Please note: The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio will now be called "UT Health San Antonio."

Search Program Faculty/Research

Raushan Kurmasheva, Ph.D.

Kurmasheva raushan


The overall focus of Dr. Kurmasheva’s lab is to improve the current treatment of childhood sarcoma. Understanding the mechanisms of resistance of Ewing sarcoma cells to DNA damage with the ultimate goal of developing more effective and less toxic therapy for the patients is the major research focus of the lab. There are several projects that are ongoing:

DNA Damage in Ewing Sarcoma Therapy

Ewing sarcoma is the fourth most common highly malignant childhood cancer; it is defined by a tumor-specific chromosomal translocation. In approximately 85% of all tumors, the EWSR1 gene on chromosome 22 is fused to a member of E26 transformation-specific sequence (ETS) family of transcription factors, the FLI1 gene on chromosome 11. In the remaining 15% of Ewing tumors, the EWSR1 is fused to other members of ETS family, mostly the ERG gene on chromosome 21. DNA damage induced by expression of EWSR1-FLI1 fusion gene is potentiated by PARP1 inhibition in Ewing cells, where EWSR1-FLI1 genes act in a positive feedback loop to maintain the expression of PARP1. The overall focus of the lab is to determine the differences between the tumors that respond to treatment with PARP1 inhibitor and those intrinsically resistant to it, and to understand the underlying mechanisms of such resistance.

Studies by the PPTP and others have shown that Ewing sarcoma cell lines are hypersensitive to inhibitors of poly-ADP ribose polymerase1 (PARP1), an enzyme involved in DNA repair, which can potentiate low-level damage to DNA in approximately 50% of Ewing sarcoma models. More than ninety percent of these tumors are characterized by chromosomal translocation between chromosomes 11 and 22 that results in oncogenic chimeric transcription factor EWSR1-FLI1. Such genomic rearrangements compromise cell survival, leading to specific defects in cellular metabolism – ‘synthetic lethal’ interactions - that can be exploited therapeutically. Our lab investigation attempts to elucidate why Ewing sarcoma cells are either sensitive or resistant to combinations of PARP1 inhibitors and DNA damage. We are applying single-cell RNA sequencing and CyTOF approaches to better understand the dependence of these cells on PARP1 or ATR pathways; and to determine the correlation between EWSR1-FLI1 expression in individual cells and response to DNA replication stress. We apply this knowledge to test efficacy of the drug combinations in mice with the goal to develop novel and improved therapy of Ewing sarcoma.

The Pediatric Preclinical Testing Consortium (PPTC) – Sarcoma and Renal Tumors

The project is focused on developing more effective and less toxic therapy for pediatric solid tumors by combining novel cytotoxic agents, or signaling inhibitors with cytotoxic agents or ionizing radiation. This project is a continuation of the 10 years of testing within PPTP, where over 80 drugs have been tested in 50 models of childhood solid tumors, and identified novel drugs and drug combinations that are now in clinical trial.

GCCRI Xenograft Core

A GCCRI-based Xenograft Core provides the service of preclinical testing in mouse models. This Core is available to the UT Health San Antonio research community, the pharmaceutical companies, and any lab interested in conducting the research. The methods used for performing testing and analysis of the data were established in PPTP (Establishment of human tumor xenografts in immunodeficient mice. Morton CL, Houghton PJ., Nat Protoc. 2007;2(2):247-50; Molecular characterization of the pediatric preclinical testing panel. Neale G, Su X, Morton CL, Phelps D, Gorlick R, et al. Clin Cancer Res. 2008 Jul 5;14(14):4572-83).The team is highly skilled in conducting in vivo studies, including toxicity testing, single-agent and combination efficacy testing, and pharmacodynamic studies. We have developed a biobank of a broad range of pediatric solid tumors xenograft models, including patient- and cell-derived xenografts. For most of these we also carry matching cell lines.


Bandyopadhyay A, Favours E, Phelps DA, Pozo VD, Ghilu S, Kurmashev D, Michalek J, Trevino A, Guttridge D, London C, Hirotani K, Zhang L, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ. Evaluation of patritumab with or without erlotinib in combination with standard cytotoxic agents against pediatric sarcoma xenograft models Pediatric blood & cancer 2018 Jan;65(2).

Kurmasheva RT, Kurmashev D, Reynolds CP, Kang M, Wu J, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of M6620 (formerly VX-970), a novel ATR inhibitor, alone and combined with cisplatin and melphalan, by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program 2018 Jan;65(2).

Kurmasheva RT, Gorlick R, Kolb EA, Keir ST, Maris JM, Lock RB, Carol H, Kang M, Reynolds CP, Wu J, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing of VS-4718, a novel inhibitor of focal adhesion kinase (FAK), against pediatric tumor models by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program Pediatric blood & cancer 2017 Jan;64(4).

Kurmasheva RT, Sammons M, Favours E, Wu J, Kurmashev D, Cosmopoulos K, Keilhack H, Klaus CR, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of tazemetostat (EPZ-6438), a novel EZH2 inhibitor, by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program Pediatric blood & cancer 2017 Jan;64(3).

Lock R, Carol H, Maris JM, Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Keir ST, Wu J, Purmal A, Gudkov A, Kurmashev D, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of the curaxin CBL0137 by the pediatric preclinical testing program Pediatric blood & cancer 2017 Jan;64(4).

Jones L, Richmond J, Evans K, Carol H, Jing D, Kurmasheva RT, Billups CA, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Lock RB. Bioluminescence Imaging Enhances Analysis of Drug Responses in a Patient-Derived Xenograft Model of Pediatric ALL Clinical cancer research : an official journal of the American Association for Cancer Research 2017 Jan;23(14):3744-3755.

Richmond J, Robbins A, Evans K, Beck D, Kurmasheva RT, Billups CA, Carol H, Heatley S, Sutton R, Marshall GM, White D, Pimanda J, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Lock RB. Acute Sensitivity of Ph-like Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia to the SMAC-Mimetic Birinapant Cancer research 2016 Jan;76(15):4579-4591.

Gorlick R, Kolb EA, Keir ST, Maris JM, Lock RB, Carol H, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Billups CA, Collins J, Kurmashev D, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial Testing of NSC 750854, a Novel Purine Analog, Against Pediatric Tumor Models by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program Pediatric blood & cancer 2016 Jan;63(3):443-450.

Murphy B, Yin H, Maris JM, Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Keir ST, Kurmasheva RT, Dvorchik I, Wu J, Billups CA, Boateng N, Smith MA, Lock RB, Houghton PJ. Evaluation of Alternative In Vivo Drug Screening Methodology: A Single Mouse Analysis Cancer research 2016 Jan;76(19):5798-5809.

Kang MH, Reynolds CP, Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Carol H, Lock R, Keir ST, Maris JM, Wu J, Lyalin D, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial Testing (Stage 1) of MK-8242-A Novel MDM2 Inhibitor-by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program Pediatric blood & cancer 2016 Jan;63(01):1744-1752.

Dolai S, Sia KC, Robbins AK, Zhong L, Heatley SL, Vincent TL, Hochgrafe F, Sutton R, Kurmasheva RT, Revesz T, White DL, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Teachey DT, Daly RJ, Raftery MJ, Lock RB. Quantitative phosphotyrosine profiling of patient-derived xenografts identifies therapeutic targets in pediatric leukemia Cancer research 2016 Jan;.

Attiyeh EF, Maris JM, Lock R, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Carol H, Gorlick R, Kolb EA, Keir ST, Wu J, Landesman Y, Shacham S, Lyalin D, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Pharmacodynamic and genomic markers associated with response to the XPO1/CRM1 inhibitor selinexor (KPT-330): A report from the pediatric preclinical testing program Pediatric blood & cancer 2016 Jan;63(2):276-286.

Khaw SL, Suryani S, Evans K, Richmond J, Robbins A, Kurmasheva RT, Billups CA, Erickson SW, Guo Y, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Carol H, Roberts AW, Huang DC, Lock RB. Venetoclax responses of pediatric ALL xenografts reveal sensitivity of MLL-rearranged leukemia Blood 2016 Jan;128(01):1382-1395.

Richmond J, Carol H, Evans K, High L, Mendomo A, Robbins A, Meyer C, Venn NC, Marschalek R, Henderson M, Sutton R, Kurmasheva RT, Kees UR, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Lock RB. Effective targeting of the P53-MDM2 axis in preclinical models of infant MLL-rearranged acute lymphoblastic leukemia Clinical cancer research : an official journal of the American Association for Cancer Research 2015 Jan;21(6):1395-1405.

Houghton PJ, Kurmasheva RT, Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Maris JM, Wu J, Tong Z, Arnold MA, Chatterjee M, Williams TM, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of the tubulin binding agent nanoparticle albumin-bound (nab) paclitaxel (Abraxane(?)) by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program (PPTP) Pediatric blood & cancer 2015 Jan;62(7):1214-1221.

Smith MA, Hampton OA, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Maris JM, Gorlick R, Kolb EA, Lock R, Carol H, Keir ST, Wu J, Kurmasheva RT, Wheeler DA, Houghton PJ. Initial testing (stage 1) of the PARP inhibitor BMN 673 by the pediatric preclinical testing program: PALB2 mutation predicts exceptional in vivo response to BMN 673 Pediatric blood & cancer 2015 Jan;62(1):91-98.

Suryani S, Bracken LS, Harvey RC, Sia KC, Carol H, Chen IM, Evans K, Dietrich PA, Roberts KG, Kurmasheva RT, Billups CA, Mullighan CG, Willman CL, Loh ML, Hunger SP, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Lock RB. Evaluation of the in vitro and in vivo efficacy of the JAK inhibitor AZD1480 against JAK-mutated acute lymphoblastic leukemia Molecular cancer therapeutics 2015 Jan;14(2):364-374.

Studebaker A, Bondra K, Seum S, Shen C, Phelps DA, Chronowski C, Leasure J, Smith PD, Kurmasheva RT, Mo X, Fouladi M, Houghton PJ. Inhibition of MEK confers hypersensitivity to X-radiation in the context of BRAF mutation in a model of childhood astrocytoma Pediatric blood & cancer 2015 Jan;62(10):1768-1774.

Moradi Manesh D, El-Hoss J, Evans K, Richmond J, Toscan CE, Bracken LS, Hedrick A, Sutton R, Marshall GM, Wilson WR, Kurmasheva RT, Billups C, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Carol H, Lock RB. AKR1C3 is a biomarker of sensitivity to PR-104 in preclinical models of T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia Blood 2015 Jan;126(10):1193-1202.

Phelps D, Bondra K, Seum S, Chronowski C, Leasure J, Kurmasheva RT, Middleton S, Wang D, Mo X, Houghton PJ. Inhibition of MDM2 by RG7388 confers hypersensitivity to X-radiation in xenograft models of childhood sarcoma Pediatric blood & cancer 2015 Jan;62(8):1345-1352.

Smith MA, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Carol H, Lock RB, Keir ST, Maris JM, Billups CA, Lyalin D, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ. Synergistic activity of PARP inhibition by talazoparib (BMN 673) with temozolomide in pediatric cancer models in the pediatric preclinical testing program Clinical cancer research : an official journal of the American Association for Cancer Research 2015 Jan;21(4):819-832.

Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Keir ST, Maris JM, Kang MH, Reynolds CP, Lock RB, Carol H, Wu J, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of BAL101553, a novel tubulin binding agent, by the pediatric preclinical testing program Pediatric blood & cancer 2015 Jan;62(6):1106-1109.

Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Maris JM, Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Wu J, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of the anti-microtubule agents cabazitaxel and docetaxel, by the pediatric preclinical testing program Pediatric blood & cancer 2015 Jan;62(11):1897-1905.

Carol H1, Maris JM, Kang MH, Reynolds CP, Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Keir ST, Wu J, Lyalin D, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Lock RB. Initial testing (stage 1) of the notch inhibitor PF-03084014, by the pediatric preclinical testing program Pediatric Blood Cancer 2014 Aug;61(8):1493-1496.

Kang MH1, Reynolds CP, Maris JM, Gorlick R, Kolb EA, Lock R, Carol H, Keir ST, Wu J, Lyalin D, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of the investigational mTOR kinase inhibitor MLN0128 by the pediatric preclinical testing program Pediatric Blood Cancer 2014 Aug;61(8):1486-1489.

Kurmasheva RT, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Allievi C, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of the topoisomerase II inhibitor pixantrone, by the pediatric preclinical testing program Pediatric Blood Cancer 2014 May;61(5):922-924.

Houghton PJ1, Kurmasheva RT, Kolb EA, Wu J, Gorlick R, Maris JM, Smith MA. Initial testing (Stage 1) of TAK-701, a humanized hepatocyte growth factor binding antibody, by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program Pediatric Blood Cancer 2014 Feb;61(2):380-382.

Gorlick R, Kolb EA, Keir ST, Maris JM, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Carol H, Lock R, Billups CA, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of the Polo-like kinase inhibitor volasertib (BI 6727), by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program Pediatric Blood Cancer 2014 Jan;61(1):158-164.

Carol H, Gorlick R, Kolb EA, Morton CL, Manesh DM, Keir ST, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Maris JM, Wozniak A, Hickson I, Lyalin D, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Lock R. Initial testing (stage 1) of the histone deacetylase inhibitor, quisinostat (JNJ-26481585), by the Pediatric Preclinical Testing Program Pediatric blood & cancer 2014 Jan;61(2):245-252.

Bid HK, Roberts RD, Cam M, Audino A, Kurmasheva RT, Lin J, Houghton PJ, Cam H. ΔNp63 promotes pediatric neuroblastoma and osteosarcoma by regulating tumor angiogenesis Cancer research 2014 Jan;74(1):320-329.

Houghton PJ, Kurmasheva RT, Lyalin D, Maris JM, Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Reynolds CP, Kang MH, Keir ST, Wu J, Smith MA. Initial solid tumor testing (stage 1) of AZD1480, an inhibitor of Janus kinases 1 and 2 by the pediatric preclinical testing program Pediatric blood & cancer 2014 Jan;61(11):1972-1979.

Kolb EA, Gorlick R, Billups CA, Hawthorne T, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ, Smith MA. Initial testing (stage 1) of glembatumumab vedotin (CDX-011) by the pediatric preclinical testing program Pediatric blood & cancer 2014 Jan;61(10):1816-1821.

Suryani S, Carol H, Chonghaile TN, Frismantas V, Sarmah C, High L, Bornhauser B, Cowley MJ, Szymanska B, Evans K, Boehm I, Tonna E, Jones L, Manesh DM, Kurmasheva RT, Billups C, Kaplan W, Letai A, Bourquin JP, Houghton PJ, Smith MA, Lock RB. Cell and molecular determinants of in vivo efficacy of the BH3 mimetic ABT-263 against pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia xenografts Clinical cancer research : an official journal of the American Association for Cancer Research 2014 Jan;20(17):4520-4531.

Singh M, Leasure JM, Chronowski C, Geier B, Bondra K, Duan W, Hensley LA, Villalona-Calero M, Li N, Vergis AM, Kurmasheva RT, Shen C, Woods G, Sebastian N, Fabian D, Kaplon R, Hammond S, Palanichamy K, Chakravarti A, Houghton PJ. FANCD2 is a potential therapeutic target and biomarker in alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma harboring the PAX3-FOXO1 fusion gene Clinical cancer research : an official journal of the American Association for Cancer Research 2014 Jan;20(14):3884-3895.

Bid HK, Zhan J, Phelps DA, Kurmasheva RT, Houghton PJ. Potent inhibition of angiogenesis by the IGF-1 receptor-targeting antibody SCH717454 is reversed by IGF-2 Molecular cancer therapeutics 2012 Jan;11(3):649-659.

Assistant Professor

Greehey Children's Cancer Research Institute

Department of Molecular Medicine


Ph.D., Biochemistry, Kazakh State National University, 1998


Phone: 210-562-9155

Fax: 210-562-9014


GCCRI page:

Andrew J Sampson, Ph.D.

Sampson andrew (09oct2017, large) cropped


I aim to develop and optimize advanced variance reduction strategies for Monte Carlo radiation transport simulation to decrease the amount of time required for advanced image analysis and processing. These calculations can be used for dose reduction techniques and advanced CT image reconstruction.

Related diseases: Cancer

Techniques: Monte Carlo Radiation Transport Simulation, Discrete Ordinance Methods

Director, Clinical Imaging Physics


Ph.D., Medical Physics, Virginia Commonwealth University



Jessica Nute, Ph.D.

Jlnute 2019 clinical small cropped


Research interests include computed tomography, quality control processes, image quality metrics and phantom development. Special research interest in dual-energy computed tomography wherein two tube potentials are used to further differentiate materials due to their unique energy-dependent linear attenuations

Assistant Professor/Clinical, Radiology


Ph.D., Medical Physics, UT Health Science Center at Houston Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, 2015

M.S., Medical Physics, Duke University, 2009

B.A., Physics, University of Virginia, 2005

B.A., Astronomy, University of Virginia, 2005



Lark Ford, Ph.D.

Lark ford 2016 cropped


The purpose of my descriptive study was to examine the perception of readiness for discharge from a transitional living center of six homeless adult family members with cardiac conditions. Three constructs formed the framework for this study: (a) being homeless, (b) undergoing severe stress, and (c) being ready for discharge. Four data collection instruments used for this study included (a) a 10-item, Self-Perceived Stress Scale to assess perception of stress over a one-month time period; (b) a pencil-and-paper, self-description of respondents’ cardiac health condition over time; (c) a retrospective, medical chart review on each respondent; and (d) a one-hour, face-to-face interview with each study volunteer. Findings showed that all of the homeless participants experienced high levels of stress, yet those participants who resided in the transitional living center in their early and later months experienced higher levels of stress than those participants who resided in the transitional living center between 12 to 18 months. One key theme emerged regarding their perception toward readiness for discharge: being safe and securing housing. The adult members’ overall perception regarding their health contributed very little to their self-perceptions of being ready for discharge. 

Associate Professor, Clinical



Sidath Kumarapperuma, Ph.D.

Sidath kumarapperuma2


Dr. Kumarapperuma's research interests are focused on the development of novel imaging methods for visualization, characterization, and quantification of biological processes taking place at the cellular and subcellular levels within intact living subjects, including patients. In this regard, ImmunoPET imaging is an active area of research in the Kumarapperuma laboratory and new imaging probes are being developed with positron-emitting isotope tagged biomolecules (e.g. biologically active small molecules, peptides, oligonucleotides, antibodies, antibody-fragments, biofunctionalized nanoparticles, and vaccines) to track cells, viruses, and immune complexes. Dr. Kumarapperuma's lab is currently developing novel PET/MRI imaging techniques to support projects directed towards studying the mechanisms of mucosal transfer of HIV, visualization of virus reservoirs, development of lymph node targeted vaccines, and design of novel cancer imaging agents.


Maize KM, Shah R, Strom A, Kumarapperuma SC, Zhou A, Wagner CR, Finzel BC; A Crystal Structure Based Guide to the Design of Human Histidine Triad Nucleotide Binding Protein 1 (hHint1) Activated ProTides. Mol Pharm 2017, 14, 3987-3997.

Shah R, Petersburg J, Gangar AC, Fegan A, Wagner CR, Kumarapperuma SC; In Vivo Evaluation of Site-Specifically PEGylated Chemically Self-Assembled Protein Nanostructures. Mol Pharm 2016, 13, 2193-2203.

Rashidian M, Kumarapperuma SC, Gabrielse K, Fegan A, Wagner CR, Distefano MD; Simultaneous dual protein labeling using a triorthogonal reagent. J Am Chem Soc 2013, 135, 16388-16396.

Gangar A, Fegan A, Kumarapperuma SC, Huynh P, Benyumov A, Wagner CR; Targeted delivery of antisense oligonucleotides by chemically self-assembled nanostructures. Mol Pharm 2013, 10, 3514-3518.

Fegan A, Kumarapperuma SC, Wagner CR; Chemically self-assembled antibody nanostructures as potential drug carriers. Mol Pharm 2012, 9, 3218-3227.

Gangar A, Fegan A, Kumarapperuma SC, Wagner CR; Programmable self-assembly of antibody-oligonucleotide conjugates as small molecule and protein carriers. J Am Chem Soc 2012, 134, 2895-2897.

McDowell M, Gonzales SR, Kumarapperuma SC, Jeselnik M, Arterburn JB, Hanley KA; A novel nucleoside analog, 1-beta-d-ribofuranosyl-3-ethynyl-[1,2,4]triazole (ETAR), exhibits efficacy against a broad range of flaviviruses in vitro. Antiviral Res 2010, 87, 78-80.

Chung DH, Kumarapperuma SC, Sun Y, Li Q, Chu YK, Arterburn JB, Parker WB, Smith J, Spik K, Ramanathan HN, Schmaljohn CS, Jonsson CB; Synthesis of 1-beta-D-ribofuranosyl-3-ethynyl-[1,2,4]triazole and its in vitro and in vivo efficacy against Hantavirus. Antiviral Res 2008, 79, 19-27.

Kumarapperuma SC, Sun Y, Jeselnik M, Chung K, Parker WB, Jonsson CB, Arterburn JB; Structural effects on the phosphorylation of 3-substituted 1-beta-D-ribofuranosyl-1,2,4-triazoles by human adenosine kinase. Bioorg Med Chem Lett 2007, 17, 3203-3207

Assistant Professor/Research

Research Imaging Institute


Ph.D., Chemistry, New Mexico State University, 2008

B.S., Chemistry, University of Colombo, 2001


Phone: 210-567-8136 


Yufeng Wang

9564 web


Research in Dr. Wang’s lab focuses on the comparative genomics, molecular evolution, and systems biology of gene families. The lab uses genomic and related data, coupled with other biochemical and microbiological information, to identify new therapeutic targets and to further study the underlying evolutionary mechanisms in diseases such as malaria. Their research has a particular emphasis on the functional divergence of duplicated genes, which are believed to provide the raw material for functional novelty. The lab is also interested in the association between sequence evolution and gene network regulation.


Department of Biology

The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) 


Ph.D., Bioinformatics and Computational Biology; Iowa State University 

M.S., Statistics and Genetics; Iowa State University 

B.S., Genetics; Fudan University, Shanghai, China


Phone: (210) 458-6492 


Meizi He, M.D., Ph.D.

Meizi he


Dr. Meizi He received her MD and MSc from Sun Yet-sen University of Medical Sciences, China and her PhD in Nutrition and Health from the University of Hong Kong. She received her post-doctoral training at the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Toronto, Canada. Dr. He has been working in the field of nutrition and health promotion for over 25 years.

Professor (Tenured)

Department of Health and Kinesiology, 

The University of Texas at San Antonio


Ph.D., Nutrition and Health, University of Hong Kong, 2000

MSc, Human Nutrition and Health, 1986

M.D., Sun Yet-sen University of Medical Sciences, 1983



Phone: 210-458-5416

Susanne Schmidt, Ph.D.

Susanne schmidt cropped-2


I am an Instructor/Research in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA). My research focuses on disparities in access to care and outcomes with particular focus on cancer and the impact of the social determinants of health. I have a PhD in Applied Demography with training in quantitative research methods with a focus on health outcomes. While working on my dissertation on disparities in injury risk among vulnerable populations, I began working as a Master-level biostatistician in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at UTHSCSA to gain additional applied experiences in health services research, qualitative methods, and program evaluation. After receiving my PhD, I completed my postdoctoral fellowship in Health Policy and Evaluation in the same department. Since joining the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, I first served as the Evaluation Manager for the Evaluation and Implementation Team of our Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA). Since 2016 I co-direct the evaluation efforts for our CTSA. In addition to my commitment to evaluation and health services research, I have sought opportunities to acquire advanced training in clinical and translational research, resulting in a 2-year Institutional Mentored Research Career Development (KL2) award. For this, I have focused on formalizing my training in program evaluation and examining access to care for vulnerable patients with cancer.


Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics 


Ph.D., Applied Demography, The University of Texas, 2013

DPL, Demography University of Rostock, 2008


Phone: (210) 567-0905


James Wilson, Ph.D.



Jim Wilson, is associate professor; Division of Health Outcomes & Pharmacy Practice; College of Pharmacy; The University of Texas at Austin; Austin, Texas 78712-1113

Dr. Wilson received his BSc and PharmD degrees from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; MSc and PhD (clinical pharmacy) degrees from Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana. He completed a residency in hospital pharmacy at the hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

Colonel Wilson spent more than 22 years in the U.S. Army, concluding his career as the chief pharmacist U.S. Army and finally as deputy director of health care operations and management support, U.S. Department of Defense.

Dr. Wilson has more than 40 years experience in management, education, training, and research. His current major interests are in pharmacoepidemiology, pharmacoeconomics, and the management of clinical programs.

In addition to various committees, Dr. Wilson currently serves as chair of the University Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Associate Professor of

Health Outcomes & Pharmacy Practice

UT Austin 


BSc, Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science

PharmD, Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science

MSc, Purdue University

PhD, Clinical Pharmacy, Purdue University


Phone: 512-471-6978

Zenong Yin, Ph.D.

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Dr. Zenong Yin is the Loretta J. Lowak Clarke Distinguished Professor in Health and Kinesiology in the Department of Health and Kinesiology at the University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas, USA. Dr. Yin was a Professor of Pediatrics in the Department of Pediatrics-Georgia Prevention Institute, the Medical College of Georgia from 2001 to 2005. He received his BEd-Physical Education in Beijing Sports University, Beijing, China and received his MA in Physical Education with a specialization in the Administration of Physical Education and Sports and PhD in Physical Education with a specialization in Sport Psychology at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California, USA. He has published over 70 peer reviewed article and given over 200 professional research presentations in public health, education, and sport and exercise psychology since 1991. Currently, Dr. Yin teaches both undergraduate and graduate classes in Health and Kinesiology, and conducts research on school- and community-based physical activity and nutrition interventions for the prevention of obesity and type 2 diabetes in low-income and minority children and adults.


Ph.D., Physical Education and Exercise Science, The University of Southern California, 1990

M.A., Physical Education, The University of Southern California, 1985



Chen-Pin Wang, Ph.D.

Chen-pin wang - faculty portait cropped


I have 12 years of experience conducting research using electronic medical records (EMR). I am the PI on two NIH funded studies that assessed health outcomes in nationwide veterans with type 2 diabetes. I also contributed to analyses of numerous studies involving EMR from VA and Department of Defense. I have developed the expertise in data validation, handing missing data, modeling of comorbidities and heterogeneity and causal modeling for longitudinal observational studies.  I have (1) derived the asymptotic relationship between Bayesian posterior predictive p-value and information criteria for model fit; (2) derived a Kullback-Leibler based information criterion for comparing both nested and non-nested models; (3) developed a comprehensive residual diagnostic procedure for assessing model fit of general latent variable (mixed effects) models; (4) extended the utilities of propensity scores to health disparity research. Statistical Modeling of Longitudinal Studies - Latent Variable Modeling (LVM) is an advanced statistical modeling technique for assessing repeatedly measured outcomes. LVM provides a robust parametric modeling framework by employing both discrete and continuous random variables to characterize complex correlation, non-linear correlation, or non-normal outcomes. I have developed expertise in the advancement of LVM, including (1) employing the Bayesian technique to overcome non-identifiability in estimation of competing risks models; (2) integrating the pseudoclass imputation technique with empirical Bayes estimation to obtain patient-level estimates; (3) integrating propensity score technique with the principal stratification methodology to derive causal inference and mediation effects for comparative effectiveness or pharmaco-epidemiology studies.

DEB Assistant Professor


Ph.D., Statistics, The University of Florida, 1999

M.S., Statistics, The University of Florida, 1995

B.S., Mathematics, Central University, 1993


Phone: (210) 617-5300 


Melissa Valerio, Ph.D.



Melissa Valerio, PhD, MPH, is an Associate Professor of Health Promotion and Behavioral Science at the UT School of Public Health, San Antonio Regional Campus. Prior to returning to Texas, she spent five years as Assistant Professor of Health Behavior and Health Education at the University of Michigan School of Public Health.

She obtained her Master’s degree in Health Behavior and Health Education at the University of Michigan School of Public Health and her PhD in health behavior and health education from the University of Michigan. Dr. Valerio's interests include chronic disease management and prevention, the design and evaluation of effective health education messages and materials, and survey methods. She is particularly interested in health literacy and cultural competence issues related to health education and communication in minority underserved communities. Dr. Valerio has been involved in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of community-based coalitions and partnerships. Most recently I have served as PI on studies focused on the design and evaluation of innovative functional health literacy related interventions and strategies to promote disease management (type 2 diabetes, asthma, and oral health) and prevention (type 2 diabetes). She serves as PI on a NINR funded R21 study to develop a measure of verbal functional health literacy. Dr. Valerio also serve as Co-I on several studies including an NIDDK funded R01 examining the use and influence of genetic explanations in prevention of type 2 diabetes, an AHRQ funded R18 examining comparative effectiveness research practices in diabetes management and on a P60 funded center initiative addressing health disparities in cardiovascular risk.

Research Interests:

Health literacy and disease management intervention design and evaluation, with a focus on marginalized and vulnerable populations.

Associate Professor

UT School of Public Health at Houston

San Antonio Regional Campus


Ph.D., Health Behavior and Health Education, University of Michigan, 2006 

M.P.H., Health Behavior and Health Education, University of Michigan, 2001

B.A., Liberal Arts-History, The University of Texas at Austin, 1997 


Phone: 210-562-5517


Thankam Sunil, Ph.D.



Thankam Sunil, Ph.D., Professor of Sociology and Director of Institute for Health Disparities Research (IHDR) at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). His research area has centered around maternal and child health and health disparities. He has published over 50 articles on these topics in national and international peer reviewed journals. He has successfully conducted and participated in a number of community needs assessment projects, Texas and served as consultant for research projects funded by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFP). His on-going research projects include breast cancer awareness programs in South Texas border counties and understanding the effects of psychosocial and sociocultural processes that impact birthweight in immigrant and non-immigrant women of Mexican descent. He received over $5 million support from Federal, State and Local agencies for his research.


Department of Sociology

The University of Texas at San Antonio


Ph.D. The University of North Texas, 2002

M.P.H., The University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth, 1998

Ph.D., Population Studies, International Institute for Population Sciences, 1998

M.Phil, Population Studies, International Institute for Population Sciences, 1993

M.P.S., Population Studies, International Institute for Population Sciences, 1992

M.Sc. Statistics, University of Kerala, 1990

B.Sc., Statistics, 1988



Office: 210-458-5617  

John Richburg, Ph.D.

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Dr. John H. Richburg, the Gustavus and Louise Pfeiffer Professor in Toxicology, has had near continuous NIH grant funding to support his research program over the last 18 years. The longstanding focus the Richburg research program is to decipher the molecular and cellular mechanisms by which exposure to certain environmental (e.g., phthalate acid ester-based plasticizers) or clinical chemotherapeutic agents (e.g., cisplatin) can result in disruption of male reproduction. The goal of this research is to provide molecular and cellular insights on toxicant action that will be useful for predicting and preventing human reproductive health risks to both chemotherapeutic agents as well as chemicals found in the environment.

Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies

Gustavus and Louise Pfeiffer Professor in Toxicology

The University of Texas at Austin


Ph.D., Toxicology, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey-New Brunswick, 1993

B.S., Toxicology, Northeastern University, 1987


Phone: 512-471-4736


Joel Tsevat, M.D.

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Joel Tsevat is a general internist and a professor of population health and medicine at Dell Medical School. He is director of the Center for Research to Advance Community Health and director of the Institutional Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) KL2 program at the UT Health Science Center at San Antonio. A past president of the Society for Medical Decision Making, he is recognized internationally in health-related quality of life research, in particular health status vs. utility assessment; spirituality/religion; cost-effectiveness analysis; and decision analysis. He has published more than 160 peer-reviewed papers, reviews, book chapters and editorials. In 2007, he received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from his medical school. He has served as principal investigator on multiple federally funded grants from the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, including as one of the two principal investigators (with James Heubi, M.D.) on the University of Cincinnati’s CTSA grant, and as principal investigator of the University of Cincinnati’s BIRCWH K12 and NIH K30 clinical research curriculum award. He has mentored numerous trainees and junior faculty members, serving as primary mentor on six NIH or VA career development awards, and he won an award for a short course on mentoring from the Society for Medical Decision Making.

Director, Center for Research to Advance Community Health (ReACH)

Director, KL2 Program, Institute for Integration of Medicine & Science, Professor of Medicine, Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine, UT Health San Antonio

Professor of Population Health, Dell Medical School, University of Texas at Austin

Adjunct Professor, University of Texas School of Public Health


M.D., Medicine, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

MPH, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health


Phone: (210) 562-5551

Fax: (210) 562-5560

Karen Rascati, PharmD, PhD



Dr. Karen Rascati’s research interests include economic and outcomes evaluations for several disease states as well as for pharmacy services. She has conducted over 60 funded research projects and has served on various grant review panels. She has supervised 40 MS and 25 PhD graduate student projects. She has authored or co-authored more than 100 publications (including five textbook chapters) and more than 100 national and international presentations. Her textbook, Essentials of Pharmacoeconomics was published in 2008, and was translated into Portuguese in 2009. In addition, she received the 2009 University of Texas Hamilton Book Award. The second edition became available in 2013.


Pharm.D, Pharmacy, The University of Florida 

Ph.D., Health Outcomes & Pharmacy Practice, University of Florida


Telephone: 512-471-1637


Amelie Ramirez, DPH



Dr. Ramirez, an internationally recognized cancer health disparities researcher, has spent 30 years directing research on human and organizational communication to reduce chronic disease and cancer health disparities affecting Latinos, including cancer risk factors, clinical trial recruitment, tobacco prevention, obesity prevention, healthy lifestyles, and more. She also trains/mentors Latinos in behavioral sciences and is on the board of directors for LIVESTRONG, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and others. She is a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academies.

Director and Professor, Institute for Health Promotion Research, UT Health San Antonio


DPH, Health Promotion, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, 1992

MPH, Health Services Administration, The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, 1977

BS, Psychology, The University of Houston, 1973



Kelly Reveles, Pharm.D., Ph.D.

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Kelly R. Reveles, PharmD, PhD, BCPS is an Assistant Professor with the Pharmacotherapy Division, College of Pharmacy, The University of Texas at Austin and an Adjoint Assistant Professor with the Pharmacotherapy Education and Research Center, School of Medicine, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. She received her PharmD degree from UT Austin in 2010 and was recently the first graduate of the joint Translational Science Ph.D. program offered by UT Austin, UT Health Science Center San Antonio, UT San Antonio, and UT School of Public Health. Her long-term research goal is to reduce the incidence and improve the outcomes of healthcare-associated infections by designing, testing, and implementing effective clinical strategies. Her current research focus is the prevention and treatment of Clostridium difficile infections and innovative methods to improve the translation of clinical research findings into practice.

Research Interests:

Clostridium difficile infection, translational science, comparative-effectiveness research, patient-centered outcomes research, and pharmacoepidemiology

Assistant Professor, College of Pharmacy, The University of Texas at Austin

Adjoint Assistant Professor, School of Medicine, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio


PhD, Translational Science, UT San Antonio, 2014

PharmD, UT Austin, 2010


Office: 210-567-8345


Mary Jo Pugh R.N., Ph.D.



Dr. Mary Jo Pugh is an accomplished researcher in the areas of diabetes, epilepsy, and geriatric care. She's a professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of Texas and a research health scientist at the South Texas Veterans Health Care System in San Antonio. She has led studies funded by VA and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control to examine the quality of medications that are considered problematic for older patients, the treatment of older patients with epilepsy, and the development of measures that can be used to examine quality of care for adults with epilepsy. She has also examined the simultaneous presence of chronic diseases among Veterans from Afghanistan and Iraq. Pugh is proud of the work that she's doing on behalf of Veterans and hopes it will improve their health conditions.

Research Investigator, South Texas Veterans Health Care System

Assistant Professor, UT Health San Antonio 


Ph.D., Developmental Psychology, Catholic University of America

M.Ed., Counseling Psychology, Boston University


Stefano Tiziani, Ph.D.



Dr. Stefano Tiziani is an Assistant Professor of the Department of Nutritional Sciences at The University of Texas at Austin. After receiving his Laurea in Chemistry at the University of Trieste, (Italy), Dr. Tiziani completed his Ph.D. at Ohio State University in 2006, where he developed a strong interest in phytochemicals and their role in disease prevention. His interest in metabolic biomarker identification was subsequently extended during his postgraduate training in the field of translational chemical biology to study cancer metabolism. He completed postdoctoral training in molecular oncology and metabolomics as a Marie Curie Fellow and European Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom in 2009. He then served as a National Science Foundation Fellow at the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute in La Jolla, CA where he gained a better understanding of the role of the tumor microenvironment in childhood leukemia. Since September 2012, Dr. Tiziani has been an Assistant Professor at UT and starting in July 2013 he has a secondary adjunct appointment at the Department of Biochemistry, School of Medicine, The University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, Texas.

Assistant Professor, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics

Department of Nutritional Sciences, Department of Pediatrics, Dell Medical School

UT Austin 


Ph.D., Ohio State University, 2006

Laurea, Chemistry at the University of Trieste



Phone: 512-495-4706

Lisa Pompeii, Ph.D.



Dr. Pompeii is an associate professor in the department of epidemiology, genetics, and environmental sciences, and a member of the Center for Health Promotion and Prevention Research and the Southwest Center for Environmental and Occupational Health at UTHealth School of Public Health. Dr. Pompeii earned a master’s degree in occupational health nursing and a PhD in epidemiology from the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health.

Associate Professor

Editor-in-Chief, Workplace Health & Safety Journal

The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston School of Public Health


PhD, Epidemiology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

MS, Occupational Health Nursing/Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill



Phone: 1+ (713) 500-9474

Clyde Phelix, Ph.D.



Dr. Phelix’s research focus is on integration of systems biology, biomarkers, biosimulations, and modelling in streamlining drug development and biological discoveries. Focus is on intellectual property and commercialization of technologies. Methods apply to all three domains of living organisms, Archae, Bacteria, and Eukarya.


Click here for a list of publications.


Department of Biology

The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) 


Ph.D. in Anatomy; University of Missouri 

B.A. in Biology; State University of New York, Potsdam


Phone: (210) 458-5495 


George Perry, Ph.D.



