Leonardo F. Ferreira, Ph.D., is a faculty in the department of Applied Physiology and Kinesiology. Dr. Ferreira’s clinical experience with patients suffering from muscle weakness and fatigue triggered his interest in muscle biology. He joined the University of Florida after undergoing research training at the University of California, Los Angeles (Harbor-UCLA), Kansas State University, and the Center for Muscle Biology at the University of Kentucky Medical School. Ferreira’s research experience spans from experiments in individual cells to non-invasive studies in humans. He has been funded by NIH and the American Heart Association throughout his career.
At the University of Florida (UF), Leo Ferreira directs the Laboratory of Basic and Clinical Muscle Biology. Our main goal is to understand mechanisms and develop new therapies for skeletal muscle weakness in chronic diseases. Our research group uses an integrative approach with state-of-the art techniques to study force production by intact muscles (in vivo and in vitro) and single muscle fibers, and examine molecular events in whole-tissue and cultured cells. To accomplish our goals, we use pharmacologic and genetic interventions in rodent models of heart failure and conduct studies in muscles biopsies from patients. In collaboration with other scientists at UF, we are working to understand the causes of muscle weakness in cancer, sepsis, and prolonged surgery.