator 2016-present
  32. Elected Academic Senator from the School of Medicine 2017-2019.
  33. Elected President of Senate Academic Affairs Committee 2017-2018.
  34. 1st HiREC Award on Excellence in Clinical and Translational Research. May, 2019
  35. Invited Reviewer for NIH grants on US and Brazil collaboration. July, 2019.
  36. Puerto Rico Society of Microbiologist 63th Annual Meeting; Premio Arturo Carrión,  June 4, 2021
  37. Puerto Rico Health Sciences Journal Associate Editor, August, 2021
  38. Abstract Reviewer Medical Sciences Campus Scientific Research Forum  March, 2022
  39. Research Abstract Committee member of the Hispanic Alliance of Clinical and Translational Research Scientific Day March, 2022.
  40. Invited Speaker for 14th UPR RISE Area Conference “Two Years of COVID-19: Lessons and Improvements”.  Embassy Suites Hotel, San Juan, PR. April 9, 2022.
  41. Hispanic Alliance Researcher Productivity Award. Hispanic Alliance of Clinical and Translational Research Scientific Day. Hotel Royal Sonesta, San Juan, PR. May 4, 2022.
  42. Invited reviewer for PlosONE, December 2022
  43. Travel award for the IDeA Proteomics Symposia for Core Directors and Staff. Feb 7-10, 2023
  44. Puerto Rico IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence Pilot proposal reviewer, January, 2023
  45. Invited by the Society on NeuroImmune Pharmacology (SNIP) to co-chair Symposium 6 on March 18, 2023 in the 27th SNIP Annual Conference to be held in New Delhi, India from 15th to 18th in March 2023.
  46. RCMI National meeting Abstract Reviewer. April, 2023
  47. Invited reviewer for manuscript J of Neuroimmune Pharmacology and Therapeutics. April, 2023
  48. Invited reviewer for J of Cellular and Molecular Histology. April, 2023
  49. Invited Speaker for University of Vermont Department of Biology. May 1, 2023
  50. NIH Reviewer F31 and F32 Special Emphasis Panel for training grants ZRG1F17A-J(20)

Patents Submitted:

  1. A method to reduce HIV replication in macrophages.
  2. Proteins associated with HIV induced dementia in monocytes and CSF.

Patents Awarded:

  1. A method of reducing HIV-Replication on human body tissue comprising down regulating the expression of the protein Cystatin B on said human body tissue Pat No. 8,143,231. Awarded to Drs. Melendez and Claribel Luciano. 2012.