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

Search Program Faculty/Research

Sudha Seshadri, M.D., DM

Sudha seshadri1 cropped


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

Boychuck-carie-medium cropped


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.

Photo 64


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., 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.

Rathbone cropped


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-


Cheng, X. G.; Yoo, J. Y.; Hale, R. G.; Davis, M. R.; Kang, H. W.; Jee, S. S., 3D printed biomaterials for

maxillofacial 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., Plateletderived

growth-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 of

Advanced 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-


 Antebi, B.; Cheng, X. G.; Harris, J.; Gower, L. B.; Cheng, X.; Ling, J., Biomimetic Collagen–Hydroxyapatite

Composite 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.

Principal Scientist and Principal Investigator at Southwest Research Institute

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) 522-6354


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, 2020



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

Artyom Grigoryan, Ph.D.

Art ee2012 cropped


Dr. Artyom Grigoryan is an associate professor at the University of Texas San Antonio. He is interested in Signal and Image processing/Fourier analysis, and Applied mathematics. He has 2 patents, 1 invention, 3 books, 3 book chapters, and over 110 publications including 48 papers in referred journals.

Selected Publications

A.M. Grigoryan, "Two classes of elliptic discrete Fourier transforms: Properties and examples," Journal of Mathematical Imaging and Vision (0235), vol. 39, pp. 210-229, January 2011.

A.M. Grigoryan, "Multi-Dimensional Discrete Unitary Transforms," invited book-chapter (103 pages) in the 3rd edition on The Transforms and Applications Handbook in the series Electrical Engineering and Signal Processing (Editor in Chief, Prof. Alexander Poularikas), Taylor and Francis-CRC Press, January 11, 2010.

A.M. Grigoryan "16-point reversible integer discrete Fourier transform with 12 control bits," IEEE Trans. on Signal Processing, vol. 58, no. 2, pp. 912-916, February 2010.

A.M. Grigoryan and M.M. Grigoryan, "Image Processing: Tensor Transform and Discrete Tomography with MATLAB," text-book (460 pages), CRC Press Taylor and Francis Group (in press, 2012).

A.M. Grigoryan and M.M. Grigoryan, "Brief Notes in Advanced DSP: Fourier Analysis with MATLAB," text-book (354 pages), CRC Press Taylor and Francis Group, February 19, 2009.

A.M. Grigoryan and S.S. Agaian, Multidimensional Discrete Unitary Transforms: Representation, Partitioning, and Algorithms, Marcel Dekker, Inc., August 2003.

A.M. Grigoryan and Nan Du, "Principle of superposition by direction images," IEEE Trans. on Image Processing,vol. 20, no. 9, pp. 2531-2541, September 2011.

A.M. Grigoryan and Nan Du, "2-D images in frequency-time representation: Direction images and resolution map," Journal of Electronic Imaging, vol. 19, no. 3 (033012), July-September 2010.

Grigoryan Artyom M: "A FAST PAIRED METHOD OF A 1-D CYCLIC CONVOLUTION REALIZATION" (U.S. Patent No. 7,346,498 on March 18, 2008).

A.M. Grigoryan, "Novel reversible integer Fourier transform with control bits," IEEE Trans. on Signal Processing, Nov. 2007, vol. 55, no. 11, pp. 5267-5276.

F.T. Arslan and A.M. Grigoryan, "Fast splitting alpha-rooting method of image enhancement: Tensor representation," IEEE Trans. on Image Processing, Nov. 2006, vol. 15, no. 11, pp. 3375-3384.

A.M. Grigoryan, "Representation of the Fourier transform by Fourier series," Journal of Mathematical Imaging and Vision, vol. 25, no. 1, pp. 87-105, July 2006.

A.M. Grigoryan, "Fourier transform representation by frequency-time wavelets," IEEE Trans. on Signal Processing, July 2005, vol. 53, no. 7, pp. 2489-2497.

A.M. Grigoryan, "An algorithm for calculation of the discrete cosine transform by paired transform," IEEE Trans. on Signal Processing, January 2005, vol. 53, no. 1, pp. 265-273.

A.M. Grigoryan and S.S. Agaian, "Transform-Based Image Enhancement Algorithms With Performance Measure," Advances in Imaging and Electron Physics, Academic Press, vol. 130, pp. 165-242, May 2004.

