Marco Gonzalez Contreras, Ph.D. for UC Davis Health

Marco Gonzalez Contreras, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Department of Neurology






Locations and Contact

Additional Numbers



Physician Referrals

800-4-UCDAVIS (800-482-3284)

Research/Academic Interests

Dr. González's research focuses on understanding the cellular and molecular events that transform a normal brain into an epileptic one. This process of transformation, also known as epileptogenesis, involves a plethora of molecular, biochemical and structural changes that may offer clues for the discovery of novel therapeutic targets. The effects that seizure activity might have on the reactivation of the pathological events leading to the manifestation of spontaneous seizures might also help to understanding the molecular events regulating seizure recurrence and will help to develop novel therapeutic approaches for the prevention, treatment, and cure of epilepsy.



Undergraduate School

B.Sc., Autonomous University of Puebla, Puebla, Mexico 1994

Other School

Ph.D., Molecular Biology, Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the National Polytechnic Institute of Mexico, Mexico City, Mexico 2000


Neuroscience/Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia PA 2000-2005

Carl Storm Underrepresented Minority Fellowship, Gordon Research Conference, 2010

Winner of The Joseph Stokes Jr. Research Institute Fellow’s Research Poster Day, 2005

Postdoctoral Fellowship Award, American Heart Association, 2003

Alavi-Dabiri Postdoctoral Fellowship Award, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, 2003

Member of the National System of Investigators, México, Candidate level, 1998

Doctoral training grant CONACYT, México, 1996

Predoctoral training grant CONACYT, México, 1994

Complete List of Publications in NCBI MyBibliography:

Ahmed MM, Carrel AJ, Cruz Del Angel Y, Carlsen J, Thomas AX, González MI, Gardiner KJ, Brooks-Kayal A. Altered Protein Profiles During Epileptogenesis in the Pilocarpine Mouse Model of Temporal Lobe Epilepsy. Front Neurol. 2021 May 28;12:654606. doi:10.3389/fneur.2021.654606. PMID:34122302.

Raol YH, Joksimovic SM, Sampath D, Matter BA, Lam PM, Kompella UB, Todorovic SM, González MI. The role of KCC2 in hyperexcitability of the neonatal brain. Neurosci Lett. 2020 Nov 1;738:135324. doi:10.1016/j.neulet.2020.135324. Epub 2020 Aug 26. PMID:32860887.

González MI. Calpain-dependent cleavage of GABAergic proteins during epileptogenesis. Epilepsy Res. 2019 Nov;157:106206. doi:10.1016/j.eplepsyres.2019.106206. Epub 2019 Sep 17. PMID:31585309.

Lam PM, González MI. Calpain activation and neuronal death during early epileptogenesis. Neurobiol Dis. 2019 Apr;124:141-151. doi:10.1016/j.nbd.2018.11.005. Epub 2018 Nov 10. PMID:30423475.

Lam PM, Carlsen J, González MI. A calpain inhibitor ameliorates seizure burden in an experimental model of temporal lobe epilepsy. Neurobiol Dis. 2017 Jun;102:1-10. doi:10.1016/j.nbd.2017.02.003. Epub 2017 Feb 22. PMID:28237317.

González MI. Regulation of the cell surface expression of chloride transporters during epileptogenesis. Neurosci Lett. 2016 Aug 15;628:213-8. doi:10.1016/j.neulet.2016.06.042. Epub 2016 Jun 21. PMID:27345384.

Thomas AX, Cruz Del Angel Y, Gonzalez MI, Carrel AJ, Carlsen J, Lam PM, Hempstead BL, Russek SJ, Brooks-Kayal AR. Rapid Increases in proBDNF after Pilocarpine-Induced Status Epilepticus in Mice Are Associated with Reduced proBDNF Cleavage Machinery. eNeuro. 2016 Mar 30;3(1):ENEURO.0020-15.2016. doi:10.1523/ENEURO.0020-15.2016. PMID:27057559.

González MI, Grabenstatter HL, Cea-Del Rio CA, Cruz Del Angel Y, Carlsen J, Laoprasert RP, White AM, Huntsman MM, Brooks-Kayal A. Seizure-related regulation of GABAA receptors in spontaneously epileptic rats. Neurobiol Dis. 2015 May;77:246-56. doi:10.1016/j.nbd.2015.03.001. Epub 2015 Mar 11. PMID:25769812.