Dr. Perry’s studies are focused on the mechanism of formation and physiological consequences of the cytopathology of Alzheimer disease. The lab has shown that oxidative damage is the initial cytopathology in Alzheimer disease. They are working to determine the sequence of events leading to neuronal oxidative damage and the source of the increased oxygen radicals. Current studies focus on the:

  1. role of redox active metals in mediating prooxidant and antioxidant properties
  2. mechanism of phosphorylation control of oxidative damage to neurofilament proteins
  3. mass spectrometry analysis of protein metal binding and crosslinking

Click here for a list of publications.

Dean of the College of Sciences

Semmes Professor of Neurobiology

Professor of Biology

The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA)


Ph.D., Marine Biology, Scripps Institution of Oceanography 

B.A., Zoology, University of California


Phone: (210) 458-8660

Deborah Parra-Medina Ph.D.

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Deborah Parra-Medina, Ph.D., M.P.H., is professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, where she is a researcher at the Institute for Health Promotion Research, which investigates the causes of and solutions to health disparities in the 38-county region of South Texas. Dr. Parra-Medina has served as the PI on several federal grants focused on the development and evaluation of theoretically-based, culturally competent chronic disease prevention and management interventions for Hispanics in Texas utilizing a mixed methods CBPR approach.

Director, Latino Research Initiative, College of Liberal Arts, University of Texas at Austin

Professor (Tenured), Department of Mexican American and Latina/o Studies, University of Texas at Austin

Adjoint Professor, Institute for Health Promotion Research, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio


Ph.D., Public Health Epidemiology, University of California San Diego/San Diego State University, 1998

M.P.H., Health Promotion and Education, San Diego State University, 1991

B.A., Social Science, University of California at Berkeley, 1989



Phone: (512) 475-9315

Jean Orman, ScD

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Jean Langlois Orman, MPH, ScD is currently the chief of Statistics and Epidemiology at the US Army Institute of Surgical Research in San Antonio, Texas. She is also Adjunct Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of Texas Health Science Center, also in San Antonio. Her education consists of a BA in Speech Communication from the University of Rhode Island, Kingston, Rhode Island (1979); an MS in Speech-Language Pathology at Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana (1981); an MPH at The Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland (1987); and an ScD in Health Policy and Management and Injury Epidemiology from The Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health (1991).

Dr. Orman has received many awards and honors, her most recent being the North American Brain Injury Society Public Policy Award (2006); Brain Injury Association of Ohio Awareness Award (2006); National Center for Injury Prevention and Control Director's Award (2005); Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Service Award (2004); and National Center for Injury Prevention and Control - Research Agenda Group Award (2003). Her professional memberships include, but are not limited to, TBI Advisory Subcommittee of the Defense Health Board (member); Scientific Advisory Board, National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research Traumatic Brain Injury Model Systems National Data Center, Denver, CO (member); Brooke Army Medical Center Military Brain Injury Rehabilitation Research Consortium (member); and the Department of Defense/Department of Veterans Affairs Deployment Health Working Group (ex-officio member).

In addition, Dr. Orman has an extensive publication history and serves as a reviewer for multiple peer-reviewed journals. Her most recent publications include the "Epidemiology" chapter in the revised Textbook of Traumatic Brain Injury, 2011; "Common data elements for traumatic brain injury: recommendations from the interagency working group on demographics and clinical assessment" in the journal Neurotrauma, 2010; and "Challenges associated with post-deployment screening for mild traumatic brain injury in military personnel" in the Clinical Neuropsychologist, 2009.

Chief of Statistics and Epidemiology

U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research


ScD, Health Policy and Management and Injury Epidemiology, The Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health, 1991

MPH, The Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health, 1987

MS, Speech-Language Pathology at Purdue University, 1981

BA, Speech Communication, University of Rhode Island, 1979



Alan Nyitray, Ph.D.



Epidemiologist with training and expertise in molecular and behavioral epidemiology, regression modeling, and social networks analysis.

Assistant Professor

Center for Infectious Diseases
Division of Epidemiology, Human Genetics, and Environmental Sciences School of Public Health
The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston


M.S., Mass Communications, Oklahoma State University, 1988

B.S., Radio, Television and Film, Oklahoma State University, 1984



Patricia Mullen, DrPH

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Dr. Mullen is a senior health promotion scientist with experience leading NIH and CDC elicitation studies and clinical trials on the adoption of smoke-free home policies, tobacco cessation during pregnancy preconception counseling to lower risk during pregnancy, provision of tools for finding, selecting, adapting, implementing, and evaluating evidence-based interventions; and promotion of informed decision making for contested cancer screening and treatment. A commitment to dissemination and implementation in clinics, jails, and other settings has strongly influenced her research, which has emphasized intervention personnel and participants who represent "real life" populations, especially those with low socio-economic status. 

She has led an Interdisciplinary Training for Cancer Prevention and Control program through four competitive renewals at the NCI and the Innovation in Cancer Prevention Research Training grant through its first competitive renewal at the Cancer Prevention Research Institute of Texas. She was selected The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) President's Scholar, a University of Texas System Regents' Distinguished Teaching Professor and elected to The University of Texas System Shine Academy of Health Sciences Teaching. She has received the Society for Public Health Education Mentoring Award.

The University of Texas System Distinguished Teaching Professor and President’s Scholar

 UT Health Houston 



University of California at Berkeley School of Public Health

Phone: +1 (713) 500-9658

Kenneth Lawson, Ph.D.



Dr. Lawson’s primary teaching interests include health care systems, community pharmacy management, and contemporary issues in pharmacy.

Smithkline Centennial Professor in Pharmacy

Professor of Health Outcomes & Pharmacy Practice

UT Austin 


Ph.D., Pharmacy, The University of Texas at Austin, 1992


Phone: 512-471-5609


Jim Koeller, M.S.

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Jim M. Koeller received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and completed a residency at the University of Wisconsin Hospital.

Professor Koeller is currently a full professor and member of the Center for Pharmacoeconomic Studies in the College of Pharmacy at the University of Texas at Austin, where he holds the Eli Lilly/CR Sublett Endowed Fellowship in Pharmacy. In addition, he is an Adjoint Professor of Medicine and Oncology at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. Prior to moving to Texas, he spent 5 years coordinating the Phase I Drug Development Program in the Department of Human Oncology, Wisconsin Comprehensive Cancer Center in Madison, Wisconsin.

Professor Koeller has published over 250 articles, abstracts, and book chapters in the areas of oncology practice, pharmacoeconomics, new drug development, and supportive care issues of the cancer patient. In addition, he has given over 500 presentations related to oncology, supportive care, pharmacoeconomics, cancer disease management, pathway development and management, and health care economics.

Selected Publications

Zachry W, Wilson J, Koeller J, Lawson K. Procedure Costs and outcomes associated with pharmacologic management of peripheral arterial disease in the department of defense. Clin Therapeutics 1999; 21:1358-1369.

Khan Z, Rascati K, Koeller J. Economic Analysis of Carboplatin versus Cisplatin in Lung and Ovarian Cancer. Pharmacoeconomics, 1999; 16:43-57.

Khan Z, Rascati K, Koeller J, Smeeding J. Fax technology for collecting data in a computer database. Am J Health-Syst Pharm, 1999; 56:2540-2.

Eli Lilly & C.R. Sublett Fellow Professor of Pharmacotherapy


M.S., Pharmacy, University of Wisconsin, 1980

B.S., Pharmacy, University of Wisconsin, 1977 


Phone: 210- 567-8339


Ahmad Kheirkhah, M.D.

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Dr. Kheirkhah completed his medical education, ophthalmology residency, and fellowship in Cornea and External Disease in Iran. After a 3-year fellowship in Ocular Surface Disease in Miami, Florid, his practice and research have been focused on ocular surface disease and this has resulted in more than 60 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters as well as numerous presentations in national and international conferences. Dr. Kheirkhah is currently an Instructor at Harvard Medical School and an Investigator at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Boston, Massachusetts. His research has spanned ocular surface disease, limbal stem cells, dry eye disease, and ocular surface imaging. In addition, his new ideas in collagen cross-linking have led to filing a patent application. Dr. Kheirkhah is a recipient of the Achievement Award from American Academy of Ophthalmology, Scholarship Award from the Eye Foundation of America, Joseph Swiger Scholarship Award, and Massachusetts Lions Eye Research Award. He is an ad hoc reviewer for more than 20 ophthalmology journals.

Selected Publications

Siatiri H, Mirzaee‑Rad N, Aggarwal S, Kheirkhah A. Combined tenonplasty and scleral graft for refractory pseudomonas scleritis following pterygium removal with mitomycin C application J Ophthalmic Vis Res (in press) 2018 Jan;.

Yin J, Kheirkhah A, Dohlman T, Saboo U, Dana R. Reduced efficacy of low-dose topical steroids in dry eye disease associated with graft-versus-host disease Am J Ophthalmol (in press) 2018 Jan;.

Kheirkhah A, Coco G, Satitpitakul V, Dana R. Subtarsal fibrosis is associated with ocular surface epitheliopathy in graft-versus-host disease Am J Ophthalmol (in press) 2018 Jan;.

Moein HR, Kheirkhah A, Muller RT, Cruzat AC, Pavan-Langston D, Hamrah P. Corneal nerve regeneration after herpes simplex keratitis: An in vivo confocal microscopy study Ocul Surf (in press) 2018 Jan;.

Kheirkhah A,, Satitpitakul V, Syed ZA, Muller R, Goyal S, Tu EY, Dana R. Factors influencing the diagnostic accuracy of laser-scanning in vivo confocal microscopy for acanthamoeba keratitis Cornea (in press) 2018 Jan;.

Marmalidou A, Kheirkhah A, Dana R. Conjunctivochalasis: a systematic review Surv Ophthalmol (in press) 2017 Jan;.

Satitpitakul V, Kheirkhah A, Crnej A, Hamrah P, Dana R. Determinants of ocular pain severity in patients with dry eye disease Am J Ophthalmol 2017 Jan;179:198-204.

Kheirkhah A, Syed ZA, Satitpitakul V, Goyal S, Muller R, Tu EY, Dana R. Sensitivity and specificity of laser-scanning in vivo confocal microscopy for filamentous fungal keratitis: role of observer experience Am J Ophthalmol 2017 Jan;179:81-89.

Kheirkhah A, Crnej A, Ren A, Mullins A, Satitpitakul V, Hamrah P, Schaumberg D, Dana R. Patients? perceived treatment effectiveness in dry eye disease Cornea 2017 Jan;36(8):893-897.

Assistant Professor/Clinical Graduate Faculty



M.D., Ahvaz Jundishapur University of the Medical Sciences, 1996


Phone: 210-567-8431 


Gerald Juhnke, EdD

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Dr. Gerald A. Juhnke attained his doctorate in Counselor Education and Supervision from Western Michigan University's College of Education and Human Development in 1991. He is a Professor and the former founding Doctoral Program Director in the Department of Counseling at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). Jerry has authored, co-authored or edited eight academic books. His 9th academic book is under contract with Oxford University Press, is specific to assessment, and is slated for 2017 publication. This book is co-authored with Dr. Richard Balkin, a Professor at the University of Louisville. Jerry'™s 10th book is a clinical guide for non-psychologists interpreting Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-2 Restructured Form (MMPI-2-RF) scores. Since 1992, Jerry has also authored or co-authored more than 50-refereed articles, 14 assessment instruments, and presented over 150 professional presentations. Jerry is an American Counseling Association Fellow and Past President of seven professional associations. He is an Associate Editor for the Journal of Counseling and Development, former Editor in Chief of The Journal of Addictions and Offender Counseling, and former Co-Chair of the American Counseling Association's Council of Journal Editors. He has received numerous counseling and teaching awards including the American Counseling Association'™s David K. Brooks Distinguished Mentor Award, the American Counseling Association's Ralph F. Berdie Research Award, the International Association for Addictions and Offender Counseling Addictions Educator Excellence Award, the Journal of Addictions and Offender Counseling Research Award, the North Carolina Counseling Association'™s Professional Writing and Research Award, and The University of North Carolina at Greensboroâ'™s School of Education's Teaching Excellence Award.


Department of Counseling

The University of Texas at San Antonio


Ed.D., Counselor Education and Supervision, Western Michigan University, 1991

M.A., Marriage and Family Counseling, Central Michigan University, 1986

B.A., Psychology and Communication Sciences, Michigan State University, 1982


Phone: 210-458-2594


Guy Huynh-Ba, D.D.S.

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Dr. Huynh-Ba received his D.D.S. in 1999 at the University of Geneva, Switzerland. He then worked for three years in private dental practices while also a part-time clinical faculty in the department of Oral Surgery at the University of Geneva. He completed his residency in Periodontics in 2005 at the University of Bern, Switzerland.

His academic career began in 2006 at the University of Connecticut Health Center. At that time he was involved in didactic teaching of dental and dental hygiene students, as well as residents in Periodontics. In 2007, Dr. Huynh-Ba received his Swiss and European board certifications in Periodontics and became a full-time faculty in the Department of Periodontics and Fixed Prosthodontics at the University of Bern. He was involved in the clinical and didactic teaching of dental students and residents in Periodontics. He was the co-course director for the 4th year predoctoral prosthodontics program and in September 2008, he assumed the course directorship. He received his Masters degree in Periodontics in 2008.

In June 2009, he joined the department of Periodontics at UT Health San Antonio. Dr. Huynh-Ba has increasingly become involved with the teaching of predoctoral and postdoctoral students in Periodontics. As of January 2011, Dr. Huynh-Ba has been a course director for the Junior (DS III) Implantology Course and teaches in four other predoctoral courses. At the postdoctoral level Dr. Huynh-Ba is involved in 13 courses (didactic and clinical). He is mentoring two master of science degree candidates and is on the Masters Thesis Supervising Committee of another six postgraduate students. Dr. Huynh-Ba received the 2011 American Academy of Periodontology Outstanding Teaching and Mentoring Award.

Dr. Huynh-Ba actively participates in preclinical and clinical research in the Department of Periodontics and his areas of interest include dental implantology and bone regeneration. Dr. Huynh-Ba maintains an active part-time private practice limited to periodontology and implantology.

Selected Publications

Associate Professor / Clinical



M.S., Periodontology, University of Bern, Switzerland, School of Dental Medicine, Bern, Switzerland, 2008

D.D.S., General Dentistry, University of Geneva, Switzerland, School of Dental Medicine, Geneva, Switzerland, 2000

D.P.L., Stomatology, University of Geneva, Switzerland, School of Dental Medicine, Geneva, Switzerland, 1999


Phone: 210-567-3569


Anthony “AJ” Johnson, M.D.

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Anthony Johnson, MD is the Orthopedic Sports Medicine Clinical Director at UT Health Austin’s Musculoskeletal Institute. Dr. Johnson was born in Korea and raised in Texas. He graduated from the United States Military Academy in 1994 and the UCLA School of Medicine in 1998 as a member of Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society. He served as the Engineer Brigade Surgeon, 2nd Infantry Division prior to graduating with honors from the Orthopedic Surgery Residency at Brooke Army Medical Center in 2004. He became an American Board of Orthopedic Surgery Diplomate in 2006 and obtained his Subspecialty Certification in Orthopedic Sports Medicine in 2008.

In addition to seeing patients in the Musculoskeletal Institute, he oversees the Special Population and Adaptive Sports Medicine Education & Community Outreach program. Additionally, he is the Orthopedic Surgery Residency Program Director for Dell Medical School at The University of Texas at Austin. His prior position was the Chair of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery at San Antonio Military Medical Center as well as the Custodian of the DoD Joint Trauma System’s Military Orthopedic Trauma Registry (MOTR). He has deployed in support of Operations Enduring Freedom (2006), Iraqi Freedom (2007), and New Dawn (2010) as a member of the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) and served as the Orthopedic SME for the Expeditionary Resuscitative Surgical Teams – Africa and the Advanced Virtual Support to Special Operations program. He has provided care through the entire evacuation chain from tactical care under fire to definitive rehabilitation and community reintegration.

A Past-President of the Society of Military Orthopedic Surgeons (SOMOS) and the US Armed Forces Sports Medical Advisory Board, he has served as the Team Physician and Director of Medical Operations for 15 international competitions to include the Para-Pan American, Paralympic, and Military World Games. His current committee leadership appointments include SOMOS Liaison to the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma (ACS-COT) Disaster & EMT Committee as well as Chairman of the International Scientific Congress on Disaster Response and Management. He is additionally a member of the AAOS Extremity War Injuries & Disaster Preparedness Project Team, AAOS Diversity Advisory Board, AAOS Council on Research & Quality, Major Extremity Trauma and Rehabilitation Consortium (METRC) Steering Committee, and AAOS Liaison to the PQRS Performance Measures Workgroup on Osteoarthritis Function & Pain Assessment.

His scholarly activities include 56 peer-reviewed publications, 3 Clinical Practice Guidelines, 16 Moderator/Panelist roles, 75 podium presentations and over $22.3M in extra-mural grant funding for his work on Post-Traumatic Osteoarthritis and Health Outcomes Disparities in casualties with an emphasis on the reintegration of elite disabled tactical athletes, especially female amputees. A Fellow of the American Orthopedic Association, American College of Surgeons & the Order of Military Medical Merit, he is also the recipient of the “A” Proficiency Designator by the Army Surgeon General, the Presidential Volunteer Service Award, the AAOS Senior Achievement Award, and the San Antonio Uniformed Services Health Education Consortium’s Golden Headed Cane Award for demonstrated excellence in patient care, teaching, and clinical research. His combat awards include the Combat Medical Badge, 2 Bronze Star Medals, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, and 3 Meritorious Service Medals.

Orthopedic Surgeon, Musculoskeletal Institute

Orthopedic Sports Medicine Clinical Director , Musculoskeletal Institute

UT Austin


M.D., University of California 

B.S., United States Military Academy West Point

David Gimeno Ruiz De Porras, Ph.D.

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David Gimeno Ruiz de Porras, MSc, PhD, is Professor within the Department of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston School of Public Health (UTSPH) in San Antonio. He is also Director of the Occupational Epidemiology Doctoral Training Program, part of the U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Research Center at the Southwest Center for Occupational and Environmental Health (SWCOEH). Dr. Gimeno is a trained psychologist (Universitat de Barcelona [UB], 1997) and social and occupational epidemiologist with a PhD in Public Health (Universitat Pompeu Fabra [UPF], 2003) and a Master in Occupational Hazards Prevention (UPF and UB, 1999). Dr. Gimeno’s research focuses on the impact of work on a range of health outcomes, particularly workplace injuries, work-related lost productivity, sickness absence and return-to-work. Dr. Gimeno is the Principal Investigator of the II Central American Survey of Working Conditions and Health and of a grant studying the associations between occupational exposures and asthma among Texas healthcare workers. In addition, Dr. Gimeno is also involved in research on physiological workloads related to musculoskeletal injuries among workers performing milking tasks and other research regarding the relationship of safety management and leadership with injuries and fatalities among logging workers.

See complete profile

PubMed citations (search for: “Gimeno-D” or “Gimeno Ruiz de Porras”) at PubMed My Bibliography URL:


UTHealth School of Public Health in San Antonio 


Ph.D. in Public Health, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, 2003



Dana Forgione, Ph.D.



Dr. Dana Forgione is a professor of accounting at The University of Texas at San Antonio. Dr. Forgione leads the MBA in the Business of Health program–a participant in the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) Higher Education Network. He is also an adjunct professor in the School of Medicine, Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, the Department of Pediatrics, and in the School of Public Health, all at the University of Texas. Dr. Forgione previously served as advisor to the MBA in Healthcare Management program at the University of Baltimore, and he held a joint appointment in the School of Pharmacy at the University of Maryland, where he taught in the Doctor of Pharmacy program.

He is an active member of the American College of Healthcare Executives, the Healthcare Financial Management Association, and the Medical Group Management Association. He has served as the senior editor of Research in Healthcare Financial Management, and as a columnist for the Journal of Health Care Finance, and San Antonio Medicine.

Dr. Forgione is a consultant to healthcare organizations and has analyzed the financial and operating performance of more than 5,500 hospitals throughout the United States. His litigation support and consulting work was used twice by the U.S. Congress in national healthcare policy deliberations, and by the Texas Attorney General in landmark hospital charity care legislation. He has also worked in collaboration with the EuroDRG project for eventual convergence of healthcare payment systems throughout the European Union. He was invited by the government of South Korea as an international expert to address more than 500 government and healthcare professionals in their rollout of a new national healthcare payment system. He also provided input for the new physician specialist payment system reforms for the country of Belgium. He is a member of the Board of Directors of Morningside Ministries–an award-winning nonprofit long-term healthcare organization, successfully completing nearly $100 million in new external financing, including a $50 million tax-exempt public bond issue.

Dr. Forgione developed and teaches a graduate-level Seminar in Medicare Regulation, as well as Accounting for Healthcare Organizations, and a doctoral research seminar in Government & Nonprofit Accounting. He has conducted professional training programs on Medicare regulation, healthcare fraud and abuse regulations, physician self-referral prohibitions, governmental auditing, forensic accounting, electronic data recovery and related issues to hundreds of accountants, auditors, regulators, fraud examiners, U.S. Internal Revenue Service agents, physicians, surgeons, allied healthcare professionals and U.S. Veterans Health Administration Inspectors General.

He has more than 137 professional publications, 46 editorial and reviewing roles, 151 instances of television debates, national radio network commentary and other news / media coverage to his credit. His books have been used in more than 75 colleges and universities throughout the U.S. He is listed in Who’s Who in Medicine and Healthcare (2000-present), Who’s Who in the World (2002-present), Who’s Who in America (2002-present), Who’s Who in Finance and Industry (2001-2009), and Who’s Who in American Education (2005-2008). He earned his BBA in accounting and information systems, MBA and MS in accounting, and Ph.D. in accounting all at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Professor of Accounting,

UTSA College of Business 


Ph.D., University of Massachusetts at Amherst

MSA, University of Massachusetts at Amherst

MBA, University of Massachusetts at Amherst

BBA, University of Massachusetts at Amherst



Phone: 210-458-6318

Teresa Evans, Ph.D.

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As an Assistant Professor,  Dr. Evans assesses the impact of novel education and outreach efforts on the STEM workforce. Her academic and individual consulting efforts focus on translation of the interests of various stakeholders, across institutions and the community, into innovative research, business development and educational initiatives that engage the STEM and entrepreneurship communities. Teresa has her Ph.D. in Neuroscience and several publications including a book focused on career strategies for STEM professionals (ReSearch: A Career Guide for Scientists) and a publication in Nature Biotechnology on Mental Health in Graduate Education. 

Assistant Professor


Ph.D., Neuroscience, UT Health San Antonio



Anibal Diogenes, D.D.S., Ph.D.

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Dr. Anibal Diogenes received his D.D.S. from the Federal University of Pernambuco in Brazil, his M.S. in Molecular Biology from the University of Nebraska, and his Ph.D. in Pharmacology and Certificate in Endodontics from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Dr. Diogenes is an associate professor and the director of the endodontic residency program at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. His areas of research include pain, neuroscience and regenerative endodontics. He is also an Associate Editor for the Journal of Endodontics, past-President of the Pulp Biology of Regeneration Group of the International Association of Dental Research and a Diplomate of the American Board of Endodontics.

Associate Professor with Tenure, Endodontics

Assistant Professor, Cellular & Structural Biology


Ph.D., Pharmacology, University Texas Health Science Center San Antonio, 2006

M.S., Molecular Biology, University of Nebraska, Kearney, Nebraska, 2002

D.D.S., Dentistry, Federal University of Pernambuco, Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil, 1998


Phone: 210-567-3394


John Digiovanni, Ph.D.



Research interests in my laboratory focus on 6 major areas: i) identifying critical targets and mechanisms involved in the initiation and promotion stages of chemical as well as UV skin carcinogenesis; ii) identification of genetic determinants of susceptibility to chemically-induced skin cancer; iii) exploring novel prevention strategies for inhibiting chemical and UV skin carcinogenesis; and iv) development of new mouse models for cancer, including models for skin, prostate and head and neck cancers; v) impact of dietary energy balance, especially obesity on development and progression of both skin and prostate cancer; and finally vi) role of Stat3 psoriasis.

Selected peer-reviewed publications (Selected from a list of over 230)

  1. Sano S, Chan KS, Carbajal S, Clifford J, Peavy M, Kiguchi K, Itami S, Nickeloff BJ, DiGiovanni J. Stat3 links activated keratinocytes and immunocytes for development of psoriasis in a novel transgenic mouse model. Nat Med 11:43-49, 2005.
  2. Sano S, Chan KS, Kira M, Takagi S, Tarutani M, Itami S, Kiguchi K, Yokoi M, Sugusawa K, Mori T, Hanaoka F, Takeda J, DiGiovanni J. Stat3 is a key regulator of keratinocyte survival and proliferation following ultraviolet irradiation. Cancer Res 65:5720-5729, 2005
  3. Kiguchi K, Ruffino L, Kawamoto T, Franco E, Kurakata S-i, Fujiwara K, Hanai M, Rumi M, DiGiovanni J. Therapeutic effect of CS-706, a specific COX-2 inhibitor, on gallbladder carcinoma in BK5.ErbB-2 mice. Mol Cancer Therapeutics 6:1709-1717, 2007.
  4. Segrelles C, Lu J, Hammann B, Santos M, Moral M, Cascallana J, Lara M, Rho O, Carbajal S, Traag J, Beltran L, Martinez-Cruz AB, Garcia-Escudero R, Lorz C, Ruiz S, Bravo A, Paramio JM, DiGiovanni J. Deregulated activity of Akt in epithelial basal cells induces spontaneous tumors and heightened sensitivity to skin carcinogenesis. Cancer Res 67:10879-10888, 2007.
  5. Chan K, Sano S, Kataoka K, Abel E, Carbajal S, Beltran L, Clifford J, Peavey M, Shen J, DiGiovanni J. Forced expression of a constitutively active form of Stat3 in mouse epidermis enhances malignant progression of skin tumors induced by two-stage carcinogenesis. Oncogene14:1087-1094, 2008.
  6. Moore T, Beltran L, Carbajal S, Strom S, Hursting SD, DiGiovanni J. Dietary energy balance modulates signaling through Akt/mTOR pathways in multiple epithelial tissues. Cancer Prev Res 1:65-76, 2008.
  7. Moore T, Carbajal S, Beltran L, Perkins SN, Yakar S, LeRoith D, Hursting SD, DiGiovanni J. Reduced susceptibility to two-stage skin carcinogenesis in mice with low circulating IGF-1 levels. Cancer Res 68:3680-3688, 2008.

8. Kataoka K, Kim DJ, Carbajal S, Clifford J, DiGiovanni J. Stage-specific disruption of Stat3 demonstrates a direct requirement during both the initiation and promotion stages of mouse skin tumorigenesis. Carcinogenesis 29:1108-1114, 2008.

  1. Segrelles C, Moral M, Lorz C, Santos M, Lu J, Cascallana JL, Lara MF, Carbajal S, Martinez-Cruz AB, Garcia-Escudero R, Beltran L, Segovia JC, Bravo A, DiGiovanni J, Paramio JM. Constitutively active Akt induces ectodermal defects and impaired bone morphogenetic protein signaling. Mol Biol Cell 19:137-49, 2008.
  2. Wang G, Carbajal S, Vijg J, DiGiovanni J., Vasquez KM. DNA structure-induced genomic instability in

vivo. JNCI 100:1815-1817, 2008.

  1. Kleiner H, Xia X, Sonoda J, Zhang J, Pontius E, Abey J, Evans RM, Moore D, DiGiovanni J. Effects of naturally occurring coumarins on hepatic drug metabolizing enzymes in mice. Tox Applied Pharm 232:337-50, 2008.
  2. Liu B, Xia X, Carbajal S, DiGiovanni J, Fischer S, Hu Y. IKKa deletion in keratinocytes causes cell- autonomous epidermal hyperplasia that is rescued by inactivation of the EGF receptor. Cancer Cell 14:212-225, 2008.
  3. Moral M, Segrelles C, Lara MF, Martinez AB, Lorz C, Santos M, Garcia R, Lu J, Kiguchi K, Buitrage A, Costa C, Saiz D, Rodriguez JL, Martinez-Tello FJ, Rodriguez-Pinilla M, Sanchez M, Garin M, Grande T, Bravo A, DiGiovanni J, Paramio J. Akt activation synergizes with Tp53 loss in oral epithelium to produce novel mouse model for head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. Cancer Res 69:1099-1108, 2009.
  4. Kim DJ, Angel JM, Sano S, DiGiovanni J. Constitutive activation and targeted disruption of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (Stat3) in mouse epidermis reveal its critical role in UVB- induced skin carcinogenesis. Oncogene 28:950-960, 2009.
  5. Kim DJ, Kataoka K, Rao D, Cotsarelis G, DiGiovanni J. Targeted disruption of Stat3 reveals a major role for follicular stem cells in skin tumor initiation. Cancer Res, 69:7587-7594, 2009.
  6. Kim, D.J., Tremblay, M.L., DiGiovanni, J. UVB-mediated nuclear translocation of protein tyrosine phosphatase TC-PTP is required for rapid Stat3 dephosphorylation in skin. PloSOne, 5(4): e10290, 2010.
  7. Kiguchi, K., Kitamura, T., Moore, T., Rumi, M., Chang, H., Treece, D., Ruffino, L., Connolly, K., DiGiovanni, J. Dual inhibition of both the EGFR and erbB2 effectively inhibits promotion of skin tumors during two-stage carcinogenesis. Cancer Prevention Research, 2010 Aug;3(8):940-52.
  8. Miyoshi,K.,Takaishi,M.,Nakajima,K.,Ikeda,M.,Asao,N.,DiGiovanni,J.,Sano,S.,Stat3isa therapeutic target for psoriasis. J. Invest. Dermatol, 2010, Sep 2. [Epub ahead of print].
  9. Abel,E.L.,Angel,J.M.,Riggs,P.K.,Langfield,L,Awasthi,Y.C.,DiGiovanni,J.,
    Evidence That Gsta4 Modifies Susceptibility to Skin Tumor Development in Mice and Humans. JNCI, in press, 2010.

Director of Center for Molecular Carcinogenesis and Toxicology

Associate Director of Basic Science Research, LiveSTRONG Cancer Institutes

Professor of Pharmacology & Toxicology

UT Austin 


Ph.D., Pharmacology, The University of Washington, 1978

B.S., Pharmacy, The University of Washington, 1974


Lynda Y. de la Viña, Ph.D.



Dr. Lynda de la Viña is the Peter Flawn Professor in the Department of Entrepreneurship and Technology Management and the Director of the Center for Global Entrepreneurship. She previously served as Dean of the College of Business from 2004-2012.

Dr. de la Viña was named one of the 100 Most Influential Hispanics by Hispanic Business magazine, and has received both the Ford Salute to Education Award as well as the Jessie and Sue Oppenheimer Award of Excellence. She was an inaugural member of the advisory committee for the State of Texas Emerging Technology Fund, a $200 million fund created to foster innovation, research and job creation in emerging high-tech industries. She also completed a prestigious Kellogg Leadership Fellows Program.

With a distinguished career in academia and government service, Dr. de la Viña was the first Mexican-American woman at the secretarial level of the U.S. Treasury, where she served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy from 1998-2001. While her work portfolio was expansive dealing with domestic and international economic policy issues, she led Treasury teams on issues of personal commitment such as financial literacy, entrepreneurship development and U.S.-Mexico border development. Following her role at the Treasury, she joined Johns Hopkins University as associate dean of the Graduate Division of Business and Management, full professor and chair of the Department of Finance and International Business.

Prior to her career in Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, Maryland, Dr. de la Viña served 19 years at UTSA in ascending positions of administrative responsibility. She joined the Department of Economics faculty in 1982 and was named executive director of the Institute for Studies in Business in 1985. She served as associate dean of graduate studies and research in the college from 1993-1998.

She has co-founded several companies including Operational Technologies Corporation (OpTech) and Pronucleotein Biotechnologies in San Antonio, TX. Under her tenure, OpTech rose from a small incubator operation in downtown San Antonio to one of the largest minority-owned businesses in San Antonio. She continues to serve on the Board of Directors of OpTech. She also serves on the boards of the Center for International Private Enterprise, an affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; the World Affairs Council; the Free Trade Alliance; and the Alamo Public Telecommunications Council.

Selected Publications

  • “Equity Crowdfunding,” (with Stephanie Black), in Educating Social Entrepreneurs: A Workbook of Cases, Exercises and Commentaries, Business Expert Press, 2017
  • “The Impact of Lean Enterprise Transformation on Production Learning Curves Used by Technology Managers in Aerospace Companies: A Decomposition-Based Model of Unit Derived Learning Curve Data,” with Cory Hallam, Proceedings of Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), Portland, OR, August 2011.
  • “Comparative Analysis of Work Force Management Techniques Between Lean and Traditional Manufacturing Companies: A Quantitative Decision Tool for Choosing Between Layoffs and Continual Improvements,” with Cory Hallam and Susan Hammond, Proceedings of the Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), Phuket, Thailand, July 2010.
  • “Analysis of the Toyota Production System and the Genesis of Six Sigma Programs: An Imperative for Understanding Failures in Technology Management Culture Transformation in Traditional Manufacturing Companies,” with Cory R. A. Hallam and Justin Muesel, Proceedings of the Portland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology (PICMET), Phuket, Thailand, July 2010.
  • “Improve Technology Transfer with this Alliance Scorecard,” with J. Michael Munson, Woodie Spivey and Fu-Sen Tsai, in Research-Technology Management, Vol. 52, No. 1, Jan-Feb 2009, pp. 10-18.

Peter T Flawn Professor of Economics

UTSA College of Business 


Ph.D. Rice University

M.A. Rice University

B.A. University of Texas, Pan American



Roxana Delgado, Ph.D.

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Roxana Delgado, PhD, is a health scientist and the wife of US Army retired Sergeant First Class Victor L. Medina. SFC(Ret.) Medina, a combat wounded Veteran and Purple Heart Recipient, was wounded in Iraq on June 29, 2009. He sustained a moderate traumatic brain injury (TBI) resulting in long-lasting physical and cognitive disabilities. Since his injuries, the couple decided to reach beyond their own struggles and stand up for others, a mission that would eventually result in Congressional recognition for their efforts to help improve the system of care for TBI. The couple identified gaps in TBI identification, diagnosis, and treatment, which they brought to the attention of military and civilian leadership to help shape new military healthcare policies. Dr. Delgado is active in the military and veteran caregiver community and is a 2015 Elizabeth Dole Foundation fellow representing the State of Texas. Dr. Delgado co-authored the “The Caregivers’ Companion” book and is currently a Fellow at the Military Health Institute and Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of Texas Health San Antonio.

University of Texas at El Paso, Nursing Deans Office, El Paso, TX


Ph.D., Health Sciences, University of Texas at El Paso, 2013

M.S., Epidemiology, University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences, 2003

B.S., General Science-Natural Sciences, University of Puerto Rico at Rio Piedras



John E. Cornell, Ph.D.

John cornell 2


Statistical Methods for High-throughput Genomic and Proteomic Experiments. Meta-Analysis and meta-regression for systematic reviews in medicine and dentistry. Application of modern test theory to evaluation of the cross-cultural equivalence of psychometric instruments. Random-effects models, generalized linear model, and generalized estimating equations applied to the analysis of unbalanced and incomplete longitudinal data.

Selected Publications

Melville JD, Lukefahr JL, Cornell J, Kellogg ND, Lancaster JL. The effect of image quality on the assessment of child abuse photographs. Pediatr Emerg Care. 2013 May;29(5):607-11.

Laine C, Guallar E, Mulrow C, Taichman DB, Cornell JE, Cotton D, Griswold ME, Localio AR, Meibohm AR, Stack CB, Williams SV, Goodman SN. Closing in on the truth about recombinant human bone morphogenetic protein-2: evidence synthesis, data sharing, peer review, and reproducible research.. Ann Intern Med. 2013 Jun 18;158(12):916-8.

Khazim K, Giustarini D, Rossi R, Verkaik D, Cornell JE, Cunningham SE, Mohammad M, Trochta K, Lorenzo C, Folli F, Bansal S, Fanti P. Glutathione redox potential is low and glutathionylated and cysteinylated hemoglobin levels are elevated in maintenance hemodialysis patients. Transl Res. 2013 Jul;162(1):16-25.

Finley EP, Pugh JA, Lanham HJ, Leykum LK, Cornell J, Veerapaneni P, Parchman ML. Relationship quality and patient-assessed quality of care in VA primary care clinics: development and validation of the work relationships scale.Ann Fam Med. 2013 Nov-Dec;11(6):543-9.

Pruski LA, Blanco SL, Riggs RA, Grimes KK, Fordtran CW, Barbola GM, Cornell JE, Lichtenstein MJ. Construct Validation of the Self-Efficacy Teaching and Knowledge Instrument for Science Teachers-Revised (SETAKIST-R): Lessons Learned. J Sci Teacher Educ. 2013;24:1133-1156.


Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics
University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio


Ph.D., Experimental Psychology, University of Southern Mississippi, 1976

M.A., Psychology, University of Southern Mississippi, 1973

B.A., Religion, Millsaps College, 1971



Craig Champlin, Ph.D.



Craig A. Champlin, Ph.D., holds the Lillie Hage Jamail Centennial Professorship in Communication Sciences & Disorders. He teaches courses in hearing science, instrumentation, electrophysiological audiometry, and hearing conservation. As a member of the Institute for Neuroscience, he also team-teaches a course that covers the principles of neuroscience. He has received the University’s Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award and the College’s Teaching Excellence Award. Dr. Champlin's research focuses on physiological correlates of auditory perception, the effects of noise on hearing, spectro-temporal processing of sound, and otoacoustic emissions. He has received numerous research grants, most of which have targeted the study of auditory evoked potentials in humans. Dr. Champlin has published research articles in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, Hearing Research, the Journal of Speech and Hearing Research, and others. In addition, Dr. Champlin has been a consultant on projects dealing with community noise issues, hearing conservation education in children, and infant hearing screening. Dr. Champlin also has served as the Editor of the Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, Chair of the Bioacoustics section of Acoustical Society of America and Chair of the Research Committee of American Academy of Audiology.