A.M. Grigoryan, "Method of paired transforms for reconstruction of images from projections: Discrete model," IEEE Trans. on Image Processing, vol. 12, no. 9, pp. 985-994, Sept. 2003.

A.M. Grigoryan, "2-D hexagonal DFT splitting," IEEE Trans. on Signal Processing, vol. 50, no. 6, pp. 1438-1448, June 2002.

Budendorf Lukas; Kononen Juha; Dougherty Edward R; Grigoryan Artyom M; Kallioniemi Olli P: SIGNAL COUNTING FOR IN SITU HYBRIDIZATION" (Patent Number WO0120044, Publication date: 2001-03-22).

A.M. Grigoryan and E.R. Dougherty, "Optimization of linear filters under power-spectral-density stabilization," IEEE Trans. on Signal Processing, vol. 49, no. 10, pp. 2292-2300, Oct. 2001.

A.M. Grigoryan, E.R. Dougherty, J. Kononen, L. Bubendorf, G. Hostetter, and O.P. Kallioniemi, "Morphological spot counting from stacked images for automated analysis of gene copy numbers by Fluorescence In Situ Hybridization," Biomedical Optics, January 2002, vol. 7, no. 1, Jan. 2002, pp. 109-122.

A.M. Grigoryan, G. Hostetter, O.P. Kallioniemi, and E.R. Dougherty, "Simulation toolbox for 3D-FISH spot counting algorithms," Real Time Imaging, June 2002, vol. 8, no 3, pp. 203-212.

G.H. Hostetter, C.L. Andersen, L. Bubendorf, J. Kononen, E.R. Dougherty, A.M. Grigoryan, O. Kallioniemi, "Design of an automated spot counting program for interphase FISH on the tissue microarray," American Journal of Human Genetics, vol. 67(4), 318, Oct. 2000.

C.L. Andersen, G.H. Hostetter, A.M. Grigoryan, G. Sauter, and A. Kallioniemi, "Improved procedure for fluorescence in situ hybridization on tissue microarrays," Cytometry 2001, 45 (2), pp. 83-86.

Associate Professor

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering



Ph.D in Physics and Mathematics. Yerevan State University, Republic of Armenia (USSR), 1990

M.S. in Electrical Engineering. Department of Electrical Engineering, Texas A&M University, USA, 1999

M.S. in Imaging Science. Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (Moscow, USSR). Faculty of Computer Science, 1981

M.S. in Mathematics. Yerevan State University, Armenia, USSR. Faculty of Mechanics and Mathematics, 1978



Phone: 210-458-7518

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

Sos Agaian, Ph.D.

Sos agaian, ph.d.


Dr. Sos Agaian is the UTSA Peter T. Flawn Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He was recently named UTSA's Innovator of the Year. Notably, Agaian is researching image enhancement for use in computer-aided cancer detection. To date, Agaian and his colleagues have developed an algorithm that:

- assists pathologists in locating and scoring cancerous tissue regions

- provides more consistent and accurate cancer grading and scoring

- reduces the time and cost to process biopsies, and

- removes the need to have slides reviewed and graded by multiple pathologists.

While at UTSA, Agaian's research has led overall to 26 invention disclosures, 17 patent applications filed, two patents issued and three technologies licensed. Over the last year alone, his research led to six invention disclosures, three provisional patent applications filed, two full patent applications filed and three technology licenses. Additionally, the licensee of his technology provided more than $100,000 in sponsored research funding to his laboratory, and it hired one of Agaian's doctoral students following graduation.

Selected Publications

K. Panetta, C. Gao, S. Agaian, No Reference Color Image Contrast and Quality Measures, IEEE Transactions on Consumer Electronics, volume 59, Number 3, Page(s): 643-651, 2013.

S.Nercessian, K.. Panetta, S. Agaian, Non-linear Direct Multi-scale Image Enhancement Based on the Luminance and Contrast Masking Characteristics of the Human Visual System, IEEE Transactions- Image Processing, Vol.: 22, Page(s): 3549 – 3561, 2013.

