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Assistant Research Professor 

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Dr. Castillo-Ruiz received her BSc from Universidad Nacional Agraria in Peru and then completed her MA and PhD in the lab of Dr. Antonio Nunez at Michigan State University, where she studied neural substrates of circadian rhythmicity in diurnal and nocturnal rodents. As a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Dr. William Schwartz at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, she studied the effects of the social environment on circadian rhythms at the brain and behavioral levels. In her second postdoc with Dr. Nancy Forger, and now as a professor, she investigates the role that birth plays on brain and behavioral development. To this aim, she manipulates events and milestones associated with birth, including mode and timing of birth, and microbiota colonization. Her research is revealing a role for birth as an orchestrator of brain development.

Dr. Castillo-Ruiz also teaches neuroscience classes at the undergraduate and graduate level and mentors undergraduate and graduate students in neuroscience research.

Dr. Castillo-Ruiz is passionate about science outreach for the general public and has participated in numerous activities in public schools in USA and Peru, the Atlanta Science Festival, and the Museum at Michigan State University, among others. She also seeks opportunities to continue with her mission (she welcomes inquiries!).

Dr. Castillo-Ruiz enjoys traveling and hiking with her husband and her dog Wally. She also enjoys gardening and doing graphic design, whilst listening to science podcasts.


"Your brain on bugs" exhibit  at the Atlanta Science Festival Expo, 2022. The exhibit was based on Dr. Castillo-Ruiz's research at GSU. The team from left to right: Hannah Sturgeon, Dr. Castillo-Ruiz, Kharli Major, and Dr. Florencia Rossetti.

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