Department of Communication Sciences & Disorders

UT Austin 



Patricia Carter, Ph.D.



Dr. Carter collaborates with interdisciplinary colleagues across the nation to explore the use of Behavioral Sleep Medicine approaches that can be useful to improving sleep quality in vulnerable populations. Her work has focused on designing, testing, and evaluating non-pharmacologic approaches to decreasing insomnia and depression symptoms while improving quality of life in active and bereaved family caregivers of persons with chronic and disabling conditions, in persons with cancer, in new mothers, and in college students.

In the past 17 years of research Dr. Carter has found that family caregivers of persons with chronic conditions (specifically cancer or dementia) suffer with severe insomnia, but they are unable to take advantage of pharmacologic treatments, because the excessive sedation does not allow for ongoing monitoring of the patient’s needs throughout the night. Therefore behavioral therapies are the most effective in decreasing the chronic sleep deprivation experienced in this population.

In the more recent 2-4 years, her work has expanded to include the exploration of how the cancer experience for both the patient and family caregiver is influenced by their sleep quality. In this time she has successfully begun to describe dyadic relationships between caregiver sleep quality and cancer patient symptom management. Additionally, she has piloted a brief behavioral intervention for sleep in the cancer patient-caregiver dyad that was delivered in a community oncology center during infusion therapy. These projects have resulted in submission of an RO1 application to NCI that was favorably reviewed, although not funded. This application is undergoing revision for resubmission.

An additional ongoing area of focus has been to develop junior sleep research scientists. This has been accomplished through the coaching and mentorship she has provided to undergraduate, masters, and doctoral students in a number of disciplines. Examples of undergraduate student projects include: exploring how college student’s sleep quality impacts their physical, mental, and social health as well as their academic success; how college student use of social media hinders sleep quality and how social media could be leveraged as mechanism for delivering positive sleep habits promotion messages to this population. While graduate student projects include: Exploration of sleep apnea assessment in pain clinics: Influence on opioid related deaths; Sleep assessment and quality of life in cancer patients: match between provider and patient ratings; Assessment of the role sleep quality plays daily function and quality of life for older adults across living environments (independent, assisted, memory care). The breadth of these projects supports her belief that sleep is a basic building block of health and wellbeing. By helping junior scientists to explore their passion through the lens of sleep broadens the impact of their work while contributing to the body of science that could not be generated by traditional sleep scientist alone.

Recently, Dr. Carter has been afforded the opportunity to broaden her own focus of research to include health promotion techniques (motivational interviewing) to promote CPAP adherence in older adults with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Beginning this year (2017), she will be a co-investigator on Kathy Richards multiple PI NIH funded project to investigate the impact CPAP adherence has on MCI progression in older adults. This project allows her to broaden her own focus to include both obstructive sleep apnea and mild cognitive impairment, while maintaining her focus on non-pharmacological behavioral interventions and health promotion. She will be exploring opportunities to add to the current project aspects to describe the role and experience of the care partner in CPAP adherence and MCI progression.

Associate Professor

The University of Texas at Austin, School of Nursing


Phone: 512 232-4709


Jose A Betancourt, DrPH

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Dr. Jose Betancourt culminated a 24 year career in the United States Army Medical Department as the Associate Dean, Academy of Health Sciences, US Army Medical Department Center & School, Fort Sam Houston, Texas. He holds a Doctorate in Public Health from the George Washington University in Washington DC, a Master’s Degree in Strategic Intelligence from the Defense Intelligence College, Washington DC, a Master’s Degree in Management from Troy State University, Alabama, and is a U.S. Army War College Graduate. As the Associate Dean of the largest school of allied health sciences in the world and the largest school in the U.S. Army, he was responsible for Army Medical Department’s institutional training in support of America’s Army. He supervised a multidisciplinary faculty of over 1,100 officers, enlisted and civilian instructors who taught at all levels including doctoral-level, master-level, and 173 courses in clinical and military leadership development skills to approximately 25,000 resident and 30,000 non-resident students annually. Prior to this assignment, he served as the principal advisor to the Afghanistan National Army Surgeon General in all sectors of health systems support to the Afghanistan National Army (ANA) and Chief of the Medical Operations Division in the Office of Military Cooperation-Afghanistan, Kabul, Afghanistan. He was directly responsible for the planning, programming and execution of over $40 million in U.S. Security Assistance funding for the planning, design and implementation of all functions in the Defense Health Sector of the ANA. These functions included medical treatment, logistics, evacuation, preventive medicine, combat stress control, and dental support. He built a health support system that currently provides Level I through IV medical support to a 70,000 soldier military and eligible beneficiary population of over one million. Dr. Betancourt formerly served on the faculty of the University of Texas School of Public Health, San Antonio Regional Campus. He is a published author having published in numerous peer-reviewed journals in the area of Global Public Health. He recently assisted the US Army plan and build its Tele-Behavioral Health infrastructure in an effort to meet the Behavioral Health needs of service members and their Families. He also assisted the US Army Medical Department transition its population of 1,200 Flight Medics from Basic-Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification to Paramedic-EMT status. Dr. Betancourt led a Department of Defense-funded study on hearing loss among Active Duty Service members and to evaluate current and proposed hearing conservation intervention programs. Dr. Betancourt is confident that a ‘collective synergy’ will evolve from the intersection of the Military Healthcare System, Academia, and Industry: specifically in the areas of military medical research & development, military medical training and education (public health), and the treatment of Wounded Warriors and their Families.

Associate Professor

Texas State University 


DrPH, George Washington University

MSSI, Defense Intelligence College

MM, Troy State University

Army War College



Jamie Barner, Ph.D.

Barner 2016


Research interests include: 1) examining the impact of pharmacy services (primarily medication therapy management services) on patient outcomes; 2) understanding factors that affect health care utilization and outcomes; and 3) examining the factors associated with medication adherence.

Professor & Division Head of Health Outcomes & Pharmacy Practice

Clifford L. Klick, Jr. Centennial Professor

UT Austin 


Office: 512-471-5612

Fax: 512-471-8762


Edwin J. Barea-Rodriguez, Ph.D.



Dr. Barea-Rodriguez’s research interest focuses on investigating and applying the best teaching practices in STEM education. Pedagogy is defined as the method and practice of teaching. Unfortunately, many graduate programs in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) disciplines do not incorporate pedagogy in their training programs.

Scientific Teaching is a pedagogical method used in undergraduate science courses. The main idea of Scientific Teaching is to help scientists bring to teaching the critical thinking, rigor, creativity, and spirit of experimentation that defines research (Handelsman et. al, 2007). Scientific Teaching involves three major components, Active Learning, Assessment, and Inclusiveness.

Professor and Associate Dean for Student Success and Instructional Innovation 

Roland K. and Jane W. Blumberg Professorship in Biosciences

The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) 


Ph.D. in Biopsychology; Southern Illinois University Carbondale 

M.A. in Biopsychology; Southern Illinois University Carbondale 

B.A. in Psychology; Inter-American University of Puerto Rico


Phone: (210) 458-4511 


Pamela Myers, Ph.D.

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Dr. Pamela Myers specializes in treatment planning comparison studies as well as HDR brachytherapy and cervical SBRT. Dr. Myers will direct two courses and co-direct two courses in addition to mentoring students in the Medical Physics Track in the Radiological Sciences Ph.D. program. 

Assistant Professor/Clinical

Radiation Oncology


Ph.D., The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio 

B.S., Texas A&M University


Phone: 210-540-5664


Gaurang Chaudhary, M.D.S..

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Dr. Chaudhary is a clinical assistant professor in the Department of Developmental Dentistry. He has expertise in multiple orthodontics bracket systems especially bonding. Dr. Chaudhary received his Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) at the Government Dental College and Hospital in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India in February, 2000.

He also received his Master of Dental Surgery (MDS) major in Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopaedics from the same Government Dental College and Hospital in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India in May 2002.

From June 2002 to August 2008, Dr.Chaudhary was working as a faculty in orthodontic department of one of the reputed dental school of his native state and also involved in part-time orthodontic practice.

After relocating to United States of America Dr.Chaudhary completed his orthodontic residency at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, TX in May of 2013. Dr. Chaudhary has published articles in, Dental Voice journal and Dentistry Today magazine.

Key Research Highlights

- Estimated and compared shear bond strength of four different bracket base types using Instron testing machine. Part of research project of orthodontic residency training at Orthodontic Department of UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, April 2013.

- Studied the bonding capabilities of a new agent, Cyanoacrylate, to facilitate wet field bonding. Previously conducted post-graduate research studying the efficacy of Smart Bond using 120 in-vitro samples at Government Dental School, Ahmedabad, India, November 2001.

Selected Publications

 “Comparison of Shear Bond Strength of Four Types of Orthodontic Brackets with Different Base Technologies.” Volume 7, Issue 6, page: 273-278. Asian Pacific Orthodontic Society (November 2017).

“Effects of Orthodontics Materials on Surrounding Structures,” Dental Voice journal, Issue 4, p. 12 (August 2005).

“Recent Advances in Orthodontic Bonding: Wet Field Bonding in 21st Century,” Dentist Today magazine, pp. 9-10 (August 2005).

Clinical Assistant Professor, Orthodontics 

Department of Developmental Dentistry 


M.D.S., Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics, Government Dental School, Ahmedabad, India, 2002

B.D.S., Dentistry, Government Dental School, Ahmedabad, India, 1999



Phone: 210-450-3500

Sudha Seshadri, M.D., DM

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Dr. Sudha Seshadri completed her M.B.B.S. from the Christian Medical College, Madras University, and her M.D. in internal medicine and D.M. in neurology from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India. Additionally, she has completed a residency in neurology at the Boston University School of Medicine and a fellowship in the neurobiology of Aging and Alzheimer Disease at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center. She has previously worked as assistant professor of neurology at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences and professor of neurology and attending neurologist at the Boston University School of Medicine.

As founding director of the Glenn Biggs Institute for Alzheimer's & Neurodegenerative Diseases, Dr. Seshadri will oversee, integrate, and coordinate all activities of the Biggs Institute, which will share the space of UT Health’s Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies.

Dr. Seshadri enjoys a superb reputation in both science and clinical care and is a recognized thought leader in Alzheimer’s disease having recently co-authored position papers disseminated by the National Academy of Sciences on Preventing Cognitive Decline and Dementia: A Way Forward,  and by the American Heart Association with a paper titled Defining Optimal Brain Health in Adults. She has lectured extensively, nationally and internationally, on Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and the genetics of stroke and vascular brain injury.

She is a senior investigator for the seminal Framingham Heart Study, has had peer reviewed research continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health for 10 years, and currently serves as the principal investigator on eight NIH U01 or R01 grants.

Selected Publications

(S. Adams et al., 2018; S. L. Adams et al., 2018; Behera et al., 2018; Blue et al., 2018; Brainstorm et al., 2018; Bung et al., 2018; Charidimou et al., 2018; Danduga, Reddy, Seshadri, Has, & Kumar, 2018; Davies et al., 2018; Dufouil, Beiser, Chene, & Seshadri, 2018; Ganguli et al., 2018; Huan et al., 2018; Jakhar, Linganna, & Seshadri, 2018; Malik et al., 2018; Marioni et al., 2018; Naj et al., 2018; Olson et al., 2018; Pase et al., 2018; Rajani et al., 2018; Sarnowski et al., 2018; Seshadri, Klaus, Winkowski, Kanold, & Plenz, 2018; Seshadri, Pope, & Zenewicz, 2018; S. Seshadri, W. Saab, et al., 2018; S. B. Seshadri et al., 2018; Stathopoulou et al., 2018; Sung et al., 2018; Tynkkynen et al., 2018; van der Lee et al., 2018; Vinals Gonzalez et al., 2018; Weinstein et al., 2018)

Adams, S., Conner, S., Himali, J. J., Beiser, A., Vasan, R. S., Seshadri, S., & Pase, M. P. (2018). Vascular risk factor burden and new-onset depression in the community. Prev Med, 111, 348-350. doi:10.1016/j.ypmed.2017.11.022

Adams, S. L., Benayoun, L., Tilton, K., Mellott, T. J., Seshadri, S., Blusztajn, J. K., & Delalle, I. (2018). Immunohistochemical Analysis of Activin Receptor-Like Kinase 1 (ACVRL1/ALK1) Expression in the Rat and Human Hippocampus: Decline in CA3 During Progression of Alzheimer's Disease. J Alzheimers Dis, 63(4), 1433-1443. doi:10.3233/JAD-171065

Behera, S., Kapadia, B., Kain, V., Alamuru-Yellapragada, N. P., Murunikkara, V., Kumar, S. T., . . . Parsa, K. V. L. (2018). ERK1/2 activated PHLPP1 induces skeletal muscle ER stress through the inhibition of a novel substrate AMPK. Biochim Biophys Acta, 1864(5 Pt A), 1702-1716. doi:10.1016/j.bbadis.2018.02.019

Blue, E. E., Bis, J. C., Dorschner, M. O., Tsuang, D. W., Barral, S. M., Beecham, G., . . . on behalf of the Alzheimer's Disease Sequencing, P. (2018). Genetic Variation in Genes Underlying Diverse Dementias May Explain a Small Proportion of Cases in the Alzheimer's Disease Sequencing Project. Dement Geriatr Cogn Disord, 45(1-2), 1-17. doi:10.1159/000485503

Brainstorm, C., Anttila, V., Bulik-Sullivan, B., Finucane, H. K., Walters, R. K., Bras, J., . . . Neale, B. M. (2018). Analysis of shared heritability in common disorders of the brain. Science, 360(6395). doi:10.1126/science.aap8757

Bung, N., Surepalli, S., Seshadri, S., Patel, S., Peddasomayajula, S., Kummari, L. K., . . . Misra, P. (2018). 2-[2-(4-(trifluoromethyl)phenylamino)thiazol-4-yl]acetic acid (Activator-3) is a potent activator of AMPK. Sci Rep, 8(1), 9599. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-27974-1

Charidimou, A., Shams, S., Romero, J. R., Ding, J., Veltkamp, R., Horstmann, S., . . . International, M.-M. I. (2018). Clinical significance of cerebral microbleeds on MRI: A comprehensive meta-analysis of risk of intracerebral hemorrhage, ischemic stroke, mortality, and dementia in cohort studies (v1). Int J Stroke, 13(5), 454-468. doi:10.1177/1747493017751931

Danduga, R., Reddy, D. S., Seshadri, S. M., Has, K. S. S., & Kumar, K. P. (2018). Effect of combination therapy with pramipexole and n-acetylcysteine on global cerebral ischemic reperfusion injury in rats. Iran J Basic Med Sci, 21(6), 569-576. doi:10.22038/IJBMS.2018.22647.5756

Davies, G., Lam, M., Harris, S. E., Trampush, J. W., Luciano, M., Hill, W. D., . . . Deary, I. J. (2018). Study of 300,486 individuals identifies 148 independent genetic loci influencing general cognitive function. Nat Commun, 9(1), 2098. doi:10.1038/s41467-018-04362-x

Dufouil, C., Beiser, A., Chene, G., & Seshadri, S. (2018). Are Trends in Dementia Incidence Associated With Compression in Morbidity? Evidence From The Framingham Heart Study. J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci, 73(suppl_1), S65-S72. doi:10.1093/geronb/gby001

Ganguli, M., Albanese, E., Seshadri, S., Bennett, D. A., Lyketsos, C., Kukull, W. A., . . . Hendrie, H. C. (2018). Population Neuroscience: Dementia Epidemiology Serving Precision Medicine and Population Health. Alzheimer Dis Assoc Disord, 32(1), 1-9. doi:10.1097/WAD.0000000000000237

Huan, T., Chen, G., Liu, C., Bhattacharya, A., Rong, J., Chen, B. H., . . . Levy, D. (2018). Age-associated microRNA expression in human peripheral blood is associated with all-cause mortality and age-related traits. Aging Cell, 17(1). doi:10.1111/acel.12687

Jakhar, J., Linganna, S., & Seshadri, S. P. (2018). Very early onset schizophrenia diagnostic challenge and cognitive remediation-A case report. Asian J Psychiatr, 33, 61-62. doi:10.1016/j.ajp.2017.10.020

Malik, R., Chauhan, G., Traylor, M., Sargurupremraj, M., Okada, Y., Mishra, A., . . . Consortium, M. (2018). Multiancestry genome-wide association study of 520,000 subjects identifies 32 loci associated with stroke and stroke subtypes. Nat Genet, 50(4), 524-537. doi:10.1038/s41588-018-0058-3

Marioni, R. E., McRae, A. F., Bressler, J., Colicino, E., Hannon, E., Li, S., . . . Deary, I. J. (2018). Meta-analysis of epigenome-wide association studies of cognitive abilities. Mol Psychiatry. doi:10.1038/s41380-017-0008-y

Naj, A. C., Lin, H., Vardarajan, B. N., White, S., Lancour, D., Ma, Y., . . . DeStefano, A. L. (2018). Quality control and integration of genotypes from two calling pipelines for whole genome sequence data in the Alzheimer's disease sequencing project. Genomics. doi:10.1016/j.ygeno.2018.05.004

Olson, N. C., Raffield, L. M., Lange, L. A., Lange, E. M., Longstreth, W. T., Jr., Chauhan, G., . . . Tracy, R. P. (2018). Associations of activated coagulation factor VII and factor VIIa-antithrombin levels with genome-wide polymorphisms and cardiovascular disease risk. J Thromb Haemost, 16(1), 19-30. doi:10.1111/jth.13899

Pase, M. P., Himali, J. J., Grima, N. A., Beiser, A. S., Satizabal, C. L., Aparicio, H. J., . . . Seshadri, S. (2018). Author response: Sleep architecture and the risk of incident dementia in the community. Neurology, 90(10), 487. doi:10.1212/WNL.0000000000005047

Rajani, R. M., Quick, S., Ruigrok, S. R., Graham, D., Harris, S. E., Verhaaren, B. F. J., . . . Williams, A. (2018). Reversal of endothelial dysfunction reduces white matter vulnerability in cerebral small vessel disease in rats. Sci Transl Med, 10(448). doi:10.1126/scitranslmed.aam9507

Sarnowski, C., Satizabal, C. L., DeCarli, C., Pitsillides, A. N., Cupples, L. A., Vasan, R. S., . . . Group, T. O. N. W. (2018). Whole genome sequence analyses of brain imaging measures in the Framingham Study. Neurology, 90(3), e188-e196. doi:10.1212/WNL.0000000000004820

Seshadri, S., Klaus, A., Winkowski, D. E., Kanold, P. O., & Plenz, D. (2018). Altered avalanche dynamics in a developmental NMDAR hypofunction model of cognitive impairment. Transl Psychiatry, 8(1), 3. doi:10.1038/s41398-017-0060-z

Seshadri, S., Pope, R. L., & Zenewicz, L. A. (2018). Glucocorticoids Inhibit Group 3 Innate Lymphocyte IL-22 Production. J Immunol. doi:10.4049/jimmunol.1800484

Seshadri, S., Saab, W., Exeter, H., Drew, E., Petrie, A., Davies, M., & Serhal, P. (2018). Clinical outcomes of a vitrified donor oocyte programme: A single UK centre experience. Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol, 225, 136-140. doi:10.1016/j.ejogrb.2018.04.017

Seshadri, S. B., Nolan, M. M., Tutuncu, G., Forrester, J. S., Sapper, E., Esteves, G., . . . Jones, J. L. (2018). Unexpectedly high piezoelectricity of Sm-doped lead zirconate titanate in the Curie point region. Sci Rep, 8(1), 4120. doi:10.1038/s41598-018-22566-5

Stathopoulou, M. G., Xie, T., Ruggiero, D., Chatelin, J., Rancier, M., Weryha, G., . . . Consortium, V. (2018). A transnational collaborative network dedicated to the study and applications of the vascular endothelial growth factor-A in medical practice: the VEGF Consortium. Clin Chem Lab Med, 56(4), 83-86. doi:10.1515/cclm-2017-0838

Sung, Y. J., Winkler, T. W., de Las Fuentes, L., Bentley, A. R., Brown, M. R., Kraja, A. T., . . . Chasman, D. I. (2018). A Large-Scale Multi-ancestry Genome-wide Study Accounting for Smoking Behavior Identifies Multiple Significant Loci for Blood Pressure. Am J Hum Genet, 102(3), 375-400. doi:10.1016/j.ajhg.2018.01.015

Tynkkynen, J., Chouraki, V., van der Lee, S. J., Hernesniemi, J., Yang, Q., Li, S., . . . Salomaa, V. (2018). Association of branched-chain amino acids and other circulating metabolites with risk of incident dementia and Alzheimer's disease: A prospective study in eight cohorts. Alzheimers Dement, 14(6), 723-733. doi:10.1016/j.jalz.2018.01.003

van der Lee, S. J., Teunissen, C. E., Pool, R., Shipley, M. J., Teumer, A., Chouraki, V., . . . van Duijn, C. M. (2018). Circulating metabolites and general cognitive ability and dementia: Evidence from 11 cohort studies. Alzheimers Dement, 14(6), 707-722. doi:10.1016/j.jalz.2017.11.012

Vinals Gonzalez, X., Odia, R., Cawood, S., Gaunt, M., Saab, W., Seshadri, S., & Serhal, P. (2018). Contraction behaviour reduces embryo competence in high-quality euploid blastocysts. J Assist Reprod Genet. doi:10.1007/s10815-018-1246-x

Weinstein, G., Zelber-Sagi, S., Preis, S. R., Beiser, A. S., DeCarli, C., Speliotes, E. K., . . . Seshadri, S. (2018). Association of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease With Lower Brain Volume in Healthy Middle-aged Adults in the Framingham Study. JAMA Neurol, 75(1), 97-104. doi:10.1001/jamaneurol.2017.3229

Satizabal, C., Beiser, A., Chouraki, V., Chêne, G., Dufouil, C., Seshadri, S. (2016). Incidence of Dementia

over Three Decades in the Framingham Heart Study. New England Journal of Medicine, 375(6),

523-532. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1504327

Robert R. Barker Distinguished University Professor of Neurology, Psychiatry and Cellular and Integrative Physiology

Senior Investigator, the Framingham Heart Study

Founding Director, Glenn Biggs Institute for Alzheimer's & Neurodegenerative Diseases


D.M., Neurology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, 1992

M.D., Internal Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, 1988

M.B.B.S., Christian Medical College, Madras University, 1985



Carie R. Boychuk, Ph.D

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First described by Claude Bernard but later coined by Walter Cannon, homeostasis refers to the process by which the body maintains a constant internal environment. In the orchestration of homeostasis, brain networks involved in autonomic and neuroendocrine function coordinate multiple peripheral physiological systems through complex network processing. Our laboratory is particularly interested in how the brain monitors, processes, and integrates energy homeostatic signals under normal physiology and pathological disease states.

To date, much of the work probing mechanisms and targets for central effects of energy homeostasis focuses on the hypothalamus and its long understood importance in feeding and metabolism. However, there is abundant evidence implicating another region, the brainstem’s dorsal vagal complex, as a critical center for sensing and regulating glucose metabolism. This region receives both peripheral afferent and upstream central signaling. This region then integrates all information and determines ultimate efferent outflow to various viscera, including the pancreas, liver, intestine and stomach, through the vagus nerve. As the first central relay for peripheral afferents and the final central modulatory point for efferent activity, our laboratory focuses on the vagal complex using a multi-disciplinary toolbox, including electrophysiology, molecular biology, and in vivo physiological analyses. We are currently pursing two distinct thematic programs involving the dorsal vagal complex’s role in energy homeostasis.

1) How sex and ovarian status modify energy homeostatic signaling in the dorsal vagal complex normally and after chronic hyperglycemia.

2) The integration of energy homeostatic signaling and cardiovascular autonomic networks.

Selected Publications

Boychuk CR, Halmos KC, Smith BN.Diabetes induces GABA receptor plasticity in murine vagal motor neurons.J Neurophysiol. 2015 Jul;114(1):698-706. doi: 10.1152/jn.00209.2015. Epub 2015 May 20. PMID: 25995347

Boychuk CR, Woerman AL, Mendelowitz D. Modulation of bulbospinal rostral ventral lateral medulla neurons by hypoxia/hypercapnia but not medullary respiratory activity. 2012 Dec;60(6):1491-7. doi: 10.1161/HYPERTENSIONAHA.112.197954. Epub 2012 Oct 29. PMID: 23108653

Boychuk CR, Hayward LF. Prenatal nicotine exposure alters postnatal cardiorespiratory integration in young male but not female rats. Neurol. 2011 Dec;232(2):212-21. doi: 10.1016/j.expneurol.2011.09.006. Epub 2011 Sep 16. PMID: 21945005

For a full list of pulications please go to:

Assistant Professor, Cellular and Integrative Physiology 


B.S. University of Florida, 2004

Ph.D., University of Florida, 2009



Peter Gakunga, Ph.D.

Peter gakunga


Dr. Peter Gakunga is an assistant professor in the Department of Orthodontics. He is a clinician/scientist with specialized training in orthodontics, as well as doctoral and postdoctoral training in oral biology and craniofacial growth and development.

Dr. Gakunga is a graduate of the Dental School, University of Nairobi, Kenya. He is also a graduate of UT Health San Antonio Orthodontic Residency Program. He obtained his basic science graduate training at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the University of California, San Francisco. He was a National Institutes of Health fellow at Baylor College of Dentistry.

Dr. Gakunga's research is focused on deciphering the molecules that control growth in the cranial base synchondroses. This work uses the mouse model, as well as a novel cranial base organ culture system. The current phase of this study is designed to decipher the role played by a potent growth factor, TGF-b1, in mediating the exquisitely controlled changes that are the hallmark of craniofacial synchondrosal growth. This work has potential for furthering our understanding of craniofacial growth and development, including the modulation of orthodontic and dentofacial orthopedic forces. It also has the potential of providing an effective screening method for some craniofacial congenital disorders.

Selected Publications

Panda SP, Guntur AR, Polusani SR, Fajardo RJ, Gakunga PT, Roman LJ, Masters BS. Conditional deletion of cytochrome P450 Reductase in osteoprogenitor cells affects long bone and skull development in mice recapitulating Antley-Bixler Syndrome: Role of a redox enzyme in development. PLoS ONE 2013 Sep;8(9):1-14.

Nummikoski PV, Dove SB, Gakunga PT, Hatch JP, Noujeim M. JPEG2000 compression on landmark identification of lateral cephalometric digital radiographs. Amercan Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics 2009 May;138(4).

Nomura M, Motegi E, Hatch JP, Gakunga PT, Ng'ang'a PM, Rugh JD, Yamaguchi H. Esthetic preferences of European American, Hispanic American, Japanese, and African judges for soft-tissue profiles. American Journal of Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics 2009 Apr;135(4 Sup):87-95.

Jackson A, Lemke RR, Hatch JP, Salome N, Gakunga PT, Cochran DL. A comparison of stability between delayed versus immediately loaded orthodontic palatal implants. Journal of Esthetic and Restorative Dentistry 2008 Mar;20(3):174-184.

Opperman LA, Adab K, Gakunga PT. Transforming growth factor-beta 2 and TGF-beta 3 regulate fetal rat cranial suture morphogenesis by regulating rates of cell proliferation and apoptosis. Developmental Dynamics 2000 Oct;219(2):237-247.

Gakunga PT, Frost G., Shuster S., Cunha G, Stern R. Hyaluronan is a prerequisite for ductal branching morphogenesis Development. 1997 Jan;124:3987-3997.

Dixon AD, Gakunga PT. Morphometric changes in growth of the rat pelvis after papain administration Anatomical Record.1993 Feb;235(2):312-318. 

Associate Professor

Director, Orthodontics Internship Program

Department of Developmental Dentistry

UT Health San Antonio 


Ph.D., Oral Biology, The University of California, San Francisco, 1997

M.S., Oral Biology, The University of California, Los Angeles, 1990

B.D.S., Dentistry, The University of Nairobi, 1985



Phone: 210-567-3507

John Zhang, Ph.D.

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Dr. John Zhang received his PhD in Exercise Physiology from the University of Missouri-Columbia and his Master of Science degree in Exercise Physiology from Springfield College, MA. He completed his post-doctoral training in the Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, at the School of Medicine at the University of Missouri-Columbia.

Professor, Department of Kinesiology, Health & Nutrition

The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) 


Ph.D., Exercise Physiology, University of Missouri-Columbia, 1997

M.S., Exercise Physiology, Springfield College, 1991

B.S., Exercise Science, Shandong Normal University, 1982



Phone: 210-458-7390

Jeffery Boychuk, Ph.D.

Boychuk-jeffery-medium cropped


Dr. Boychuk's lab is dedicated to treating the brain after mechanical and vascular trauma in order to improve lives affected by stroke, traumatic brain injury and epilepsy.

Overview: Cortical neurons exhibit profound forms of molecular, structural and biophysical remodeling during learning and following injury to the brain. Our laboratory studies how neural circuits in neocortex and hippocampus are affected by these processes. We seek to understand the function of these circuits and to test how they are modified by brain insults and subsequent interventions. It is an exciting era for this research because of the rapid innovation in transcriptome/proteome profiling, neuroanatomical tracing techniques and mouse genetics. These approaches provide a means to more precisely define populations of cells and to identify how neurons directly signal to one another. This increased level of specificity dramatically increases the number of opportunities to probe these networks in a highly focused manner. Our contribution is to combine these innovations with modern, and emerging, cell patch clamp electrophysiological techniques in order to generate comprehensive data sets of neuronal signaling within these defined cell networks. The central goal of this work is to identify the discrete circuit changes responsible for brain repair. This is carried out in order to generate novel therapeutic targets that can be harnessed to optimize brain recovery.

Motor Cortex & Stroke: Neocortex exhibits a laminar organization that contains several subtypes of glutamatergic-expressing and gamma-aminobutyric (GABA)-expressing cells. Several laboratories have been making key discoveries to identify the circuit architecture of these cells both within and between these cortical layers. We are contributing to this endeavor by directly measuring these circuits in the context of motor learning, ischemic injury and post-injury rehabilitative training. These projects are heavily guided by our previous investigations of large network reorganization of motor cortex during recovery. Previous topics include neuromodulation strategies as well as testing for the roles of serotonin signaling, chloride co-transport and hyperpolarization-activated cyclic nucleotide-gated nonselective cation (HCN) channels in motor cortex dynamics. Recent collaborative efforts have tested the possibility that treatments designed to provide neuroprotection after stroke may also confer brain repair benefits.

Hippocampus & Traumatic Brain Injury/Post-Traumatic Epilepsy: The dentate gyrus (DG) is a site of converging input, and its principle cells, dentate granule cells (DGCs), exhibit properties that make them well suited to restrict excitability and filter incoming signals. Thus, DGCs are often considered a gating mechanism within the hippocampus. We are testing whether preserving or restoring DG function after trauma can support recovery while reducing the likelihood of post-traumatic epilepsy. This work studies structural and physiological modifications both in DGCs and in inhibitory GABA-expressing cells that innervate them. Recent experiments have tested for beneficial effects of pharmacologically inhibiting mammalian (mechanistic) target of rapamycin (mTOR) as well as modifying type A GABA receptor subunit expression.


See full list

Assistant Professor

Cellular and Integrative Physiology


Ph.D., University of Florida, 2009

B.Sc., University of Lethbridge, 2005



Gangadhara Sareddy, Ph.D.

Picture sareddy


Dr. Gangadhara Reddy Sareddy is currently employed at The University of Texas Health at San Antonio, in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He attended Sri Krishnadevaraya University (India) and received his Bachelors in Biology, followed by Masters in Biochemistry. He received his Ph.D. in Animal Sciences from the University of Hyderabad (India). Dr. Sareddy studies are focused on hormonal signaling and epigenetic mechanisms in glioblastoma and gynecologic malignancies. Dr. Sareddy’s current research interest include: 1) understanding the significance of histone lysine demethylase KDM1A and nuclear receptor signaling in glioma stem cells and hypoxia 2) studying the tumor suppressor functions of estrogen receptor beta signaling in ovarian cancer progression and therapy resistance.


Raj GV, Sareddy GR, Ma S, Lee T, Viswanadhapalli S, Li R, Liu X, Murakami S,Chen C, Lee W, Mann M, Krishnan SR, Manandhar B, Gonugunta VK, Strand D, Tekmal RR, Ahn J, Vadlamudi RK. Estrogen receptor coregulator binding modulators (ERXs) effectively target estrogen receptor positive human breast cancers eLife 2017 Aug;.

Liu J, Viswanadhapalli S, Garcia L, Zhou M, Nair BC, Kost E, Tekmal RR, Li R, Rao MK, Curiel T, Vadlamudi RK, Sareddy GR. Therapeutic utility of natural estrogen receptor beta agonists on ovarian cancer Oncotarget (in press) 2017 Apr;.

Sareddy GR, Viswanadhapalli S, Surapaneni P, Suzuki T, Brenner A, Vadlamudi RK. Novel KDM1A inhibitors induce differentiation and apoptosis of glioma stem cells via unfolded protein response pathway Oncogene 2017 Apr;36(17):2423-2434.

Sareddy G, Li X, Liu J, Garcia L, Viswanadhapalli S, Gruslova A, Garcian M, Strom A, Gustaffson J-A, Tekmal RR, Brenner A, Vadlamudi RK. Selective Estrogen Receptor β agonist LY500307 as a Novel Therapeutic Agent for Glioblastoma Sci Rep 2016 Apr;.

Clark CA, Gupta HB, Sareddy GR, Pandeswara S, Lao S, Yuan B, Drerup JM, Padron A, Conejo-Garcia J, Murthy K, Liu Y, Turk MJ, Thedieck K, Hurez V, Li R, Vadlamudi R, Curiel TJGR. Tumor intrinsic PD-L1 signals regulate cell growth, pathogenesis and autophagy in ovarian cancer and melanoma Cancer Res 2016 Jan;76:6964-6974.

Gupta HB, Clark CA, Yuan B, Sareddy GR, Pandeswara S, Padron AS, Hurez V, Garcia J, Vadlamudi RK, Li R, Curiel TJ. Tumor cell-intrinsic PD-L1 promotes tumor-initiating cell generation and functions in melanoma and ovarian cancer Signal Transduction and Targeted Therapy 2016 Jan;1.

Thakkar R, Wang R, Sareddy G, Wang J, Thiruvaiyaru D, Vadlamudi R, Zhang Q, Brann D. NLRP3 Inflammasome Activation in the Brain after Global Cerebral Ischemia and Regulation by 17β-Estradiol Oxid Med Cell Longev 2016 Jan;.

Sareddy GR, Zhang Q, Wang R, Scott E, Zou Y, O?Connor JC, Chen Y, Dong Y, Vadlamudi RK, Brann D. Proline-, glutamic acid-, and leucine-rich protein 1 mediates estrogen rapid signaling and neuroprotection in the brain Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2015 Dec;112:E6673--82.

Krishnan SR, Nair BC, Sareddy GR, Roy SS, Natarajan M, Suzuki T, Peng Y, Raj G, Vadlamudi RK. Novel role of PELP1 in regulating chemotherapy response in mutant p53-expressing triple negative breast cancer cells Breast Cancer Res Treat 2015 Jan;150(3):487-499.

Nair BC, Krishnan SR, Sareddy GR, Mann M, Xu B, Natarajan M, Hasty P, Brann D, Tekmal RR, Vadlamudi RK. Proline, glutamic acid and leucine-rich protein-1 is essential for optimal p53-mediated DNA damage response Cell Death Differ 2014 Sep;21(9):1409-1418.

Gonugunta V, Sareddy GR, Krishnan SR, Cortez V, Saha Roy S, Tekmal RR, Vadlamudi RK. Inhibition of mTOR signaling reduces PELP1-mediated tumor growth and therapy resistance Mol Cancer Ther 2014 Jan;13(1578):1578-1588.

Zhang Q, Wang R, Tang H, Dong Y, Chan A, Sareddy GR, Vadlamudi RK, and Brann DW. Brain-Derived Estrogen Exerts Anti-inflammatory and Neuroprotective Actions in the Rat Hippocampus Mol Cell Endocrinol 2014 Jan;389:84-91.

Sareddy GR, Kesanakurti D, Kirti PB, Babu PP. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs diclofenac and celecoxib attenuates Wnt/β-catenin/Tcf signaling pathway in human glioblastoma cells Neurochem Res 2013 Jan;38:2313-2322.

Sareddy GR, Nair BC, Krishnan SK, Gonugunta VK, Zhang QG, Suzuki T, Miyata N, Brenner AJ, Brann DW, Vadlamudi RK. KDM1 is a novel therapeutic target for the treatment of gliomas Oncotarget 2013 Jan;4(1):18-28.

Zhang QG, Wang RM, Scott E, Han D, Dong Y, Tu JY, Yang F, Reddy Sareddy G, Vadlamudi RK, Brann DW. Hypersensitivity of the hippocampal CA3 region to stress-induced neurodegeneration and amyloidogenesis in a rat model of surgical menopause Brain 2013 Jan;136:1432-1445.

Sareddy GR, Nair BC, Gonugunta VK, Zhang QG, Brenner A, Brann DW, Tekmal RR, Vadlamudi RK. Therapeutic significance of estrogen receptor β agonists in gliomas Mol Cancer Ther 2012 Jan;11:1174-1182.

Assistant Professor



Ph.D., Animal Sciences (Cancer Biology), University of Hyderabad, 2010

M.S., Biochemistry, Sri Krishnadevaraya University, 2005


Phone: 210-567-4912 


Daniel Saenz, Ph.D.

Daniel saenz2


Dr. Daniel Saenz is an academic medical physicist in the Department of Radiation Oncology.  


Narayanasamy G, Saenz DL, Defoor D, Papanikolaou N, Stathakis S. Dosimetric validation of Monaco treatment planning system on an Elekta VersaHD linear accelerator. Journal of Applied Clinical Medical Physics 2017 Nov;18(6):123-129.

Saenz DL, Kim H, Chen J, Stathakis S, Kirby NA. The level of detail required in a deformable phantom to accurately perform quality assurance of deformable image registration. Physics in Medicine and Biology 2016 Aug;61(17):6269-6280.