(Best paper award) Yue Wu, Sos Agaian and Joseph P. Noonan, A novel method of testing image randomness with applications to image shuffling and encryption, Proc. SPIE 8755, (2013); 25 April - 3 May 2013, SPIE Defense, Security Sensing, conference

Y.Zhou K. Panetta, and S. Agaian, (n, k, p)-Gray Code for Imaging Systems,” Man, and Cybernetics, Part B: Cybernetics, IEEE Transactions on , 2013 , Volume: 43 , Issue: 2 Page(s): 515 – 529, 2013

Khader Mohammad and Sos Agaian "Practical Recognition System for Text Printed on Clear Reflected Material," ISRN Machine Vision,, 12 pages, 2012

K. Panetta, Y. Zhou, S. Agaian, H. Jia, ” Nonlinear Unsharp Masking for Mammogram Enhancement, “ IEEE Transactions on Information Technology in Biomedicine, Volume: 15, Page(s): 918 – 928,2011

S.Agaian, at el., “Parameterized Logarithmic Framework for Image Enhancement Systems,” Man, and Cybernetics, Part B: Cybernetics, IEEE Transactions , Vol.: 41 , Issue: 2 , 2011 , Page(s): 460 - 473

K.. Panetta, S. Agaian, S. C. Nercessian, and A. Almunstashri, ” Shape-dependent canny edge detector”, Opt. Eng. 50(8), 087008 (2011) , Page(s): 087008-1 , 087008-12

S Agaian, at el., “Boolean Derivatives with Application to Edge Detection for Imaging Systems” IEEE transactions: Systems, Man and Cybernetics- 1-12, Vol. 40, Page(s): 371–382, 2010

K. Panetta, E. Wharton, and S. Agaian, “Human visual System Based Image Enhancement and Measure of Image Enhancement,” Systems, Man and Cybernetics, IEEE transactions, vol. 38, no.1, pp.174-188, 2008.

Agaian, S.S.; Silver, B.; Panetta, K.A.; Transform Coefficient Histogram-Based Image Enhancement Algorithms Using Contrast Entropy, Image Processing, IEEE Transactions Volume 16, Issue 3, March 2007 Page(s):741 – 758

The Peter T. Flawn Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering


Ph.D., Graduate Studies, Steklov Institute of Mathematics Academy of the Sciences of the USSR (Moscow)



Phone: 210-458-5939

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

Roberto Fajardo, Ph.D.

Roberto fajardo 5x7 reduced


Dr. Roberto Fajardo's research focuses on two important topics that are clinically relevant to our community and the university's research mission: diabetic skeletal fragility and orthopaedic health disparities in total knee arthroplasty. 

His research on diabetic skeletal fragility focuses on underlying factors such as increased fracture risk in diabetes, an outcome that disproportionately impacts Latinos in the United States. Specifically, his lab has been investigating whether microvascular complications in human diabetic bone are associated with altered bone metabolism and bone material properties. 

Selected Publications

Fajardo RJ, and Müller R. 2001. Three-dimensional analysis of nonhuman primate trabecular architecture using micro-computed tomography. Am J Phys Anthropol 115:327-36.
Fajardo RJ, Ryan TM, and Kappelman J. 2002. Assessing the accuracy of high-resolution x-ray computed tomography of primate trabecular bone by comparisons with histological sections. Am J Phys Anthropol 118:1-10.
Fajardo RJ, Manoharan RK, Pearsall RS, Davies M, Marvell T, Monnell T, Ucran J, Pearsall AE, Khanzode D, Kumar R, Underwood K, Roberts B, Seehra J, and Bouxsein ML. 2010. Treatment with a soluble receptor for activin improves bone mass and structure in the axial and appendicular skeleton of female cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis). Bone 46:64-71.
Fajardo RJ, De Silva JM, Manorharan R, Schmitz JE, MacLatchy LM, and Bouxsein ML. 2013. Lumbar vertebral body bone microstructural scaling in small to medium-sized strepsirhines. Anat Rec
Guevara JG, Fajardo RJ, Morrey BF, Burns T, Dutta A. 2013. Survey: Trends in the prophylactic treatment and surgical management of heterotopic ossification in the elbow by U.S. orthopaedic surgeons. Curr Orthop Pract
Kilpadi KL, ElDabaje RE, Schmitz JE, Louden C, Thames TA, Joshi AP, Michalek JE, Simmons JW, and Fajardo RJ. Type 2 Diabetes Is Associated with Vertebral Fractures in Clinic- and Hospital-based Latinos. J Immig and Minority Health

Assistant Professor / Research



Ph.D., Anthropological Sciences, SUNY at Stony Brook, 2004

M.A., Anthropological Sciences, SUNY at Stony Brook, 1998

B.A., Anthropology, University of Texas at Austin, 1994


Phone: 210-567-6176


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


Lizhen Chen, Ph.D.



