Natalia Castano Rodriguez

Senior Lecturer

Professional Experience

  • 2020-2024: UNSW Scientia Lecturer
  • 2020-2023: Cancer Institute NSW Early Career Fellow
  • 2016-2020: NHMRC Early Career Fellow
  • 2015: Research Associate, UNSW Sydney
  • 2014: PhD in Molecular Genetics, UNSW Sydney
  • 2011: MPhil (BABS) Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, UNSW Sydney
  • 2008: Research Assistant, Biological Research Corporation (Corporación para Investigaciones Biológicas - CIB), Colombia
  • 2008: Research Assistant, Occidental Biomedical Research Centre (Centro de Investigación Biomédica de Occidente - CIBO), Mexico
  • 2007: Doctor of Medicine, Del Rosario University (Universidad del Rosario), Colombia

 

Research Career and Contribution

Dr Natalia Castaño Rodríguez is a WSTEM Early Career Researcher, who has worked in the fields of molecular biology, microbiology, biostatistics and bioinformatics related to immunogenetics and genetics of cancer for the past 10 years. She currently leads a research group composed of higher degree research and Honours students, all dedicated to investigate the interplay between host immunogenetic factors and gastrointestinal dysbiosis in gastrointestinal carcinogenesis (mainly stomach cancer) and other chronic inflammatory conditions (mainly inflammatory bowel diseases).  

Prior to moving to  Australia, Natalia undertook research trainee fellowships in Colombia (Biological Research Corporation (CIB), Medellín, Colombia) and Mexico (Occidental Biomedical Research Centre (CIBO), Guadalajara, Mexico), where she acquired skills in the areas of human genetics and autoimmunity. Following the completion of her MD degree, Natalia funded her postgraduate studies with competitive scholarships from Colombia and Australia (COLFUTURO Scholarship and UNSW University International Postgraduate Award) to investigate the role of innate immunity in stomach cancer. After a stint as a research associate in the Helicobacter and Campylobacter laboratory at UNSW, she was then awarded an Early Career Fellowship by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) to expand her work on the role of immunogenetics, particularly related to pattern recognition receptors and the autophagy pathway, in Helicobacter pylori-related stomach cancer (May 2016- April 2020). During this time, she further funded her research with a Cancer Australia Priority-driven Collaborative Cancer Research Scheme (PdCCRS) Young Investigator grant (2017) as well as a Gastroenterological Society of Australia Project Grant (2019) to investigate the contribution of dysregulated autophagy to carcinogenesis in the stomach. Having established herself as an emerging leader in the field of immunogenetics in cancer, Natalia recently secured a Cancer Institute NSW ECF (2020-2023) as well as a UNSW Scientia Fellowship (2020-2024).

If you would like to learn more about Natalia and her research, please read these layperson articles published in Nature Communications Biology, Can Too Foundation  and Medscape. A full list of Natalia’s scientific publications can also be found here.

 

Other Roles

As a young female ethnic researcher, embracing diversity has been a priority for Natalia. In 2019, she was selected to be part of UNSW’s Women in Maths and Science Champions Program, she is a member of important Australian gender equity societies, and her research includes marginalised populations from South America and East Asia. She is also actively involved in early career academic representation at UNSW, being the Chair of the Early Career Academic Network (ECAN) and UNSW’s representative in the Early- and Mid-Career Researchers (EMCR) forum.

 