Saenz DL, Kirby NA, Gutierrez AN. Characterization of Air Temperature in Modern Ion Chambers Due to Phantom Geometry and Ambient Temperature Changes. Medical Physics 2016 Jul;43(7):4032-4039.

Narayanasamy G, Cruz W, Saenz DL, Stathakis S, Papanikolaou N, Kirby N. Effect of electron contamination on in vivo dosimetry for lung block shielding during TBI. J Appl Clin Med Phys 2016 Jan;17(3):486-491.

Saenz DL, Roring J, Cruz W, Sarkar V, Papanikolaou N, Stathakis S. Commissioning and cross-comparison of four scanning water tanks. Journal of Cancer Therapy and Oncology 2015 Dec;4(1):1-9.

Narayanasamy G, Saenz DL, Cruz W, Ha CS, Papanikolaou N, Stathakis S. Commissioning An Elekta VersaHD Linear Accelerator. J Appl Clin Med Phys 2015 Sep;17(1):1-13.

Saenz, DL, Narayanasamy, G, Cruz, W, Papanikolaou N, Stathakis S. Pinnacle3 modeling and end-to-end dosimetric testing of a Versa HD linear accelerator with the Agility head and flattening filter-free modes. J Appl Clin Med Phys 2015 Aug;17(1):1-15.

Saenz DL, Yan Y, Christensen N, Henzler M, Forrest L, Bayouth J, Paliwal B. Characterization of a 0.35T MR system for phantom image quality stability and in vivo assessment of motion quantification. J Appl Clin Med Phys 2015 Jun;16(6):1-11.

Saenz DL, Paliwal B, Bayouth J. A dose homogeneity and conformity evaluation between ViewRay and pinnacle-based linear accelerator IMRT treatment plans. J Med Phys 2014 Apr;39(2):64-70.

Assistant Professor/Clinical and Other, Radiation Oncology


Ph.D., Medical Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2014

M.S., Medical Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2011

B.S., Physics, Rice University, 2009


Phone: 210-450-1023 


Karl Rasmussen, Ph.D.

Rasmussen cropped


Dr. Karl Rasmussen is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology.


Stanley DN, McConnell, K, Kirby NA, Gutierrez, AN, Papanikolaou N, Rasmussen KHComparison of Initial Patient Setup Accuracy between Surface Imaging and Three Point Localization: A Retrospective Analysis. Journal of Applied Clinical Medical Physics 2017 Sep;.

Ferreira C, Johnson D, Rasmussen KH, Leinweber C, Ahmad S, Jung JW. A novel conformal skin high-dose- rate brachytherapy device for the treatment of inoperable non-melanoma skin cancer and keloids. Brachytherapy 2017 Jan;16(1):215-222.

Rasmussen KHDesign and verification of 3d printed brachytherapy applicators for skin lesions. JACMP 2016 Jan;.

MCM Ferreira, TK Podder, KH Rasmussen, JW Jung. Praseodymium-142 microspheres for brachytherapy of nonresectable hepatic tumors. Brachytherapy 2013 Jan;12(6):654-664.

Assistant Professor, Radiation Oncology


Ph.D., Medical Physics, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2009

B.S., Mathematics and Physics, Nebraska Wesleyan University, 1998


Phone: 210-450-1027 


Kenneth Kist, M.D.

Kistkenneth cropped


Dr. Kenneth Kist is a board certified radiologist, with fellowship training in women’s imaging and breast imaging and intervention. He is proud of providing state-of-the-art breast imaging to patients quickly and efficiently. He enjoys working closely with colleagues in surgery, medical oncology and radiation oncology, while providing breast care. Refinement of the technologies of breast imaging is his primary research interest.

Associate Professor and Director, Breast Imaging and Intervention


M.D., Medicine, Hahnemann University, 1992

B.A., Psychology, Temple University, 1988


Phone: (210) 567-6488 


Jianhua Ruan, Ph.D.

Head cropped


Dr. Jianhua Ruan holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Washington University in St Louis (2007), M.S. in Computer Science from California State University San Bernardino (2002), and B.S. in Biology from the University of Science and Technology of China (1998).

His research interests lie in the broad area of bioinformatics, computational biology, and machine learning. More specifically, his current research focuses on three areas: (1) machine learning methods for modeling and analyzing cis-regulatory networks; (2) graph algorithms for analyzing complex biological networks to facilitate knowledge discovery; and (3) data mining approaches to biomarker discovery and disease prediction via integrated analysis of heterogonous "omics" data. In addition, he has extensive collaborations with biologists at UTSA and the UT Health Science Center for a broad spectrum of bioinformatics applications involving genomic, transcriptomic, proteomic, and epigenomic data. He received a Best Performer award in the Third Annual DREAM Reverse Engineering Challenges in 2008. His research is sponsored by NIH, NSF, and the San Antonio Life Sciences Institute.

Associate Professor 

Department of Computer Science 

The University of Texas at San Antonio


Ph.D., Computer Science, Washington University in St Louis, 2007

M.S., Computer Science, California State University San Bernardino, 2002

B.S. in Biology, The University of Science and Technology of China, 1998


Office: NPB 3.318

Phone: (210) 458-6819
Fax: (210) 458-4437

David Libich, Ph.D.

David libich, ph.d.


All cellular functions, activities, and communications are mediated by protein interactions. Despite their crucial importance, we know relatively little about many of these interactions due in large part to experimental limitations of structural biology. The central theme of the Libich Lab revolves around the determination of the structure and elucidation of the molecular mechanisms of highly dynamic and transient protein interactions. In conjunction with conventional biophysical approaches, we employ a host of cutting-edge NMR methods designed to detect and quantify kinetic, dynamic and structural information from such systems. Our current efforts are focused on understanding the assembly and functional interactions of low-complexity RNA-binding proteins involved in cancer and neurodegenerative processes. These types of proteins are challenging targets for biophysical characterization due to their extreme structural heterogeneity and propensity to aggregate. In particular we are interested in the oncogenic fusion protein EWS-Fli1 and the structural implications of its role as the sole driver of Ewing's sarcoma. By characterizing, at atomic resolution, the structural features that contribute to both EWS-Fli1 self-association and its macromolecular interactions we will seek to understand the molecular basis of how it influences the genetic program of the cell. In a wider context, these studies will teach us more about the fundamental mechanisms of protein interactions, in both healthy and disease states.

Selected Publications

Confinement and Stabilization of Fyn SH3 Folding Intermediate Mimetics within the Cavity of the Chaperonin GroEL Demonstrated by Relaxation-Based NMR. Libich DS, Tugarinov V, Ghirlando R, Clore GM Biochemistry: 2017-02-21; 56(7); 903-906 Epub: 2017-02-08.  PMID: 28156097 LINK:

Reply to Marchenko et al.: Flux analysis of GroEL-assisted protein folding/unfolding.Libich DS, Tugarinov V, Clore GM Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 2015-12-15; 112(50); E6833-4 Epub: 2015-11-24.  PMID: 26604310 LINK:

The energetics of a three-state protein folding system probed by high-pressure relaxation dispersion NMR spectroscopy. Tugarinov V, Libich DS, Meyer V, Roche J, Clore GM Angew Chem Int Ed Engl: 2015-09-14; 54(38); 11157-61  PMID: 26352026 LINK:

Intrinsic unfoldase/foldase activity of the chaperonin GroEL directly demonstrated using multinuclear relaxation-based NMR. Libich DS, Tugarinov V, Clore GM Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 2015-07-21; 112(29); 8817-23 Epub: 2015-06-29.  PMID: 26124125 LINK:

Characterizing methyl-bearing side chain contacts and dynamics mediating amyloid β protofibril interactions using ¹³C(methyl)-DEST and lifetime line broadening. Fawzi NL, Libich DS, Ying J, Tugarinov V, Clore GM

Angew Chem Int Ed Engl: 2014-09-22; 53(39); 10345-9 Epub: 2014-08-11. PMID: 25130489 LINK: The intrinsically disordered structural platform of the plant defence hub protein RPM1-interacting protein 4 provides insights into its mode of action in the host-pathogen interface and evolution of the nitrate-induced domain protein family.

Sun X, Greenwood DR, Templeton MD, Libich DS, McGhie TK, Xue B, Yoon M, Cui W, Kirk CA, Jones WT, Uversky VN, Rikkerink EH FEBS J: 2014-09-01; 281(17); 3955-79 Epub: 2014-08-08.  PMID: 25039985 LINK:

Probing the transient dark state of substrate binding to GroEL by relaxation-based solution NMR. Libich DS, Fawzi NL, Ying J, Clore GM Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A: 2013-07-09; 110(28); 11361-6 Epub: 2013-06-24. PMID: 23798407 LINK:

Assistant Professor


Ph.D., Biophysics, University of Guelph Ph.D. 

B.Sc., Biochemistry, University of Guelph B.Sc. 



Phone: 210-450-8326

Yogesh Gupta, Ph.D.

P0349 photo guptayogesh


The Gupta lab studies the structure and function of protein-nucleic acid assemblies central to normal homeostasis and childhood cancers. We are particularly interested in understanding the exact mechanisms by which different enzymes and accessory factors cross talk, assemble, and install various covalent chemical modifications on their RNA targets. These epigenetic marks regulate cellular fate decisions including oncogenic transformation of cancer cells. Our long-term goal is to understand the nature of subunit assemblies and sub cellular localization of the entire human RNA methylome. We employ a powerful combination of structural biology tools such as X-ray crystallography, NMR, coupled with array of other biophysical, in silico, and cell based methods to address prevailing questions on this emerging field of RNA epigenetics. Our studies are expected to elucidate the role of RNA methylome and its potential as a novel anticancer target. We are also pursuing structural and mechanistic studies on selective ATP motors that process abnormal nucleic acid structures to maintain genome's integrity. These ATP motors appear to play direct role in disease progression including pediatric brain tumors.

Assistant Professor


Ph.D., Structural Biology, Magnetic Resonance Center (CERM), University of Florence, Florence, Italy

M.Tech., Biotechnology, Anna University, Chennai, India

M.Sc., Biochemistry, Agra University, Agra, India



Phone: (210) 562-9064

Gupta Laboratory Website

Masahiro Morita, Ph.D.



Metabolic reprogramming is one of the hallmarks of cancer. Cancer cells change their metabolic programs to efficiently utilize the limited nutrients, ultimately driving macromolecule synthesis (e.g., protein, lipid and nucleotide synthesis) and cell growth and proliferation. Protein, the most abundant macromolecule in the cell, is aberrantly synthesized in malignant cells. Post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression, including mRNA translation and degradation, directly modulate protein synthesis, and are dysregulated in a variety of metabolic diseases including cancer. However, the mechanisms that underpin the role of post-transcriptional regulation in controlling cancer and metabolism remain largely unknown. The focus on our research is to determine how mutually dependent changes in protein synthesis and cellular metabolism contribute to the development of cancer and metabolic diseases. To this end, we will investigate the role of one of the central energy-sensing signaling pathways known to regulate both cellular energetics and protein synthesis: the mammalian/mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway in cancer and metabolic diseases.

The mTOR complex 1 (mTORC1) pathway is one of the major oncogenic signaling pathways that stimulates anabolism (e.g., protein synthesis) and suppresses catabolism (e.g., autophagy) in response to nutrient availability through multiple downstream effectors (in the Figure below). Prominent ones include translation initiation factor 4E (eIF4E)-binding proteins (4E-BPs) and ribosomal protein S6 kinases (S6Ks). 4E-BPs are translation initiation repressors, which bind to the mRNA 5’cap-binding protein eIF4E and prevent the assembly of the eIF4F complex, consisting of eIF4E, that facilitates ribosome recruitment to the mRNA. Phosphorylation of 4E-BPs by mTORC1 results in their dissociation from eIF4E, thus allowing assembly of the eIF4F complex and promoting protein synthesis and cell proliferation. The oncogenic activity of the mTORC1 pathway is mediated through 4E-BP-dependent translational activation of mRNAs encoding tumor-promoting proteins, such as cell cycle regulators and metabolic enzymes.

Our laboratory focuses on mTORC1-depenedent control of mRNA translation and degradation in cancer and metabolic diseases. We have developed a genome-wide analyses of mRNA translation and degradation to find the target mRNAs. Our genome-wide analysis reveals that the oncogenic mTORC1 signaling pathway stimulates not only global protein synthesis, but also translation of a subset of mRNAs that encode pivotal regulators of mitochondrial dynamics. Our group demonstrates that mTORC1 coordinates energy consumption by translation machinery, and energy production by bolstering mitochondrial functions and dynamics via regulation of 4E-BPs. Furthermore, we show that the CCR4-NOT poly(A) nuclease (deadenylase) controls susceptibility to metabolic disorders, which is a cancer-predisposing state, by selectively regulating turnover of mRNAs encoding hormone-like proteins. Dissecting the mechanistic underpinnings of these translational and metabolic signatures should provide a molecular basis to improve the efficacy of existing drugs and devise more effective therapies to treat poor outcome cancer patients. Taken together, our laboratory is currently highlighting the pathways that relate the post-transcriptional regulation to metabolic perturbations in cancer, which in long term will provide novel therapeutic avenues to target cancer energetics.

Selected Publications 

*,#M. Morita, J. Prudent, K. Basu, V. Goyon, S. Katsumura, L. Hulea, D. Pearl, N. Siddiqui, S. Strack, S. McGuirk, J. St-Pierre, O. Larsson, I. Topisirovic, H. Vali, #H.M. McBride, #J.J. Bergeron, #N. Sonenberg, mTOR Controls Mitochondrial Dynamics and Cell Survival via MTFP1, Molecular cell, 67 (2017) 922-935. *First and #Co-Corresponding authors.

K. Araki, M. Morita, A.G. Bederman, B.T. Konieczny, H.T. Kissick, N. Sonenberg, R. Ahmed, Translation is actively regulated during the differentiation of CD8+ effector T cells, Nat Immunol, 18 (2017) 1046-1057.

M. Bhat, A. Yanagiya, T. Graber, N. Razumilava, S. Bronk, D. Zammit, Y. Zhao, C. Zakaria, P. Metrakos, M. Pollak, N. Sonenberg, G. Gores, M. Jaramillo, *M. Morita, *T. Alain, Metformin requires 4E-BPs to induce apoptosis and repress translation of Mcl-1 in hepatocellular carcinoma cells, Oncotarget, 8 (2017) 50542-50556. *Co-Corresponding authors.

X. Li, M. Morita, C. Kikuguchi, A. Takahashi, T. Suzuki, T. Yamamoto, Adipocyte-specific disruption of mouse Cnot3 causes lipodystrophy, FEBS letters, 591 (2017) 358-368.

V. Gandin, L. Masvidal, M. Cargnello, L. Gyenis, S. McLaughlan, Y. Cai, C. Tenkerian, M. Morita, P. Balanathan, O. Jean-Jean, V. Stambolic, M. Trost, L. Furic, L. Larose, A.E. Koromilas, K. Asano, D. Litchfield, O. Larsson, I. Topisirovic, mTORC1 and CK2 coordinate ternary and eIF4F complex assembly, Nat Commun, 7 (2016) 11127.

T. Inoue, M. Morita, A. Hijikata, Y. Fukuda-Yuzawa, S. Adachi, K. Isono, T. Ikawa, H. Kawamoto, H. Koseki, T. Natsume, T. Fukao, O. Ohara, T. Yamamoto, T. Kurosaki, CNOT3 contributes to early B cell development by controlling Igh rearrangement and p53 mRNA stability, J Exp Med, 212 (2015) 1465-1479.

*M. Morita, *S.P. Gravel, *L. Hulea, O. Larsson, M. Pollak, J. St-Pierre, I. Topisirovic, mTOR coordinates protein synthesis, mitochondrial activity and proliferation, Cell Cycle (review), 14 (2015) 473-480. *Co-First authors.

A. Takahashi, S. Adachi, M. Morita, M. Tokumasu, T. Natsume, T. Suzuki, T. Yamamoto, Post-transcriptional Stabilization of Ucp1 mRNA Protects Mice from Diet-Induced Obesity, Cell Rep, 13 (2015) 2756-2767.

C. Watanabe, M. Morita, T. Hayata, T. Nakamoto, C. Kikuguchi, X. Li, Y. Kobayashi, N. Takahashi, T. Notomi, K. Moriyama, T. Yamamoto, Y. Ezura, M. Noda, Stability of mRNA influences osteoporotic bone mass via CNOT3, Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 111 (2014) 2692-2697.

C. Rouya, N. Siddiqui, M. Morita, T.F. Duchaine, M.R. Fabian, N. Sonenberg, Human DDX6 effects miRNA-mediated gene silencing via direct binding to CNOT1, RNA, 20 (2014) 1398-1409.

M. Morita, S.P. Gravel, V. Chenard, K. Sikstrom, L. Zheng, T. Alain, V. Gandin, D. Avizonis, M. Arguello, C. Zakaria, S. McLaughlan, Y. Nouet, A. Pause, M. Pollak, E. Gottlieb, O. Larsson, J. St-Pierre, I. Topisirovic, N. Sonenberg, mTORC1 controls mitochondrial activity and biogenesis through 4E-BP-dependent translational regulation, Cell metabolism, 18 (2013) 698-711.

Selected in “Cell Metabolism Best of 2013” and Recommended by “Faculty of 1000 in Cell Biology”

*O. Larsson, *M. Morita, *I. Topisirovic, T. Alain, M.J. Blouin, M. Pollak, N. Sonenberg, Distinct perturbation of the translatome by the antidiabetic drug metformin, Proc Natl Acad Sci USA Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 109 (2012) 8977-8982. *Co-First authors.

M. Morita, L.W. Ler, M.R. Fabian, N. Siddiqui, M. Mullin, V.C. Henderson, T. Alain, B.D. Fonseca, G. Karashchuk, C.F. Bennett, T. Kabuta, S. Higashi, O. Larsson, I. Topisirovic, R.J. Smith, A.C. Gingras, N. Sonenberg, A novel 4EHP-GIGYF2 translational repressor complex is essential for mammalian development, Molecular and cellular biology, 32 (2012) 3585-3593.

A. Takahashi, M. Morita, K. Yokoyama, T. Suzuki, T. Yamamoto, Tob2 inhibits peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma2 expression by sequestering Smads and C/EBPalpha during adipocyte differentiation, Molecular and cellular biology, 32 (2012) 5067-5077.

*T. Alain, *M. Morita, B.D. Fonseca, A. Yanagiya, N. Siddiqui, M. Bhat, D. Zammit, V. Marcus, P. Metrakos, L.A. Voyer, V. Gandin, Y. Liu, I. Topisirovic, N. Sonenberg, eIF4E/4E-BP ratio predicts the efficacy of mTOR targeted therapies, Cancer research, 72 (2012) 6468-6476. *Co-First authors.

M. Morita, Y. Oike, T. Nagashima, T. Kadomatsu, M. Tabata, T. Suzuki, T. Nakamura, N. Yoshida, M. Okada, T. Yamamoto, Obesity resistance and increased hepatic expression of catabolism-related mRNAs in Cnot3+/- mice, The EMBO journal, 30 (2011) 4678-4691.

M.R. Fabian, M.K. Cieplak, F. Frank, M. Morita, J. Green, T. Srikumar, B. Nagar, T. Yamamoto, B. Raught, T.F. Duchaine, N. Sonenberg, miRNA-mediated deadenylation is orchestrated by GW182 through two conserved motifs that interact with CCR4-NOT, Nature structural & molecular biology, 18 (2011) 1211-1217.

H. Wang, M. Morita, X. Yang, T. Suzuki, W. Yang, J. Wang, K. Ito, Q. Wang, C. Zhao, M. Bartlam, T. Yamamoto, Z. Rao, Crystal structure of the human CNOT6L nuclease domain reveals strict poly(A) substrate specificity, The EMBO journal, 29 (2010) 2566-2576.

X. Yang, M. Morita, H. Wang, T. Suzuki, W. Yang, Y. Luo, C. Zhao, Y. Yu, M. Bartlam, T. Yamamoto, Z. Rao, Crystal structures of human BTG2 and mouse TIS21 involved in suppression of CAF1 deadenylase activity, Nucleic acids research, 36 (2008) 6872-6881.

*T. Miyasaka, *M. Morita, K. Ito, T. Suzuki, H. Fukuda, S. Takeda, J. Inoue, K. Semba, T. Yamamoto, Interaction of antiproliferative protein Tob with the CCR4-NOT deadenylase complex, Cancer science, 99 (2008) 755-761. *Co-First authors.

M. Morita, T. Suzuki, T. Nakamura, K. Yokoyama, T. Miyasaka, T. Yamamoto, Depletion of mammalian CCR4b deadenylase triggers elevation of the p27Kip1 mRNA level and impairs cell growth, Molecular and cellular biology, 27 (2007) 4980-4990.

Assistant Professor of Molecular Medicine and Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies


Postdoctoral Fellow, Medicine, McGill University, 2010

Ph.D., Biophysics and Biochemistry, University of Tokyo, 2008

B.Eng., Chemistry and Biotechnology, University of Tokyo, 2003



Phone: 210-450-8287

Office Location: STRF 289.2

Gail Tomlinson, M.D., Ph.D.

Gail tomlinson photo 2015


I have a long-standing interest in familial cancer and the application of cancer predisposition to cancer risk assessment, early detection, and prevention in children and adults. Our CPRIT-funded Prevention Project has established infrastructure for comprehensive cancer genetic risk assessment, genetic counseling and testing at sites throughout San Antonio as well as the Rio Grande Valley, and the western border regions of Texas. Within this CPRIT funded project, we also have developed a curriculum specific for genetic risk assessment based on a framework of the ACGME competencies.

I have laboratory and clinical interest and background in the biology of pediatric liver tumors as well as other rare tumors. My group previously described the first recurring translocation in hepatoblastoma and also described the spectrum of APC mutations in hepatoblastoma. Recently I was the Lead P.I. for our CPRIT funded Multi-Investigator project, "Genetics and Biology of Liver Tumorigenesis in Children" with collaborating investigators at Baylor College of Medicine and UT Southwestern. This project defined the genetic landscape of hepatoblastoma and also identified a panel of stem cell markers as well as NFE2L2 mutation as prognostic markers in hepatoblastoma.

My group has also begun a study of predisposition factors for leukemia that are unique to the Hispanic children of South Texas.

I have several administrative roles in research including co-Leader of the Population Science and Prevention Program within the UT Health Cancer Center, Division Director Pediatric Hematology-oncology and Interim Chair, Department of Pediatrics.  


Kalish JM, Doros L, Hellman L, Hennekam RCM, Kuiper R, Maher E, Nichols KE, Plon SE, Porter CC, Rednam S, Schultz KAP, States LJ, Tomlinson GE, Zelley K,. Druley TE. Surveillance recommendations for children with overgrowth syndromes and predisposition to Wilms tumors and hepatoblastoma: Clinical Cancer Research, 23 (13) e115-e122.

Sumazin P, Chen Y, Treviño LR, Sarabia SF, Hampton OA, Patel P, Mistretta T-A, Zorman B, Thompson P, Heczey A, Comerford S, Wheeler DA, Chintagumpala M, Meyers R, Rakheja D, Finegold MJ, Tomlinson G, Parsons DW, and López-Terrada D. 2017 Integrated Genomic Analysis of Hepatoblastoma Identifies Distinct Molecular and Prognostic Subgroups, Hepatology, 65: 104-121

Comerford SA, HinnantEA, ChenY, BansalH, KlapprothS, RakhejaD, Lopez-TerradaD, O’DonnellKA, FinegoldMJ, ParsonsDW, TomlinsonGE, Hammer RE. Hepatoblastoma modeling in mice places nrf2 within a cancer field established by mutant b-catenin. J. Clin Invest.Insight, 2016 1(16)e88549.

Mette LA, PulidoSaldivar AM, Poullard NE, Torres IC, Seth SG, Pollock BH, Tomlinson GE. Reaching High-Risk Underserved Individuals for Cancer Genetic Counseling by Videoteleconferencing. J Comm Supp Onc,14(4):162-8.

Professor of Pediatrics

Greehey Distinguished Chair in Genetics and Cancer

Division Director, Pediatric Hematology-Oncology

Interim Chair, Department of Pediatrics


Ph.D., Biochemistry, Duke University

M.D., George Washington University School of Medicine


Phone 210-562-9116


Shivani Ruparel, Ph.D.



Dr. Shivani Ruparel is currently an assistant professor at the UT Health Science Center in San Antonio. She obtained her bachelor’s and master’s in microbiology in India. Following her passion, she came to the United States to attend the Cellular and Structural Biology Ph.D. program at UTHSCSA in 2003. While she was a graduate student, she studied the role of telomerase in prostate cancer under the guidance of Dr. Robert Marciniak and Dr. Linda deGraffenried. Following her doctorate degree, she received post-doctoral training in pain and neuropharmacology under Dr. Kenneth Hargreaves. As an Assistant Professor, her research program focuses on elucidating mechanisms for cancer cells and sensory neuron interactions in mediating pain as well as tumorigenesis. Specifically, Her research investigates the contribution of oral cancer cells in regulating sensory nerve terminals at the site of tumor growth leading to cancer-induced pain and studying the mechanisms underlying this communication. Additionally, Her group is also exploring the involvement of sensory neurons in regulating oral tumor development and progression.

She has received numerous grants from various funding sources including NIH, American Cancer Society and William and Ella Owens Foundation.

Selected Publications 

Hargreaves KM, Ruparel S. Role of Oxidized Lipids and TRP Channels in Orofacial Pain and Inflammation Journal of Dental Research 2016 Sep;95(10):1117-1123.

Chodroff L, Bendele M, Valenzuela V, Henry MA, Ruparel S. BDNF Contributes to Oral Cancer pain in A Preclinical Orthotopic Rodent Model Molecular Pain 2016 Sep;2(12).

Green D, Ruparel S, Gao X, Ruparel N, Patil M, Akopian AN, Hargreaves KM. Central activation of TRPV1 and TRPA1 by novel enodgneous agonists contributes to mechanical and thermal allodynia after burn injury 2016 Jan;.

Eskander M, Ruparel S, Green D, Por E, Chen P, Jeske NA, Gao X, Flores E, Hargreaves KM. Persistent nociception triggered by nerve growth factor (NGF) is mediated by TRPV1 and oxidative mechanisms Journal of Neuroscience 2015 Jun;35:8593-8603.

Ruparel S, Bendele M, Wallace A, Green D. Released Lipids Regulate Transient Receptor Potential Channel (TRP)-Dependent Oral Cancer Pain Molecular Pain 2015 Jan;.

Ruparel N, Ruparel S, Paul Chen, Blake Ishikawa, Diogenes AR. Direct Effect of Endodontic Sealers on Trigeminal Neurons Journal of Endodontics 2014 May;40(5):683-687.

Patil, Mayur, Ruparel S, Henry MA, Akopian AN. Prolactin Regulates TRPV1, TRPA1 and TRPM8 in Sensory Neurons in Sex-dependent Manner: Contribution of Prolactin Receptor to Inflammatory Pain American Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism 2013 Nov;305(9):1154-1164.

Brandfellner HM, Ruparel SB, Gelfond JA, Hargreaves KM. Major blunt trauma evokes selective upregulation of oxidative enzymes in circulating leukocytes Shock 2013 Sep;40(3):182-187.

Ruparel S, Hargreaves KM, Eskander M, Rowan S, Almeida JFA, Roman LJ, Henry MA. The Oxidized Linoleic Acid Metabolite-Cytochrome P450 System is Active in Biopsies from Patients with Inflammatory Dental Pain PAIN 2013 Jan;154:2363-2371.

Green D, Ruparel S, Roman LJ, Henry MA, Hargreaves KM. Role of Endogenous TRPV1 Agonists in a Post-Burn Pain Model of Partial-Thickness Injury PAIN 2013 Jan;154:2512-2520.

Ruparel S, Henry MA, Akopian AN, Patil. Mayur J, Zeldin. D.S., Roman. L.J., Hargreaves KM. Plasticity of cytochrome P450 isozyme expression in rat trigeminal ganglia neurons during inflammation. AT PRESS PAIN 2012 Oct;153(10):2031-2039.

Ruparel S, Green D, Chen P, Hargreaves KM. The cytochrome P450 inhibitor, ketoconazole, inhibits OLAM-mediated peripheral inflammatory pain Molecular Pain 2012 Sep;8(73).

Assistant Professor - Tenure Track, Endodontics 


Ph.D., Cellular and Structural Biology, UT Health San Antonio, 2009

M.S., Clinical Investigation, UT Health San Antonio, 2015

M.S. Microbiology, Bhavan's College, 2002

B.S., Microbiology, Mumbai University, 2000


Phone: 210-567-4413


Alumni Spotlight article

Graduate Students

Jacob Boyd (M.D./Ph.D) 

Teppei Fujikawa, Ph.D.



Our scientific interest is to unravel the mechanism by which the central nervous system (CNS) regulates whole body metabolic homeostasis such as glucose and fat metabolism, energy expenditure, and food intake. Obesity and metabolic diseases have been increasing at the alarming rate and threatening our health and economy over the world. Understanding the mechanism underlying the regulation of metabolism is a fundamental step towards to designing new treatments for obesity and its associated diseases, and many other metabolic diseases. To unravel the mechanism by which the CNS regulates metabolism, we will utilize a variety of technique including, but not limited, generating transgenic animals, optogenetics, chemogenetics, in situ hybridization, immunohistochemistry, and biochemical assay. Currently, our lab is focused on two projects

1) The CNS regulates metabolic adaptations to high physical activity

Most, if not all, animals have evolved in the environment in which high physical activity is required in order to seek food for surviving. Our genetics is optimized to this metabolically challenging environment, and not ready for our modern sedentary lifestyle. Human and rodents studies have shown that high physical activity or exercise training can dramatically improve metabolism. A part of beneficial effects of exercise on metabolism results from metabolic adaptations to exercise such as increases the metabolic capacity of the skeletal muscle. Our lab will investigate the contributions of the CNS to metabolic adaptations to exercise.

2) The CNS regulates glucose metabolism independently of insulin

Insulin, which is secreted from pancreatic beta-cells, is essential for life. In fact, a person who lacks insulin develops severe disease, type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM). Insulin treatment has been saving the life of T1DM patients, yet the treatment is not still perfect. For instance, T1DM patients have a higher risk of cardiovascular diseases compared to same age of non-T1DM subjects. Previously we found that the CNS has a capability to regulate glucose metabolism independently of insulin. Our aim is to unravel the precise neuronal and molecular mechanism by which the CNS regulates glucose metabolism without insulin.

Selected Publications

Fujikawa T, Castorena CM, Pearson M, Kusminski CM, Ahmed N, Battiprolu PK, Kim KW, Lee S, Hill JA, Scherer PE, Holland WL, Elmquist JK. SF-1 expression in the hypothalamus is required for beneficial metabolic effects of exercise. eLife. 2016; 5. PMID: 27874828

Fujikawa, T. *, and Coppari, R. *, Living without insulin: the role of leptin signaling in the hypothalamus. Front Neurosci, (2015) 9, 108. *co-corresponding author Williams, K.W., Liu, T., Kong, X., Fukuda, M., Deng, Y., Berglund, E.D., Deng, Z., Gao, Y., Liu, T., Sohn, J.-W., Jia, L., Fujikawa, T., Kohno, D., Sccotte, M., Lee, S., Lee, S., Sun, K., Chang, Y., Scherer, P.E., and Elmquist, J.K., Xbp1s in Pomc neurons connects ER stress with energy balance and glucose homeostasis. Cell metabolism, (2014) 20, 471-482.

Assistant Professor

UT Health San Antonio

Department of Cellular and Integrative Physiology


B.Sc. Kyoto University, 2003

Ph.D. Kyoto University, 2008


7703 Floyd Curl Drive, San Antonio

Texas 78229-3900 Mail Code: 7756

Office 3.029V1 Lab 3.068V

Phone: +1-210-450-8253


Swati Banerjee, Ph.D.

Swati banerjee


Dr. Swati Banerjee uses the Drosophila model system to investigate the cellular and molecular bases of axonal ensheathment and synaptic development and function.

The cellular and molecular interactions between neurons and glial cells are vital for proper functioning of the nervous system across species. The ensheathment of axons, formation of axo-glial junctions, and maintenance of functional blood-brain and blood-nerve barriers are all centrally dependent on neuronal and glial cells. Using genetic, cell biological and biochemical approaches, Dr. Banerjee has identified proteins that are highly conserved in vertebrates and have fundamental roles in mediating neuron-glial interactions. Her studies on axonal ensheathment in Drosophila are relevant in elucidating the mechanisms that regulate vertebrate neuron-glial interactions and myelination.

Another area of her research involves understanding how trans-synaptic adhesion and signaling underlie synaptic growth and maintenance of proper synaptic cytoarchitecture, as these processes are critical for cognition and in shaping neural networks to process and refine information. Many neurodevelopmental and psychiatric disorders result from synaptic dysfunctions or abnormal neural connectivity. Dr. Banerjee’s research aims at identifying the genes and genetic pathways that contribute toward the formation, stabilization, and maintenance of functional synapses that may provide insights into human neurological disorders resulting from synaptic dysfunction.

Selected Publications

Banerjee, S. and Riordan, M. (2018). Coordinated Regulation of Axonal Microtubule Organization and Transport by Drosophila Neurexin and BMP Pathway. Scientific Reports, 8(1):17337.

Banerjee, S., Mino, R., Fisher, E. and Bhat, M.A. (2017). A Versatile Genetic Tool to Study Midline Glia Function in the Drosophila CNS. Developmental Biology, 1; 429(1):35-43.

Banerjee, S., Venkatesan, A. and Bhat, M.A. (2017) Neurexin, Neuroligin and Wishful Thinking Coordinate Synaptic Cytoarchitecture and Growth at Neuromuscular Junctions. Mol. Cell. Neurosci.78, 9-24. (Featured on the Cover).

Mino, R.E., Rogers, S.L., Risinger, A.L., Rohena, C., Banerjee, S. and Bhat, M.A. (2016). Drosophila Ringmaker Regulates Microtubule Stabilization and Axonal Extension During Embryonic Development. J. Cell Sci. 129, 3282-3294.

Banerjee, S., Riordan, M. and Bhat, M.A. (2014). Genetic Aspects of Autism Spectrum Disorders: Insights from Animal Models. Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience 8:58.

Chen, Y.-C., Lin, Y.Q., Banerjee, S., Venken, K., Li, J., Ismat, A., Chen, K., Duraine, L., Bellen, H.J. and Bhat, M.A. (2012). Drosophila Neuroligin 2 is Required Presynaptically and Postsynaptically for proper Synaptic Differentiation and Synaptic Transmission. J. Neurosci. 32: 16018-16030.

Assistant Professor/Research

Department of Cellular and Integrative Physiology


Ph.D., Life Sciences, Devi Ahilya University, Indore and Indian Institute of Technology, 2002



Lab Phone: 210-567-8124

Office Phone: 210-562-4058

Edward Medina, M.D.



Dr. Edward A. Medina is a Pathology Specialist in San Antonio, Texas. He graduated with honors from University Of California, Davis School Of Medicine in 2005.   

Selected Publications 

Medina, E. A., Shi, X., Grayson, M. H., Ankerst, D. P., Livi, C., Medina, M. V., Thompson, I. M., Jr & Leach, R. J. The diagnostic value of adiponectin multimers in healthy men undergoing screening for prostate cancer. Cancer Epidemiol. Biomarkers Prev. 23(2):309-15 (2013). PMID: 24296854; PMCID: PMC4084930

Medina, E.A., Oberheu, K., Polusani, S.R., Ortega, V., Velagaleti, G.V. & Oyajobi, B.O. PKA/AMPK signaling in relation to adiponectin's antiproliferative effect on multiple myeloma cells. Leukemia 28(10):2080-9 (2014). PMID: 24646889

Pathology - University Hospital


M.D., University of California at Davis, 2005



Katsumi Kitagawa, Pharm.D., Ph.D.

Img 2331 copy (1) copy 2


The molecular mechanisms that ensure accurate chromosome segregation in mitosis and meiosis are of fundamental importance to the conservation of euploidy in eukaryotes. Errors in this process (e.g., chromosome nondisjunction and chromosome loss) result in aneuploidy—the phenotypic consequences of which are usually profound, including cancer, birth defects, and developmental disorders such as Down syndrome. In humans, errors in chromosome segregation may trigger the onset of neoplasia by uncovering the expression of recessive oncogenic phenotypes, or by contributing to the development of specific aneuploidies. The centromere, a single locus per chromosome, is essential to ensure high fidelity of chromosome transmission. The kinetochore (the protein complex at the centromere) mediates attachment of chromosomes to spindle microtubules and directs chromosome movement during mitosis. Cells have a surveillance system, the spindle checkpoint, which can delay mitotic progression by transiently inhibiting the anaphase-promoting complex in response to defective kinetochore-microtubule attachment. Defects in kinetochore function and the spindle checkpoint result in aneuploidy. Considerable evidence indicates a role of a dysfunctional spindle checkpoint in tumorigenesis.

In most eukaryotes, the centromere is associated with large arrays of repetitive DNA, but has no defined DNA sequence. Consequently, heritability of the centromere is thought to involve epigenetic modifications. CENP-A, the centromeric histone H3 variant, is thought to be a strong candidate for the epigenetic mark. After DNA replication, centromeric nucleosomes, including existing CENP-A, are distributed to the replicated chromatids, and newly synthesized CENP-A deposition occurs at the centromere in G1 in humans. This regulation is crucial for proper centromere inheritance and function. One of our goals is to determine the function of post-translational modifications (PTMs) of CENP-A in the regulation of CENP-A deposition at the centromere and the assembly of kinetochore complexes.

Neocentromeres originate from non-centromeric regions of chromosomes, (i.e., not alpha-satellite DNA). The formation of complex rearranged chromosomes, each containing a neocentromere, has been observed in cancer cells, particularly hematological malignancies. Addition of a neocentromere to a chromosome with an endogenous centromere creates a dicentric state, which results in extensive genomic instability displaying hallmarks of cellular transformation. In colon cancer, CENP-A is overexpressed, and this overexpression is associated with mistargeting of CENP-A to non-centromeric chromatin. These findings suggest that overexpression of CENP-A might cause aneuploidy by creating neocentromeres. In addition, genomic amplification of the CENP-A locus occurred in neuroendocrine prostate cancer (15% of cases) and breast cancer (10% of cases).