The goal of Dr. Lizhen Chen's research is to discover molecular pathways involved in neuronal aging and disease, and to translate such findings into potential therapeutic targets. Specifically, our research focuses on molecular mechanisms of neuronal aging, degeneration and age-dependent axon regeneration. We use C. elegans and mouse models in our research. The short life span and powerful genetics of C. elegans offers unique advantage for understanding the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying neuronal aging. The findings from C. elegans will then be applied to mammals. We are currently working on the following projects:

Regulation of MT dynamics in neuronal responses to age and injury

Axons in the central nervous system of adult mammals fail to regenerate after injury. In contrary, embryonic and early postnatal animals show a remarkable ability to regenerate axons. Despite decades of studies, the age-dependent changes and the factors influencing this transition remain largely unknown. The importance of MT regulation in neuron aging is underscored by the dysfunction of MT stabilization proteins in age-dependent neurodegeneration and the effect of drugs targeting MT stability in altering the pathogenic symptoms in animal models of neurodegenerative diseases. Age-dependent deterioration in neuronal morphology and disorganized MT arrays has been reported, but the MT dynamics in aged neurons has received little attention. MT plus ends are constantly undergoing growth and shrinkage, while the minus ends are relatively less dynamics. We have previously used a MT plus end marker EBP-2::GFP to study MT growth in injured axons. We aim to understand age-associated changes in MT organization and dynamics, and their effect on neuronal aging and regeneration.

CELF-mediated alternative splicing in neurodegeneration

Alternative splicing is a fundamental mechanism in gene expression regulation. Alternative splicing have been previously implicated in the context of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). For example, alternative splicing of exon 10 of the tau primary transcript generates isoforms of tau protein with three or four microtubule binding repeats. Imbalances in the ratio of three to four-repeat tau are known to induce pathological changes in a human-Tau mouse model. CELF family of RNA binding proteins are expressed in the nervous system and involved in RNA splicing. Recent GWAS analyses have identified CELF proteins as risk factors of AD. We have conducted CLIP-seq on CELF proteins and found that CELF RBPs bind to mRNAs of AD-related genes and the binding sites are proximate to the alternatively spliced exons, suggesting that CELF RBPs might be involved in alternative splicing of these AD-related genes. We are currently testing the hypothesis that CELF RBPs co-regulate splicing of a set of AD-related genes and manipulating CELF expression can influence the ratio of splicing isoforms and subsequently impact neuronal health.

Recent Publications

Chen L, Liu Z, Zhou B, Wei C, Zhou Y, Rosenfeld MG, Fu XD, Chisholm AD, Jin Y. CELF RNA binding proteins promote axon regeneration in C. elegans and mammals through alternative splicing of Syntaxins. Elife. 2016 Jun 2;5. pii: e16072. doi: 10.7554/eLife.16072. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 27253061.

Chen L, Chuang M, Koorman T, Boxem M, Chisholm A and Jin Y (2015) Axon injury triggers EFA-6 mediated destabilization of axonal microtubules via TACC and doublecortin like kinase. eLife.08695. PMID: 26339988

Grill B, Chen L, Bienvenut W, Anderson M, Quadroni M, Jin Y and Garner CC (2012) RAE-1 a novel PHR binding protein is required for axon termination in C. elegans. Journal of Neuroscience 32(8):2628-36 PMID: 22357847

Chen L, Wang Z, Hubert T, Ghosh-Roy A, O’ Rourke S, Bowerman B, Wu Z, Jin Y, Chisholm A. (2011) Axon regeneration pathways identified by systematic genetic screening in C. elegans. Neuron 71(6):1043-57 PMID: 21943602

