Dr. Huertas

Dr. Huertas

Mar Huertas

Assistant Professor, Texas State University; mhuertas@txstate.edu


  1. Professional Preparation


Institute Major/Area Degree & Year
University of Barcelona, Spain Organism and Systems B.S., 1999
University of Barcelona, Spain Experimental Biology M.S., 2000
University of Barcelona, Spain Animal biology Ph.D., 11/2006
University of Algarve, Portugal Endocrinology and Electrophysiology Postdoc Fellow 11/06-03/12


  1. Academic Appointments


Department of Biology, Texas State University, San Marcos, US. Assistant Professor, 8/2016-present

Department of Biology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, US. Adjunct Assistant Professor, 12/2015-present.

Department of Fisheries and Wildlife and Department of Physiology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI. US. Senior Research Assistant, 04/2013-672017

Molecular and Comparative Endocrinology group, University of Algarve, Faro. Portugal. Postdoctoral Fellow, 11/2006-03/2012

Institute of Technological & Agro-alimentary Research. Tarragona. Spain. Research Associate, 2001-06

Department of Zoology.  University of Barcelona. Barcelona. Spain. Research Assistant, 1995-2001


  1. Individual’s Expertise


My research interests during the last ten years were largely driven by my fascination for the pheromones and endocrine systems of fish.  I focused on how external chemical signals drive reproductive output, which eventually lead to a study on the activation of endocrine axis after a pheromone detection event. I have become proficient in electrophysiology, and investigation of the morphology and physiology of elements of the hypothalamus-pituitary-gland axis by protein biochemistry, histology and molecular procedures.


  1. Publications (last 10 years)


Peer-reviewed publications:

  1. Buchinger, T. J., U Bussy, H Wang, C. F. Baker, Huertas, J. Liang, M. C. Hayes, W. Li, and N. S Johnson (2017). Evolution of pheromone communication in lampreys. Integrative and comparative biology. 57: E213-E213.
  2. Brant, C., Huertas, K. Li, and W. Li (2016). Mixtures of two bile alcohol sulfates function as a proximity pheromone in sea lamprey. PLOS one, 11 (2), e0149508.
  3. Sara E. Smith, S. P. Sitar, F. W. Goetz, Huertas, C. Simchik, B. M. Armstrong, A. Bartholomew, K. Chopra and C. A. Murphy (2016). Differential physiological response to sea lamprey parasitism between lake trout morphotypes (Salvelinus namaycush) from Lake Superior. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic sciences, 73: 1-15.
  4. Bussy, U., Huertas, Y-W. Chung-Davidson, K. Li and W. Li (2016). Chemical derivatization of neurosteroids for trace determination in sea lamprey by LC-MS/MS. Talanta, 149: 326-334.
  5. Churcher, A.M., J. M. Pujolar, M. Milan, Huertas, P. C. Hubbard, L. Bargelloni, T. Patarnello, I. AM. Marino, L. Zane and A.V.M. Canário (2015). Transcriptomic profiling of male European eel (Anguilla anguilla) livers at sexual maturity. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part D: Genomics and Proteomics, 16: 28-35.
  6. Churcher, A.M., P.C. Hubbard, J. Marques, A.V.M. Canário, and Huertas. (2015). Deep sequencing of the olfactory pithelium reveals specific chemosensory receptors are expressed at sexual maturity in the European eel (Anguilla anguilla). Molecular Ecology, 24(4): 822-834
  7. Li, K., Huertas, C.O. Brant, Y.-W. Chung-Davidson, U. Bussy, T.R. Hoye and W. Li. (2015). (+)- and (–)-Petromyroxols: Antipodal tetrahydrofurandiols from larval sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus) that elicit enantioselective olfactory responses. Chemical letters, 17: 286-289
  8. Bryan, M.B., Y.-W. Chung-Davidson, J. Ren, S. Bowman, A.P. Scott, Huertas, M.P. Connolly and W. Li. (2015). Evidence that progesterone plays an important role in spermiation and pheromone production in male sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus). General and Comparative Endocrinology, 212: 17-27.
  9. Churcher, A.M., J. M. Pujolar, M. Milan, P. C. Hubbard, R. ST. Martins, J. L. Saraiva, Huertas, L. Bargelloni, T. Patarnello, I. AM. Marino, L. Zane and A.V.M. Canário. (2014). Changes in the gene expression profiles of the brains of male European eels (Anguilla anguilla) during sexual maturation. BMC Genomics, 15:799
  10. Huertas, M., O.G. Almeida, A.V.M. Canario and P. C. Hubbard. (2014). Tilapia male urinary pheromone stimulates female reproductive axis. General and Comparative Endocrinology 196(15): 106-111.
  11. Li K., C.O. Brant, Huertas, S.K. Hur and W. Li (2013). Petromyzonin, a hexahydrophenanthrene sulfate isolated from the larval sea lamprey (Petromyzon marinus L.). Organic Letters 15(23): 5924-5927.
  12. Huertas, M., L. Hagey, A.F. Hofmann, J. Cerdà, A.V.M. Canário and P.C. Hubbard. (2010). Olfactory sensitivity to bile fluid and bile salts in the European eel (Anguilla anguilla), goldfish (Carassius auratus) and Mozambique tilapia (Oreochromis mossambicus) suggests a ‘broad range’ sensitivity not confined to those produced by con-specifics alone. Journal of Experimental Biology 213: 308-317.
  13. Huertas, M., V.M. Canário and P.C. Hubbard. (2008). Chemical communication in the Genus Anguilla: a minireview. Behaviour 145 (10): 1389-1407.
  14. Scott, A.P., Hirschenhauser, N. Bender, R. Oliveira, R.L. Earley, M. Sebire, T. Ellis, M. Pavlidis, P.C. Hubbard, M. Huertas and A.V.M. Canario. (2008). Non-invasive measurement of steroids in fish-holding water: important considerations when applying the procedure to behaviour studies. Behaviour 145 (10): 1307-1328.
  15. Huertas, M., C. Hubbard, A.V.M. Canário and J. Cerdà. (2007). Olfactory sensitivity to conspecific bile fluid and skin mucus in the European eel (Anguilla anguilla, L.). Journal of Fish Biology 70 (6): 1907-1920.
  16. Huertas, M., and J. Cerdà. (2006). Stocking density at early developmental stages affects growth and sex ratio in European eel (Anguilla anguilla, ). Biological Bulletin 211: 286-296.
  17. Huertas, M., P. Scott, P.C. Hubbard, A.V.M. Canário and J. Cerdà. (2006). Sexually mature European eels (Anguilla anguilla L.) stimulate gonadal development of neighboring males: possible involvement of chemical communication. General and Comparative Endocrinology 147: 304-313. [This research was highlighted in Journal of Experimental Biology by M. Danielle McDonald (2006). Is sexual maturation contagious? 209, p. V].
  18. Scott, A.P., M.L. Pinillos and Huertas. (2005). The rate of uptake of sex steroids from water by tench Tinca tinca L. is influenced by their affinity for sex steroid binding protein in plasma. Journal of Fish Biology 67: 182-200.


Book chapters:

  1. Power, D.M., P.M.G. Guerreiro, P.C. Hubbard, M. Huertas, I.M. Morgado and J. Fuentes. (2010). Endocrinology applied to aquaculture finfish. In: Recent advances in aquaculture research (Koumondouros, G., ed.), pp. 1-54, Transworld Research Network, Kerala.
  2. Chung-Davidson, Y.-W., M. Huertas and W. Li. (2011). A review of research in fish pheromones. In: Chemical communication in crustaceans (Breithaupt, T. and Thiel, M., eds.), pp. 467-482, Springer, New York.