Integrative Biology Faculty
Massimo Attanasio, M.D.
Research Interests: Genetics of inherited kidney diseases, human genetics, molecular genetics, molecular biology
Ilya Bezprozvanny, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Neuronal calcium signaling and neurodegeneration; molecular mechanisms of Huntington's and Alzheimer's disease; calcium channels; synaptic transmission
Perry Bickel, M.D.
Research Interests: Cellular lipid storage and utilization, specifically with respect to the function of perilipin family proteins
Rolf A. Brekken, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Tumor-host interactions in pancreatic cancer as an avenue for the development of novel therapy; interplay between neoplastic genetic alterations, changes in the extracellular matrix, and angiogenesis in the development and progression of pancreatic cancer; gene therapy to restore SMAD4 expression in tumor cells; blocking VEGF-induced angiogenesis in tumors; function of the matricellular protein SPARC in tumor development
Michael S. Brown, M.D.
Research Interests: Unraveling the mechanism by which the SREBP pathway regulates cholesterol metabolism at the molecular, cellular, and whole-body levels
Benjamin Chen, Ph.D.
Research Interests: DNA damage response; repair of DNA double-strand breaks
George N. DeMartino, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Cell physiology; regulation of growth and atrophy; protein degradation; intracellular proteases; ubiquitin/proteasome pathway of protein degradation
Amelia J. Eisch, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Adult mammalian neurogenesis and growth factors; cell-cycle analysis of adult neural stem cells in vivo; regulation of endogenous cell cycle proteins in psychiatric disorders such as addiction, depression, and Alzheimer’s disease; transgenic manipulation of adult mammalian neurogenesis
Andrew Feranchak, M.D.
Research Interests: Hepatobiliary transport, mechanisms of bile formation, biophysical characterization of membrane ion channels, cell volume regulation, cholestatic liver disease
Joseph Garcia, M.D., D.Phil.
Research Interests: Integrative biological studies of hypoxia-inducible transcription factors; identification of genetic factors controlling the cardiovascular-respiratory response to hypoxia
Joseph L. Goldstein, M.D.
Research Interests: Unraveling the mechanism by which the SREBP pathway regulates cholesterol metabolism at the molecular, cellular, and whole body levels
Frederick Grinnell, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Cell signaling during wound repair; cell motility and contractility in wound contraction; MAP kinase and other signaling pathways regulating cellular reorganization of collagen matrices stimulated by platelet-derived growth factor, lysophosphatidic acid, and transforming growth factor beta
Rana Gupta, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Transcriptional control of fat cell development and adipose tissue expansion in obesity; manipulating the adipose lineage as a therapeutic treatment for metabolic disease
Joachim J. A. Herz, M.D.
Research Interests: Molecular genetics; genetic manipulation of neuronal apoE receptors in mice; mechanisms of brain development, neurogenesis, and Alzheimer’s disease
Joseph A. Hill, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Molecular signaling processes in cardiac hypertrophy and failure; mechanisms of structural, functional, and electrophysiological remodeling, using genetic and surgical mice models
Sandra L. Hofmann, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Role of lipid-metabolizing enzymes in cell metabolism and signal transduction; covalent modification of proteins by the fatty acid palmitate; the study of enzymes that transfer the palmitate on and off modified proteins
William Holland, Ph.D.
Research Interests:Our lab focuses on understanding the role of sphingolipids in metabolic disease. Modulating the flux of these lipids can have profound influences on glucose homeostasis, energy homeostasis, cell survival, and cancer biology.
Ming-Chang Hu, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Abnormal mineral metabolism and dysregulation of Klotho/FGF23 axis related to acute kidney injury and chronic kidney disease, and to the complications in kidney diseases
Chou-Long Huang, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Ion channels related to renal physiology and diseases, including renal potassium channel ROMK, epithelial calcium channel, and polycystic kidney disease protein related channels
W. Lee Kraus, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Cellular signaling, gene regulation, and epigenetic control in the chromatin environment of the nucleus. Biological systems include: reproduction, cancer, inflammation, adipogenesis, stem cells, differentiation.
Lu Q. Le, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Tumor cell of origin; roles of tumor microenvironment in cancer development; cellular and molecular mechanisms of neurofibromatosis; stem cell and cancer biology
Pradeep Mammen, M.D.
Research Interests: Internal Medicine; treatment and management of patients with heart failure and the molecular mechanisms underlying this clinical entity. Currently, I run a molecular cardiology laboratory focused on understanding how regulation of the metabolic and redox states of muscle progenitor cells and myocytes can be modulated to serve as potential therapeutic targets for various cardiac and skeletal myopathies. Ultimately, the ability to selectively regulate the metabolic and redox states within these cells may provide opportunities for the development of novel therapeutic approaches to the treatment of patients with various myopathies.