Chen L and Chisholm A. (2011) Axon regeneration mechanisms: insights from C.elegans. Trends in Cell Biology 21(10):577-84 PMID: 21907582

Chen L, Zhao P, Wells L, Amemiya C, Condie B, Manley N. (2010) Mouse and zebrafish Hoxa3 orthologs have non-equivalent in vivo protein function. PNAS vol. 107 no. 23 10555-10560 PMID: 20498049

Liu Z, Farley A, Chen L, Kirby BJ, Kovacs CS, Blackburn C, Manley N. (2010) Thymus-associated parathyroid hormone has two cellular origins with distinct endocrine and immunological functions. PLoS Genetics 6(12): e1001251 PMID: 21203493

Wang ZR, Guo L, Chen L, McEachern MJ. (2009) Evidence for an additional base-pairing element between the telomeric repeat and the telomerase RNA template in Kluyveromyces lactis and other yeasts. Mol Cell Bio.29(20):5389-98 PMID: 19687297

Chen L, Xiao S, Manley N. (2009) Foxn1 is required to maintain the postnatal thymic microenvironment in a dosage-sensitive manner. Blood. 113(3):567-74 PMID: 18978204

Assistant Professor

Department of Cell Systems and Anatomy

Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies

UT Health Science Center at San Antonio


University of Georgia, 2008



Phone: (210) 562-5062

Departmental Website

Jannine D. Cody, Ph.D.

Codyj cropped


Dr. Jannine Cody is originally from Charles City, Iowa. She graduated from Hoover High School in Des Moines where she also attended Grandview College. At the University of Iowa, she earned a B.S. degree in General Science and a M.S. degree in Biology.

In 1990, Dr. Cody founded the Chromosome 18 Registry and Research Society as a way to bring affected families together and to learn from each other. To date, the Registry includes more than 3000 families affected by chromosome 18 abnormalities from around the world. In 1991, Dr. Cody enrolled in a Ph.D program at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio; graduating in 1997. Dr. Cody is now a Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the UT Health Science Center at San Antonio.

While pursuing her Ph.D., she developed the multidisciplinary Chromosome 18 Clinical Research Center, the goal of which is to make the chromosome 18 conditions completely treatable. The research ranges from the molecular biology of the conditions, to the clinical consequences, to the psychosocial ramifications for the affected individual, the parents and the siblings. This work is primarily funded by the families of the Chromosome 18 Registry.

In an effort to ensure federal support for research into chromosome abnormalities, Dr. Cody has testified twice before the US Congress and has served on a variety of national committees and organizations related to genetics.

Selected Publications

Cody JD, Hale DE. Making chromosome abnormalities treatable conditions. Am J Med Genet C Semin Med Genet. 2015 Sep;169(3):209-15. doi: 10.1002/ajmg.c.31447. PMID: 26351122

Hasi-Zogaj M, Sebold C, Heard P, Carter E, Soileau B, Hill A, Rupert D, Perry B, Atkinson S, O'Donnell L, Gelfond J, Lancaster J, Fox PT, Hale DE, Cody JD. A review of 18p deletions. Am J Med Genet C Semin Med Genet. 2015 Sep;169(3):251-64. doi: 10.1002/ajmg.c.31445. PMID: 26250845

Cody JD, Sebold C, Heard P, Carter E, Soileau B, Hasi-Zogaj M, Hill A, Rupert D, Perry B, O'Donnell L, Gelfond J, Lancaster J, Fox PT, Hale DE. Consequences of chromsome18q deletions. Am J Med Genet C Semin Med Genet. 2015 Sep;169(3):265-80. doi: 10.1002/ajmg.c.31446. PMID: 26235940

Sebold C, Roeder E, Zimmerman M, Soileau B, Heard P, et al. Tetrasomy 18p: report of the molecular and clinical findings of 43 individuals. Am J Med Genet A. 2010 Sep;152A(9):2164-72. PubMed PMID: 20803640.