PUBLICATIONS

Journal articles
add
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Paramsothy S; Kaakoush NO, 2020, 'Promise of Fecal Microbiota Transplantation Therapy in Pouchitis', Digestive Diseases and Sciences, vol. 65, pp. 1107 - 1110, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10620-019-05831-z
2020
Simovic I; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Kaakoush NO, 2019, 'OPCML: A Promising Biomarker and Therapeutic Avenue', Trends in Cancer, vol. 5, pp. 463 - 466, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.trecan.2019.06.002
2019
Lee J-E; Castano-Rodriguez N, 2019, 'Spotlight on early-career researchers: an interview with Natalia Castano-Rodriguez', COMMUNICATIONS BIOLOGY, vol. 2, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s42003-019-0376-8
2019
Vinasco K; Mitchell HM; Kaakoush NO; Castaño-Rodríguez N, 2019, 'Microbial carcinogenesis: Lactic acid bacteria in gastric cancer', Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - Reviews on Cancer, vol. 1872, pp. 188309, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bbcan.2019.07.004
2019
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Underwood AP; Merif J; Riordan SM; Rawlinson WD; Mitchell HM; Kaakoush NO, 2018, 'Gut microbiome analysis identifies potential etiological factors in acute gastroenteritis', Infection and Immunity, vol. 86, http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/IAI.00060-18
2018
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Popple GL; Porras-Hurtado GL; Cardona-Deazza JL; Montoya-Martinez JJ; Cadavid-Velez AJ; Toro-Hidalgo HW; Cobo-Alvarado AR; Del Socorro Hincapié-Rincón O; Riordan SM; Kaakoush NO, 2018, 'OPCML is hypermethylated in a subset of patients with metaplastic changes in their esophagus', Biomarker Research, vol. 6, pp. 35, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40364-018-0150-y
2018
Deshpande NP; Riordan SM; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Wilkins MR; Kaakoush NO, 2018, 'Signatures within the esophageal microbiome are associated with host genetics, age, and disease', Microbiome, vol. 6, pp. 227, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40168-018-0611-4
2018
Castanõ-Rodríguez N; Kaakoush NO; Lee WS; Mitchell HM, 2017, 'Dual role of Helicobacter and Campylobacter species in IBD: A systematic review and meta-analysis', Gut, vol. 66, pp. 235 - 249, http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/gutjnl-2015-310545
2017
Paramsothy S; Paramsothy R; Rubin DT; Kamm MA; Kaakoush NO; Mitchell HM; Castaño-Rodríguez N, 2017, 'Faecal microbiota transplantation for inflammatory bowel disease: A systematic review and meta-analysis', Journal of Crohn's and Colitis, vol. 11, pp. 1180 - 1199, http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ecco-jcc/jjx063
2017
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Goh KL; Fock KM; Mitchell HM; Kaakoush NO, 2017, 'Dysbiosis of the microbiome in gastric carcinogenesis', Scientific Reports, vol. 7, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-16289-2
2017
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Mitchell HM; Kaakoush NO, 2017, 'NAFLD, Helicobacter species and the intestinal microbiome', Best Practice and Research: Clinical Gastroenterology, vol. 31, pp. 657 - 668, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bpg.2017.09.008
2017
Deshpande NP; Wilkins MR; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Bainbridge E; Sodhi N; Riordan SM; Mitchell HM; Kaakoush NO, 2016, 'Campylobacter concisus pathotypes induce distinct global responses in intestinal epithelial cells', Scientific Reports, vol. 6, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/srep34288
2016
Kaakoush NO; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Mitchell HM; Man SM, 2015, 'Global epidemiology of campylobacter infection', Clinical Microbiology Reviews, vol. 28, pp. 687 - 720, http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/CMR.00006-15
2015
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Kaakoush NO; Goh KL; Fock KM; Mitchell HM, 2015, 'Autophagy in Helicobacter pylori Infection and Related Gastric Cancer', Helicobacter, vol. 20, pp. 353 - 369, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/hel.12211
2015
Castano Rodriguez N; Kaakoush N; Goh K; Fock K; Mitchell H, 2015, 'Correction: The NOD-Like Receptor Signalling Pathway in Helicobacter pylori Infection and Related Gastric Cancer: A Case-Control Study and Gene Expression Analyses', PLOS ONE, vol. 10, pp. e0117870 - e0117870, http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0117870
2015
Kaakoush NO; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Day AS; Lemberg DA; Leac ST; Mitchell HM, 2015, 'Faecal levels of zonula occludens toxin in paediatric patients with crohn’s disease and their association with the intestinal microbiota', Journal of Medical Microbiology, vol. 64, pp. 303 - 306, http://dx.doi.org/10.1099/jmm.0.000005
2015
