Carol Elias, Ph.D.

Michigan Neuroscience Institute Affiliate
Professor of Molecular & Integrative Physiology
Professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology
Director Academic Program, Neuroscience Graduate Program

Caswell Diabetes Institute
2800 Plymouth Rd.
North Campus Research Complex
Bld. 25, Office 3682


Administrative Contact


After completing her postdoctoral training at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center/Harvard Medical School, Dr. Elias established an independent research program in the Institute of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, where she worked for about ten years. In 2006, she returned to the United States (University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center/UTSW, Dallas - TX) for a 1-year sabbatical and was invited to join the faculty at the Division of Hypothalamic Research. In November of 2012, her lab relocated to the University of Michigan, and she joined both the faculty of the Department of Molecular & Integrative Physiology and the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology. Dr. Elias became the director of the Neuroscience Graduate Program in 2021.

Areas of Interest

Dr. Elias' primary research interest is neuroendocrinology and systems neuroscience. The Elias Lab aims to determine the neural and molecular mechanisms by which the metabolic imbalance disrupts reproductive physiology. Research in Dr. Elias's lab is also focused on genetic mouse models of reproductive neuroendocrine deficits and hypothalamic transcriptome programs during postnatal development. Her lab uses molecular biology tools, omics, genetically modified mouse models, and viral vectors for brain mapping and targeted deletion or re-expression of related genes.

Honors & Awards

  • Fellow elected – American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) 2020
  • Member elected – Latin-American Academy of Sciences (ACAL) 2020
  • D’ Agrosa Memorial Lecture Award. Nutrition and Growth: The Search for Key Hypothalamic Pathways in Pubertal Development., St. Louis University, St. Louis, MO (2018)
  • Clinical Research Fellowship Mentor Award. Supported by Pfizer, Inc - Endocrine Society Meeting, Boston, MA (2016)
  • Solomon A. Berson Distinguished Lectureship Award – American Physiological Society – Endocrinology and Metabolism. San Diego, CA (2014)
  • Distinguished Young Researcher - UTSW Medical Center, Dallas, TX (2009)
  • Distinguished Scholar in Medical Research - UTSW Medical Center, Dallas, TX (2008)


  • Postdoctoral training. Neurology and Neuroendocrinology. Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, M.A. (1999)
  • Ph.D. Neuroscience and Behavior. University of Sao Paulo - Brazil (1997)
  • M.A. Neuroanatomy. University of Sao Paulo (USP), Sao Paulo, SP - Brazil (1994)
  • B.S. Biological Sciences. University of Campinas (UNICAMP) - Brazil (1990)

Published Articles or Reviews

  • Han X, Burger LL, Garcia-Galiano D, Sim S, Allen SJ, Olson DP, Myers MG Jr, Elias CF.Hypothalamic and cell-specific transcriptomes unravel a dynamic neuropil remodeling in leptin-induced and typical puberty.iScience. 23(10):101563. doi: 10.1016/j.isci.2020.101563. eCollection 2020 Oct 23.
  • Garcia-Galiano David, Cara A, Tata Z, Allen SJ, Myers MG, Jr., Schipani E, and Elias CF.ERa signaling in GHRH Kiss1 dual phenotype neurons plays sex-specific role in growth and puberty, J Neurosci. 40(49):9455-9466. 2020
  • Cara AL,  Myers MG Jr., Elias CF. Lack of AR in LepRb cells disrupts ambulatory activity and neuroendocrine axes in a sex-specific manner in mice. Endocrinology. 2020 Aug;161(8):bqaa110. doi: 10.1210/endocr/bqaa110.
  • Hill JW, Elias CF. Neuroanatomical Framework of the Metabolic Control of Reproduction. Physiol Rev, 98(4):2349-2380. 2018.
  • Garcia-Galiano D, Borges BC, Donato JJr, Allen SJ, Bellefontaine N, Wang M, Zhao JJ, Kozloff KM, Hill JW, Elias CF. PI3Ka inactivation in leptin receptor cells increases leptin sensitivity but disrupts growth and reproduction. JCI Insight, Dec 7; 2 (23). pii: 96728. doi: 10.1172/jci.insight.96728. [Epub ahead of print]. 2017. PMID: 29212950. 2017.

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