Thus, elucidating the mechanism of neocentromere formation will contribute to understanding the mechanism of “cancer evolution” that results in resistance to cancer therapy.

Selected Publications

Niikura Y, Kitagawa R and Kitagawa K. CENP-A Ubiquitylation is the epigenetic mark for centromere identify. Cell Reports 2016, 15: 61-76.

Niikura Y andKitagawa K. Immunofluorescence analysis of endogenous and exogenous centromere-kinetochore proteins. J Vis Exp. 2016 Mar 3;(109). doi: 10.3791/53732.

Ogi H, Sakuraba Y, Kitagawa R, Xiao L, Shen C, Cynthia M, Ohta S, Arnold MA, Ramirez N, Houghton PJ, and Kitagawa K. The Oncogenic Role of the Cochaperone Sgt1. Oncogenesis 2015 2015 May 18;4:e149.

Niikura Y, Kitagawa R, Ogi H, Abdulle R, Pagala V, and Kitagawa K. CENP-A K124 Ubiquitylation Is Required for CENP-A Deposition at the Centromere. Developmental Cell 2015 Mar 9;32(5):589-603.

Ohkuni K, Abdulle R, and Kitagawa K. Degradation of centromeric histone H3 variant Cse4 requires the Fpr3 peptidyl-prolyl cis-trans isomerase. Genetics 2014; 196(4):1041-5.

Bian Y, Kitagawa R, Bansal PK, Fujii Yo, Stepanov A, and Kitagawa K. Synthetic genetic array screen identifies PP2A as a therapeutic target in Mad2-overexpressing tumors. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014; 111(4):1628-33

Kikuchi K, Narita T, Pham VT, Iijima J, Hirota K, Keka IS, Mohiuddin M, Okawa K, Hori T, Fukagawa T, Essers J, Kanaar R, Whitby MC, Sugasawa K, Taniguchi Y, Kitagawa K, Takeda S. Structure-specific endonucleases Xpf and Mus81 play overlapping but essential roles in DNA repair by homologous recombination. Cancer Res. 2013; 73(14):4362-71

Ohkuni K and Kitagawa K, Role of transcription at centromeres in budding yeast. Transcription 2012; 3(4).

Ohkuni K and Kitagawa K, Endogenous Transcription at the Centromere Facilitates Centromere Activity in Budding Yeast. Current Biology 2011; 21(20):1695-703.

Yang C, Tang X, Guo X, Niikura Y, Kitagawa K, Cui K, Wong STC, Fu L, and Xu B, Aurora-B Mediated ATM Serine 1403 Phosphorylation Is Required For Mitotic ATM Activation and the Spindle Checkpoint. Molecular Cell 2011; 44(4):597-608.

Kitagawa K, Too early to say, "no targeting of mitosis!" Nat Rev Clin Oncol. 2011; 8(7):444.

Goto GH, Mishra A, Abdulle R, Slaughter CA, and Kitagawa K, Bub1-mediated Adaptation of the Spindle Checkpoint. PLoS Genetics 2011; 7(1):e1001282.

Kikuchi K, Niikura Y, Kitagawa K, and Kikuchi A, Dishevelled, a Wnt signaling component, is involved in mitotic progression in cooperation with Plk1. EMBO J. 2010; 29(20):3470-83.

Niikura Y, Ogi H, Kikuchi K, Kitagawa K, BUB3 that dissociates from BUB1 activates caspase-independent mitotic death (CIMD). Cell Death Differ. 2010; 17(6):1011-24.

Bansal PK, Mishra A, High AA, Abdulle R, Kitagawa K, Sgt1 dimerization is negatively regulated by protein kinase CK2-mediated phosphorylation at S361; J Biol Chem. 2009; 284(28):18692-8.

Bansal PK, Nourse A, Abdulle R, Kitagawa K. Sgt1 dimerization is required for yeast kinetochore assembly. J Biol Chem. 2009; 284(6):3586-92.

Kitagawa K* and Niikura Y. Caspase-Independent Mitotic Death (CIMD). Cell Cycle. 2008; 7(8):1001-5.

Ohkuni K, Abdulle R, Tong AH, Boone C, and Kitagawa K. Ybp2 Associates with the Central Kinetochore of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Mediates Proper Mitotic Progression. PLoS ONE. 2008;3(2):e1617.

Niikura Y, Dixit A, Scott R, Perkins G and Kitagawa K. BUB1 mediation of caspase-independent mitotic death determines cell fate. J. Cell Biol. 2007;178(2):283-96. (Faculty of 1000 Biology: F1000 Factor 6.0: Must Read

Scaglione KM, Bansal PK, Deffenbaugh AE, Kiss A, Moore JM, Korolev S, Cocklin R, Goebl M, Kitagawa K, and Skowyra D. SCF E3 -mediated autoubiquitination negatively regulates activity of the Cdc34 E2 but plays a nonessential role in the catalytic cycle in vitro and in vivo. Mol. Cell. Biol. 2007;27(16):5860-70.

Niikura Y, Ohta S, Vandenbeldt KJ, Abdulle R, McEwen BF and Kitagawa K. 17-AAG, an Hsp90 inhibitor, causes kinetochore defects: a novel mechanism by which 17-AAG inhibits cell proliferation. Oncogene 2006; 25:4133-46 (Faculty of 1000 Biology: F1000 Factor 3.0: Recommended

Kondo-Okamoto N, Ohkuni K, Kitagawa K, McCaffery JM, Shaw JM, Okamoto K. The novel F-box protein Mfb1p regulates mitochondrial connectivity and exhibits asymmetric localization in yeast. Mol. Biol. Cell 2006; 17:3756-67.

Bansal PK, Abdulle R, and Kitagawa K. Sgt1 associates with molecular chaperones: an initial step of assembly of the core kinetochore complex. Mol. Cell. Biol. 2004 Sep;24(18):8069-79.

Steensgaard P, Garre M, Muradore I, Transidico P, Nigg EA, Kitagawa K, Earnshaw WC, Faretta M, Musacchio A. Sgt1 is required for human kinetochore assembly. EMBO Rep. 2004 Jun;5(6):626-31. Epub 2004 May 07.

Niikura Y and Kitagawa K. Identification of a Novel Splice Variant: Human SGT1B (SUGT1B). DNA sequence. 2003 Dec;14(6):436-41.

Kitagawa K, Abdulle R, Bansal PK, Cagney G, Fields S, and Hieter P. Requirement of Skp1-Bub1 interaction for kinetochore-mediated activation of the spindle checkpoint. Mol. Cell. 2003 May;11(5):1201-13.

Nowotny M, Spiechowicz M, Jastrzebska B, Filipek A, Kitagawa K, Kuznicki J. Calcium-regulated interaction of Sgt1 with S100A6 (calcyclin) and other S100 proteins. J. Biol. Chem. 2003 Jul 18;278(29):26923-8. Epub 2003 May 13.

Kitagawa K and Abdulle R. In vivo site-directed mutagenesis of yeast plasmids by using a three-fragment homologous recombination system. Biotechniques. 2002 Aug;33(2):288, 290, 292 passim.

Schadick KH, Fourcade M, Boumenot P, Seitz JJ, Morrell JL, Chang L, Gould KL, Partridge JF, Allshire RC, Kitagawa K, Hieter P, and Hoffman CS.* Schizosaccharomyces pombe Git7p, a member of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Sgt1p family, is required for Pglucose/cAMP signaling, cell wall integrity, and septation. Eukaryot Cell. 2002 Aug;1 (4):558-67.

Dubacq C, Guerois R, Courbeyrette R, Kitagawa K, and Mann C. Sgt1p contributes to cAMP pathway activity and physically interacts with the adenylyl cyclase Cyr1p/Cdc35p in budding yeast. Eukaryot Cell. 2002 Aug;1 (4):568-82.

Associate Professor, Department of Molecular Medicine

Greehey Children's Cancer Research Institute


Ph.D., Nagoya University, 1995

Pharm.D., Nagoya City University, 1991

B. Pharm., Nagoya City University, 1990


Phone: 210-562-9096


Marie-Claire Gauduin, Ph.D.



Dr. Gauduin has more than 25 years of experience in HIV/AIDS research and medical microbiology. She has been working extensively on HIV and the development of novel vaccine strategies using the non-human primate model for AIDS. In her work, she uses epithelial stem cells and weakened recombinant papillomavirus as vaccine- vectors to protect against multiple low-dose mucosal challenges. Dr. Gauduin is also developing a neonatal model for tuberculosis to study HIV/TB co-infection in pediatric AIDS.

Her specific research interests are:

- Early events of simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) transmission in a macaque model

- Host immune responses to infectious diseases

- Early virus-specific T cell responses in neonates

- Tuberculosis/SIV coinfection in pediatric AIDS

Gauduin’s laboratory is investigating the early events of SIV transmission in macaque using a recombinant SIV tagged with a “green fluorescent protein” as a sensitive tool to monitor infected cells in vivo. This construct allows the team to identify: 1) the initial infected cells, their phenotype and function; 2) the mechanisms involved, time course and routes of viral spread from the site of initial infection to lymphoid organs and blood; and 3) the generation of early SIV-specific immune response from the mucosal site of infection. This is critical for the development of effective vaccines.

Maternal transmission of HIV-1 accounts for most cases of pediatric HIV-1 infection. Gauduin’s group is investigating the early virus-specific T cell responses in neonates orally infected with a pathogenic or non-pathogenic strain of simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV), an HIV laboratory surrogate. She has shown that newborn monkeys infected with a less pathogenic SIV can control infection even in the absence of antiviral treatment, which suggests that treatment may be quite successful in "rescuing" or preserving the infant’s immune response. The laboratory is now focusing on defining the mechanisms involved in oral SIV transmission to develop effective strategies to successfully block SIV transmission.

One key obstacle to an effective AIDS vaccine has been the inability to deliver antigen for a sufficient period of time leading to weak and transient protection. Because HIV transmission occurs predominantly across mucosal surfaces, the ideal vaccine strategy would be to target HIV at mucosal entry sites of transmission to prevent infection. Gauduin proposes to develop a novel genetic vaccine strategy that delivers viral proteins. A promoter will drive antigen expression and stem cells will continuously yield new (daughter) antigenproducing cells without being eliminated by the immune response.

TB is the leading cause of death among people with HIV, and pregnant women living with active TB and HIV are at far greater risk of maternal mortality than those without HIV infection Gauduin has established an experimental acute M. tuberculosis infection in the newborn primate model to produce progressive and/ or active but asymptomatic infections that mimic the clinical and pathologic effects of pediatric tuberculosis. The ultimate goal is to optimize neonatal primate model for TB/HIV co-infection to study immunopathogenesis of TB/SIV interactions, the impact of treatment and treatment interruption on the evolution of tuberculosis.

Selected Publications 

High cell-free virus load and robust autologous adaptive immune responses in breast milk of SIV-infected African green monkeys. Wilks AB, Perry JR, Ehlinger EP, Zahn RC, White B, Gauduin MC, Carville A, Seaman MS, Schmitz JE, Permar AR. J Virol 85: 9517-26, 2011
PubMed ID: 21734053

Vaccine protection by live, attenuated simian immunodeficiency virus in the absence of high-titer antibody responses and high-frequency cellular immune responses measurable in the periphery. Mansfield K, Lang SM, Gauduin M-C, Sanford HB, Lifson JD, Johnson RP, Desrosiers RC. J Virol 82 (8): 4135-4148, 2008
PubMed ID: 18272584

Expression of CD8alpha identifies a distinct subset of effector memory CD4+ T lymphocytes. Macchia I, Gauduin M-C, Kaur A, and Johnson RP. Immunology 119 (2): 232-242, 2006
PubMed ID: 16836648

Induction of a virus-specific CD4+ T cell responses by attenuated SIV infection.Gauduin M-C, Yu Y, Piatak M, Lifson J, Desrosiers RC, and Johnson RP. J Exp Med 203 (12): 2661-2672, 2006
PubMed ID: 17116733

Intracellular cytokine staining for the characterization and quantitation of antigenspecific T lymphocyte responses. Gauduin M-C. Methods 38 (4): 263-273, 2006
PubMed ID: 16481196

Elevated interleukin-7 levels are not sufficient to maintain T-cell homeostasis during simian immunodeficiency virus induced disease progression.Muthukumar A, Wozniakowski A, Gauduin M-C, Johnson RP, McClure HM, Silvestri G, and Sodora DL. Blood 103: 973-979, 2004
PubMed ID: 14525780

Optimization of intracellular cytokine staining for quantitation of Ag-specific CD4+ T cell responses in macaques.Gauduin M-C, Kaur A, Ahmad S, Yilma T, Lifson JD, and Johnson RP. J Immunol 288: 61-79, 2004
PubMed ID: 15183086

Associate Scientist | Southwest National Primate Research Center, Virology & Immunology

Microbiology, Immunology, Molecular Medicine 


Ph.D., Microbiology at the New York University School of Medicine


Tel: (210) 258-9844


Chris Rathbone, Ph.D.



Developments in tissue engineering and regenerative medicine have the potential to dramatically improve outcomes for a wide variety of diseases and injuries. In particular, stem cell-based therapies have been successful in this realm, however, the development of a sufficient vascular supply limits their full potential. Broadly speaking, I am interested in improving the regeneration of tissue by utilizing tissue-engineering based strategies whereby vascular structures and stem cells are used in conjunction with scaffolds and growth factors. Previous experience working in government and industry research provided a valuable perspective on the need to make scientific advancements a clinical reality.

Muscle diseases and injuries represent one area where these concepts are applied. Traumatic acute muscle injuries that occur subsequent to severe trauma often result in a complete elimination of the necessary building blocks for tissue regrowth, i.e., stem/progenitor cells, growth factors, and matrices. With muscle wasting that occurs with chronic diseases and aging the building blocks are present, but their limited function and blood supply renders them unable to effectively maintain a homeostatic balance. Stated another way, acute muscle injuries will rely heavily on the delivery of stem cells, growth factors, and scaffolds to restore vasculature and regenerate skeletal muscle tissue de novo in an environment void of these elements, whereas muscle wasting may require therapies that take into consideration a limited microenvironment in a confined space. An effective approach to restore tissue perfusion and regenerative capacity of skeletal muscle for muscle compromised under both acute and chronic conditions is to utilize microvascular fragments (MVFs) derived from adipose tissue. MVFs have been demonstrated to be effective in restoring perfusion in a variety of models under very standard conditions. One of the objectives of my laboratory is to improve the use of MVFs by using a combinatorial approach where growth factors and biomaterials are incorporated to fully realize the regenerative potential of MVFs.

Selected Publications 

McDaniel JS, Pilia M, Raut V, Ledford J, Shiels SM, Wenke JC, Barnes B, Rathbone CR. Alternatives to autograft evaluated in a rabbit segmental bone defect. Int. Orthop. 2016 Jan;40(1):197-203

Rivera JC, Hsu JR, Noel SP, Wenke JC, Rathbone CR. Locally Delivered Nonsteroidal Antiinflammatory Drug: A Potential Option for Heterotopic Ossification Prevention. Clin Transl Sci. 2015 Oct;8(5):591-3.

Garg K, Ward CL, Rathbone CR, Corona BT. Transplantation of devitalized muscle scaffolds is insufficient for appreciable de novo muscle fiber regeneration after volumetric muscle loss injury. Cell Tissue Res. 2014 Dec;358(3):857-73.

Pilia M, McDaniel J, Guda T, Chen XK, Rhoads RP, Allen RE, Corona BT, Rathbone CR. Transplantation and Perfusion of Microvascular Fragments in a Rodent Model of Volumetric Muscle Loss Injury. Eur Cell Mater. Jul 14;28:11-24, 2014.

McDaniel JS, Pilia M, Ward CL, Pollot BE, Rathbone CR. Characterization of cells derived from microvascular fragments. J Surg Res. May 24, 2014. doi: 10.1016/j.jss.2014.05.047.

Corona BT, Rathbone CR. Accelerated functional recovery following skeletal muscle ischemia-reperfusion injury using freshly isolated bone marrow cells. J Surg Res. May 1;188(1) 100-9, 2014.

Elster JE, Rathbone CR, Liu Z, Liu X, Barrett H, Rhoads RP, and Allen RE. Skeletal muscle satellite cell migration to injured tissue measured with 111In-oxine labeling and high-resolution SPECT imaging. J Muscle Res Cell Motil. Dec;34(5-6):417-27, 2013.

Flann KL, Rathbone CR, Cole LC, Liu X, Allen RE, Rhoads RP. Hypoxia simultaneously alters satellite cell-mediated angiogenesis and hepatocyte growth factor expression. J Cell Physiol. May;229(5):572-9, 2014.

Corona BT, Wenke JC, Walters TJ, Rathbone CR. Intramuscular transplantation and survival of freshly-isolated bone marrow cells following skeletal muscle ischemia-reperfusion injury. J Trauma Acute Care Surg. Aug;75(2 Suppl 2):S142-9, 2013.

Corona BT, Garg K, Ward CL, McDaniel JS, Walters TJ, Rathbone CR. Autologous minced muscle grafts: A tissue engineering therapy for the volumetric loss of skeletal muscle. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. Oct 1;305(7):C761-75, 2013.

Wu, X, Rathbone CR. Satellite cell functional alterations following cutaneous burn in rats include an increase in their osteogenic potential. J Surg Res. Oct;184(2):e9-16, 2013.

Rathbone CR, Yamanouchi K, Chen X, Nevoret-Bell CJ, Rhoads RP and Allen RE. Effects of transforming growth factor -beta (TGF-?1) on satellite cell activation and survival during oxidative Stress. J Muscle Res Cell Motil. Sep;32(2):99-109, 2011.

Rathbone CR, Cross J, Brown K, Murray CK, Wenke JC. Effect of various concentrations of antibiotics on osteogenic cell viability and activity. J Orthop Res. 2011 Jul;29(7):1070-4), 2011

Assistant Professor

Department of Biomedical Engineering



Ph.D. University of Missouri-Columbia

M.S. Texas A&M University

B.A. University of Northern Iowa



Xingguo Cheng, Ph.D.

Xingguo cheng


As a principal scientist in SWRI, Dr. Cheng develops new technology platforms and expands existing capabilities on biomedical material engineering. His areas of research interest include nanomaterial, biomaterial, tissue engineering, nanomedicine and regenerative medicine, and medical device. His research interests emphasize on developing synthetic soft and hard biomaterials (polymer hydrogel, bioceramic, and composites) and natural biomaterials (e.g., collagen, chitosan) for a wide range of applications such as drug/gene/vaccine delivery for prevention or treatment of diseases, wound healing and tissue engineering, bone grafts, and biosensors. He also supports the program and clients by using the experience in cell culture (cancer cells, bone marrow stromal cells, fibroblasts), animal and human subjects tests, and general biomaterial and tissue evaluation and testing. 

At SwRI, Dr. Cheng has been a principal investigator/project manager on multiple projects including multifunctional, aligned collagen for tendon/ligament repair; Mg alloy for bone tissue engineering; antimicrobial/biocidal testing of compounds and devices; magnetic calcium phosphate nanoparticles; medical device development; and microencapsulation of drugs/actives and particulate adjuvants for vaccines. He has been a key contributor to several programs including bone-targeting nanoparticles; antimicrobial, anti-abrasion coating on orthopedic implants; haemoglobin encapsulation; collagen-hydroxyapatite perfusion scaffold for mesenchymal stem cell expansion; aligned carbon nanotube-collagen fiber for tendon repair; and carbon nanotube-collagen fiber coupled with neuron progenitor cells (NPCs) for neural regeneration; transdermal delivery, and disinfectant testing. Dr. Cheng is a study director on several regulated projects which require either Good Laboratory Practices (GLP) or FDA-compliant ISO 13485 medical device quality assurance compliance.

Selected Publications 

Cheng, X. G.; Yoo, J. Y.; Hale, R. G., Biomask for skin regeneration. Regenerative Medicine 2014, 9, (3), 245-248.

Cheng, X. G.; Yoo, J. Y.; Hale, R. G.; Davis, M. R.; Kang, H. W.; Jee, S. S., 3D printed biomaterials formaxillofacial tissue engineering and reconstruction – a review Open Journal of Biomedical Materials Research 2014, 1,(3), 1-7.

Cheng, X. G.; Tsao, C.; Sylvia, V. L.; Cornet, D.; Nicolella, D. P.; Bredbenner, T. L.; Christy, R. J., Plateletderivedgrowth-factor-releasing aligned collagen–nanoparticle fibers promote the proliferation and tenogenic differentiation of adipose-derived stem cells. Acta Biomaterialia 2014, 10, (3), 1360-1369.

Poenitzsch, V.; Bredbenner, T. L.; Hornsby, P. J.; Cornell, L.; Cheng, X. G., Electrochemically Directed Assembly of Carbon Nanotubes (CNTs) and Collagen Macromolecules into Macroscopic Hybrid Fibers. Open Journal ofAdvanced Materials Research 2013, 1, (1), 7-12.

Cheng, X. G.; Tsao, C.; Saul, J. M.; Sylvia, V.; Cornet, D.; Christy, R., Comparison of Two Nanoparticle Formulations for Localized Delivery of Platelet-Derived Growth Factor (PDGF) from Aligned Collagen Fibers Pharmaceutical Nanotechnology 2013, 1, (1), 1-10.

Cheng, X. G.; Poenitzsch, V.; Cornell, L.; Tsao, C.; Potter, T., Electrochemical Bioencapsulation of Nanomaterials into Collagen for Biomedical Applications. Journal of Encapsulation and Adsorption Science 2013, 3, 16- 23.

Antebi, B.; Cheng, X. G.; Harris, J.; Gower, L. B.; Cheng, X.; Ling, J., Biomimetic Collagen–HydroxyapatiteComposite Fabricated Via a Novel Perfusion-Flow Mineralization Technique. Tissue Engineering - Part C: Methods

2013, 19, (7), 1-10.Montserrat, R.; Patrick, A.; Désirée, W.; Tyler, W.; Gutierrez, G.; Rossini, G.; Desai, S.; Wellinghoff, S.; Yu, H.;

Cheng, X. G., Design and assessment of a wrapped cylindrical Ca-P AZ31 Mg alloy for critical-size ulna defect repair. Journal of Biomedical Material Research (Part B, Applied Biomaterials) 2012, 100B, 206-216.

Cheng, X. G.; Desai, S., Preparation of Nanoparticle-containing Aligned Collagen Fibers for Dense Connective Tissue Repair and Regeneration. MRS conference proceedings, Cambridge Journals Online 2012, 1417, 5.

Swanson, T. E.; Cheng, X. G.; Friedrich, C., The Development of Chitosan-vancomycin Antimicrobial Coatings on Titanium Implants. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A 2011, 97A, (2), 167-176.

Gurkan, U. A.; Cheng, X. G.; Kishore, V.; Uquillas, J. A.; Akkus, O., Comparison of morphology, orientation, and migration of tendon derived fibroblasts and bone marrow stromal cells on electrochemically aligned collagen constructs. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research Part A 2010, 94A, (4), 1070-1079.

Diegmueller, J. J.; Cheng, X. G.; Akkus, O., Modulation of Hydroxyapatite Nanocrystal Size and Shape by Polyelectrolytic Peptides. Crystal Growth & Design 2009, 9, (12), 5220-5226.

Cheng, X. G.; Haggins, D. G.; York, R. H.; Yeni, Y. N.; Akkus, O., Analysis of crystals leading to joint arthropathies by Raman Spectroscopy: comparision with compensated polarizing imaging. Applied Spectroscopy 2009, 63, (4), 381-6, PMID: 19366502

Dai, L. J.; Cheng, X. G.; Gower, L. B., Transition Bars during Transformation of an Amorphous Calcium Carbonate Precursor. Chemistry of Materials 2008, 20, (22), 6917-6928.

Cheng, X. G.; Gurkan, U. A.; Dehen, C. J.; Tate, M. P.; Hillhouse, H. W.; Simpson, G. J.; Akkus, O., An electrochemical fabrication process for the assembly of anisotropically oriented collagen bundles. Biomaterials 2008, 29, (22), 3278-3288.

Olszta, M. J.; Cheng, X. G.; Jee, S. S.; Kumar, R.; Kim, Y. Y.; Kaufman, M. J.; Douglas, E. P.; Gower, L. B., Bone structure and formation: A new perspective. Materials Science & Engineering R-Reports 2007, 58, (3-5), 77-116.

Cheng, X. G.; Kuhn, L., Chemotherapy drug delivery from calcium phosphate nanoparticles. International Journal of Nanomedicine 2007, 2, (4), 667-674.

Cheng, X. G.; Varona, P. L.; Olszta, M. J.; Gower, L. B., Biomimetic synthesis of calcite films by a polymerinduced liquid-precursor (PILP) process 1. Influence and incorporation of magnesium. Journal of Crystal Growth 2007, 307, (2), 395-404.

Cheng, X. G.; Gower, L. B., Molding mineral within microporous hydrogels by a polymer-induced liquidprecursor (PILP) process. Biotechnology Progress 2006, 22, (1), 141-149.

Cheng, X. G.; Wang, J.; Yuan, M. J.; He, J. S., Preparation of microcellular composites with biomimetic structure via supercritical fluid technology. Chinese Science Bulletin 2001, 46, (11), 909-911.

Chief Science Officer, Dynamic Entropy Technology, LLC

Core Faculty in the Joint Biomedical Engineering Graduate Program


Ph.D., Materials Science and Engineering, University of Florida, 2005

M.S., Chemistry, Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 2001

B.Eng, Engineering, University of Science and Technology of China, 1996


Phone: (210) 269-6757


Charles Wilson, Ph.D.



Dr. Wilson’s lab studies the circuitry and neurons of the basal ganglia, with the goal of understanding the computational function of these structures at the cellular level, and their dysfunction in diseases, especially Parkinson’s Disease. Their experiments are focused on the ionic mechanisms that endow each cell type with its characteristic responses to synaptic input, the patterns of connectivity that deliver specific inputs to each cell, and the dynamics that arise from the combination of these.

Selected Publications

Wilson, C.J. (2013) Active decorrelation in the basal ganglia. Neuroscience 250:467-482.

Dodla R and Wilson CJ. (2013) Interaction function of oscillating coupled neurons. Phys Rev E Stat Nonlin Soft Matter Phys. 88:042704.

Wilson C.J., Barraza D, Troyer T, and Farries F.A. (2014) Predicting the responses of repetitively firing neurons to current noise. PLoS Comput. Biol. 10:e1003612.

Beatty JA, Song SC, Wilson CJ. (2015) Cell-type-specific resonances shape the responses of striatal neurons to synaptic input. J Neurophysiol. 113:688-700. PMC4312866

Wilson CJ. (2015) Oscillators and Oscillations in the Basal Ganglia. Neuroscientist. 21:530-539. PMC4454624

Higgs MH, Wilson CJ. (2016) Unitary synaptic connections among substantia nigra pars reticulata neurons. J Neurophysiol.115:2814-2829. PMC4946591.

Rock C, Zurita H, Wilson C, Apicella AJ. (2016) An inhibitory corticostriatal pathway. Elife. May 9;5. pii: e15890. doi: 10.7554/eLife.15890. PMC4905740

Song SC, Beatty JA, Wilson CJ. (2016) The ionic mechanism of membrane potential oscillations and membrane resonance in striatal LTS interneurons. J Neurophysiol. 116:1752-1764. PMC5144687

Rock C, Zurita H, Lebby S, Wilson CJ, Apicella AJ. (2017) Cortical circuits of callosal GABAergic neurons. Cerebral Cortex 8:1-14.

Higgs M, Wilson CJ. (2017) Measurement of phase resetting curves using optogenetic barrage stimuli. J. Neurosci. Methods 289:23-30.

Dodla R, Wilson CJ. (2017) Effect of phase response curve shape and synaptic driving force on synchronization of coupled neuronal oscillators. Neural. Comput. 29:1769-1814.

Wilson CJ. (2017) Predicting the response of striatal spiny neurons to sinusoidal input. J. Neurophysiol. 118:855-873.

Here’s a link to his complete bibliography.

Professor and Ewing Halsell Chair in Biology, UTSA 


Ph.D. in Biopsychology; University of Colorado 

B.A. in Psychology; University of Colorado


Phone: (210) 458-5654 


Xiaodu Wang, Ph.D.

Wang xiaodu


Xiaodu Wang, Ph.D. is a professor in The University of Texas at San Antonio's Department of Mechanical Engineering. Professor Wang specializes in the study of hard tissue nanomechanics and prediction/prevention of aging and skeletal disorder induced bone fragility fractures.

Selected Publications

Xiaodu Wang, Haoran Xu, Yehong Huang, Sumin Gu, and Jean Jiang: Coupling effect of water and proteoglycan on the in situ toughness of bone, JBMR, (2016) 31(5): 1026-1029.

Liqiang Lin, Jitin Samuel, Xiaodu Wang, and Xiaowei Zeng: Contribution of extrafibrillar matrix to the mechanical behavior of bone using a novel cohesive finite element model, Journal of Mechanical Behavior of Biomedical Materials, (2016) 65: 224-235.

Xiao Yang, Ahmed Jenan Mostafa, Mark Appleford, Lian-Wen Sun, and Xiaodu Wang: Bone formation is affected by matrix advanced glycation end products (AGEs) in vivo, Calcified Tissue International, (2016) 99(4): 373-383

X. Dong, H. Leng, Q. Ran, X. Wang: Finding of microdamage morphology differences in mice femoral bones with distinct mineralization levels, Journal of Mechanics in Medicine and Biology (2010) accepted.

Silva, M. J., Brodt, M. D., Lynch, M. A., McKenzie, J. A., Tanouye, K. M., Nyman, J. S., Wang, X: Type 1 diabetes in young rats leads to progressive trabecular bone loss, cessation of cortical bone growth, and diminished whole bone strength and fatigue life, Journal of bone and mineral research, 24 (2009) 1618-27

X. Dong, T. Guda, H.R. Millwater, X. Wang: Probabilistic prediction of microdamage progression in bone using a finite element model of mineral-collagen composites, J. Biomech. 42 (2009) 202-209.

Y. Yang, S. Park, Y. Liu, K. Lee, H. Kim, J. Koh, X. Meng, K. Kim, H. Ji, X. Wang, J. Ong: Development of sputtered nanoscale titanium oxide coating on osseointegrated implant devices and their biological evaluation, Vacuum 83 (2009) 569-574.

H. Leng, X. Dong, and X. Wang: Progressive post-yield behavior of human cortical bone in compression for middle-aged and elderly groups, J. Biomech. 42 (2009) 491-497

J.S. Nyman, H. Leng, X. Dong, X. Wang: Differences in the mechanical behavior of cortical bone between compression and tension when subjected to progressive loading, Journal of Mechanical Behavior of Biomaterials, 2 (2009) 613-619

J.S. Nyman; Q. Ni, D.P. Nicollela, X. Wang: Measurements of mobile and bound water by nuclear magnetic resonance correlate with mechanical properties of bone, Bone 42 (2008) 193–199.

X. Wang, J.S. Nyman: A novel approach to assess post-yield energy dissipation of bone in tension, J. Biomech. 40 (2007) 674-7.

X. Wang, Y.J. Yoon, & H. Ji: A novel scratching approach for measuring age-related changes in the in situ toughness of bone, J. Biomech. 40 (2007) 1401-4.

S. Parachuru, A Jain, and X. Wang: Size requirements of compact sandwich specimen for testing of bone, J. Mechanics in Medicine and Biology 7 (2007) 419-431

J.S. Hyman, A. Roy, J.H. Tyler, R. Acuna, H.J. Gayle, and X. Wang: Age-related factors affecting the post-yield energy dissipation of human cortical bone. J. Orhtop. Res. 25 (2007) 646-655.

Q. Ni, J. S. Nyman, X. Wang, A. De Los Santos, and D.P. Nicolella: Assessment of water distribution changes in human cortical bone by nuclear magnetic resonance,Meas. Sci. Technol. 18 (2007) 1–9.

J.S. Nyman, A. Roy, R.L. Acuna, H.J. Gayle, M.J. R eyes, J.H. Tyler, D.D. Dean, and X. Wang: Age-related effect on the concentration of collagen crosslinks in human osteonal and interstitial bone tissue, Bone, 39 (2006) 1210-1217.

J.G. Fleischli, T.J. Laughlin, K.A. Athanasiou, D.R. Lanctot, L. Lavery, X. Wang, and C.M. Mauli: Effect of diabetes mellitus on the material properties of the distal tibia. Journal of the American Podiatric Association, (2006) 96(2) 91-95.

J. Nyman, A. Roy, X. Shen, and X. Wang: The influence of water distribution on the strength and toughness of cortical bone, J. Biomech. (2006) 39(5) 931–938.

Professor, Materials Engineering and Biomechanics, UTSA


Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, Yokohama National University, 1990

M.S., Mechanical Engineering, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, 1985

B.S., Mechanical Engineering, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, 1982



Phone: 210-458-5565

Liang Tang, Ph.D.



Translational research combining nanotechnology, biomolecular engineering, and clinical medicine is the focus to enhance healthcare quality from rapid medical diagnostics to therapeutic solutions. Specifically, new nanomaterials with desired optical and magnetic properties are fabricated and characterized. The nanoparticles can be further engineered for self-assembly to form large scale ordered 2D or 3D nanopatterns. By manipulating the unique properties, we emphasize innovative biomedical applications such as high-throughput and multiplexed nano-biochip for point-of-care diagnostics. Multifunctional nanoparticles are also developed as a paradigm shift to theranostic platform capable of not only cellular imaging for diagnosis, but also drug and siRNA delivery in situ for treatment.

Selected Publications

Tang L, Casas J, Venkataramasubramani, M. Magnetic nanoparticle mediated enhancement of localized surface plasmon resonance for ultrasensitive bioanalytical assay in human blood plasma. Analytical Chemistry, 85:1431-1439, (2013).

Casas J, Venkataramasubramani M, Wang YY, Tang L. Replacement of Cetyltrimethylammoniumbromide Bilayer on Gold Nanorod by Alkanethiol Crosslinker for Enhanced Plasmon Resonance Sensitivity. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 49:525-530, (2013).

Song C, Zhi A, Liu Q, Yang J, Jia G, Shervin J, Tang L, Hu X, Deng R, Xu C, Zhang GP. Rapid and sensitive detection of beta-agonists using a portable fluorescence biosensor based on fluorescent nanosilica and a lateral flow test strip. Biosensors and Bioelectronics,50:62-65, (2013).

Wang YY, Tang L. Chemisorption Assembly of Au Nanorods on Mercaptosilanized Glass Substrate and Biofunctionalization for Label-free Biological Detection. Analytica Chimica Acta, 796:122-129, (2013).

Mimum L, Pedraza F, Dhanale A, Tang L, Dravid V, Sardar D. Bimodal Imaging Using Neodymium Doped Gadolinium Fluoride Nanocrystals with Near-Infrared to Near-Infrared Down Conversion Luminescence and Magnetic Resonance Properties. J. of Mater. Chem. B., 1:5702-5710, (2013).

Pokhrel M, Mimum LC, Kumar GA, Yust B, Dhanale A, Tang L, Sardar DK. Stokes emission in GdF3:Nd(3+) nanoparticles for bioimaging probes. Nanoscale, 6:1667-1674 (2014). PMID: 24336743

Tang L, Casas J. Quantification of cardiac biomarkers using label-free and multiplexed gold nanorod bioprobes for myocardial infarction diagnosis. Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 61:70-75 (2014).

Zhang B, Morales AW, Peterso R, Tang L, Ye JY. Label-free detection of cardiac troponin I with a photonic crystal biosensor. Biosensor and Bioelectronics, 58:107-113 (2014).

Wang YY, Tang L. Multiplexed gold nanorod array biochip for multi-sample analysis. Biosensor and Bioelectronics, 14:542-549 (2014).

Wang XF, Mei Z, Wang YY, Tang L. Gold nanorod biochip functionalization by antibody thiolation. Talanta, 136:1-8 (2015).

Mei Z, Dhanale A, Gangaharan A, Sardar DK, Tang L. Water dispersion of magnetic nanoparticles with selective biofunctionality for enhanced plasmonic biosensing. Talanta, 151:23-29 (2016).

Mei Z, Tang L. Surface plasmon coupled fluorescence enhancedment based on ordered gold nanorod array biochip for ultra-sensitive DNA analysis. Analytical Chemistry, 89:633-639 (2017). 

Associate Professor

Graduate Advisor of Record (GAR)

Department of Biomedical Engineering




Phone: (210) 458-6557

Fidel Santamaria, Ph.D.



Dr. Santamaria’s lab studies the structural properties of dendrites that allow them to implement computational functions to process information and store memories. The influence of dendritic structure on the electrical properties of neurons has been intensely studied over 50 years; however, the question of how dendritic structure affects biochemical computation remains a very open topic of research. For example, from Dr. Santamaria’s work as well as the work of others in the field, it is now clear that not only the physical structure of dendrites, but also their cytostolic structure and organization affect computation. Dr. Santamaria’s research therefore addresses dendritic structure over a wide range of spatial scales, from nanoscopic to the whole dendrite.

At present, work is specifically focused on understanding how dendritic structure controls the reliability and specificity of the biochemical signals that underlie synaptic activity and plasticity. This is an important problem because it is not yet understood how the relatively low numbers of molecules in a synapse can support reliable memory storage especially given the inherently noise nature of biochemical cascades. The lab’s recent work has specifically shown that the complexity of dendritic structure, in this case the diversity and density of dendritic spines modifies the environmental diffusion of dendrites breaking down the classical laws of diffusion, named anomalous diffusion. The lab has been able to map spine density to the dendrite’s biochemical environment measured as the level of anomalous diffusion. The biological implications of this break-down are that the reaction rates that were assumed to be noisy at low concentrations may actually be much more efficient than previously expected, resulting in more reliable synapses processes.

Efforts are undertaken using combined and interacting computational, theoretical, and experimental approaches in order to develop a unified framework to understand how dendritic structure affects biochemical processing. The lab believes that this framework can be applied at multiple scales, from glutamate receptors moving in and out of the synapse, to large scale heterogeneous networks of spiking neurons.

