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NameEmailPhD ProgramResearch InterestPublications
Schrank, Travis

EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Bioinformatics, Biophysics, Cancer Biology, Cancer Signaling & Biochemistry, Chemical Biology, Computational Biology, Evolutionary Biology, Genetics, Genomics, Molecular Biology, Molecular Mechanisms of Disease, Translational Medicine, Virology

I am a surgeon-scientist specialized in head and neck cancers. My goal is to address translationalquestions with genomic data and bioinformatic methods, as well as benchtop experimentation. My clinical practice as a head and neck cancer surgeon also influences my research by helping me seek solutions to problems that will directly inform gaps in the current treatment protocols.

I have developed a strong interest in HPV genomics as well as HPV/host genome integrations, as these factors are intrinsically related to transcriptional diversity and patient outcomes in HPV-associated head and neck cancers. Our work has helped to demonstrate that a novel mechanism of HPV-mediated oncogenesis requiring NF-kB activation is present in nearly 50% of oropharyngeal tumors. In this vein, we are aggressively investigating the cellular interplay between the NF-kB pathway and persistent HPV infection, tumor radiation response, NRF2 signaling, and more.

Another outgrowth of this work has been investigating APOBEC3B and its non-canonical roles in regulating transcription. Our preliminary work has demonstrated that APOBEC3B has surprisingly strong transcriptional effects in HPV+ HNSCC cells and may promote oncogenesis and tumor maintenance by suppressing the innate immune response and influencing the HPV viral lifecycle.

Our group also have a strong interest in translational genomic studies. Our group is working to develop methods that will make gene expression-based biomarkers more successful in the clinic, as well as studying many aspects of genomic alterations that contribute to the development of squamous cell carcinomas.

Peng, Aimin
WEBSITE
EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Cell Biology & Physiology, Oral & Craniofacial Biomedicine, Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Biochemistry, Cancer Biology, Cancer Preclinical Models, Cancer Signaling & Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Cell Cycle, Drug Discovery

Our overarching goal is to delineate how cells respond to cancer therapeutics that induce DNA damage, and, accordingly, to develop new strategies that overcome treatment resistance in cancer, including head and neck cancer. To achieve this goal, we study new mechanisms of the cell cycle and DNA repair using comprehensive experimental systems; we investigate the involvement of these mechanisms in oral cancer progression and resistance; and we develop new therapeutics using cellular, biochemical, and pharmacological approaches.

Yates, Melinda

EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Cancer Biology, Cancer Genomics, Cancer Preclinical Models, Cancer Signaling & Biochemistry, Pharmacology, Toxicology, Translational Medicine

Our translational research lab is focused on the earliest changes that occur in the uterus (endometrium) during cancer development related to obesity and hereditary DNA repair defects. We use preclinical tools (rodents, organoids, and cell lines) to probe mechanisms of endometrial cancer pathogenesis, in parallel with human tissue studies. Our overall goal is to understand how environmental factors, including obesity, hormones, and other exposures, influence endometrial cancer development and disparities so that we can use pharmacologic agents to prevent or reverse cancer development.

Starbird, Chrystal

EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Biochemistry & Biophysics, Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Cancer Signaling & Biochemistry, Molecular Mechanisms of Disease, Structural Biology

Our lab is interested in understanding the structural basis for activation of cell surface receptors. Using a combination of biochemistry, structural biology and cell biology, we seek to understand how the membrane environment and receptor:ligand interactions are modulated to generate the wide diversity of signaling regulated by these receptors, and how these interactions are modified in disease.

Kim, Boa
WEBSITE
EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Cell Biology & Physiology, Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Cardiovascular Biology, Cardiovascular Disease, Cell Biology, Metabolism, Microscopy, Molecular Mechanisms of Disease, Physiology

Endothelial cells, which comprise the innermost wall of all blood vessels, are involved in a broad range of metabolic and cardiovascular diseases that represent a global challenge with high morbidity. Endothelial cell metabolism is an active process, and altered endothelial metabolism drive disease progression. The research in my lab focuses on the molecular mechanisms of endothelial cell metabolism and how they affect cardiovascular and metabolic diseases.