David J. Mangelsdorf, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Mechanism of action of nuclear hormone receptors; transcriptional regulation of lipid metabolism; role of retinoids and cancer
Ram Mani, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Epigenetic mechanisms underlying cancer progression; ETS gene fusions in prostate cancer; Genomic rearrangements in cancer; Transcriptional regulation in prostate cancer
Steven McKnight, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Subset of transcription factors that are gene-specific; regulation of transcription-factor function at a biochemical level with keen attention to biological relevance
Chieko Mineo, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Molecular basis of pathogenesis of antiphospholipid syndrome; role of Pentraxin C Reactive protein in metabolic syndrome; biology of lipoproteins and their receptors
Lisa Monteggia, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Development of animal models for psychiatric diseases; growth factors and depression; role of MeCP2 in mediating autistic-like behavior; transcriptional repression in neurons
Nikhil Munshi, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Cardiac development; transcriptional regulation; human genetics; arrhythmogenesis. The cardiac conduction system is an electrically coupled structure within the heart responsible for initiation and propagation of each heartbeat. Our lab is interested in elucidating the transcriptional mechanisms that dictate formation of the cardiac conduction system and its impact on the establishment of normal and pathological cardiac rhythms
Juan Pascual, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Animal and cellular models of neurogenetic disorders; synaptic transmission in experimental epilepsies; disorders of brain energy metabolism; developmental neurobiology; genotype:phenotype correlations in novel childhood encephalopathies; clinical pediatric neurology
Vishal Patel, M.D.
Research Interests: Studying the roles of miRNAs in kidney development and kidney diseases
Joyce Repa, Ph.D.
Research Interests: How nuclear receptors control the expression of ABC transport proteins and the consequences of this regulation on lipid balance with respect to atherosclerosis, diabetes, and brain physiology
Charles Rosenfeld, M.D.
Research Interests: Cardiovascular adaptation during development and pregnancy; maturation and ontogeny of visceral and vascular smooth-muscle protein expression and function; regulation and function of angiotensin II receptor subtypes during development and pregnancy; mechanisms related to estrogen-induced vasodilation and modulation of uteroplacental blood flow in pregnancy
Beverly A. Rothermel, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Internal Medicine; control of muscle remodeling during development and disease; circadian control of cardiac function and the role of RCAN1 (Down Syndrome Critical Region 1), a regulator of the calcium-dependent phosphatase calcineurin
Rashmin C. Savani, M.D.
Research Interests: Cell and mouse models to investigate the mechanisms of extracellular matrix regulation of lung development and injury, in particular, the interaction of hyaluronan (hyaluronic acid) with specific receptors to regulate cell migration in pulmonary vascular development, innate immunity, and inflammatory responses to injury
Philipp Scherer, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Identification and physiological characterization of novel secretory proteins that serve as potential links between the adipocyte and the processes of whole body energy homeostasis, inflammation, and cancer, thereby defining novel targets for pharmacological intervention and further defining the role of adipose tissue as an endocrine organ
Rhonda F. Souza, M.D.
Research Interests: Internal Medicine/VA Medical Center; investigate the molecular mechanisms involved in the development and neoplastic progression of Barrett’s esophagus, focusing on the intracellular signaling mechanisms and biologic relevance of acid and/or bile acid exposure, the components of reflux, on Barrett’s esophagus using animal models, cell culture, and human biopsy tissues
James T. Stull, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Myosin phosphorylation in the actin cytoskeleton and cell motility; modulation by signal-transduction pathways involving Ca2 and small GTP-dependent proteins
Madhukar H. Trivedi, M.D.
Benjamin Tu, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Metabolic cycles; mechanisms by which fundamental processes (e.g., cell growth and division, transcription, mitochondria homeostasis) are coupled to cellular metabolic state; yeast
Steven Vernino, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Animal models of autoimmune autonomic neuropathy, serologic evaluation of patients with dysautonomia, disorders of neuromuscular hyperexcitability, paraneoplastic neurological syndromes
Yihong Wan, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Transcriptional regulation of development, metabolism and cancer by nuclear receptors using the skeleton and the mammary gland as model systems
Richard Wang, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Regulation of glucose uptake; autophagy and skin cancer
Kevin W. Williams, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Understanding the cellular mechanisms that contribute to the coordinated control of food intake, body weight, and glucose homeostasis
Guanghua (Andy) Xiao, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Statistical methods in biomedical research, bioinformatics and computer software development, computer algorithm and database
Masashi Yanagisawa, M.D., Ph.D.
M. Yanagisawa Lab
Research Interests: Identification and characterization of new signaling molecules that regulate vital functions such as sleep, appetite, and blood pressure
Helen L. Yin, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Actin cytoskeletons of nonmuscle cells, including reorganization in response to extracellular signals; structure/function relationships of the gelsolin family of actin regulatory proteins
Chengcheng (Alec) Zhang
Research Interests: Mechanisms by which the cell fates of adult stem cells are regulated, and the interaction of adult stem cells and their in vivo microenvironment; ex vivo expansion of HSCs for cell therapy and gene therapy; the interplay between stem cells and cancer
Jeffrey M. Zigman, M.D., Ph.D.
Research Interests: Identification of CNS targets of ghrelin action, the study of ghrelin cell physiology, functional neuroanatomy of the mammalian hypothalamus
These faculty members do not accept graduate students. They participate in teaching, co-mentoring, exam and dissertation committees, and all other program responsibilities.
Qun Zang, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Mitochondria-targeted antioxidant therapy; Mitochondrial signaling in sepsis-associated organ dysfunction; Oxidative stress in sepsis/trauma-induced inflammation
Xiaowei Zhan, Ph.D.
Research Interests: Statistical genetics, statistical computation and association mapping using next generation sequencing technology