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Research Mentors

PHYSIOLOGY

 

Peter Mohler, PhD: P​rotein targeting in excitable cells and its role in arrhythmia of the heart.

 

Vidu Garg, MDUnderstanding the genetic basis of congenital heart disease and the molecular pathways regulating normal and abnormal cardiac                                    development.

 

Brenda Lilly, PhD: Regulation of vascular development and smooth muscle differentiation 

 

Noah Weisleder, PhD: Plasma membrane repair in skeletal muscle and cardiovascular physiology and pathology

 

Frederica Accornero, PhD: The role of RNA binding proteins in the mechanisms underlying heart and skeletal muscle disease.

 

Brandon Biesiadecki, PhD: Post-translation protein modifications in heart function. 


Sakima Smith, MD: Cardiac physiology as it relates to heart failure and disease.  


Kristin Stanford, PhD: The impact of exercise and metabolic health on  the respinse to injury.

 

Paul Janssen, PhD: The contractile dysfunction of muscle in heart failure and muscular dystrophy.


Meagen Ackermann Borzok, PhD:  Cardiomyocyte intercellular architecture and communication in physiology and pathophysiology.


Renzhi Han, PhD:  CRISPR genome editing in understanding muscle physiology and disease, and therapeutic development.


Jianjie Ma, PhD:  Regenerative medicine, cardiovascular disease, and cancer biology. 


   

​CANCER BIOLOGY

 

Jeff Parvin, MD, PhD: Using bioinformatics as well as molecular and biochemical methods to study the biological processes underlying breast                                                    cancer.

 

Christopher Weghorst, PhD: Genetic susceptibility, food-based cancer prevention, and assessment of prevention approaches in human clinical                                                            trials.

 

Lawrence Kirschner, MD, PhD: Signaling pathways that contribute to tumorigenesis in endocrine tumors


Nicholas Denko, MD, PhD: The microenvironment of solid tumors and it’s effect on tumor metabolism and therapeutic response.

  

Natarajan Muthusamy, DVM, PhD: Protein phosphorylation in lymphocyte biology and as a therapeutic target for leukemia


Vicenzo Coppola, MDModeling biology of human disease in mice.

 

Ewy Mathe, PhD: Developing new analytical methods to process, organize, visualize, and integrate large comprehensive data as it relates to                                               cancer.

 

Leah Pyter, PhD: Psychoneuroimmunology of the impact of stress and cancer on behavior and wound healing. 


Terence Williams, MD, PhD: The molecular biology and genetics which govern tumorigenesis and tumor response to therapy. 


John Byrd, MD: Study of common types of adult leukemia with emphasis on identifying novel targets for therapeutic targeting with immune and                                         targeted therapies than can impact patients lives.


Michael Freitas, PhD:  Determination of side chain modifications of proteins important in Chromatin Remodeling and relating these modifications to                                            aberrant cellular function in cancer.


Kay Huebner, PhD:  Investigate and define the biological functions of the tumor suppressor proteins, Fhit and Wwox, encoded by the chromosome                                         fragile sites FRA3B and FRA16D.


Jacob Naduparambil, PhD:  Biomarkers for early prediction of the delayed effects of normal tissue injury following radiation disaster or therapeutic                                                      exposure; mechanisms of therapeutic resistance in malignant brain tumors; targeting the mitotic machinery in cancers.


Amanda Toland, PhD:  How germline genetic variants contribute to cancer risk through effects on cancer-related pathways and through impact on                                              somatic mutation frequency.


  

MICROBIOLOGY, MICROBIAL PATHOGENESIS AND IMMUNOLOGY

 

John Gunn, PhD: Understanding the regulatory factors important for Salmonella and Francisella virulence and infection as well as developing                                             new vaccines and small molecule therapeutics to advance treatment/prevention of disease

 

Daniel Wozniak, PhD: Understanding the molecular biology and virulence of Pseudomonas aeruginosa in order to prevent persistent airway                                                      infections.