Carter E, Heard P, Hasi M, Soileau B, Sebold C, et al. Ring 18 molecular assessment and clinical consequences. Am J Med Genet A. 2015 Jan;167A(1):54-63. PubMed PMID: 25339348

Founder and President, The Chromosome 18 Registry & Research Society

Professor of Pediatrics, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA)

Director of the Chromosome 18 Clinical Research Center; Department of Pediatrics, UTHSCSA

Scientific Director, Pediatric Clinical Research, Department of Pediatrics and Institute for the Integration of Medicine and Science, UTHSCSA


Ph.D., Human Genetics, University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, 1997

M.S., Biology, University of Iowa, 1978

B.S., General Science, University of Iowa, 1976

A.A., General Science, Grand View College, 1974



Office phone: 210-567-9220

Lab phone: 210-567-5321

Office fax: 210-567-0492

Eugenio Cersosimo, M.D., Ph.D.

E.-cersosimo-photo cropped


Eugenio Cersosimo, MD, PhD is currently the medical director of clinical research at the Texas Diabetes Institute and an associate professor of medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas. He is board certified in endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism and maintains an active practice in the adult outpatient clinic in San Antonio. Dr. Cersosimo graduated from medical school at the Universidade Federal Fluminense in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1975 and obtained a doctorate degree in physiology at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee in 1986. 

He completed his training in internal medicine and endocrinology, diabetes & metabolism in the Clinician Investigator Tract at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota in 1994. He started his academic career as an assistant professor of medicine at the State University of New York at Stony Brook, NY and in 2001 transferred to his current position at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. 

Dr. Cersosimo has authored more than 60 original manuscripts and has received numerous research grants and awards from the National Institutes of Health, Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, American Diabetes Association, Kronkosky Foundation, Howard Hughes Institute, and from various pharmaceutical companies. Presently, he is directly involved in and supervises more than 20 different research projects in areas of his greatest interest: glucose regulation, the entero-pancreatic axis, and insulin therapy & insulin resistance with a focus on cardiovascular and renal complications.

Selected Publications

Cersosimo E, Solis-Herrera C, Triplitt C. Inhibition of renal glucose reabsorption as a novel treatment for diabetes patients J Bras Nefrol 2014 Jan;36(1):80-92.

Sara Reyna, Puntip Tantiwong, Eugenio Cersosimo, R. A. DeFronzo, Apiradee Sriwijitkamol Nicolas Musi,. Short term exercise training improves insulin sensitivity but does not inhibit inflammatory pathways in immune cells from insulin resistant subjects Experimental Diabetes Research 2013 Jul;.

Fowler SP, Puppala S, Arya R, Chittoor G, Farook VS, Schneider J, Resendez RG, Upadhayay RP, VandeBerg J, Hunt KJ, Bradshaw B, Cersosimo E, VandeBerg JL, Almasy L, Curran JE, Comuzzie AG, Lehman DM, Jenkinson CP, Lynch JL, DeFronzo RA, Blangero J, Hale DE, Duggirala R. Genetic epidemiology of cardiometabolic risk factors and their clustering patterns in Mexican American children and adolescents: The SAFARI Study Human Genetics 2013 Jan;132(9):59-71.

Solis C, Triplitt C, Garduno-Garcia JD, Adams J, DeFronzo RA, Cersosimo C. Mechanisms of glucose lowering of DPP-4 inhibitor sitagliptin when used alone or with metformin in type 2 diabetes: A double tracer study Diabetes Care 2013 Jan;36:2756-2762.

Cersosimo E, Xu X, Musi N. Potential role of insulin signaling on vascular smooth muscle cell migration, proliferation, and inflammation pathways Am J Physiol Cell Physiol 2012 Feb;302(4):C652-C657.

Cersosimo E, Gastaldelli A, Cervera A, Wajcberg E, Sriwijilkamol A, Fernandez M, Zuo P, Petz R, Triplitt C, Musi N, Defronzo RA. Effect of exenatide on splanchnic and peripheral glucose metabolism in type 2 diabetic subjects J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2011 Jun;96(6):1763-1770.

Fernandez M, Gastaldelli A, Triplitt C, Hardies J, Casolaro A, Petz R, Tantiwong P, Musi N, Cersosimo E, Ferrannini E, Defronzo R. Metabolic Effects of Muraglitazar in Type 2 Diabetic Subjects Diabetes Obes Metab 2011 May;13:893-902.