Kaakoush NO; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Man SM; Mitchell HM, 2015, 'Is Campylobacter to esophageal adenocarcinoma as Helicobacter is to gastric adenocarcinoma?', Trends in Microbiology, vol. 23, pp. 455 - 462, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tim.2015.03.009
2015
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Kaakoush NO; Pardo AL; Goh KL; Fock KM; Mitchell HM, 2014, 'Genetic polymorphisms in the Toll-like receptor signalling pathway in Helicobacter pylori infection and related gastric cancer', Human Immunology, vol. 75, pp. 808 - 815, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.humimm.2014.06.001
2014
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Kaakoush NO; Mitchell HM, 2014, 'Pattern-recognition receptors and gastric cancer', Frontiers in Immunology, vol. 5, http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2014.00336
2014
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Kaakoush NO; Goh KL; Fock KM; Mitchell HM, 2014, 'The NOD-like receptor signalling pathway in Helicobacter pylori infection and related gastric cancer: A case-control study and gene expression analyses', PLoS ONE, vol. 9, http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0098899
2014
Burgos-Portugal JA; Mitchell HM; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Kaakoush NO, 2014, 'The role of autophagy in the intracellular survival of Campylobacter concisus', FEBS Open Bio, vol. 4, pp. 301 - 309, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.fob.2014.03.008
2014
Castano-Rodriguez N; Mitchell HM, 2013, 'Peptic ulcer disease: current notions', MICROBIOLOGY AUSTRALIA, vol. 34, pp. 147 - 150, http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/MA13049
2013
Kaakoush NO; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Day AS; Lemberg DA; Leach ST; Mitchell HM, 2013, 'Campylobacter concisus and exotoxin 9 levels in paediatric patients with Crohn's disease and their association with the intestinal microbiota', Journal of Medical Microbiology, vol. 63, pp. 99 - 105, http://dx.doi.org/10.1099/jmm.0.067231-0
2013
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Kaakoush NO; Goh KL; Fock KM; Mitchell HM, 2013, 'The Role of TLR2, TLR4 and CD14 Genetic Polymorphisms in Gastric Carcinogenesis: A Case-Control Study and Meta-Analysis', PLoS ONE, vol. 8, http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0060327
2013
Castano-Rodriguez N; Kaakoush NO; Schmidt HA; Goh K; Fock KM; Sutton P; Chionh Y; Mitchell HM, 2012, 'PAR-1 polymorphisms and risk of Helicobacter pylori-related gastric cancer in a Chinese population', Anticancer Research, vol. 32, pp. 3715 - 3721, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22993310
2012
Castano-Rodriguez N; Kaakoush NO; Pardo AL; Schmidt H-MA; Ha DM; Goh K-L; Fock KM; Sutton P; Forman D; Mitchell HM, 2012, 'Genetic polymorphisms involved in the toll-like receptor signaling pathway and Helicobacter pylori-related gastric cancer: a case-control study and meta-analysis', JOURNAL OF GASTROENTEROLOGY AND HEPATOLOGY, vol. 27, pp. 11 - 11, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000298599600029&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2012
Castano-Rodriguez N; Kaakoush NO; Pardo AL; Schmidt H-MA; Ha DM; Sutton P; Goh K-L; Fock KM; Forman D; Mitchell HM, 2012, 'PAR-1 polymorphisms and risk of gastric cancer in a Chinese population', JOURNAL OF GASTROENTEROLOGY AND HEPATOLOGY, vol. 27, pp. 11 - 11, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000298599600030&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2012
Every AL; Lynne S; Castano-Rodriguez N; Wei L; Helen W; Janet LKW; Agnieszka S; Barry JM; Kaakoush NO; Mitchell HM; Sutton P, 2011, 'Did transmission of Helicobacter pylori from humans cause a disease outbreak in a colony of Stripe-faced Dunnarts (Sminthopsis macroura)?', Veterinary Research, vol. 42, pp. 26, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1297-9716-42-26
2011
Kaakoush N; Holmes J; Octavia S; Man S; Zhang L; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Day A; Leach S; Lemberg D; Dutt S; Stormon M; O'Loughlin E; Magoffin A; Mitchell H, 2011, 'Detection of Helicobacteraceae in Intestinal Biopsies of Children with Crohn's Disease', Gastroenterological Endoscopy, vol. 53, pp. 99, http://dx.doi.org/10.11280/gee.53.99
2011
Coral-Alvarado P; Pardo AL; Castaño-Rodriguez N; Rojas-Villarraga A; Anaya JM, 2009, 'Systemic sclerosis: A world wide global analysis', Clinical Rheumatology, vol. 28, pp. 757 - 765, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10067-009-1144-9
2009
Castiblanco J; Varela DC; Castaño-Rodríguez N; Rojas-Villarraga A; Hincapié ME; Anaya JM, 2008, 'TIRAP (MAL) S180L polymorphism is a common protective factor against developing tuberculosis and systemic lupus erythematosus', Infection, Genetics and Evolution, vol. 8, pp. 541 - 544, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.meegid.2008.03.001
2008
Castaño-Rodríguez N; Diaz-Gallo LM; Pineda-Tamayo R; Rojas-Villarraga A; Anaya JM, 2008, 'Meta-analysis of HLA-DRB1 and HLA-DQB1 polymorphisms in Latin American patients with systemic lupus erythematosus', Autoimmunity Reviews, vol. 7, pp. 322 - 330, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.autrev.2007.12.002