Selected Publications

Stockton D and Santamaria F (2016). Automating NEURON simulation deployment in cloud resources. In press, Neuroinformatics.

Yang Z and Santamaria F (2016) Purkinje cell intrinsic excitability increases after synaptic long term depression. J Neurophysiology. DOI: 10.1152/jn.00369.2016

Mohapatra N, Tønnesen J, Vlachos A, Kuner T, Dealers T, Nägerl UV, Santamaria F, and Jedlicka P (2016) Spines slow down dendritic chloride diffusion and affect short-term ionic plasticity of GABAergic inhibition. Accepted Scientific Reports.

Teka W, Stockton DB, and Santamaria F (2016) Power-law dynamics of membrane conductances increase spiking diversity in a Hodgkin-Huxley model. In press PLoS Computational Biology.

Stockton DB and Santamaria F (2015). NeuroManager: A workflow analysis based simulation management engine for computational neuroscience. Frontiers in Neuroinformatics Vol. 9(24) 10.3389/fninf.2015.00024

Santamaria F. (2015) Cerebellum: Overview. Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience. Jung and Jaeger Eds. Springer.

Marinov T and Santamaria F. (2015) Diffusion Equation. Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience. Jung and Jaeger Eds. Springer.

Michaelides E and Santamaria F. (2015). Multi-Scale Modeling of Purkinje Cells. Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience. Jung and Jaeger Eds. Springer.

Deans H and Santamaria F. (2015). Modeling ion concentrations. Encyclopedia of Computational Neuroscience. Jung and Jaeger Eds. Springer.

Romero VH, Kereselidze Z, Egido W, Michaelides EA, Santamaria F, and Peralta XG. (2014). Nanoparticle assisted photothermal deformation of individual neuronal organelles and cells. Biomedical Optics Express. Vol. 5(11), pp 4002-4012. DOI:

Salinas K, Kereselidze Z, Peralta XG, Santamaria F. (2014). Transient extracellular application of gold nano-stars increases hippocampal neuronal activity. J. of Nanobiotechnology 12(31) DOI:

Teka W, Marinov T, Santamaria, F. (2014). Neuronal Spike Timing Adaptation Described with a Fractional Leaky Integrate-and-Fire Model. PLoS Comput Biol 10(3): e1003526. DOI:

Marinov TM and Santamaria F. (2014) Computational modeling of diffusion in the cerebellum. Prog Mol Biol Transl Sci.123:169-89. DOI:

Marinov T, Ramirez N, Santamaria F. (2013) Fractional integration toolbox. Fractional Calculus and Applied Analysis. Vol 16(3). DOI: 10.2478/s13540-013-0042-7

Santamaria F, Antunes G, and De Schutter E. Breakdown of mass-action laws in biochemical computation. (2012) Computational Systems Neurobiology, La Novere Bhalla Eds.

Kereselidze Z, Romero VH, Peralta XG, Santamaria F. (2012) Gold Nanostar Synthesis with a Silver Seed Mediated Growth Method. Journal of Visualized Experiments. DOI: 10.3791/3570

Santamaria F, Wils S, De Schutter E, Augustine GJ. (2011). The diffusional properties of dendrites depend on the density of dendritic spines. Eur. J. Neurosci. DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2011.07785.x.

Commentary: Anomalous diffusion imposed by dendritic spines (Commentary on Santamaria et al.) DOI: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2011.07809.x

Valdez CM, Smith MA, Perry G, Phelyx DF, Santamaria F (2011) Modeling cholesterol metabolism by gene expression profiling in the hippocampus. Mol. Biosyst., DOI:10.1039/C0MB00282H

Santamaria F, Gonzalez J, Augustine GJ, and Ragavachari S. (2010). Quantifying the effects of elastic collisions and non-covalent binding on glutamate receptor trafficking in the post-synaptic density. PLoS Comp. Bio. 6(5):e1000780. doi:10.1371/journal.pcbi.1000780

Coop AD, Cornelis H, and Santamaria F (2010). Dendritic excitability modulates dendritic information processing in a Purkinje cell model. Front. Comput. Neurosci. 4:6. doi:10.3389/fncom.2010.00006.

Valdez CM , Smith MA, Perry G, Phelyx CF, Santamaria F (2010). Cholesterol homeostasis markers are localized to mouse hippocampal pyramidal and granule layers. Hippocampus. doi: 10.1002/hipo.20743.

Augustine GJ, Santamaria F, Wils S, DeSchutter E (2009) Trapping of diffusing molecules by dendritc spines Journal of Neurochemistry. pp 69-69.

Santamaria F and Bower JM (2008). Theoretical and Computational Neuroscience: Hodgkin-Huxley models. The New Encyclopedia of Neuroscience. Elsevier.

Tanaka K, Khiroug L, Santamaria F, Doi T, Ogasawara H, Ellis-Davies GC, Kawato M, Augustine GJ (2007) Ca2+ requirements for cerebellar long-term synaptic depression: role for a postsynaptic leaky integrator. Neuron54: 787-800.

Santamaria F, Tripp PG, Bower JM (2007) Feedforward inhibition controls the spread of granule cell-induced Purkinje cell activity in the cerebellar cortex. J Neurophysiol97: 248-263.

Santamaria F, Wils S, De Schutter E, Augustine GJ (2006) Anomalous diffusion in Purkinje cell dendrites caused by spines.Neuron52: 635-648.

Santamaria F, Bower JM (2005) Background synaptic activity modulates the response of a modeled purkinje cell to paired afferent input. J Neurophysiol93: 237-250.

Augustine GJ, Santamaria F, Tanaka K (2003) Local calcium signaling in neurons. Neuron40: 331-346.

Santamaria F, Jaeger D, De Schutter E, Bower JM (2002) Modulatory effects of parallel fiber and molecular layer interneuron synaptic activity on purkinje cell responses to ascending segment input: a modeling study. J Comput Neurosci13: 217-235.

Mocanu OD, Oliver J, Santamaria F, Bower JM (2000) Branching point effects on the passive properties of the cerebellar granule cell axon. Neurocomputing. pp 207-212.

Santamaria F, Marsalek P (1998) Investigating spike backpropagation induced Ca2+ influx in models of hippocampal and cortical pyramidal neurons. Biosystems (48)1-3:147-156.

Associate Professor 

Department of Biology



Ph.D., Neuroscience, California Institute of Technology 

B.S., Physics, National Autonomous University of Mexico


Phone: (210) 458-6910 


Luke Norton, Ph.D.

Ln pic


Research Interests

My overall goal as a researcher is to combine physiological studies in humans and rodents with cutting-edge molecular and genomics approaches to improve our understanding of the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes. In particular, I am interested in how novel type 2 diabetes candidate genes influence an individual’s risk for diabetes at the physiological and molecular/genomic level. My lab is also involved in novel studies designed to unravel the mechanism of action of novel and established type 2 diabetes medications in humans, animals and cells. We use a range of modern molecular and physiological tools to approach these questions.

Graduate School Activities

- PHYL 6020: Diabetes Lecture Series, Department of Physiology, UTHSCSA.

- PHAR 5019: Metabolism, Hormones, GI Physiology and Therapeutics, Department of Pharmacology, UTHSCSA

- Graduate Student Mentor (Iriscilla Ayala, UTHSCSA), 2016 – present

- Graduate Student Mentor (Stephen Chen, UTHSCSA) 2013 – present

- Graduate Student Mentor (Lu Zhang, UTHSCSA) 2013 – present

- Graduate Student Mentor (Juan Xiong, UTHSCSA) 2013 – present

- Graduate Student Committee member (Jianbo Wang, UTHSCSA) 2013 – 2014

- Medical Student Research Program mentor 2013 – 2014

Selected Publications

Chen X, Ayala I, Shannon CE, Fourcaudot M, Acharya NK, Jenkinson CP, Heikkinen S, Norton L: The Diabetes Gene and Wnt Pathway Effector TCF7L2 Regulates Adipocyte Development and Function. Diabetes. 2018 (in press)

Norton L, Shannon CE, Fourcaudot M, Hu C, Wang N, Ren W, Song J, Abdul-Ghani M, DeFronzo RA, Ren J, Jia W*: Sodium-glucose (SGLT) and Glucose (GLUT) Transporter Expression in the Kidney of Type 2 Diabetic Subjects. Diabetes Obes Metab. 2017 19(9):1322-1326

ShannonCE, DanieleG, Galindo C, Abdul-Ghani MA, DeFronzo RA, and Norton L: Pioglitazone Inhibits Mitochondrial Pyruvate Metabolism and Glucose Production in Hepatocytes, FEBS J, 2016 (in press)

Norton L, Chen X, Fourcaudot M, DeFronzo RA and Heikkinen S*: The Mechanisms of Genome-Wide Target Gene Regulation by TCF7L2 in Liver Cells, Nucleic Acids Res, 2014 42(22):13646-61 (*corresponding author)

Abdul-Ghani MA, DeFronzo RA and Norton L: A Novel Hypothesis to Explain Why SGLT2 Inhibitors Inhibit only 30-50% of Filtered Glucose Load in Humans Diabetes, 2013 62(10):3324-8, 2013

Norton L, FourcaudotM, Abdul-Ghani MA, WinnierD, MehtaFF, JenkinsonCP and DeFronzo RA: Chromatin occupancy of transcription factor 7-like 2 (TCF7L2) and its role in hepatic glucose metabolism Diabetologia 54(12):3132-42, 2011 (*corresponding author)

Norton L, Parr T, Chokkalingam K, Bardsley RG, Ye H, Bell GI, Pelsers MM, van Loon LJ, Tsintzas K: Calpain-10 mRNA and protein levels in human skeletal muscle: Effect of acute lipid-induced insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 93(3):992-8, 2008

Assistant Professor 

Department of Medicine/Diabetes Division



Phone: (210) 567-0739

Hye Young Lee, Ph.D.

Hye young lee cropped


Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) form a heterogeneous neurodevelopmental syndrome characterized by deficits in language development/social interactions, and repetitive behavior/restricted interests. ASD likely arises from a complex combination of risk factors. However, it remains possible that certain aspects of the molecular pathophysiology responsible for ASD are recurrent themes that can inform the underlying neurobiological basis of ASD. The goal of Dr.Hye Young Lee's research is: 1) to identify the molecular mechanisms responsible for the pathophysiology of ASD and to use these mechanisms to rescue ASD symptoms in mouse models, which will help us understand/improve mental function and behavioral deficits and 2) to elucidate the social communication deficits and repetitive behaviors in autism mouse models and to identify the brain region and neurons underlying these behavioral deficits, which will help us understand how this circuitry might contribute to compromised behavioral phenotypes in ASD.

Assistant Professor


Ph.D., Life Science, Pohang University of Science and Technology, 2006

B.S., Biological Sciences, Ewha Women's University, 2001



Karl Rodriguez, Ph.D.

Karlrodriguez cropped (2)


My long-term research goal is to understand the role of molecular chaperones in protein homeostasis and how proteostasis influences healthspan and longevity. Molecular chaperones, namely heat shock proteins (HSPs), play a key role in maintaining protein quality, preventing protein unfolding and aggregation and influencing the rates of protein degradation via either the proteasome or autophagy. During aging, most organisms have a greater load of damaged or misfolded proteins to target for degradation. This condition is exacerbated by a decline in the efficacy of proteolytic machinery and leads to an accrual of the aggregation-prone cytotoxic proteins that underlie several age-associated pathologies (e.g., Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, sarcopenia). We study these pathologies in the lab.

My lab recently discovered that heat shock protein 25kDa (HSP25) correlated with maximum lifespan potential in rodent muscle and liver tissue. The mechanisms and regulatory processes by which HSP25 is responds to stress within a cell and this regulation influences both cellular and organ health and lifespan is unknown and presents a gap of knowledge in the field of chaperone biology. One of the main projects in the lab is to discover this mechanism in the context of aging and neurodegenerative disease using the Caenorhabditis elegans worm model system. So far we have discovered that HSP25 overexpression positively affects lifespan and mitigates the toxicity of both polyglutamine and tau aggregates.

We have expanded upon this project to look at other small heat shock chaperones and their role in health and longevity in the worm. These roles have led us to look at nutritional stress and inflammatory changes with age and disease. The lab does not only use worms as a model system. Mechanistic discoveries in worms are used to inform future projects in cell culture systems (immortalized and primary), and in animal models such as mice and the long-lived naked mole-rat (Heterocephalus glaber). In the vertebrate systems we examine physiology and behavior in our animals as well as cell and molecular biology.

Selected Publications

Rodriguez KA, Valentine JM, Kramer DA, Gelfond JA, Kristan DM, Nevo E, Buffenstein, R. Determinants of rodent longevity in the chaperone-protein degradation network. Cell Stress Chaperones. 2016 May; 21(3):453-66. doi 10.1007/s12192-016-0672-x. PMID: 26894765.

Rodriguez KA, Li K, Nevo E, Buffenstein R. Mechanisms regulating proteostasis are involved in sympatric speciation of the blind mole rat, Spalax galili. Autophagy. 2016 April 2; 12(4) 703-04. doi: 10.1080/15548627. PMID: 27050459

Triplett JC, Tramutola A, Swomley A, Kirk J, Grimes K, Lewis K, Orr M, Rodriguez K, Cai J, Klein JB, Perluigi M, Buffenstein R, Butterfield DA. Age-related changes in the proteostasis network in the brain of the naked mole-rat: Implications promoting healthy longevity. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2015 Oct; 1852(10 Pt A):2213-24. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2015.08.002. PMID: 26248058.

Li K, Hong W, Jiao H, Wang GD, Rodriguez KA, Buffenstein R, Zhao Y, Nevo E, Zhao H. Sympatric speciation revealed by genome-wide divergence in the blind mole rat Spalax. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 Sep 22; 112(38):11905-10. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1514896112. PMID: 26340990.

Rodriguez KA, Osmulski PA, Pierce A, Weintraub ST, Gaczynska M, Buffenstein R. A cytosolic protein factor from the naked mole-rat activates proteasomes of other species and protects these from inhibition. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2014 Nov; 1842(11):2060-72. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2014.07.005. PMID: 25018089.

Rodriguez KA, Dodds SG, Strong R, Galvan V, Sharp ZD, Buffenstein R. Divergent tissue and sex effects of rapamycin on the proteasome-chaperone network of old mice. Front Mol Neurosci. 2014 Nov 4; 7:83. doi: 10.3389/fnmol.2014.00083. eCollection 2014. PMID: 25414638.

Assistant Professor of Cell Systems and Anatomy


Ph.D. Molecular Medicine, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2002



Phone: (210) 567-7221

Office: STCBM 3.100.04 

Graduate Students

Courtney Carroll, Ph.D., Post-doctoral Fellow (SABER-IRACDA program)

Chelbee Farnen, Graduate Student (IBMS, CGM discipline)

Aliyah Encarnacion, Research Assistant

Vicky Poenitzsch, Ph.D.

D015615 poenitzsch


Dr. Poenitzsch’s main area of interest and expertise is in the synthesis and characterization of thin films, nanoparticles, and nanocomposite materials for varied applications. She employs a portfolio of technologies including physical vapor deposition, chemical vapor deposition, plasma enhanced chemical vapor deposition, atmospheric pressure plasmas and wet chemical synthetic processes for preparing thin films and nanoparticles.

Dr. Poenitzsch explores novel technologies for future applications to benefit mankind along with materials solutions for near-term problems. She is an aggressive and resourceful investigator with demonstrated capability to technically, programmatically, and strategically lead programs ranging from thousands of dollars to over $5M for both government and industrial clients.

Dr. Poenitzsch is also on the Nanotechnology Advisory Committee for Northwest Vista College and is an Adjoint Faculty member in the Biomedical Engineering Graduate Program at the University of Texas San Antonio. She also serves on the organizing committee for the San Antonio Nanotechnology Forum. Dr. Poenitzsch was honored in 2014 as a rising star by San Antonio Business Journal’s 40 under 40 listing. Dr. Poenitzsch has published multiple high-impact papers in refereed journals, authored several patent applications, and presented at numerous technical symposia.

Selected Publications 

V. Z. Poenitzsch, K. A. Slinker, D. W. Miles, M. A. Miller, R. Wei, K. Coulter, S. H. Gardner “ Free Standing Foils of Nanotube Arrays Fused with Metals” J. Mat. Sci 2014, 20, 7080-7086.

X. Cheng, V. Z. Poenitzsch, L. Cornell, C. Tsao, T. Potter “Electrochemical biocencapsulation of nanomaterials into collagen for biomedical applications” J. Encapsulation and Adsoportion Science 2013, 3, 16-23.

V. Z. Poenitzsch, S. T. Wellinghoff, B. R. Furman, M. J. Rubal, K. E. Coulter “Preparation of yttria-stabilized zirconia nanoplatelets using vacuum roll coating” J. Mat. Sci. 2012, 47, 3407-3414.

V.Z. Poenitzsch, C. A. Engel, K. E. Coulter “Preparation of nanoplatelets using vacuum roll coating” Microsc. Microanal. 2008, 14, 272.

V.Z. Poenitzsch, H. Xie, A.B. Dalton, G.R. Dieckmann, I. H. Musselman “Effect of electron-donating and electron-withdrawing groups on peptide/single-walled carbon nanotube interactions” J Am. Chem. Soc. 2007, 129, 14724.

S.F. Chin, R.H. Baughman, A.B. Dalton, G. R. Dieckmann, R. K. Draper, C. Mikoryak, I. H. Museelman, V. Z. Poenitzsch, H. Xie, P. Pantano “Amphiphilic helical peptide increased the uptake of single-walled carbon nanotubes by living cells” Experimental Biology and Medicine, 2007, 232, 1236.

I. H. Musselman, V. Z. Poenitzsch, G. R. Dieckmann “Scanning tunneling microscopy and spectroscopy of peptide-wrapped single-walled carbon nanotubes” Microsc. Microanal. 2006, 12, 554-555.

V. Z. Poenitzsch, I. H. Musselman “Atomic force microscopy measurements of peptide-wrapped single-walled carbon nanotube diameters” Microsc. Microanal. 2006, 12, 221-227.

V. Zorbas,M. Kanungo, M., S. A. Bains, Y. Mao, T. Hemraj-Benny, J. A. Misewich, S. S. Wong “Current-less photoreactivity catalyzed by functionalized AFM tips” Chem. Comm. 2005, 36, 4598-4600.

V. Zorbas,A. L.Smith, X. Hie, A. Ortiz-Acevedo, A. B. Dalton, G. R. Dieckmann, R. K. Draper, R. H. Baughman, I. H. Musselman “Importance of aromatic content for peptide/single-walled carbon nanotube interactions” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2005,127, 12323-12328.

A. Ortiz-Acevedo, H. Xie, V. Zorbas, W. M. Sampson, A. B. Dalton, R. H. Baughman, R, K, Draper, I. H. Musselman, G. R. Dieckmann “Diameter selective solubilization of single-walled carbon nanotubes by reversible cyclic peptides” J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2005,127, 9512-9517.

V. Zorbas, A. Ortiz-Acevedo, A. B. Dalton, M. M. Yoshida, G. R. Dieckmann, R. K. Draper, R. H. Baughman, M. J. Yacaman, I. H. Musselman “Preparation and characterization of individual peptide-wrapped single-walled carbon nanotubes”, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2004,126, 7222-7226.

X. Cheng, V. Z. Poenitzsch “Aligned polymer including bonded substrates” Pub No. US2011/0306754 A1.

K. A. Slinker, V. Z. Poenitzsch “Interface infused nanotube interconnects” Pub No. US2010/021736 A1 and EP2149538 A2.

Principal Scientist 

Surface Engineering & Materials 

Chemistry Materials Engineering Department 

Mechanical Engineering Division

Southwest Research Institute 


Ph.D., Chemistry, The University of Texas at Dallas, 2007

B.S., Chemistry, United States Military Academy at West Point, 1997


Phone: (210) 522-3755 


Anson Ong, Ph.D.

Ong joo


Dr. Anson Ong's primary research focus on modifications and characterization of implant biomaterial surfaces for dental and orthopedic applications, tissue engineered bioceramic scaffolds, protein-biomaterials interactions, and bone-biomaterials interactions.

In the area of implant surfaces, one of his research goals is to better understand the biological basis for successful orthopedic and dental implant therapy by elucidating the phenomena that govern osseointegration. Central to achieving this goal is the need to understand the mechanisms which control early responses of bone cells, both at implant surfaces and in the micro-environment associated with the cell-implant interface. In his laboratory, several coating processes are being investigated. The role of well-characterized HA and other calcium phosphates on early bone cell activity are also being investigated in vitro and in vivo. Their objectives are to systematically correlate the effect of HA surfaces of different crystallinity to dissolution, protein adsorption, and early maturation of bone cells in vitro and in vivo. It is their intention that our research will contribute to the development of an ideal implant surface for optimum osseointegration, thereby reducing implant failures which are expensive to patients in terms of implant cost, surgery cost, trauma and time.

In the area of tissue engineering, one of their research goals is to replace lost or missing tissues from the human body. Their research laboratory at UTSA is one of a few in the nation that focus on the use of calcium phosphates (CaP) ceramics, such as hydroxyapatite and tricalcium phosphate, to produce trabecular bone-like scaffolds for orthopedic and dental applications.

Rationales for the use of CaP ceramics stem from the fact that CaP is found in bones and teeth, and it shows promises of biocompatibility, osteoconductivity, and biodegradability. Their research on these scaffolds included alteration of composition and architecture, the production of nano-crystalline surface, and means to deliver growth factors and drugs. In addition, their laboratory evaluates the effects of external stimuli on bone formation and vascularization within the scaffolds in vitro and in vivo. Aside from translating the technology to the clinics, these researches also provide them with basic understandings of how tissues regenerate on 3-D scaffolds in order to persuade the body to heal or repair. Major advancements in this area have been made within their group and these scaffolds are currently being evaluated in animal models.

Selected Publications 

J Protivinsky, M Appleford, J Strnad, A Helebrant, JL Ong. Effect of chemically modified titanium surfaces on protein adsorption and osteoblast precursor cell behavior. International Journal of Oral and Maxillofacial Implants (in press).

W Chen, S Oh, AP Ong, N Oh, Y Liu, HS Courtney, M Appleford, JL Ong. Anti-bacterial and osteogenic properties of silver- containing hydroxyapatite coatings produced using a sol gel process. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research (in press).

MR Appleford, S Oh, JA Cole, J Protivinsky, JL Ong. Ultrasound effects on osteoblast precursor cells in trabecular calcium phosphate scaffolds. Biomaterials (in press).

BC Chesnutt, Y Yuan, N Brahmandam, Y Yang, JL Ong, WO Haggard, JD Bumgardner. Characterization of biomimetic calcium phosphate on phosphorylated chitosan films. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research 2007, 82A:343-353.

MR Appleford, S Oh, JA Cole, DL Carnes, M Lee, JD. Bumgardner, WO Haggard, JL Ong. Effects of trabecular calcium phosphate scaffolds on stress-signaling in osteoblast precursor cells. Biomaterials 2007, 28:2747-2753.

JD Bumgardner, BM Chesnutt, Y Yuan, Y Yang, M Appleford, S Oh, R McLaughlin, SH Elder, JL Ong. The integration of chitosan-coated titanium in bone: An in vivo study in rabbits. Implant Dentistry 2007, 16:66-79.

N-S Oh, D-J Kim, JL Ong, H-Y Lee, K-W Lee. Properties and cyclic fatigue of glass infiltrated tape-cast alumina cores produced using a water-based solvent. Dental Materials 2007, 23:442-449.

CM Alves, Y Yang, DL Carnes, JL Ong, VL Sylvia, DD Dean, CM Agrawal, RL Reis. Modulating bone cells response onto starch-based biomaterials by surface plasma treatment and protein adsorption. Biomaterials 2007, 28:307-315.

W Chen, Y Liu, HS Courtney, M Bettenga, CM Agrawal, JD Bumgardner, JL Ong. In vitro anti-bacterial and biological properties of magnetron co-sputtered silver-containing hydroxyapatite coating. Biomaterials 2006, 27:5512-5517.

JL Ong, M Appleford, S Oh, Y Yang, W-H Chen, JD Bumgardner, WO Haggard. The characterization and development of bioactive hydroxyapatite coatings. Journal of the Minerals, Metals, and Materials 2006, 58:67-70.

Y Yang, N Oh, Y Liu, W Chen, S Oh, M Appleford, S Kim, K Kim, S Park, J Bumgardner, W Haggard, J Ong. Enhancement of osseointegration using surface modified titanium implant. Journal of the Minerals, Metals, and Materials 2006, 58:71-76.

A Rabiei, B Thomas, R Narayan, J Cuomo, Y Yang, JL Ong. A study on functionally graded HA coatings processed using ion beam assisted deposition with in-situ heat treatment. Surface and Coatings Technology 2006, 200:6111-6116.

Kyohan Kim, Tae-Yub Kwon, Shin-Yoon Kim, Inn-Kyu Kang, Sukyoung Kim, Yang Y, Ong JL. Preparation and characterization of anodized titanium surfaces and their effect on osteoblast response. Journal of Oral Implantology 2006; 32:8-13.

Y Zhao, G He, R Nie, X Deng, Z Liang, X Li, J Ong, Y Yang, Z Chen. Calcium phosphate coating over silk fibroin film by biomimetic methods. J Wuhan U of Technol - Mater Sci Ed 2005; 20 (Suppl): 92-9.

P Berube, Y Yang, D Carnes, R Stover, E Boland, JL Ong. The effect of sputtered calcium phosphate coatings of different crystallinity on osteoblast differentiation. Journal of Periodontology 2005; 76:1697-1703.

S Oh, E Tobin, Y Yang, D Carnes, JL Ong. In vivo evaluation of hydroxyapatite coating of different crystallinity. Journal of Oral Implantology 2005; 20:726-731.

CK You, XW Meng, TY Kwon, YZ Yang, SK Choi, KB Park, JL Ong, S Kim, and KH Kim. Development of hydroxyapatite thin film on titanium substrate by electrophoretic deposition. Key Engineering Materials 2005; 284-286:901-904.

Kern T, Y Yang, R Glover, JL Ong. Effect of heat-treated titanium surfaces on protein adsorption and osteoblast precursor cell initial attachment. Implant Dentistry 2005; 14:70-76.

Associate Dean of Administration, College of Engineering

USAA Foundation Distinguished Professor at UTSA

Adjunct Professor in Comprehensive Dentistry at UTHSCSA.  


B.S., University of Iowa

M.S., University of Alabama at Birmingham

Ph.D., University of Alabama at Birmingham



Phone: 210-458-7084

Daniel Nicolella, Ph.D.



Dr. Daniel Nicolella is an Institute Engineer in the Materials Engineering Department at Southwest Research Institute. He is also an adjunct professor for the Biomedical Engineering Joint Program. 

Selected Publications

Bonivtch, A.R., Bonewald, L.F., and Nicolella, D.P.: Tissue strain at the osteocyte lacuna: a microstructural finite element model. Journal of Biomechanics, 40(10), 2199-206, 2007.

Ni, Q.; Nyman, J. S.; Wang, X.; De Los Santos, A.; Nicolella, D.P.: Assessment of water distribution changes in human cortical bone by nuclear magnetic resonance. Measurement Science and Technology,18(3), 715-723, 2007.

Barragan-Adjemian, C., Nicolella, D.P., Dusevich, V., Dallas, M.R., Eick, J.D., and BonewaldL.F.: Mechanism by Which MLO-A5 Late Osteoblast/Early Osteocytes Mineralize in Culture: Similarities with Mineralization of Lamellar Bone. Calcified Tissue International, 79 (5): 340-353, 2006.

Chan, K.S., Lee, Y-D, Nicolella, D.P., Furman, B.r., Wellinghoff, S., and Rawls, R.: Improfving fracture toughness of dental nanocomposites by interface engineering and micromechanics. Engineering Fracture Mechanics, accepted, 2006.

"Osteocyte Lacunae Tissue Strain in cortical Bone," D.P. Nicolella, D.E. Moravits, A.M. Gale, L.F. Bonewald and J. Lankford, Journal of Biomechanics, 39, 1735-1743, 2006.

D.P. Nicolella, B.H. Thacker, H. Katoozian, and D.T. Davy: The Effect of Three Dimensional Shape Optimization on the Probabilistic Response of a Cemented Femoral Hip Prosthesis. Journal of Biomechanics, 39 1265-1278, 2006.

D.P. Nicolella, L.F. Bonewald, D.E. Moravits, J. Lankford: Measurement of Microstructural Strain in Cortical Bone. European Journal of Morphology, 42(1/2), 23-29, 2005.

Thacker, B.H., Enright, M.P., Nicolella, D.P., Riha, D.S., Huyse, L.J., Waldhart, W.J., Fitch: "Applications of Reliability Assessment," CRC Engineering Design Reliability Handbook S.HK., Accepted for publication, 2005. E. Nikolaidis and D.M. Ghiocel (eds).

Do-Gyoon Kim, J.B. Brunski and D.P. Nicolella: Microstrain Fields for Critical Bone in Uniaxial Tension: Optical Analysis Method. Journal of Engineering in Medicine, Part H, 219(2), 119-128, 2005.

Q. Ni and D.P. Nicolella: The characterization of human cortical bone microdamage by nuclear magnetic resonance. Measurement Science and Technology, 16:659-668, 2005.

D.P. Nicolella and J. Lankford: Microstructural strain near osteocyte lacuna in cortical bone in vitro. J Muscoloskelet Neuronal Interact, 2(3), 261-3, 2002.

Nicolella, D.P., Thacker, B.H., Katoozian, H., and Davy, D.T.: Probabilistic Risk Analysis of a Cemented Hip Implant. Journal of Mathematical Modelling and Scientific computing, 13(1-2): 98-108, 2001.

Thacker, B.H., Nicolella, D.P., Kumaresan, S., Yoganandan, N., and Pintar, F.A.: Probabilistic Finite Element Analysis of the Human Lower Cervical Spine. Journal of Mathematical Modeling and Scientific Computing, 13(1-2): 12-21, 2001.

R.A. Brand, C.M. Stanford, and D.P. Nicolella: Primary Adult Human Bone Cells Do Not Respond to Tissue (Continuum) Level Strains. Journal of Orthopaedic Science, 6(3):259-301, 2001.

D.P. Nicolella, A.E. Nicholls, J. Jankford, and D.T. Davy: Machine Vision Photogrammetry: a technique for measurement of microstructural strain in cortical bone. J. Biomechanics, 34(1) 134-139, 2001.

Adjoint Professor 



B.S., Drexel University

M.S., Drexel University

Ph.D., Case Western Reserve University 


Phone: (210) 522-3222

Richard Lebaron, Ph.D.



Dr. LeBaron’s interests are to understand how cells’ microenvironment contributes to disease progression. Changes in the microenvironment in the human body are defined, at least in part, by molecules of the extracellular matrix (ECM) and ECM interactions with cell surface signaling receptors called integrins. The lab’s recombinant protein technology has identified roles of ECM interaction on integrins in cell adhesion, migration, and cell death by apoptosis in disease states such as degenerative articular joint disease, diabetes, and cancer. Understating the complex relationship of ECM activation of cellular signaling pathways in diseased and healthy tissues is expected to provide opportunities for novel drug design and patient treatments.

Selected Publications 

Thoma, B.S., Moritz, R.J., Rezapoor, F., Sargent, C.T., Phelix, C.F., LeBaron, R.G. (2016) BIGH3: A Negative Regulator of Human Osteosarcoma Large Multicellular Spheroids. Int. J. Clin. Med. 2016. (Online 2158-2882

TGFβ induces BIGH3 expression and human retinal pericytes apoptosis: A novel pathway of diabetic retinopathy. (2016) Betts-Obregon, B.S., Mondragon, A.A., Mendiola A.S., LeBaron, R.G., Asmis, R., Zou, T., Gonzalez-Fernandez, F., Tsin, A.T. Eye, 1–9. (Online

Moritz, R.J., LeBaron, R,G., Phelix, C.F, Rupaimoole, R., Kim H-S., H-S., Tsin, A. Asmis, R. Macrophage TGF-β1 and the Proapoptotic Extracellular Matrix Protein BIGH3 Induce Renal Cell Apoptosis in Prediabetic and Diabetic Conditions. (2016) Int. J. Clin. Med. 7, (Online July 2016 Sci/Res.


Department of Biology



Ph.D. in Biochemistry; University of Alabama 

B.S. in Biology; Louisiana State University


Phone: (210) 458-5841 


Yufang Jin, Ph.D.



Dr. Yufang Jin received her Ph.D. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Central Florida in 2004. Since then, she has been with the Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) as an Full Professor. She was promoted to Associate Professor in 2016. She has also been an associated faculty for Biomedical Engineering Program sponsored by both UTSA and the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.

Dr. Jin’s expertise is in the area of computational biology, mathematical modeling, and control theory. She currently focuses on multi-scale modeling for cardiovascular remodeling post-MI, cardiac aging, and proteomics. She was a recipient of Best Paper Award of 2006 and 2005 Artificial Neural Networks in Engineering Conference. Her research has been supported by NSF, National Institute of Health, Texas Higher Educational Board, and AT&T foundation. She has been an organizer of several special sessions and workshops including the IEEE International Conference on Mechatronics and Automation, International Conference on BioComp, and IEEE international Conference on Machine Learning and Cybernetics.

Selected Publications

Chiao YA, Dai Q, Zhang J, Lin J, Lopez E, Ahuja SS, Chou YM, Lindsey ML, and Jin YF, “Multi-analyte profiling reveals mmp-9 and mcp-1 as plasma biomarkers of cardiac aging”, Circ Cardiovasc Genet. 4(4):455-462 (2011). PMID:21685172. (IF: 6.7)

Ghasemi O, Lindsey ML, Yang T, Nguyen N, Huang Y, and Jin YF. Bayesian parameter estimation for nonlinear modeling of biological pathways, BMC Systems Biology, 5:S3:S9, 2011. PMID:22784628. (Highly accessed paper) (IF:3.15)

Halade GV, Jin YF, and Lindsey ML. Matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-9: a proximal biomarker for cardiac remodeling and a distal biomarker for inflammation, Pharmacol Ther. 2013 Jul;139(1):32-40. PMID: 23562601. (IF: 9.72)

Castro Bras L, Iyer PR, Jin YF, and Lindsey ML. Translating Koch's Postulates to Identify Matrix Metalloproteinase Roles in Post-Myocardial Infarction Remodeling: The Cardiac Metalloproteinase Actions (CarMA) Postulates, Circulation Research 2013. (IF: 11.02)

Nguyen NT, Zhang X, Wu C, Lange RA, Chilton RJ, Lindsey ML, Jin YF. Integrative Computational and Experimental Approaches to Establish a Post-Myocardial Infarction Knowledge Map. PLoS Computation Biology, (2014) PLoS Comput Biol 10(3): e1003472. doi: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1003472. (IF: 4.87)

Yabluchanskiy A, Ma Y, Chiao YA, Lopez EF, Voorhees A, Toba H, Hall ME, Han H-C, Lindsey ML, and Jin YF. Cardiac aging is initiated by matrix metalloproteinase-9 mediated endothelial dysfunction. American Journal of Physiology: Heart and Circulatory Physiology. 306:H1398-H1407 (2014). (IF: 3.84)

Ma Y, Chiao YA, Clark R, Flynn ER, Yabluchanskiy A, Ghasemi O, Zouein F, Lindsey ML, and Jin YF. Deriving a cardiac ageing signature to reveal MMP-9-dependent inflammatory signalling in senescence. Cardiovasc Res. 106: 421-431 (2015), PMID:25883218, (IF: 5.94)

Nguyen NT, Lindsey ML, Jin YF. Systems analysis of gene ontology and biological pathways involved in post-myocardial infarction responses. BMC Genomics Vol 16, S7, 2015, PMID:26100218. (IF:3.99)

DeCoux A, Tian Y, DeLeon-Pennell KY, Nguyen NT, de Castro Bras LE, Flynn ER, Cannon PL, Griswold ME, Jin YF, Puskarich MA, Jones AE, and Lindsey ML. Plasma Glycoproteomics Reveals Sepsis Outcomes Linked to Distinct Proteins in Common Pathways. Critical Care Medicine. 43(10):2049-58 (2015), PMID:26080492. (IF:6.15)

Merry L. Lindsey, Manuel Mayr, Aldrin V. Gomes, Christian Delles, D. Kent Arrell, PhD; Anne M. Murphy, Richard A. Lange, Catherine E. Costello, Jin YF, Daniel T. Laskowitz, FAHA; Flora Sam, Andre Terzic, Jennifer Van Eyk, and Pothur R. Srinivas, The Transformative Impact of Proteomics on Cardiovascular Health and Disease, American Heart Association, Scientific Statement, Circulation, 132(9):852-872, 2015, PMID: 26195497 (IF:11.02)

Lindsey ML. DeLeon-Pennell KY, Zamilpa R, Zouein F, Bratton D, Flynn ER, Cannon PL, Tian Y, Jin YF, Lange RA, Fields GB, Iyer PR, de Castro Brás LE. A Novel Collagen Matricryptin Reduces Left Ventricular Dilation Post-myocardial Infarction by Promoting Scar Formation and Angiogenesis, Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 66(12): 1364-1374 2015. (IF:16.5) 


Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering 



Ph.D. Electrical Engineering, University of Central Florida, 2004


Phone: (210) 458-5588

Fax:(210) 458-5947 


Yufei Huang, Ph.D.

Yufei v2 cropped


Dr. Yufei Huang received his Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from the State University of New York at Stony Brook in 2001. Since 2002, he has been with the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), where he is now Professor. He is also an adjunct professor at the Dept. of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. He has been a visiting professor at the Center of Bioinformatics, Harvard Center for Neurodegeneration & Repair.