Joya-Galeana J, Fernandez M, Cervera A, Reyna SM, Ghosh S, Triplitt C, Musi N, DeFronzo R, Cersosimo E. Effects of insulin and oral antidiabetic agents on glucose metabolism, vascular dysfunction and skeletal muscle inflammation in type 2 diabetic subjects Diabetes/Metabolism Research and Reviews 2011 Jan;27(4):373-382.

Associate Professor of Medicine, University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, TX
Medical Director of Clinical Research, Texas Diabetes Institute, San Antonio, TX


Ph.D., Physiology, Vanderbilt University, 1985

M.D., Clinical Sciences,Universidade Federal Fluminense, 1975


Phone: (210) 358-7200


LTC Andrew P. Cap, M.D., Ph.D., FACP



Dr. Andrew Cap is a hematologist conducting basic and translational research on coagulation system function and cellular therapy products for use in trauma and burn care. His mission is to lead the U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research Coagulation and Blood Research Group. He also serves as a staff Hematologist-Oncologist at the San Antonio Military Medical Center (SAMMC), as a core faculty member its Hematology-Oncology Fellowship Program, as Program Director for the Clinical Investigation Fellowship Program and as an Associate Professor of Medicine at the Uniformed Services University. He is a board certified internist and hematologist-oncologist and serves as hematology and blood products subject matter expert advisor to the Joint Trauma System (JTS), US Pacific Command, and the US Special Operations Command (SOCOM).

His overall research goals are to decrease battlefield mortality, with emphasis on providing diagnostic and therapeutic interventions to treat hemorrhage and the coagulopathy of trauma. The mission of the Blood and Coagulation program has been focused on defining the pathophysiologic effects of trauma on the coagulation system. Specifically, they are analyzing new diagnostics and interventions to understand the role of platelets, cell-derived microparticles, and transfusion strategies in prevention or creation of clots that occur in trauma and burned soldiers. Their goal is to improve storage, preparation, and efficacy of blood products delivered to the far-forward battlefield.

Selected Publications

James A. Bynum, M. Adam Meledeo, Todd M. Getz, Armando C. Rodriguez, James K. Aden, Andrew P. Cap, Heather F. Pidcoke. Bioenergetic Profiling of Platelet Mitochondria during Storage: 4°C Storage Extends Platelet Mitochondrial Function and Viability. Transfusion. Accepted for publication Jan 15, 2016.

Todd M. Getz, Robbie K. Montgomery, James A. Bynum, James K. Aden, Heather F. Pidcoke and Andrew P. Cap. Storage of platelets at 4°C in platelet additive solutions prevents aggregate formation and preserves platelet functional responses. Transfusion. Epub 8 Feb 2016.

Kristin M. Reddoch, Robbie K. Montgomery, Armando C. Rodriguez, M. Adam Meledeo, Heather F. Pidcoke, Anand K. Ramasubramanian, Andrew P. Cap. Endothelium-derived inhibitors efficiently attenuate the aggregation and adhesion responses of refrigerated platelets. Shock. Vol 45, Issue 2, February 2016, pages 220–227.

Andrew P. Cap. Platelet storage: a license to chill! Transfusion. Volume 56, Issue 1, Jan 2016. pages 13–16.

Xiaowu Wu, Daniel N Darlington, Andrew P Cap. Procoagulant and Fibrinolytic Activity after Polytrauma in Rat. American Journal of Physiology-Regulatory, Integrative and Comparative Physiology. December 2015 Vol. no. , DOI: 10.1152/ajpregu.00401.2015

Daniel N Darlington, Mary D Gonzales, Teresa Craig, Michael A Dubick, Andrew P Cap, Martin G Schwacha. Trauma-induced coagulopathy is associated with a complex inflammatory response in the rat. Shock. Vol 44, August 2015. Pages 129-137.

Heather F Pidcoke, Claire L Isbell, Maryanne C Herzig, Chriselda G Fedyk, Beverly S Schaffer, Kevin K Chung, Christopher E White, Steven E Wolf, Charles E Wade, Andrew P Cap. Acute blood loss during burn and soft tissue excisions: An observational study of blood product resuscitation practices and focused review. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. Vol 78, Issue 6. June 2015. Pages S39-S47.