2008
Conference Abstracts
add
Simovic I; Mitchell H; Castano-Rodriguez N, 2019, 'Association of ATG16L1 rs2241880 and the risk of Helicobacter pylori-related gastric cancer', in JOURNAL OF GASTROENTEROLOGY AND HEPATOLOGY, WILEY, Vol. 34, pp. 34 - 34, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000483843100050&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2019
Paramsothy S; Paramsothy R; Kamm MA; Kaakoush NO; Mitchell HM; Rubin DT; Castano-Rodriguez N, 2017, 'FAECAL MICROBIOTA TRANSPLANTATION FOR INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASE: A SYSTEMATIC REVIEW AND META-ANALYSIS', in GASTROENTEROLOGY, W B SAUNDERS CO-ELSEVIER INC, Chicago, IL, Vol. 152, pp. S1007 - S1007, presented at Digestive Disease Week (DDW), Chicago, IL, 06 May 2017 - 09 May 2017, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0016-5085(17)33417-0
2017
Castano-Rodriguez N; Fock KM; Goh KL; Mitchell HM; Kaakoush NO, 2017, 'The role of gastric dysbiosis in gastric carcinogenesis', in JOURNAL OF GASTROENTEROLOGY AND HEPATOLOGY, WILEY, Vol. 32, pp. 56 - 56, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000407897100099&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2017
Castano-Rodriguez N; Fock K; Goh K; Mitchell HM; Kaakoush NO, 2017, 'The role of gastric dysbiosis in gastric carcinogenesis', in HELICOBACTER, WILEY, Bordeaux, FRANCE, Vol. 22, presented at 30th International Workshop of the European-Helicobacter-and-Microbiota-Study-Group (EHMSG) on Helicobacter and Microbiota in Inflammation and Cancer, Bordeaux, FRANCE, 07 September 2017 - 09 September 2017, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000423287200033&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2017
Paramsothy S; Paramsothy R; Kamm M; Kaakoush N; Mitchell H; Rubin D; Castano-Rodriguez N, 2017, 'Faecal microbiota transplantation for inflammatory bowel disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis', in JOURNAL OF CROHNS & COLITIS, OXFORD UNIV PRESS, Vol. 11, pp. S380 - S381, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000398606901123&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2017
Castano-Rodriguez N; Kaakoush NO; Vadivelu J; Lee WS; Mitchell HM, 2015, 'HELICOBACTER PYLORI INFECTION IS A CONSISTENT PROTECTIVE FACTOR AGAINST INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASES', in HELICOBACTER, WILEY-BLACKWELL, Nicosia, CYPRUS, Vol. 20, pp. 84 - 84, presented at European-Helicobacter-Study-Group 28th International Workshop on Helicobacter and Microbiota in Inflammation and Cancer, Nicosia, CYPRUS, 24 September 2015 - 26 September 2015, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000363064400045&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2015
Kaakoush NO; Holmes J; Octavia S; Man S; Zhang L; Castano-Rodriguez N; Day A; Leach ST; Lemberg DA; Dutt S; Storman M; O'Laughlin EV; Magoffin A; Mitchell HM, 2010, 'Do members of the Helicobacteraceae play a role in Crohn's disease?', in HELICOBACTER, WILEY-BLACKWELL PUBLISHING, INC, Rotterdam, NETHERLANDS, Vol. 15, pp. 315 - 315, presented at 23rd International Workshop on Helicobacter and Related Bacteria in Chronic Digestive Inflammation and Gastric Cancer, Rotterdam, NETHERLANDS, 16 September 2010 - 18 September 2010, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000279986200015&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2010
Conference Papers
add
Castano-Rodriguez N; Popple G; Kaakoush NO; Lee W; Mitchell HM, 2017, 'The role of the intestinal microbiota in the aetiology of inflammatory bowel diseases and the impact of Helicobacter pylori infection', in HELICOBACTER, WILEY, Bordeaux, FRANCE, presented at 30th International Workshop of the European-Helicobacter-and-Microbiota-Study-Group (EHMSG) on Helicobacter and Microbiota in Inflammation and Cancer, Bordeaux, FRANCE, 07 September 2017 - 09 September 2017, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000423287200340&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2017
Castano-Rodriguez N; Popple G; Kaakoush NO; Lee WS; Mitchell HM, 2017, 'The role of the intestinal microbiota in the etiology of inflammatory bowel disease and the impact of Helicobacter pylori infection', in JOURNAL OF GASTROENTEROLOGY AND HEPATOLOGY, WILEY, pp. 116 - 116, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000407897100211&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2017
Castano-Rodriguez N; Kaakoush NO; Schmidt H; Forman D; Goh K; Fock K; Sutton P; Mitchell HM, 2010, 'Host genetic polymorphisms and gastric cancer', in HELICOBACTER, WILEY-BLACKWELL PUBLISHING, INC, Rotterdam, NETHERLANDS, pp. 328 - 328, presented at 23rd International Workshop on Helicobacter and Related Bacteria in Chronic Digestive Inflammation and Gastric Cancer, Rotterdam, NETHERLANDS, 16 September 2010 - 18 September 2010, http://gateway.webofknowledge.com/gateway/Gateway.cgi?GWVersion=2&SrcApp=PARTNER_APP&SrcAuth=LinksAMR&KeyUT=WOS:000279986200050&DestLinkType=FullRecord&DestApp=ALL_WOS&UsrCustomerID=891bb5ab6ba270e68a29b250adbe88d1
2010