Dr. Huang’s expertise is in the areas of computational biology, computationalneuroergonomics, brain computer interface, statistical modeling, and Bayesian methods. He is currently focusing on uncovering the functions of mRNA methylation using high throughput sequencing technologies, developing passive EEG-based brain-machine-interaction, and deep learning algorithms for EEG data analysis. He was a recipient of US National Science Foundation (NSF) Early CAREER Award in 2005, Best Paper Award of 2006 Artificial Neural Networks in Engineering Conference, and 2007 Best Paper Award of IEEE Signal Processing Magazine. His research has been supported by NSF, National Institute of Health, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Army Research Lab, Department of Defense, and Qatar National Research Fund. He has been an organizer of workshops and several special sessions including the IEEE Workshop on Genomic Signal Processing and Statistics, and Workshop on Systems Biology and Medicine, and IEEE Bioinformatics and Biomedicine Conference. He is an Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing, BMC Systems Biology, EURASIP Journal on Bioinformatics and Computational Biology, and International Journal Machine Leaning and Cybernetics.

Selected Publications

Zhou, Yi, Hung‐I. H. Chen, A. L. Lin, H. Dang, Karin Haack, Shelley A. Cole,Yufei Huang, Haiyang Yu, Yidong Chen, and Chih‐Ko Yeh. "Early Gene Expression in Salivary Gland After Isoproterenol Treatment."Journal of cellular biochemistry116, no. 3 (2015): 431-437. (IF: 3.368)

Liu H, Flores MA, Meng J, Zhang L, Zhao X, Rao MK, Chen Y, Huang Y*. MeT-DB: a database of transcriptome methylation in mammalian cells. Nucleic Acids Res. 2014 Nov 6. pii: gku1024. PubMed PMID: 25378335. (IF: 8.378)

Yao, Wan X., Jinqi Li, Zhiguo Jiang, Jia-Hong Gao, Crystal G. Franklin, Yufei Huang, Jack L. Lancaster, and Guang H. Yue. "Aging interferes central control mechanism for eccentric muscle contraction." Frontiers in aging neuroscience 6 (2014).

Liu, Lian, Shao-Wu Zhang, Yu-Chen Zhang, Hui Liu, Lin Zhang, RunshengChen, Yufei Huang, and Jia Meng. "Decomposition of RNA methylome reveals co-methylation patterns induced by latent enzymatic regulators of theepitranscriptome."Molecular BioSystems11, no. 1 (2015): 262-274. (IF:3.18)

M. Flores, Y. Chen, Y. Huang*. TraceRNA: A Web Application for Competing Endogenous RNA Exploration.Circ Cardiovasc. Genet, 2014, Aug; 7(4): 548-57. doi: 10.1161/CIRCGENETICS.113.000125 (IF: 6.728)

Rosalie Moody, Ying Zhu, Yufei Huang, Xiaodong Cui, Tiffany Jones, RobleBedolla, Xiufen Lei, Zhiqiang Bai, Shou-Jiang Gao. KSHV MicroRNAs Mediate Cellular Transformation and Tumorigenesis by Redundantly Targeting Cell Growth and Survival Pathways. PLoS Pathogens, 2014; 9 (12): e1003857 DOI: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1003857, PMID:24385912 (IF: 8.13)

Meng J, Lu Z, Liu H, Zhang L, Zhang S, Chen Y, Rao MK, Huang Y*. A protocol for RNA methylation differential analysis with MeRIP-Seq data and exomePeakR/Bioconductor package. Methods. 2014 Oct 1;69(3):274-81. doi: 10.1016/j.ymeth.2014.06.008. Epub 2014 Jun 27. PubMed PMID: 24979058; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4194139. (IF:4.197)

Ma, Chifeng, Hung-I. H. Chen, Mario Flores, Yufei Huang*, and Yidong Chen. "BRCA-Monet: a breast cancer specific drug treatment mode-of-action network for treatment effective prediction using large scale microarray database." BMC Systems Biology 7, no. Suppl 5 (2013): S5. (IF:2.98)

J. Meng, L. M. Merino, K. Robbins, Y Huang*, “Classification of imperfectly time-locked image RSVP events with EEG device,” Neuroinformatics, Sept. 2013 DOI 10.1007/s12021-013-9203-4, PMID:24037139 (IF: 3.13)

Xuan, P., Han, K., Guo, M., Guo, Y., Li, J., Ding, J., & Huang, Y*. (2013). Prediction of microRNAs Associated with Human Diseases Based on Weighted k Most Similar Neighbors. PLoS one, 8(8), e70204. (IF:3.73)

J. Meng, X. Cui, M. Rao, Y. Chen, Y. Huang*,Exome-based Analysis for RNAEpigenome Sequencing DataBioinformatics, Apr. 2013; doi: 10.1093/bioinformatics/btt171, PMID:23589649 (IF:5.32)

M. Flores, T-H Hsiao, Y-C Chiu, E. Y. Chuang, Y. Huang*, Y. Chen, “Gene Regulation, Modulation and Their Applications in Gene Expression Data Analysis,” Advances in Bioinformatics, 2013: 360678, 2013 March 13. doi: 10.1155/2013/360678, PMID:23573084

Sanchez-Diaz PC, Hsiao TH, Chang JC, Yue D, Tan MC, Chen HI, Tomlinson GE, Huang Y, Chen Y, Hung JY. “De-Regulated MicroRNAs in Pediatric Cancer Stem Cells Target Pathways Involved in Cell Proliferation, Cell Cycle and Development.” PLoS One. 2013 Apr 17;8(4):e61622. PMID: 23613887, PMCID: PMC3629228 (IF: 4.09)

J. Meng, Y. Chen, Y. Huang*, “Uncover context-specific gene regulation by transcription factors and microRNAs using Bayesian sparse nonnegative factor regression analysis,” Journal of Biological Systems, Vol. 20, No. 4 (2012) 377–402 (IF: 0.57)

X. Lei, Y. Zhu, T. Jones, Z Bai, Y. Huang, and S-J Gao, “A KSHV microRNA targets TGF-β pathway to promote cell survival” Journal of Virology, 86:11698116711, Nov. 2012, doi: 10.1128/JVI.06855-11 (IF: 5.42)

J. Meng, L. M. Merino, N. B. Shamlo, S. Makeig, K. Robbins, Y Huang* “Characterization and robust classification of EEG signal from image RSVP events with independent time-frequency features,” PLoS ONE, in press (IF: 4.41)

L. Zhang, J. Meng, H. Liu, Y. Huang*, “Clustering DNA methylation expressions using nonparametric beta mixture model,” BMC Genomics, in press (IF: 4.21)

D. Yue, Y. Chen, Y. Huang*, “A Bayesian Decision Fusion Approach for microRNA Target Prediction,” BMC Genomics, in press (IF: 4.21)

Huang Y*, Zhao Z, Xu H, Shyr Y, Zhang B (2012) “Advances in Systems Biology: Computational Algorithms and Applications” BMC Systems Biology, in press (IF: 3.57)

Zhao Z, Zhang B, Shyr Y, Huang Y, Xu H, (2012) Genomics in 2012: challenges and opportunities in the next generation sequencing era. BMC Genomics, in press (IF: 4.21)

D. Yue, J. Meng, M. Lu, P. Chen, M. Guo, Y. Huang*, “Understanding microRNA regulation: A computational perspective,” IEEE Signal Process Magazine, 29:1, 77-88, 2012. (IF:6.0)

N. Nguyen, Y. Chiao, Y. Huang, S-J, Gao, M. Lindsey, Y. Chen, Y. Jin “Temporal clustering of gene expression patterns using short-time segments” Int. J. Functional Informatics and Personalised Medicine, Vol 4, No. 1, 2011

O. Ghasemi, M. Lindsey, T. Yang, N. Nguyen, Y. Huang, Y. Jin, “Bayesian parameter estimation for nonlinear modeling of biological pathways,” BMC Systems Biology, 2011, 5(Suppl 3):S9 doi:10.1186/1752-0509-5-S3-S9 (IF: 3.57)

Xuan, P; Guo, MZ; Huang, YC; Li, WB; Huang, Y*, “MaturePred: Efficient Identification of MicroRNAs within Novel Plant Pre-miRNAs”, PLOS ONE, 6 (11): - NOV 16 2011 (IF: 4.41)

J. Meng, J. Zhang, Y. Chen, Y. Huang*, “Bayesian non-negative factor analysis for reconstructing transcription factor mediated regulatory networks,” Proteome Science, Volume 9, Supplement 1, 2011 (IF: 2.49)

Boutz DR, Collins P, Suresh U, Lu M, Ramírez CM, Fernández-Hernando C,Huang Y, de Sousa Abreu R, Le SY, Shapiro BA, Liu AM, Luk JM, Aldred SF,Trinklein N, Marcotte EM, Penalva LO, A two-tiered approach identifies a network of cancer and liver diseases related genes regulated by miR-122,Journal of Biological Chemistry, 286: 18066-78, 2011 (IF:5.33)

P. Xuan, M. Guo, X. Liu, Y. Huang, W. Li, Y. Huang*, “PlantMiRNAPred: efficient classification of real and pseudo plant pre-miRNAs” (2011) Bioinformatics 27: 1368-1376 (IF:4.88)

Professor Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering 

University of Texas at San Antonio 

Adjunct Professor Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics 

University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio


Ph.D., State University of New York at Stony Brook, 2001.


Phone: (210) 458-6270

Fax: (210) 458-5947


Hai-Chao Han, Ph.D.

Han-1-web cropped


Dr. Han is a professor & department chair in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Texas at San Antonio. He is interested in bioengineering, cardiovascular biomechanics, left ventricular remodeling, vascular remodeling, artery buckling and tortuosity, and vascular disease.

Selected Publications

1.Halaney DL, Sanyal A, Nafissi NA, Escobedo D, Goros M, Michalek J, Acevedo PJ, Pérez W, Escobar GP, Feldman MD, Han HC (2017). The importance of trabeculae carneae for left ventricular diastolic compliance: improvement in compliance with trabecular cutting. J Biomech Eng. 139(3), 031012.

2.Yang H, Fortier A, Horne K, Mohammad A, Banerjee S, Han HC (2017), Investigation of Stent Implant Mechanics Using Linear Analytical and Computational Approach. Cardiovascular Eng Tech. 8(1):81-90.

3.Garcia JR, Sanyal A, Fatemifar F, Mottahedi M, Han HC (2017). Twist buckling of veins under torsional loading. J Biomech 58: 123-130.

4.Wang GL, Wang LY, Yang SX, Zhang P, Chen XH, Yao QP, Gong XB, Qi YX, Jiang ZL, Han HC (2016). Arterial wall remodeling under sustained axial twisting in rat. J Biomech 60:124-133.

5.Chesnutt JKW, Han HC (2016). Computational simulation of platelet interactions in the initiation of stent thrombosis due to stent malapposition. Phys Biol 13(1):016001.

6.Yabluchanskiy A, Ma Y, DeLeon-Pennell KY, Altara R, Halade GV, Voorhees AP, Nguyen NT, Jin YF, Winniford MD, Hall ME, Han HC, Lindsey ML (2016). Myocardial Infarction Superimposed on Aging: MMP-9 Deletion Promotes M2 Macrophage Polarization. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 71(4):475-83.

7.Mottahedi M, Han HC (2016). Artery buckling analysis using two layered model with collagen dispersion. J Mech Behavior Biomed Mat 60: 515–524.

8.Xiao Y, Liu Q, Han HC (2016). Buckling reduces eNOS production and stimulates extracellular matrix remodeling in arteries in ex vivo organ culture. Ann Biomed Eng. 44(9):2840-50.

9.Han HC, Liu Q, Jiang ZL (2016). Mechanical Behavior and Wall Remodeling of Blood Vessels under Axial Twist (Invited review). J Med Biomech, 31(4):319-326.

10.Alagarsamy K, Fortier A, Kumar N, Mohammad A, Banerjee S, Han HC, Mishra RS (2016). Computational modeling of stent implant procedure and comparison of different stent materials. J Biomed Eng Res. 1: 101.

11.FatemiFar F, Han HC (2016). Effect of axial stretch on lumen collapse of arteries. J Biomech Eng. 138(12), 124503 (Nov 03, 2016).

12.Alagarsamy K, Fortier A, Komarasamy M, Mishra R, Mohammad A, Banerjee S, Han HC (2017). Mechanical properties of High Entropy Alloy Al0.1CoCrFeNi for Peripheral Vascular Stent Application. Cardiovasc Eng & Tech. 7(4): 448-454.

13.Chesnutt JKW, Han HC (2015). Simulation of the microscopic process during initiation of stent thrombosis. Comput Biol Med 56:182-191. Jan 1, 2015.

14.Sanyal A, Han HC (2015). Artery buckling affects the mechanical stress in atherosclerotic plaques. Biomed Eng Online 14(Suppl 1): S4.

15.Khalafvand SS, Han HC (2015), Stability of carotid artery under steady state and pulsatile blood flow: A fluid-structure interaction study. ASME J Biomech Eng. 137(6): 061007.

16.Luetkemeyer CM, James RH, Devarakonda ST, Le VP, Liu Q, Han HC, Wagenseil J (2015). Critical buckling pressures in mouse arteries with altered elastic fibers. J Mech Behav Biomed Mater 46: 69-82.

17.Voorhees AP, DeLeon-Pennell KY, Ma Y, Halade GV, Yabluchanskiy A, Iyer RP, Flynn E, Cates VA, Lindsey, ML, and Han, HC (2015). Building a Better Infarct: Modulation of Collagen Cross-linking to Increase Infarct Stiffness and Reduce Left Ventricular Dilation post-Myocardial Infarction. J Mol Cell Cardiol 85:229-239.

18.Wang G, Xiao Y, Voorhees AP, Qi YX, Jiang Z, Han HC (2015). Artery remodeling under axial twist in three days organ culture. Ann Biomed Eng 43(8): 1738-47.

19.Voorhees AP. Han HC (2015). Biomechanics of Cardiac Function. (Invited review). Comprehensive Physiol. 5:1623–1644. Oct. 2015.

20.Huang K, Yan ZQ, Zhao D, Chen SG, Gao LZ, Zhang P, Shen BR, Han HC, Qi YX, Jiang ZL (2015). SIRT1 and FOXO mediate contractile differentiation of vascular smooth muscle cells under cyclic stretch. Cell Physiol Biochem. 37(5): 1817-1829.

21.Qi N, Gao H, Ogden RW, Holzapfel GA, Han HC, Luo XY (2015). Investigation of the optimal collagen fibre orientation in human iliac arteries.J Mech Behavior Biomed Mat 52: 108-119.

22.Grimes KM, Voorhees A, Chiao YA, Han HC, Lindsey ML, Buffenstein R (2014). Cardiac function of the naked mole-rat: ecophysiological responses to working underground. Am J Physiol. - Heart Circ Physiol. 306(5): H730-H737.

23.Voorhees A. Han HC (2014). A model to determine the effect of collagen fiber alignment on heart function post myocardial infarction. J Theoretical Biol Model 11:6 (1-19).

24.Yabluchanskiy A, Ma Y, Chiao YA, Lopez EF, Voorhees AP, Toba H, Hall ME, Han HC, Lindsey ML, Jin YF (2014). Cardiac aging is initiated by matrix metalloproteinase-9 mediated endothelial dysfunction. Am J Physiol. -Heart Circ Physiol. 306(10): H1398-H1407.

25.Zhang J*, Liu Q*, Han HC (2014). An in vivo animal model of artery buckling for studying wall remodeling. Ann Biomed Eng 42(8): 1658-1667.

26.Liu Q, Wen Q, Mottahedi M, Han HC (2014). Artery buckling analysis using four-fiber wall model. J Biomech. 47(11): 2790-2796.

27.Xiao Y, Hayman D, Khalafvand SS, Lindsey ML, Han HC (2014). Artery buckling stimulates cell proliferation and NF-κB signaling. Am J Physiol. -Heart Circ Physiol. 307(4): H542-H551.

28.Lee AY*, Sanyal A*. Shadfan R, Xiao Y, Han HC (2014). Mechanical instability of normal and aneurismal arteries. J Biomech 47(16): 3868-3875.

29.Liu Q, Han HC (2013). Mechanical buckling of arterioles in collateral development. J Theor Biol, 316: 42-48.

30.Hayman DM, Zhang J, Liu Q, Xiao Y, Han HC (2013). Smooth muscle contraction increases the critical buckling pressure of arteries. J Biomech 46(4):841-4; 2013.

31.Ma Y, Halade GV, Zhang J, Ramirez TA, Levin D, Voorhees A, Jin YF, Han HC, Manicone AM, and Lindsey ML (2013). Matrix metalloproteinase-28 deletion exacerbates cardiac dysfunction and rupture following myocardial infarction in mice by inhibiting M2 macrophage activation. Circ Res 112(4): 675-688.

32.Han HC, Chesnutt JKW, Garcia JR, Liu Q, Wen Q (2013). Artery buckling: new phenotypes, models, and applications. (Invited review) Ann Biomed Eng 41(7):1399-1410.

33.Garcia JR, Lamm SD, Han HC (2013). Twist buckling behavior of arteries. Biomech Model Mechanobiol 12(5): 915-927, Oct 2013.

34.Chesnutt JKW, Han HC (2013). Platelet size and density affect shear-induced thrombosis formation in tortuous arterioles. Phys Biol 10(5):056003.

35.Chesnutt JKW, Han HC (2013). Effect of red blood cells on platelet activation and thrombus formation in tortuous arterioles. Frontiers Bioeng Biotech. 1:18 (1-12).

Professor & Department Chair 

Zachry Endowed Chair Department of Mechanical Engineering 

The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) Professor

Ph.D. Program in Biomedical Engineering 

Fellow of AHA, AIMBE, and ASME


Ph.D., Xi'an Jiaotong University, China, 1991 

Jointly trained at University of California at San Diego, 1989-1991 

M.S., Xi'an Jiaotong University, China, 1987

B.S., Xi'an Jiaotong University, China, 1984



Phone: 210-458-4952

Teja Guda, Ph.D.

Teja guda sm


Dr. Teja Guda's current interests are focused on developing regenerative strategies for bone and skeletal muscle tissue engineering. His on-going projects focus on the employment of mechanical stimulation regimes in bioreactors to improve engraftment of bone and muscle substitutes. The compliance of substrates has a profound influence on the stem cell response and this effect is enhanced by applied mechanical loads. Studying the relative impact of these cues on directed cellular differentiation is important to develop appropriate materials for musculoskeletal interfaces, where there is a steep gradient in mechanical properties. This work is being carried out in close collaboration with Dr. Joseph Wenke’s group at the U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research.

In support of the tissue regeneration efforts, he works on the correlation of in vivo bone and vessel morphology using micro computed tomography or alternative image bases analyses to scaffold structure and bio-mechanical properties. The spatial architecture of tissue grafts and the resulting initial mechanical properties including strength and permeability directs the efficacy of these grafts to act as suitable substrates to direct tissue regeneration. The non-destructive evaluation of these properties along the translation of the scaffold from material synthesis, through in vitro testing and in vivo evaluation provides a powerful analysis tool with built in feedback for design improvements.

‎Assistant Professor at The University of Texas at San Antonio


B.Tech, ME, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, India

Ph.D., BME, University of Texas at San Antonio / University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

Post-doc, Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine



Phone: 210-458-8529

Ender Finol, Ph.D.

Finol 3


Dr. Ender Finol is an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Texas at San Antonio. His research interests are in vascular biomechanics, design and optimization of intravascular medical devices, and non-destructive soft tissue mechanics (for more information please see He also teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in biomechanics.

Selected Publications

Ruiz de Galarreta, S., Antón, R., Cazón, A., and Finol, E.A., 2017, “A methodology for verifying abdominal aortic aneurysm wall stress,” Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, Vol. 139, No. 1, 011006 {9 pages}. PDF

Ruiz de Galarreta, Antón, R., S., Cazón, A., Larraona, G.S., and Finol, E.A., 2016, “Anisotropic abdominal aortic aneurysm replicas with biaxial material characterization,” Medical Engineering & Physics, Vol. 38, No. 12, pp. 1505-1512. PDF

Chandra, S.C., Vimalatharmaiyah, R., Riveros, F., Rodriguez, J.F., and Finol, E.A., 2016, “A methodology for the derivation of unloaded abdominal aortic aneurysm geometry with experimental validation,” Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, Vol. 138, No. 10, 101005 {11 pages}. PDF

Aramburu, J., Antón, R., Borro, D., Rivas, A., Sánchez-Larraona, G., Ramos, J.C., and Finol, E.A., 2016, “A methodology for assessing local bifurcated blood vessel shape variations,” Biomedical Physics & Engineering Express, Vol. 2, 015001 {10 pages}.PDF

Raut, S.S., Liu, P., and Finol, E.A., 2015, “An approach for patient-specific multi-domain vascular mesh generation featuring spatially varying wall thickness modeling,” Journal of Biomechanics, Vol. 48, No. 10, pp. 1972-1981. PDF

Kheyfets, V.O., Rios, L., Smith, T., Schroeder, T., Mueller, J., Murali, S., Lasorda, D., Zikos, A., Spotti, J., Reilly Jr., J.J., and Finol, E.A., 2015, “Patient-specific computational modeling of blood flow in the pulmonary arterial circulation,” Computer Methods and Programs in Biomedicine, Vol. 120, No. 2, pp. 88-101. PDF

Kheyfets, V.O., Thirugnanasambandam, M., Rios, L., Evans, D., Smith, T., Schroeder, T., Mueller, J., Murali, S., Lasorda, D., Spotti, J., and Finol, E.A., 2015, “The role of wall shear stress in the assessment of right ventricle hydraulic workload,” Pulmonary Circulation, Vol. 5, No. 1, pp. 90-100 {cover illustration}. PDF

Satriano A., Rivolo, S., Finol, E.A., Di Martino, E.S., 2015, “In-vivo strain assessment of the abdominal aortic aneurysm,”Journal of Biomechanics, Vol. 48, No. 2, pp. 354–360 {cover illustration}. PDF

Anton, R., Chen, C.-Y., Hung, M.-Y., Finol, E.A., and Pekkan, K., 2015, “Experimental and computational investigation of patient-specific abdominal aortic aneurysm pressure field with and without intraluminal thrombus,” Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering, Vol. 8, No. 9, pp. 981-992. PDF

Sohrabi, S., Zheng, J., Finol, E.A., and Liu, Y., 2014, “Numerical simulation of particle transport and deposition in the pulmonary vasculature,” Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, Vol. 136, No. 12, 121010 {11 pages}. PDF

Kheyfets, V.O., Thornton, R., Kowal, M., and Finol, E.A., 2014, “A Protocol for measuring pull-off stress of wound-treatment polymers,” Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, Vol. 136, No. 7, 074501 {5 pages}. PDF

Malve, M., Chandra, S., Garcia, A., Mena, A., Martinez, M.A., Finol, E.A., and Doblare, M., 2014, “Impedance-based outflow boundary conditions for human carotid haemodynamics,” Computer Methods in Biomechanics and Biomedical Engineering, Vol. 17, No. 11, pp. 1248-1260. PDF

Chen, C.-Y., Anton, R., Hung, M.-Y., Menon, P.G., Patrick, M.J., Finol, E.A., and Pekkan, K., 2014, “Effect of intraluminal thrombus on patient-specific abdominal aortic aneurysm hemodynamics via stereoscopic PIV and CFD modeling,” Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, Vol. 136, No. 3, 031001 {9 pages}. PDF

Cornejo, S.L., Guzman, A.M., Valencia, A.A., Rodriguez, J.F., and Finol, E.A., 2014, “Flow-induced wall mechanics of patient-specific aneurysmal cerebral arteries: nonlinear isotropic vs. anisotropic wall stress,” Journal of Engineering in Medicine, Vol. 228, No. 1, pp. 37-48. PDF

Ruiz de Galarreta, S., Cazón, A., Antón, R., and Finol, E.A., 2014, “Abdominal aortic aneurysm: from clinical imaging to realistic replicas,” Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, Vol. 136, No. 1, 014502 {5 pages}. PDF

Evani, S.J., Prabhu, R.G., Vimalatharmaiyah, R., Finol, E.A., and Ramasubramanian, A.K., 2013, “Monocytes mediate metastatic breast tumor cell adhesion to endothelium under flow,” The Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, Vol. 27, No. 8, pp. 3017-3029. PDF

Zhang, H., Kheyfets, V.O., and Finol, E.A., 2013, “Robust abdominal aortic aneurysm lumen centerline detection for rupture status classification,” Medical Engineering and Physics, Vol. 35, No. 9, pp. 1358-1367. PDF

Raut, S., Jana, A., De Oliveira, V., Muluk, S.C., and Finol, E.A., 2013, “The importance of patient-specific regionally varying wall thickness in abdominal aortic aneurysm biomechanics,” Journal of Biomechanical Engineering, Vol. 135, No. 8, 081010 {10 pages}. PDF

Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Texas at San Antonio


Ph.D., Mechanical Engineering and Biomedical and Health Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University, 2002

M.S., Mechanical Engineering, University of Massachusetts Lowell, 1997

B.S. in Engineering, University of Carabobo, 1994




Yusheng Feng, Ph.D.

Coe feng.yusheng1500x2100 cropped


Dr. Yusheng Feng is a professor in Mechanical and Biomedical Engineering at The University of Texas at San Antonio. He also serves as a core faculty member of Center for Computational Oncology at the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Feng is a NIH/K25 career award recipient for his work on integrated computational approach for real-time control of thermal therapeutic treatment. He is the founder and director of Advanced Visualization Lab (VizLab) sponsored by NSF/MRI (Major Research Instrument) grant. The VizLab is now institutionalized and becomes a core facility of UTSA. Dr. Feng is also the co-founder and director of Center for Simulation Visualization and Real-Time Prediction (SiViRT) sponsored by NSF/CREST (Centers for Research Excellence in Science and Technology. The SiViRT Center currently has 23 faculty members from College of Engineering, College of Science, and College of Business. The common thread is mathematical modeling and computer simulation.

Dr. Feng’s main research areas are

- Multi-Scale Modeling of Biological Systems

- Computational Oncology

- Prediction of thermal therapeutic outcomes

- Prediction of Cancer Treatment Outcome

- Network Theory and Biological Pathway Simulation

- 3D Interactive Visualization and Virtual Surgical Simulator

- Medical Device Design.

Selected Publications

M. Rahman, Y. Feng, T. Yankeelov, J.T. Oden, “A Fully Coupled Space-Time Multiscale Modeling Framework for Predicting Tumor Growth,” Computer Methods in Applied Mechanics and Engineering, Comp Meth in Appl Mech & Eng, 320:261–286, 2017.

J.T. Oden, Ernesto A. B. F. Lima, Regina C. Almeida, Yusheng Feng, M. N. Rylander, D. Fuentes, D. Faghihi, M. M. Rahman, M. DeWitt, M. Gadde, and J. Zhou, Toward Predictive Multiscale Modeling of Vascular Tumor Growth, Arch Computat Methods Eng, 23(4): pp735-779, 2016

Man Zhang, Zhuhuang Zhou, Shuicai Wu, and Yusheng Feng, “Simulation of Temperature Field for Temperature-Controlled Radio Frequency Ablation using a Hyperbolic Bioheat Equation and Temperature-varied Voltage Calibration: A liver-mimicking phantom study,” Physics in Medicine and Biology, 60(24):9455-9471, December 2015.

E. Biglari, M. Feng, J. Quarles, E. Sako, J. Calhoon, R. Rodriquez, and Y. Feng, Haptics-Enabled Surgical Training System with Guidance Using Deep Learning, UAHCI 2015, Part III, LNCS, M. Antona and C. Stephnides (Eds), pp267-278, 2015. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-20684-4_26

Feng Y, S. Boukhris, R. Ranjan, and R. Valencia, Biological Systems: Multiscale Modeling Based on Mixture Theory, Chapter 11 (Page 257-286), Multiscale Modeling in Biomechanics and Mechanobiology, Suvranu De, Wonmuk Hwang and Ellen Kuhl (Eds), Springer-Verlag, London, ©2015.

Feng Y and Biglari E, Interactive Virtual-Reality Driven Learning Framework for Engineering and Science Education, Proceeding of American Engineering Education, 2014.

Yasmin, N. Du, J. Chen, and Y. Feng, “A Haptic-Enabled Novel Approach to Cardiovascular Visualization,” Computer Animation and Virtual Worlds, DOI:10.1002/cav.1586, 2014B.E. Yunker, G.D. Dodd, S.J. Chen, S. Chang, A.L. Scherzinger, R. Shandas, Y. Feng, K.S. Hunter, The design and fabrication of two portal vein flow phantoms by different methods, Med. Phys, 41(2), 023701-1:6; doi: 10.1118/1.4861819, February 2014.

Shafirstein G and Feng Y, “The Role of Mathematical Modeling in Thermal Medicine [editorial], “ Int’l J. Hyperthermia, 29(4): 259-261, June 2013.

Yunker BE, Cordes D, Scherzinger A, Dodd G, Shandas R, Feng Y, and Hunter KS, “An investigation of industrial molding compounds for use in 3D ultrasound, MRI, and CT imaging phantoms,” Med. Phys. 40 (9), May 2013.

Feng Y.and D. Fuentes, Model-based Planning and Real-Time Predictive Control for Laser-Induced Thermal Therapy, Int’l J. Hyperthermia, 27(8), 751-761, December, 2011.

Bagley R andFeng Y., “A Numerical Solution Method for Initial-Value Problems Using Harmonic Analysis and Taylor Series Approximations,” Int’l J. Appl. Math, 24(6): 841-860, 2011.

Feng, Y. and D. Fuentes, Real-Time Predictive Surgical Control for Cancer Treatment Using Laser Ablation [Life Science]. Signal Processing Magazine, IEEE, 28(3): p. 134-138, 2011.

Millwater H and Feng Y, “Probabilistic Sensitivity Analysis with Respect to Bounds of Truncated Distributions,” J. Mech. Design, 133(6), 061001,doi:10.1115/1.4003819, June 2011.

D. Fuentes, Y. Feng, A. Elliott, A. Shetty, R. J. McNichols, J. T. Oden, and R. J. Stafford. “Adaptive real-time bioheat transfer models for computer driven MR-guided laser induced thermal therapy,” IEEE Trans. BME, 57(5): 1024-1030, 2010 (Featured on the Cover Page)

M. N. Rylander, Y. Feng, K. Zimmermann, and K. R. Diller, “Measurement and Mathematical Modeling of Thermally Induced Injury and Heat Shock Protein Expression Kinetics in Normal and Cancerous Prostate Cells,” Int’l J. Hyperthermia Special Issue on Prostate Cancer Therapy,26(8): 748-764, 2010.

Fuentes D., Cardan R., Stafford R. J., Yung J., Dodd III G. D., and Feng Y. “High fidelity finite element models for pretreatment planning of RF ablation with in vitro experimental correlation,” J. Vascular and Interventional Radiology, 21(11):1725-1732, 2010.

Feng Y, Fuentes D, Hawkins A, Bass, J, Rylander MN, Optimization and real-time control for laser treatment of heterogeneous soft tissues,” Comput. Meth in Appl. Mech. Eng., 198(21-26):1742-1750, 2009.

Feng Y, Fuentes D, Hawkins A, Rylander MN, Elliott A, Stafford J, Oden J. T., “Nanoshell-Mediated Laser Surgery Simulation for Prostate Cancer Treatment,” Special Issue of Computational Bioengineering, Engineering with Computers, 25: 3-13, 2009.

Feng Y, Oden J. T, Rylander M. N, “A two-state cell damage model under hyperthermic conditions: Theory and in vitro Experiments,” J. Biomech Eng., v.130, 041016:1-10, 2008.

Kenneth R. Diller, J.Tinsley Oden, Chandrajit Bajaj, James C. Brown, John Hazle, Ivo Babuska, Jon Bass, L. Bidaut, Leszek Demkowicz, Andrew Elliot, Yusheng Feng, David Fuentes, S. Goswami, Andrea Hawkins, Sepideh Khoshnevis, B. Kwon, Serge Prudhomme, and R. Jason Stafford. Advances in Numerical Heat Transfer, volume 3: Numerical Implementation of Bioheat Models and Equations, Chapter 9: Computational Infrastructure for the Real-Time Patient Specific Treatment of Cancer. Taylor & Francis Group, 2008.

Oden JT, Diller KR, Bajaj C, Browne JC, Hazle J, Babuska I, Bass J, Demkowicz L, Elliott A, Feng Y, Fuentes D, Prudhomme S, Rylander MN, Stafford RJ, and Zhang Y, “Dynamic Data-Driven Finite Element Models for Laser Treatment of Cancer,” J Num Meth PDE, 23(4), 904-922, 2007.

Bajaj C, Oden JT, K. R. Diller KR, Browne J.C., Hazle, J, Babuška I, Bass J, Bidaut L, Demkowicz L, Elliott A, Feng Y, Fuentes D, Kwon B, Prudhomme S, Stafford RJ, and Zhang Y, “Using Cyber-Infrastructure for Dynamic Data Driven Laser Treatment of Cancer, Lecture Notes in Computer Science,” Shi Y, et al (eds), 4487:972-979, 2007.

Rylander M. N., Feng Y, Bass J, and Diller KR, Heat Shock Protein Expression and Damage Optimization for Laser Therapy Design,” Lasers in Surgery and Medicine, 39:734-746, 2007

Oden JT, Diller KR, Bajaj C, Browne JC, Hazle J, Babuska I, Bass J, Demkowicz L, Feng Y, Fuentes D, Prudhomme S, Rylander MN, Stafford RJ, Zhang Y. “Development of a computational paradigm for laser treatment of cancer,” ICCS 2006, Part III, LNCS 3993, Alexandrov VN et al. (eds.), Springer-Verlag, 530-537, 2006.

Rylander M. N., Feng Y, Zhang J, Bass J, Stafford, RJ, Hazle, JD, Diller, KR. “Optimizing HSP expression induced by prostate cancer laser therapy through predictive computational models,” Journal of Biomedical Optics, 11:4, 0411131-16, 2006.

J. T. Oden, K. R. Diller, C. Bajaj, J. C. Browne, J. Hazle, I. Babuska, J. Bass, L. Demkowicz, Y. Feng, D. Fuentes, S. Prudhomme, N. Rylander, R. J. Stafford, and Y. Zhang, “Development of a Computational Paradigm for Laser Treatment of Cancer,” DDDAS, 2006.

M. N. Rylander, Y. Feng, J. Bass, and K. R. Diller, “Thermally Induced Injury and Heat-Shock Protein Expression in Cells and Tissues,” Annals of New York Academy of Science, 1066:222-242, 2005.J.T. Oden, I. Babuska, F. Nobile, Y. Feng and R. Tempone, Comput. ““Theory and methodology for estimation and control of error due to modeling, approximation and uncertainty,” Methods Appl. Mech. Engrg, Vol.194, pp193-204, 2005.

Y. Feng, M.N. Rylander, J. Bass, J.T. Oden, and K. R. Diller, “Optimal Design of Laser Surgery for Cancer Treatment Through Nanoparticle-Mediated Hyperthermia Therapy,” NSTI-Nanotech, Vol.1, pp39-42, 2005.

J.T. Oden, J.C. Browne, I. Babuska, Y. Feng, C. Bajaj, L. Demkowicz, L. Gray, J. Bass, S. Prudhomme, F. Nobile, and R. Tempone, "A Dynamic Data Driven Infrastructure for Reliable Computer Simulations", Proceedings of the Computational Science - ICCS 2004 Conference, Bubak, Van Albada, Sloot, and Dongarra (Eds.), Springer-Verlag, 2004.

J.T. Oden, J.C. Browne, I. Babuska, Y. Feng, K.M. Liechti, L. Demkowicz, J. Bass, F. Nobile, and R. Tempone, "A Computational Infrastructure For Reliable Computer Simulations," in Dynamic Data Driven Applications Systems, F. Darema (Ed.), Kluwer Academic Publishers, Netherlands, 2004.

J.T. Oden, Y. Feng, and S. Prudhomme “Local and Pollution Error Estimation for Stokesian Flows,”, Int’l J. for Numerical Methods in Fluids, vol. 27, pp. 33-39, 1998.

“Parallel Domain Decomposition Solver for Adaptive hp Finite Element Methods,” J.T. Oden, A. Patra, and Y. Feng, SIAM J. on Numerical Analysis, vol. 34, no. 5, pp. 1-29, Dec. 1997.

J.T. Oden and Y. Feng,“Local and Pollution Error Estimation for Finite Element Approximations of Elliptic Boundary Value Problems,”, J. Computational and Applied Mathematics, vol. 74, pp. 245-293, Nov. 1996.

“Parallel Adaptive hp Finite Element Methods for Fluid and Solid Mechanics,” J.T. Oden, A. Patra and Y. Feng, in Recent Developments in Finite Element Analysis, A Book Dedicated to Robert L. Taylor, Edited by T.J.R. Hughes, E. Onate, and O.C. Zienkiewicz, CIMNE, Barcelona, Spain, pp. 29-36, 1994.

“Domain Decomposition for Adaptive Finite Element Methods,” J.T. Oden, A. Patra and Y. Feng, Contemporary Mathematics, vol. 180, pp. 295-301, 1994.

“An hp Adaptive Strategy,” J. T. Oden, A. Patra and Y. Feng, in ASME Publication, Adaptive Multilevel and Hierarchical Computational Strategies, Edited by A.K. Noor, AMD vol. 157, pp. 23-46, 1993.


Department of Mechanical Engineering



B.S. Solid Mechanics, Tsinghua University (China) 

M.S. Mechanical Engineering, University of Oklahoma 

M.S. Applied Mathematics, University of Oklahoma 

Ph.D. Computational Mechanics, University of Texas at Austin



Phone: 210-458-6479

Keith Bartels, Ph.D.



Dr. Keith Bartels is a Staff Engineer at the Southwest Research Institute. 

Staff Engineer

Southwest Research Institute 


Ph.D., Electrical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 1993

M.S., Electrical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin, 1988

B.S., Engineering Science, Trinity University, 1986


Phone: (210) 522-6062


Mark R. Appleford, Ph.D.

Mark appleford


The focus of Dr. Mark R. Appleford's current research is to examine bone cell interactions with biomaterials and to study the pathways of cell differentiation into mature tissues. 

