Eduardo Rosa-Molinar

Eduardo Rosa-Molinar
  • Professor
  • Director of Microscopy & Analytical Imaging Research Resource Core Lab
  • Department of Pharmacology & Toxicology

Contact Info

Haworth Hall, Room 1036
1200 Sunnyside Avenue
Lawrence, KS 66045


Eduardo Rosa-Molinar, Ph.D., is the Director of the Microscopy and Analytical Imaging Research Resource Core Laboratory and a tenured Professor in Pharmacology and Toxicology, Bi-Campus Neuroscience Graduate Program, and Bioengineering Graduate Program.  Until June 2015, he was a tenured Professor of Integrative Anatomy and Neurobiology, University of Puerto Rico-Rio Piedras, San Juan, Puerto Rico.

He holds the lifetime distinction of Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).  He also holds memberships and fellowships in numerous societies and serves or served in various senior leadership positions, committees, and boards, including Society for Integrative Biology, Histochemical Society, Royal Microscopical Society, Linnean Society of London, Optica (formally Optical Society of America), Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Society for Neuroscience, American Society of Cell Biology, Society of Photographic Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE), Association of Biomolecular Facilities, BioImaging North America, and the Federation of American Societies of Experimental Biology.  He also serves or served as review editor, associate editor, and or as an editorial board member of journals, including Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience, IEEE Access, PEERJ Computer Science, Biotechnic and Histochemistry, Integrative and Comparative Biology, and Journal of Experimental Zoology Part B: Molecular and Developmental Evolution.

Dr. Rosa-Molinar’s focus is on mentoring and training a diverse and inclusive workforce of neuroscientists, photo-optical bioengineers, optical and electron microscopists, and imaging neurotechnology developers required to advance neuroscience research, reduce health disparities of the nervous system, and expand science, technology, engineering and math education opportunities for women and individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds (including economic, racial, ethnic minorities, and disabilities).


Postdoctoral Training, Creighton University School of Medicine, 1999, Omaha, NE
Ph.D. in Medical Sciences: Anatomy, Cell Biology, and Neuroscience, University of Nebraska Medical Center, 1997, Omaha, NE
B.S. in Natural Sciences, The University of Alabama, 1994, Tuscaloosa, AL


Dr. Rosa-Molinar and his group apply to multi-scale multi-modal correlated volume resin microscopies a systems engineering process concept known as “imaging chain” that includes determining provenance, searching, mining, processing, analyzing, displaying, storing, and managing datasets. The imaging chain enables the group to develop, refine, and use imaging tools and reagents to create image data sets required to research and unravel synapses’ three-dimensional (3-D) nano-scale geometry and molecular diversity.

To this end, Dr. Rosa-Molinar and his group are patenting and developing reagents and technology for multi-scale multi-modal correlated volume resin microscopic imaging of the central nervous system using photon-based and electron-based imaging technologies.  They image and study the 3-D nano-scale geometry and molecular diversity of a poorly studied synapse that combines the features of both a chemical synapse and an electrical synapse, a connexin-based gap junction channel made of two hemichannels or connexons, one at each side of apposed membranes, known as a “mixed synapse”, to achieve his long-term research goal of elucidating the functional foundations of niche specialization of connexin, gap junction proteins, in electrical synapses and to elucidate the impact of use of different connexins in specialized niches within neural “microcircuits", a specific pattern of connectivity between neurons within a specific region of the central nervous system.

Research Interests

He and his group’s research interest is in the emerging field of neurotechnology, specifically developing/refining reagents, tools, and workflows for multi-scale multi-modal correlated volume resin microscopies required to determine the three-dimensional nano-scale geometry and molecular diversity of synapses. They are particularly interested in electrical synapses (e.g., gap junctions), specifically “mixed synapses,” a poorly studied synapse that combines the features of both chemical and electrical synapses.

Freeze fracture image of a E-face spinal mixed synapse labeled for Connexin-35 (Cx35; 6-nm gold beads; white arrow heads), a fish ortholog of mammalian Cx36, and a postsynaptic density (PSD) clusters of E-face intramembrane particles identified as glutamate receptors based on weak but positive labeling for NMDAR1 (12-nm gold bead, white complete arrow).

Selected Publications