 

Michael Bailey, PhD: Bidirectional interactions between the host physiology and microbes within the gastrointestinal tract (the microbiome).

 

Mireia Guerau-de-Arellano, PhD:​ The role of micro RNAs in immune cells and multiple sclerosis. 

 

Kevin Mason, PhD: Host Pathogen interactions of nontypeable haemophilus influenzea.

 

M. Asuncion Mejias, MD, PhD: Pathogenesis of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV). 

 

Ning Quan, PhD: The inflammatory pathways that contribute to psychopathologies such as anxiety disorders.

 

John Sheridan, PhD: The impact of chronic stress on the innate immune system and inflammatory changes in the brain which affect behavior.


Stephanie Seveau, PhD:  Molecular mechanisms underlying host-pathogen interactions using the foodborne pathogen Listeria monocytogenes as a                                                model facultative intracellular pathogen.


Kristine Yoder, PhD:  Study retroviruses, particularly the integration of retroviral cDNA to host DNA.


Santiago Partida-Sanchez, PhD:  Ion channels and their role in regulating migration of phagocytic cells during inflammation or infection.


Mark Peeples, PhD:  Mechanisms by which respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) initiates infection of its native target cells, the ciliated cells of the human                                      airway epithelium, with the goals of developing vaccines to protect infants and antiviral drugs to treat them.


Vijay Pancholi, PhD:  Research-gram-positive bacterial pathogenesis  and therapeutic intervention against  reemerging multidrug resistant pathogens.



NEUROSCIENCE/NEUROLOGICAL DISEASE/MENTAL HEALTH/PSYCHOLOGY

 

Jamie Jontes, PhD: Synapse and circuit formation in the vertebrate nervous system.


Karl Obrietan, PhD: Cellular signaling in synaptic plasticity, epilepsy, and circadian rhythms

 

Andy Fischer, PhD: The impact of stem cells on retinal degeneration and regeneration. 

 

Scott Harper, PhD: Developing RNAi-based approaches to treat neuromuscular and neurodegenerative disease.

 

Kirk Mykytyn, PhD: Role of primary cilia in neuronal signaling

 

Candice Askwith, PhD: Role of ion channels in neuronal death and signaling

 

Tamar Gur, MD, PhD: Maternal mental health in the development of psychiatric outcomes in offspring.

 

Leah Pyter, PhD: Psychoneuroimmunology of the impact of stress and cancer on behavior and wound healing
 
John Sheridan, PhD: The impact of chronic stress on the innate immune system and inflammatory changes in the brain which affect behavior.

Ning Quan, PhD​: The inflammatory pathways that contribute to psychopathologies such as anxiety disorders.

Dana McTigue, PhD:​  The role of adult progenitor cells in repair after CNS injuury or disease.

Jose Otero, MD, PhD:  Elucidate the mechanisms of post-natal brain development in health and disease with a particular focus on the autonomic nervous                                               system.     

 

BIOMOLECULAR or BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING/BIOINFORMATICS

 

Jeff Parvin, MD, PhD: Using bioinformatics as well as molecular and biochemical methods to study the biological processes underlying breast                                                    cancer.

 

Ja​yajit Das, PhD: Developing a mechanistic understanding of host pathogen interactions using computational and theoretical methods. 


David Wood, PhD: Developing biotechnologies through engineering proteins for specific applications such as biosensing, protein purification,                                              drug discovery, and drug delivery.

 

E​wy Mathe, PhD: Developing new analytical methods to process, organize, visualize, and integrate large comprehensive data as it relates to                                               cancer.

 

Joseph Kitzmiller, MD, PhD: Understanding and utilizing genetic influences on patient response to medicine (pharmacogenomics) in translational                                                         medicine and for understanding minority health disparities.


Peixuan Guo, PhD:  Nanobiotechnology and RNA Nanotechnology, including structure, function and applications of components of phi29 DNA                                               packaging motor.


 

 
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