To clarify cell-biomaterial interactions, he examines the integrin receptor activity of cells during their first contact with a biomaterial. Sub-cellular signaling pathways have been identified to track key players such as the stress activated protein kinases (SAPK), viability markers such as P38 and differentiation gene transcription factor RUNX2. By following pathways from outside the cell, through internal protein signaling and finally to the production of specific proteins by the cell, we can help explain the mechanisms responsible for implant rejection or successful long-term integration. Most research in this field has been performed with experiments of 2D cell monolayers. Our laboratory has developed a variety of techniques to measure these signals within 3D scaffolds to better understand the mechanisms of cell behavior. The laboratory also explores the tissue-level formation of new bone through the use of bioreactor tissue engineering. Fluid perfusion chambers have been used to grow volumes of bone tissue in the laboratory for up to three months. By studying the morphology of the new tissue we can help refine ideal culture conditions for replacement grafts while identifying the precise fluid shear mechanical forces associated with differentiation pathways.

In addition to these basic science approaches, the laboratory works on the large scale reconstruction of bone and cartilage tissue using natural ceramic scaffolds. Calcium phosphate foams serve as a template for bone bridging of large segmental defects in the cranium, femur and tibia. The approach of this research has been to bridge a large defect for early integration while still allowing for natural blood vessel and bone formation that ultimately replaces the scaffold within a year.

Selected Publications 

P Konofaos, D Petersen, JA Jennings, RA Smith, H Doty, BT Reves, T Guda, M Appleford, J Bumgardner, R Wallace. Evaluation of Amniotic Multipotential Tissue Matrix to Augment Healing of Demineralized Bone Matrix in an Animal Calvarial Model. Journal of Craniofacial Surgery 26 (4), 1408-1412, 2015.

X Yang, C Gandhi, MDM Rahman, M Appleford, LW Sun, X Wang. Age-Related Effects of Advanced Glycation End Products (Ages) in Bone Matrix on Osteoclastic Resorption. Calcified tissue international 97 (6), 592-601, 2016.

X Yang, AJ Mostafa, M Appleford, LW Sun, X Wang. Bone Formation is Affected by Matrix Advanced Glycation End Products (AGEs) In Vivo. Calcified tissue international, 99 (4) 373-383, 2016.

Pilia M, Murray M, Guda T, Heckman M, Appleford M. Orthopedics “Pretensioning of Soft Tissue Grafts in Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction.” 2015 Jul 1;38(7):e582-7. doi: 10.3928/01477447-20150701-55. PMID:26186319

Rathbone CR, Guda T, Singleton BM, Oh DS, Appleford MR, Ong JL, Wenke “Effect of cell-seeded hydroxyapatite scaffolds on rabbit radius bone regeneration” JC. J Biomed Mater Res A. 2014 May;102(5):1458-66. doi: 10.1002/jbm.a.34834. Epub 2013 Jun 22. PMID: 23776110

M. Pilia, T. Guda, B. Pollot, V. Aguero, M. R. Appleford, “Local microarchitecture affects mechanical properties of deposited extracellular matrix for osteonal regeneration", Materials Science and Engineering C, 2014, Vol. 35, pp:122-133.

T. Guda, J.A. Walker, J. Hernandez, B. Singleton, M.R. Appleford, S. Oh, J.L. Ong, J.C. Wenke, “Hydroxyapatite scaffold pore architecture effects in large bone defects in vivo”, Journal of Biomaterials Applications, 2014, Vol. 28, Iss.7, pp:1016-1027.

C.R. Rathbone, T. Guda, B. Singleton, S. Oh, M.R. Appleford, J.L. Ong, J.C. Wenke, “Effect of hydroxyapatite scaffolds seeded with cells on in vivo bone regeneration ”, Journal of Biomedical Materials Research A, 2014, Vol. 102, Iss. 5, pp:1458–1466

CM Agrawal, JL Ong, MR Appleford, G Mani. Introduction to Biomaterials: Cambridge University Press 2014.

X Yang, C Gandhi, RM Mizanur, MR Appleford, LW Sun, X Wang. Aging Effects of Advanced Glycation End Products on Osteoclast Resorption on Human Bone JOURNAL OF BONE AND MINERAL RESEARCH 29, S424-S424. 2014.

Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs 

Department of Biomedical Engineering



Ph.D. University of Tennessee Health Science Center

M.S. California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo

B.S. California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo



Phone: 210-458-6840

Jing Yong Ye, Ph.D.

Jing yong ye, ph.d.


Dr. Ye’s research covers a wide range of areas in biomedical optics and nanobiotechnology, with special emphasis on the development of cutting-edge ultrasensitive and ultrafast laser-based detection techniques and methodologies to address critical issues at the frontier of biomedical science and technology. His research activities involve:

- Photoacoustic imaging with a unique optoacoustic sensor for cancer diagnosis and drug delivery monitoring

- Label-free bioassays with photonic crystal biosensors for a wide range of applications, including noninvasive detection of prostate cancer, cardiac research, and peptide screening for genetic treatment of soybean disease

- In vivo fiber-optic biosensing and imaging for quantifying targeted drug delivery and for brain research

- Ultrafast laser interaction with nanoparticle targeted cancer cells

- Fiber scanning multiphoton microscopy

- In vivo two-photon flow cytometry

- Adaptive optical aberration correction in confocal microscopy, and

- Single-molecule fluorescence imaging and spectroscopy.

Dr. Ye has led multiple exciting research programs funded by NIH and several other funding agencies. He has published 86 refereed articles, over 150 conference papers, and two book chapters, and holds 12 patents. He serves as a reviewer for funding agencies including NIH, NSF, Petroleum Research Fund, United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation, the James & Esther King Biomedical Research Program and the Bankhead-Coley Cancer Research Program. He also serves as a reviewer for over 30 scientific journals. He is a senior member of IEEE and was elected as the president for the Ann Arbor Section of the Optical Society of America in 2008-2009. In addition, Dr. Ye is a co-founder of Photon Affinity LLC and on the advisory board of a biotech company, and has served as a professional consultant for five companies.

Selected Publications

Bailin Zhang, Bing Wang, Andres W. Morales, Jonathan Scudder, Madan K. Bhattacharyya, and Jing Yong Ye “Study of the Interactions of Fusarium virguliforme Toxin FvTox1 with Synthetic Peptides by Molecular Simulations and a Label-Free Biosensor”, Analytical Chemistry 88, 3024-30 (2016).

He Huang, Gilbert Bustamante, Ralph Peterson, and Jing Yong Ye, “An adaptive filtered back-projection for photoacoustic image reconstruction”, Medical Physics 42, 2169-2178 (2015).

Bailin Zhang; Andres Morales, Ralph Peterson; Liang Tang, and Jing Yong Ye, “Label-free Detection of Cardiac Troponin I with a Photonic Crystal Biosensor”, Biosensors and Bioelectronics, 58C, 107-113 (2014).

Ralph Peterson, Steven Solis, Bailin Zhang, He Huang, and Jing Yong Ye, “Sensitivity Enhancement of an Open Cavity Based Optoacoustic Sensor”, Optics Letters, Vol. 38, 2739-2741 (2013).

Bailin Zhang, Juan Manuel Tamez-Vela, Steven Solis, Gilbert Bustamante, Ralph Peterson, Shafiqur Rahman, Andres Morales, Liang Tang and Jing Yong Ye, “Detection of Myoglobin with open-cavity and label-free photonic crystal biosensor”, Journal of Medical Engineering, 808056, 2013.

Bailin Zhang, Chia-Yi Fang, Cheng-Chun Chang, Ralph Peterson, Saher Maswadi, Randolph D. Glickman, Huan-Cheng Chang, and Jing Yong Ye, “Photoacoustic Emission from Fluorescent Nanodiamonds Enhanced with Gold Nanoparticles”, Biomedical Optics Express 3, 1662–1629 (2012).

Shatha Dallo, Bailin Zhang, James Denno, Soonbae Hong, Anyu Tsai, Williams Haskins, Jing Yong Ye, and Tao Weitao, “Association of Acinetobacter baumannii EF-Tu with cell surface, outer membrane vesicles and fibronectin”, the Scientific World Journal, Vol. 2012, 127805 (2012)

Thommey P. Thomas, Yu-Chung Chang, Jing Yong Ye, Alina Kotlyar, Zhengyi Cao, Rameshwer Shukla, Suyang Qin, Theodore B. Norris, James R. Baker Jr., “Optical fiber-based in vivo quantification of growth factor receptors”, Cancer, 118, 2148-56 (2012).

Yun Zhou, Kun Yang, Jianmin Cui, Jing Yong Ye, Cheri X. Deng, “Controlled permeation of cell membrane by single bubble acoustic cavitation”, J. of Controlled Release, 157, 103-111, (2012).

Bailin Zhang, Shatha Dallo, Ralph Peterson, Syed Hussain, Tao Weitao, and Jing Yong Ye “Detection of anthrax lef with DNA-based photonic crystal sensors”, Journal of Biomedical Optics 16, 127006 (2011).

Colin M. Chow, Yun Zhou, Yunbo Guo, Theodore Norris, Xueding Wang, Cheri Deng, and Jing Yong Ye, “Optical Ultrasound Sensor with a Unique Open-Cavity Structure”, J. Biomed. Opt. 16, 017001 (2011).

Christine Tse, Marwa J Zohdy, Jing Yong Ye, Matthew O'Donnell, Wojciech Lesniak and Lajos Balogh, “Enhanced optical breakdown in KB cells labeled with folate-targeted silver-dendrimer composite nanodevices”, Nanomed Nanotechnol Biol. Med., 7, 97-106 (2011)

Yunbo Guo, Jing Yong Ye, Charles Divin, Baohua Huang, Thommey P. Thomas, James R. Baker, Jr. and Theodore B. Norris, “Real-Time Biomolecular Binding Detection Using a Sensitive Photonic Crystal Biosensor”, Anal. Chem., 82, 5211-5218 (2010).

Associate Professor 

Department of Biomedical Engineering



Ph. D., University of Tsukuba, Japan

B. S., Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China



Phone: 210-458-5056

Glenn Halff, M.D.

Glenn halff, m.d.


Dr. Glenn Halff is serving the University as Acting Dean of the School of Medicine and is the Director of the Division of Organ Transplantation in the Department of Surgery at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. He received his medical degree at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston, Texas. He completed his residency and internship at New York University in New York City, New York and his transplant fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh. In 1992, he started the liver transplant program at University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. He performs adult and pediatric liver and kidney transplants. He along with Dr. Francisco Cigarroa performed the first split liver transplant in South Texas. He also performs adult to adult living liver transplants and specializes in all liver, biliary and pancreas surgeries.

Selected Publications

Halff GA, Mansouri M, Poordad F, Lawitz E, Cigarroa F, Halff G, Lopez R, Alkhouri N. Characteristics and Outcomes of Liver Transplantation for Primary Biliary Cholangitis in Young patients: Analysis of the Untied Network for Organ Sharing Database Washington, DC.: 2017 Oct. (. The Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD)).

Halff G, Amanda r. Munoz, Divya Chakravarthy, Jingjing Gong, Rita Ghosh, Addanki P. Kumar. Pancreatic Cancer: Current Status and Challenges Springer; 2017 Oct. (Current Pharmacology Reports; vol. 1).

Halff GA, Jay C, Pugh J, Abrahamian G, Cigarroa F, Washburn K. Graft quality matters: Survival after simultaneous liver-kidney transplant according to KDPI. 2017 May. (Clinical transplant; vol. 31, no. 5).

Halff GA,Jun Liu, Naoki Akanuma, Chengyang Liu, Ali Naji, Glenn A. Halff, William K. Washburn, Luzhe Sun & Pei Wang. TGF-?1 promotes acinar to ductal metaplasia of human pancreatic acinar cells. 2016 Aug. (Scientific reports; vol. 6, no. 30904).

Halff GA, Washburn KW, Matsuoka L, Pandit U, Kim JE, Almenda J. Mora-Esteves C, Genyk Y, Holland B, Wilson DJ, Sher L, Koneru B. Parikh A. A multicenter study of 30 days complications after deceased donor liver transplatation in the model for endstage liver disease score era 2015 Sep. (Liver Transplant).

* Coronado, R, Kenneth, W, Ong, G, Halff GA, Christy, R. Effect of Decellularized Liver Matrix Proteins on Porcine Hepatocytes in vitro. 2014 Oct. (Biomedical Engineering Society Annual Meeting).

* Parikh A, Washburn WK, Matsuoka L, Pandit U, Genyk Y, Almeda JL, Mora-Esteves C, Halff GA, Kim J, Holland B, Wilson D, Sher L, Koneru B. Risk Factors for Number CV Preview Page 5 of 32 11/6/2017 and Severity of Complications Following Deceased Donor Liver Transplantation 2014 Jun. p. 291. (Liver Transplantation; vol. 20).

Halff GA, McDiarmid S, Berquist W, Bucuvalas J, Narkewicz M, Millis J, Martin S, Mittal N, Atkison P, Fecteau A, Langnas A, Freese D, Kerkar N, Gilmour S, Fisher R, D‘Alessandro A, Eason J, Kane R, Alonso E, Tzakis A, Rosenthal P, Heffron T, Schwarz K, Andrews W, Lopez J, Bozorgzadeh A, Lowell J, Karpen S, Humar A, Gonzalez-Peralta R, Mazariegos G, Lavine J, Dunn S, Jonas M, Lobritto S, Telega G,

Book L, Horslen S, Tector A, Tuttle-Newhall E.. Long-term linear growth and puberty in pediatric liver transplant recipients. Department of Pediatrics, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL: J Pdiatr; 2013 Nov. p. 1354-1360. (The Journal of Pediatrics; vol. 163, no. 5).

Professor of Transplant Surgery
Dielmann Chair, Transplant Center
Director, UT Transplant Center, UT School of Medicine San Antonio


M.D., University of Texas Medical School in Houston



Jian Ling, Ph.D.

Jian ling


Dr. Jian Ling is an Institute Scientist of Department of Pharmaceuticals and Bioengineering at the Southwest Research Institute. Dr. Ling has been involved in biomedical research and medical device development for over 25 years, and has led the development of varieties of biomedical devices and researches. He was the PI for the development of polymer-based nano-encapsulation for protein delivery, and lipid-encapsulated small molecules for control release. He led the development of composite tissue engineering materials and bioreactors for bone, meniscus, and vascular regeneration. He also led the development of an organ perfusion system for long-term organ preservation, and an NIH funded project to investigate an engineered 3D bone marrow environment for stem cell expansion. Dr. Ling was also the project manager for the development of a fiber optics-based Raman spectroscopy for clinical diagnosis, and the use of multi-color immunofluorescence imaging and flow cytometry for cancer diagnosis.

Dr. Ling’s research interests are in the development of biomaterials, bioreactors, and stem cell applications for wound healing and regenerative medicine. His interests are also in the application of nano-encapsulation for protein and RNA/DNA delivery and controlled release. Dr. Ling is familiar with the process to translate technology to medical products under the ISO 13485 quality system that is compliant with the FDA regulation 21 CFR Part 820.

Selected Publications and Patents

Antebi B, Zhang ZL, Wang Y, Lu ZD, Chen XD, Ling, J. Stromal cell-derived extracellular matrix promotes the proliferation and retains the osteogenic differentiation capacity of mesenchymal stem cells on three-dimensional scaffolds. Tissue Engineering: Part C, Methods, 21(2), p171-81, 2015.

Antebi B, Cheng XG, Harris JN, Gower LB, Chen XD, Ling J. “Biomimetic collagen-hydroxyapatite composite fabricated via a novel perfusion-flow mineralization technique”, Tissue Engineering: Part C, Vol 19(7), p 487-496, 2013.

Sun Y., Li W., Lu Z., Chen R., Ling J., Ran Q., Jilka R.L., Chen X.D., “Rescuing replication and osteogenesis of aged mesenchymal stem cells by exposure to a young extracellular matrix”, FASEB J., Vol. 25, p 1474-1485, 2011.

Rath A.L., Bonewald L.F., Ling J., Jiang JX, Van Dyke M.E., Nicolella D.P., “Correlation of cell strain in single osteocytes with intracellular calcium, but not intracellular nitric oxide, in response to fluid flow”, Journal of Biomechanics, Vol. 43, No. 8, p. 1560-4, 2010.

Lai Y.L., Sun Y., Skinner C.M., Son E.L., Lu Z.D., Tuan R.S., Jilka R.L., Ling J., and Chen X.Dong, “Reconstitution of Marrow-derived Extracellular Matrix Ex Vivo: a Robust Culture System for Expanding Large-scale Highly Functional Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells”, Stem Cells and Development, Vol. 19, No. 7, p. 1095-107, 2010.

Ling J., Chen X.D. “Bone marrow stromal cell-derived extracellular matrix promotes mesenchymal stem cell motility”, International Society for Analytical Cytology XXIV International Congress, Budapest, Hungary, May, 2008.

U.S. Patent 9,456,893, 2016: “Engineered Tissue Implants and Methods of Use Thereof”.

U.S. Patent 9,044,530, 2015: “Fabrication of bone regeneration scaffolds and bone filler material using a perfusion flow system”

U.S. Patent 8,815,594, 2014: “Hybrid Tissue Scaffold for Tissue Engineering” 

Institute Scientist

Pharmaceuticals and Bioengineering Department

Chemistry and Chemical Engineering Division

Southwest Research Institute


Ph.D., Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering, The University of Texas at Austin

M.S., Electrical and Computer Engineering, The University of Houston

B.S., Electrical Engineering, East China Normal University


Phone: (210) 522-3953


David Devereaux Dean, Ph.D.



Dr. David Dean's research activities focus on three main areas. 

1) The first area of interest involves examining how osteoblasts interact with titanium implant surfaces and the role of arachidonic acid metabolites (prostaglandin E2, arachidonic acid, and nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs) in regulating osteoblast response. The laboratory has developing methods for measuring changes in gene expression during the first 3-6 hours of culture on an implant surface so that it is possible to examine some of the very earliest cell responses to titanium or other biomaterials. 

2) A second area focuses on isolating and characterizing wear debris particles from resin, wear machine fluids, and tissues. The laboratory is actively working on fractionating wear debris particles into micron, sub-micron, and nanometer size ranges. After fractionation, particle preparations will be tested for their effect on osteoblasts; changes in gene expression, as well as differentiation, proliferation, and local factor production, will be assessed. 

3) The third area of research is a joint effort with colleagues in Biomedical Engineering at UTSA, Carnegie Mellon University, and Brooke Army Medical Center/Institute for Surgical Research to develop tissue engineering scaffolds for bone repair. The research focuses on developing new materials for regenerating large segments of bone lost due to trauma such as encountered on the battlefield.

Selected Publications 

Dean DD, Schwartz Z, Liu Y, Blanchard CR, Agrawal CM, Mabrey JD, Sylvia VL, Lohmann CH, and Boyan BD. The Effect of Ultrahigh Molecular Weight Polyethylene Wear Debris on MG63 Osteosarcoma Cells In Vitro. Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery (American Volume) 81:452-461, 1999.

Dean DD, Schwartz Z, Blanchard CR, Liu Y, Agrawal CM, Lohmann CH, Sylvia VL, and Boyan BD. Ultrahigh Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMWPE) Particles Have Direct Effects on Proliferation, Differentiation, and Local Factor Production of MG63 Osteoblast-like Cells. Journal of Orthopaedic Research 17:9-17, 1999.

Lohmann CH, Bonewald LF, Sisk MA, Sylvia VL, Cochran DL, Dean DD, Boyan BD, and Schwartz Z: Maturation State Determines the Response of Osteogenic Cells to Surface Roughness and 1,25-(OH)2D3. Journal of Bone and Mineral Research 15:1169-1180, 2000.

Dean DD, Lohmann CH, Sylvia VL, Köster G, Liu Y, Schwartz Z, and Boyan BD: Effect of Polymer Molecular Weight and Addition of Calcium Stearate on Response of MG63 Osteoblast-like Cells to UHMWPE Particles. Journal of Orthopaedic Research 19:179-186, 2001.

Lohmann CH, Dean DD, Bonewald LF, Schwartz Z, and Boyan BD: Production of Nitric Oxide and Prostaglandin E2 by Osteogenic Cells in Response to Ultra-high Molecular Weight Polyethylene Particles is Dependent on Cell Maturation State. Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery (American Volume) 84:411-419, 2002.

Bannister SR, Lohmann CH, Liu Y, Sylvia VL, Cochran DL, Dean DD, Boyan BD, and Schwartz Z: Shear Force Modulates Osteoblast Response to Surface Roughness. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research 60:167-174, 2002.

Lohmann CH, Dean DD, Köster G, Casasola D, Buchhorn GH, Fink U, Schwartz Z, and Boyan BD: Ceramic and PMMA Particles Differentially Affect Osteoblast Phenotype. Biomaterials 23:1855-1863, 2002.

Lohmann CH, Tandy EM, Sylvia VL, Hell-Vocke AK, Cochran DL, Dean DD, Boyan BD, and Schwartz Z: Response of Normal Female Human Osteoblasts (NHOst) to 17(-Estradiol is Modulated by Implant Surface Morphology. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research 62:204-213, 2002.

Kim HJ, Kim SH, Kim MS, Lee EJ, Oh HG, Oh WM, Park SW, Kim WJ, Lee GJ, Choi NG, Dinh DB, Hardin RR, Johnson K, Sylvia VL, Schmitz JP and Dean DD. Varying Ti-6Al-4V Surface Roughness Induces Different Early Morphologic and Molecular Responses in MG63 Osteoblast-like Cells. Journal of Biomedical Materials Research 74A:366-373, 2005.

Alves CM, Yang Y, Carnes DL, Ong JL, Sylvia VL, Dean DD, Agrawal CM, and Reis RL: Modulating Bone Cells Response onto Starch-based Biomaterials by Surface Plasma Treatment and Protein Adsorption. Biomaterials 28:307-315, 2006.

Adjoint Professor

Comprehensive Dentistry


Ph.D., Botany-Biochemistry, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1981

B.S., Biology-Chemistry, Randolph-Macon College, 1975


Phone: (210) 567-1728


Howard Wang, M.D.

Wanghoward 5x7new2


Dr. Howard Wang is an academic plastic surgeon with interest in patient care, teaching, and research. He is interested in graduate medical education. Through his patient care activities and didactic teaching, he educates residents/medical students about plastic surgery reconstruction and cosmetics with an emphasis on breast surgery, head and neck reconstruction and microsurgery. He is interested in both basic science and clinical studies.

Selected Publications

Luce EA, Wang HT. The Plastic Surgery Education Network: Appreciating Its Potential for Resident Training 2016 Jun. p. e776e776.(Plast Reconstr Surg Global Open; vol. 4, no. 6S2).

Hosein, RC, Cornejo, A, Wang, HT. Postoperative monitoring of free flap reconstruction: a comparison of external Doppler ultrasonography and the implantable Doppler probe Plast Surg (OAKV) 2016 Jan;24(1):11-19.

Orbay H, Busse BK, Stevenson TR, Wang HT, Sahar, DE. Deep Inferior Epigastric Artery Perforator Flap Breast Reconstruction without Microsurgery Fellowship Training Plast Reconstr Surg Glob Open 2015 Aug;3(7):e455-e461.

Sagar Ghosh, Fei Gu, Chou-Min Wang, Chun-Lin Lin, Joseph Liu, Howard Wang, Peter Ravdin, Yanfen Hu, Tim H.M. Haung, Rong Li. Gernome-wide DNA methylation profiling reveals parity-associated hypermethylation of FOXA1q Breast Cancer Res Treat 2014 Sep;147:653-659.

Chen A,Ver Halen J, Basu CB, Khan S, Wang H, and Jeffers L,. Young Plastic Surgeons Forum member survey: Part 1. Investing in the future: attitudes towards the Plastic Surgery Foundation Plast Reconstr Surg 2014 Aug;134(2):343-350.

Shah AR, Cornejo A, Guda T, Sahar DE, Stephenson SM, Chang S, Krishnegowda NK, Sharma R, Wang HT. Differentiated adipose-derived stem cell cocultures for bone regeneration in polymer scaffolds in vivo J Craniofac Surg 2014 Jul;25(4):1504-1509.

Cornejo A, Ivatury S, Crane CN, Myers JG, Wang HT. Analysis of Free Flap Complications and Utilization of Intensive Care Unit Monitoring J Reconstr Microsurg 2013 Sep;29(7):473-479.

Ghosh S, Ashcraft K, Jahid MJ, April C, Ghajar CM, Ruan J, Wang H, Foster M, Hughes DC, Ramirez AG, Huang T, Fan JB, Hu Y, Li R. Regulation of adipose oestrogen output by mechanical stress Nat Commun 2013 Jan;4:1821-1846.

Sahar DE, Walker JA, Wang HT, Stephenson SM, Shah AR, Krishnegowda NA, Wenke JC. Effect of endothelial differentiated adipose-derived stem cells on vascularity and osteogenesis in poly(d,l-lactide) scaffolds in vivo J Craniofac Surg 2012 May;23(3):913-918.

Cornejo A, Sahar DE, Stephenson SM, Chang S, Nguyen S, Guda T, Wenke JC, Vasquez, A, Michalek JE, Sharma R, Krishnegowda NK, Wang HT. Effect of Adipose Tissue-Derived Osteogenic and Endothelial Cells on Bone Allograft Osteogenesis and Vascularization in Critical-Sized Calvarial Defects Tissue Eng Part A 2012 May;18(15-16):1-10.

Cornejo A, Rodriguez T, Steigelman M, Stephenson S, Sahar D, Cohn SM, Michalek JE, Wang HT. The use of visible light spectroscopy to measure tissue oxygenation in free flap reconstruction Journal of Reconstructive Microsurgery 2011 Sep;27(7):397-402.

Ghosh S, Kang T, Wang H, Hu Y, Li R. Mechanical phenotype is important for stromal aromatase expression Steroids 2011 Jul;76(8):797-801.

Associated Faculty and Cross Appointment in UTSA/UTHSCSA Joint Graduate Program in Biomedical Engineering

Medical Director for Plastic Surgery Clinics

Professor of Otolaryngology and Cross Appointment in Department of Otolaryngology

Professor of Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery


M.D., Medicine, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 1995

B.A., Biology, Cornell University, 1991


Phone: (210) 567-6936


Andrew Meyer, M.D./M.S.

Andrewmeyer presaward2017 71 cropped


A physician-scientist who integrates biomedical engineering and medical research to improve the lives of critically ill children.

Selected Publications

Beely BM, Campbell JE, Meyer AD, Langer T, Negaard K, Chung KK, Cap AP, Cancio LC, Batchinsky AI. Electron Microscopy as a Tool for Assessment of Anticoagulation Strategies During Extracorporeal Life Support: The Proof Is on the Membrane ASAIO J 2016 Sep;62(5):525-532.

Hancock S, Froehlich C, Armijo-Garcia V, Meyer AD. ELSO registry outcomes for children with thoracic insufficiency requiring ECLS, Pediatric Crit. Care Med 2016 Feb;.

Prat NJ, Meyer AD, Ingalls NK, Dubose JJ, Cap AP. ROTEM significantly optimizes transfusion practices for damage control resuscitation in combat casualties Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery 2016 Jan;.

Meyer A, Gelfond JA, Wiles AA, Freishtat RJ, Rais-Bahrami K. Platelet-derived microparticles generated by Neonatal Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation Systems ASAIO J 2015 Jan;61(1):37-42.

Meyer AD, Wiles AA, Rivera O, Wong EC, Freishtat RJ, Rais-Bahrami K, Dalton HJ, Meyer A. Hemolytic and thrombocytopathic characteristics of extracorporeal membrane oxygenation systems at simulated flow rate for neonates Pediatr Crit Care Med 2012 Jul;13(4):e255-e261.

Assistant Professor of Pediatrics

Division of Critical Care

Research Physician at U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research

Associated Faculty of the Joint Graduate Program in Biomedical Engineering


M.D., Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, 2004

M.S., Biomedical Engineering, Virginia Commonwealth University/MCV Campus, 2000

B.S., Nuclear Engineering/Material Science & Eng.University of California at Berkeley, 1997


Phone: (210) 567-4424


Graduate Students

Animesh Agarwal, M.D.

Agrawal-photo 170 210 c1


Dr. Agarwal is a practicing Orthopaedic surgeon, as well as the Director of Orthopaedic Trauma and Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio (UTHSCSA), San Antonio’s only civilian Level I Trauma Center. Dr. Agarwal received his Orthopaedics residency training and M.D. at UTHSCSA after earning a B.S. degree in Biomedical Engineering from Johns Hopkins University. Following his residency, Dr. Agarwal completed a trauma fellowship at Grant Medical Center in Columbus, Ohio, and joined the clinical faculty of UTHSCSA in 1997. He is a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering and has been the recipient of several honors and awards, and has authored more than 270 scientific publications and 18 patents.

His research interests include: 1) diabetes and its effects on the musculoskeletal system, 2) fracture healing, 3) biomechanis of cartilage and bone, 4) retrograde femoral nailing, 5) knee dislocations and cruciate injuries, 6) bone graft/filler substitutes, and 7) wound VAC applications.

Selected Publications:

Athanasiou, KA, Agarwal, A, and Dzida, FJ: Comparative Study of the Intrinsic Mechanical Properties of the Human Acetabular and Femoral Head Cartilage. Journal of Orthopaedic Research, 12(3):340-349, 1994.

Athanasiou, KA, Agarwal, A, Muffoletto, A, Dzida, FJ, Constantinides, G, and Clem, M: Biomechanical Properties of Hip Cartilage in Experimental Animal Models. Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research, 316:254-266,1995.

Wirth, MA, Jensen, KL, Agarwal, A, Curtis, RJ, Rockwood, Jr., CA: Fracture-Dislocation of the Proximal Part of the Humerus with Retroperitoneal Displacement of the Humeral Head. A Case Report. Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, 79-A(5):763-766, 1997.

Schenck, Jr., RC, Kovach, IS, Agarwal, A, Brummett, R, Ward, R, Lanctot, D, and Athanasiou, KA: Cruciate Injury Patterns In Knee Hyperextension: A Cadaveric Model. Arthroscopy, 15(5):489-495, 1999.

Ostrum, RF, Agarwal, A, Lakatos, RP, Poka, A: Prospective Comparison of Retrograde and Antegrade Femoral Intramedullary Nailing, Journal of Orthopaedic Trauma, 14(7):496-501, 2000.

Professor, Trauma Service, Chief of Trauma Division

Orthopedic Surgery 



B.S., Johns Hopkins University, 1988

M.D., University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 1992



Phone: 210-567-5154

Annette Occhialini, M.D.



Dr. Occhialini received her Medical Degree from UTHSCSA. She completed her General Surgery residency in San Antonio and her Plastic Surgery residency at UT Health Science Center in Houston. She has been in private practice as a plastic surgeon in San Marcos for over twenty years. She began teaching anatomy at the Health Science Center in 2011 as a volunteer and was appointed to the faculty as a lecturer II in 2013. She was named as the Clinical co-director for the Language of Medicine module starting July 2015.

Lecturer II

Department of Cell Systems & Anatomy


UTHSCSA Medical School, 1985


DTL 1.236S.1 

Phone: (210) 567-3933 


Thomas S. King, Ph.D.



Dr. King is a Distinguished Teaching Professor at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA). He has faculty appointments in both the Department of Cell Systems & Anatomy and the Department of Obstetrics-Gynecology.

He has been an NIDA-funded research scientist but now devotes the majority of his efforts and time to teaching, in the School of Medicine (SOM). Dr. King is one of a number of faculty central to the design and implementation of a new and highly innovative, clinically-integrated medical school curriculum at UTHSCSA.

Over the course of more than three decades of teaching in the medical school, Dr. King has received various teaching accolades and awards including the very prestigious University of Texas System Board of Regents Teaching Excellence Award in the summer of 2014. In the spring of 2015, Dr. King was named a Piper Professor (Minnie Stevens Piper Foundation). Dr. King is an active member in the University of Texas Academy of Health Sciences Education.

Selected Publications:

Chen EC, Javors MA, Norris C, Siler-Khodr T, Schenken RS, King TS. (2004) Dependence of 3',5'-cyclic adenosine monophosphate--stimulated gonadotropin-releasing hormone release on intracellular calcium levels and L-type calcium channels in superfused GT1-7 neurons. J Soc Gynecol Investig. 2004 Sep;11(6):393-8.

M.A. Javors, P. Bean, T.S. King, and R.F.Anton. (2003) Biochemical Markers for Alcohol Consumption. In: Handbook of Clinical Alcoholism Treatment (B.A. Johnson, P. Ruiz and M. Galanter, eds.) Baltimore. Lippincott Williams and Wilkins, pp. 62 - 79, 2003.

King TS, McNichol M, Canez MS, Javors MA, Schenken RS. (2001) Effect of acute administration of cocaine on pituitary gonadotrophin secretion in female rats. Reproduction. 2001 Nov;122(5):723-9.

Javors MA, Sanchez JJ, King TS, Rohde AR, Wilson SG, Flores CM. (2001) Extraction and quantification of epibatidine in plasma. J Chromatogr B Biomed Sci Appl. 2001 May 5;755(1-2):379-82.

King TS, Potter D, Kang IS, Norris C, Chen E, Schenken RS, Javors MA. (1999) Concentration dependent effect of muscimol to enhance pulsatile GnRH release from GT1-7 neurons in vitro. Brain Res. 1999 Apr 3;824(1):56-62.

Associate Professor



Ph.D., Anatomy; Pathology, Medical University of South Carolina, 1980

B.S., Biology, Davidson College, 1975


Phone: (210) 567-3899


Rekha Kar, Ph.D.

Rekhakar 3 cropped


Dr. Rekha Kar's research is aimed at understanding the mechanisms that predispose diabetic patients to cardiovascular diseases. In particular, she is interested in elucidating the role of a nitric oxide-producing enzyme in modulating the susceptibility to cardiovascular dysfunction seen in diabetes using animal models of obesity and insulin resistance.

Diabetes is associated with increased oxidative stress, which causes cardiomyocyte death leading to defects in the myocardium and subsequent cardiac dysfunction. Nitric Oxide (NO) produced by the nitric oxide synthases (NOS) scavenges superoxide, which could potentially reduce overall oxidative stress. One of the potential sequelae of increased oxidative stress during diabetes could result from reduced NO bioavailability observed in diabetic patients, likely due to depletion of the substrate L-Arginine (L-Arg) and/or oxidation of the cofactor tetrahydrobiopterin (H4B). 

Deletion of neuronal NOS (nNOS) in mice led to increased oxidative stress in heart, suggesting a critical role of this isoform of NOS in modulating oxidative stress. Her research showed that brief exposure to hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) induces phosphorylation of nNOS, whereas prolonged exposure reduces nNOS expression in cardiomyocytes. She is interested in determining the mechanisms of oxidative stress-induced regulation of nNOS function and the role of nNOS in regulating diabetic cardiomyopathy.

Dr. Kar will teach:

- CIRC 5003 Language of Medicine

- CSBL 5022 Inter-professional Anatomy

She will also direct the Summer Anatomy workshop held in June each year and possibly have future teaching activities in CSBL 5032 Dental Histology in the Fall of 2016.

Selected Publications:

Kar R, Kellogg DL 3rd, Roman LJ. (2015) Oxidative stress induces phosphorylation of neuronal NOS in cardiomyocytes through AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK). Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2015 Apr 10;459(3):393-7.

Riquelme MA, Burra S, Kar R, Lampe PD, Jiang JX. (2015) Mitogen-activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) Activated by Prostaglandin E2 Phosphorylates Connexin 43 and Closes Osteocytic Hemichannels in Response to Continuous Flow Shear Stress. J Biol Chem. 2015 Nov 20;290(47):28321-8.

Batra N, Riquelme MA, Burra S, Kar R, Gu S, Jiang JX. (2014) Direct regulation of osteocytic connexin 43 hemichannels through AKT kinase activated by mechanical stimulation. J Biol Chem. 2014 Apr 11;289(15):10582-91.

Kar R, Riquelme MA, Werner S, Jiang JX. (2013) Connexin 43 channels protect osteocytes against oxidative stress-induced cell death. J Bone Miner Res. 2013 Jul;28(7):1611-21.

Kar R, Batra N, Riquelme MA, Jiang JX. (2012) Biological role of connexin intercellular channels and hemichannels. Arch Biochem Biophys. 2012 Aug 1;524(1):2-15.


Department of Cell Systems & Anatomy


University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2008


DTL 1.275S 

Phone: (210) 567-1567 


Janice Jianhong Deng, M.D.



Dr. Janice Jianhong Deng is interested in: 

- Restoration of mitochondrial dysfunction:
We are exploring approaches to repair mitochondrial defects in cell models carrying various types of mitochondrial mutations.

- Mitochondrial quality control:
We are in the process to identify and characterize protein factors involved in various stages of mitochondrial quality control.

- Role of respiratory complex dynamics in neuronal system:
We are generating various animal models of neuronal specific alterations in respiratory complex dynamics and investigating the consequences.

Selected Publications:

Vartak R, Deng J, Fang H, Bai Y. (2015) Redefining the roles of mitochondrial DNA-encoded subunits in respiratory Complex I assembly. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2015 Jul;1852(7):1531-9.

Mishra S, Deng JJ, Gowda PS, Rao MK, Lin CL, Chen CL, Huang T, Sun LZ. (2014) Androgen receptor and microRNA-21 axis downregulates transforming growth factor beta receptor II (TGFBR2) expression in prostate cancer. Oncogene. 2014 Jul 31;33(31):4097-106.

Gowda PS, Deng JD, Mishra S, Bandyopadhyay A, Liang S, Lin S, Mahalingam D, Sun LZ. (2013) Inhibition of hedgehog and androgen receptor signaling pathways produced synergistic suppression of castration-resistant prostate cancer progression. Mol Cancer Res. 2013 Nov;11(11):1448-61.

Sharma LK, Fang H, Liu J, Vartak R, Deng J, Bai Y. (2011) Mitochondrial respiratory complex I dysfunction promotes tumorigenesis through ROS alteration and AKT activation. Hum Mol Genet. 2011 Dec 1;20(23):4605-16.

Yang Y, Cimen H, Han MJ, Shi T, Deng JH, Koc H, Palacios OM, Montier L, Bai Y, Tong Q, Koc EC. (2010) NAD+-dependent deacetylase SIRT3 regulates mitochondrial protein synthesis by deacetylation of the ribosomal protein MRPL10. J Biol Chem. 2010 Mar 5;285(10):7417-29.



M.D., Medical Science, Xian Medical College, 1983


Phone: 210-567-1501