Good, Misty
WEBSITE
EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Microbiology & Immunology, Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Cell Biology, Developmental Biology, Gastrointestinal Biology, Human Subjects Research, Immunology, Molecular Mechanisms of Disease, Pathogenesis & Infection, Stem Cells

The Good Laboratory is focused on the cellular and molecular mechanisms involved in the pathogenesis of a devastating intestinal disease primarily affecting premature infants called necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC). The long-term goal of the Good Lab is to understand the signaling pathways regulating the uncontrolled immune response in NEC and how these responses can be prevented through dietary modifications or targeted intestinal epithelial therapies. Her basic and translational research utilizes a bench-to-bedside approach with multiple cutting-edge techniques. In her pre-clinical studies, their team utilizes a humanized neonatal mouse model of NEC to understand the signaling pathways and immune cell responses involved in NEC development. Specifically, the laboratory interrogates ways to modulate the immune response, epithelial cell and stem cell regeneration as well as early microbial colonization during NEC. In the clinical component of her research program, Dr. Good leads a large multi-center NEC biorepository for the dedicated pursuit of molecular indicators of disease and to gain greater pathophysiologic insights during NEC in humans. Dr. Good also developed a premature infant intestine-on-a-chip model to study NEC and provide a personalized medicine approach to test new therapeutics. Her laboratory is currently funded with multiple NIH R01 grants and has previously received K08 and R03 funding as well as awards from the March of Dimes, the Gerber Foundation and the NEC Society.

Rosenthal, Adam
WEBSITE
EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Microbiology & Immunology, Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Bacteriology, Molecular Biology, Pathogenesis & Infection, Systems Biology

Our lab uses a systems biology approach to study phenotypic heterogeneity in bacteria. We develop tools that quantify single cell bacterial transcription. We then compare dynamic measurements during vegetative growth and infection to identify regulators of gene expression and mechanisms that bacteria use to coordinate community organization. With this data we want to understand the role of heterogeneity and noise in infectious disease.

Fedoriw, Yuri
WEBSITE
EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Cancer Biology, Immunology, Pathology, Translational Medicine

Our research interests focus on the immunologic and genetic mechanisms of lymphomagenesis, particularly in the setting of HIV infection. While hematologic malignancies and lymphoproliferative disorders in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) arise under intrinsic and extrinsic pressures very different from those in the United States, comprehensive analyses of these diseases have not been performed. We use advanced sequencing, immunophenotypic and cellular analyses to address gaps in our understanding of lymphomagenesis and tumor microenvironment in the context of HIV-associated immune dysregulation, with the goal of translation to clinical care and future clinical trials.

Williams, Morika
WEBSITE
EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Neuroscience, Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Behavior, Neurobiology, Pharmacology, Physiology, Translational Medicine

Early life and adult pain can have drastic effects on neurodevelopment and overall quality of life. In the Williams’ Pain, Aging, and Interdisciplinary Neurobehavioral (P.A.I.N.) Lab, our research focuses on behavioral neuroscience and the mechanisms of neurobiology and neurophysiology of pain processing, with a special emphasis on the neonatal. The ultimate research goal is to better understand, recognize, and alleviate pain in the newborn to improve the quality of life in adulthood by uncovering new assessment tools and interventional strategies. Our research interests include the mechanisms of neurobiology and neurophysiology of pain processing, neonatal pain, chronic pain, neurobehavior, osteoarthritis, translational medicine, anesthesia/analgesics, and evoked and non-evoked pain assessment tools. The P.A.I.N. Lab has both pre-clinical and clinical studies to help close the gap in translation.

Mock, Jason
WEBSITE
EMAIL
PUBLICATIONS

PHD PROGRAM
Microbiology & Immunology, Pathobiology & Translational Science

RESEARCH INTEREST
Immunology, Physiology, Translational Medicine

Our research interests focus on investigating the reparative processes critical to the resolution of acute lung injury. Acute events such as pneumonia, inhalational injury, trauma, or sepsis often damage the lung, impeding its primary function, gas exchange. The clinical syndrome these events can lead to is termed Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). ARDS is a common pulmonary disease often seen and treated in intensive care units. Despite decades of research into the pathogenesis underlying the development of ARDS, mortality remains high. Our laboratory has built upon exciting observations by our group and others on the importance of how the lung repairs after injury. One type of white blood cell, the Foxp3+ regulatory T cell (Treg), appears essential in resolving ARDS in experimental models of lung injury–through modulating immune responses and enhancing alveolar epithelial proliferation and tissue repair. Importantly, Tregs are present in patients with ARDS, and our lab has found that subsets of Tregs may play a role in recovery from ARDS.