Dr. Angel de la Cruz Landrau was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where he attended the University of Puerto Rico, Bayamón Campus, and graduated with a B.S. in Biology with a concentration in Human Biology and a minor in General Sciences and Biology Teaching. Afterward, he enrolled in the Universidad Central del Caribe to obtain his Ph.D. in Molecular and Cell Biology. During the second year of his Ph.D. program, Dr. de la Cruz Landrau became an NINDS summer graduate student before becoming a predoctoral student in the NIH Graduate Partnership Program in Dr. Miguel Holmgren's lab. There he worked on his dissertation research entitled "Insights on the Gating Mechanism of a Voltage-Gated Potassium Channel using Metal Bridges and Methanethiosulfonate Crosslinkers."
After obtaining his Ph.D., Dr. de la Cruz Landrau held dual postdoc appointments within the NIH Office of Intramural Training and Education (OITE) under Dr. Sharon Milgram while continuing his research with Dr. Holmgren. While at OITE, he served as a Program Coordinator for the High School Scientific Training and Enrichment Program (HiSTEP). His duties with HiStep afforded him in-depth knowledge of NIH-sponsored training programs and career paths for all career levels.
Over the years, Dr. de la Cruz Landrau developed an interest in helping scientific trainees at every level. He joined the leadership of the NIH Society for the Advancement of Chicanos, Hispanos, and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) to provide opportunities in career development and mentor the NIH community. Additionally, he served on multiple NINDS committees with the goal to disseminate the NINDS mission to the greater Washington D.C. region via community outreach activities, including the NIH Take Your Child to Work Day, the USA Science and Engineering Festival, Brain Awareness Week, and others.
Dr. de la Cruz Landrau completed a detail within the NINDS DER's Office of Programs to Enhance Neuroscience Workforce Diversity with Dr. Michelle Jones-London, where he learned about the grant-approval process and funding opportunities within the NINDS extramural community. In December 2018, he joined NINDS DIR as the Summer, Diversity, and Postbacs Program Coordinator to oversee the training and career development of the NINDS Intramural trainees. Currently, Dr. de la Cruz Landrau is a Scientific Program Manager at the Office of Research Training and Career Development at the NINDS where he continues his work in program management for various trainee levels. Dr. de la Cruz Landrau's overall goal is to provide the necessary training to the future young neuroscientist inside and outside the NINDS to excel in their careers.