Nicolas J Prat, Robbie Montgomery, Andrew P Cap, Michael A Dubick, Jean-Claude Sarron, Casimir Destombe, Philippe May, Pascal Magnan.Comprehensive evaluation of coagulation in swine subjected to isolated primary blast injury. Shock. Vol 43, Issue 6, June 2015. Pages 598-603.

James Eric Campbell, James Keith Aden, Andrew Peter Cap. Acute traumatic coagulopathy: Whole blood thrombelastography measures the tip of the iceberg. Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery. Vol 78, Issue 5, May 2015. Pages 955-961.

Pidcoke HF, McFaul SJ, Ramasubramanian AK, Parida BK, Mora AG, Fedyk CG, Valdez-Delgado KK, Montgomery RK, Reddoch KM, Rodriguez AC, Aden JK, Jones JA, Bryant RS, Scherer MR, Reddy HL, Goodrich RP, Cap AP. Primary hemostatic capacity of whole blood: a comprehensive analysis of pathogen reduction and refrigeration effects over time. Transfusion. 2013 Jan;53 Suppl 1:137S-149S. doi: 10.1111/trf.12048. PMID:23301966

Medical Corps, US Army
Chief, Blood Research, US Army Institute of Surgical Research
Associate Professor of Medicine, Uniformed Services University
Program Director, Clinical Research Fellowship
Deputy Hematology-Oncology Consultant to the Surgeon General
Staff Hematologist-Oncologist, San Antonio Military Medical Center


M.S, Technology and Policy, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1995

M.D./ Ph.D, Boston University, 2003

B.A., Government, Harvard University, 1992

Leonid Bunegin, BSc

Leon bunegin


Leonid Bunegin is an Associate Professor with tenure in the Department of Anesthesiology at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. He is currently the Director of the Biomedical Engineering Laboratories and has served as Co-Director of Anesthesiology Research and Director of Anesthesiology Laboratories at the Department of Anesthesiology. He is also director of the Advanced Cardiac Life Support training program at the Department of Anesthesiology.

Selected Publications

Bunegin L, Gelineau. Oxygenated Hypothermic Machine Perfusion of Goat Kidneys with Krebs. Henseleit Buffer. Experimental and Clinical Transplantation. (in press) 2017

Lin, RP, Weitzel, EK, Chen, PG, Mcmains, KC, Majors, J & Bunegin, L. Failure pressures of three rhinologic dural repairs in a porcine ex vivo model‘ International Forum of Allergy and Rhinology., 2015;5(7):633-636.

Bunegin L, Weitzel EK, McMains KC, Burge SD. Development and Validation of an Endoscopic Sinus Surgery Skills Training Model Allergy and Rhinology Journal 2012;26:409-413.

Bunegin L, Tolstykh GP, Gelineau JF, Cosimi B, Anderson LM. Oxygen Consumption during Oxygenated Hypothermic Perfusion as a Measure of Donor Organ Viability ASAIO Journal 2013;59:427-432.

Bunegin L, Tolstykh GP, Gelineau, JF, Maier, LM. Novel Portable Hypothermic Pulsatile Perfusion Preservation Technology: Improved Viability and Function of Rodent and Canine Kidneys. Annals of Transplantation 2010;15(3):35-43

Bunegin L Moore J. Simultaneous Spectrophotometric and Mechanical Property of Skin In: Progress in Biomedical Optics and Imaging: Photonic Therapeutics and Diagnostics II. Bellingham, Washington: International Society of Optical Engineering; 2006. p. 1 - 11.

Bunegin L, Tolstykh GP, Gelineau JF. Method for three-dimensional visualization of neurodegeneration in cupric-silver stained serial rat brain slices. Journal of Biomedical Optics 2005;10(2):240121-240126.

Bunegin L, Gelineau JF. The application of fluidics technology for organ preservation. Biomed Instrum Technol 2004;38(2):155-164.

Bunegin L, Gelineau JF. The Application of Fluidics Based Technology for Perfusion Preservation of Adult Human Sized, Canine Hearts. Journal of Cardiovascular Engineering 2003;8(1-2):73-78.

Bunegin L. Perservation of Rodent Kidneys in a Portable Preservation Device Based on Fluidics Technology. Transplantation 2002;73(9):1508-1510.

Associate Professor with tenure, Department of Anesthesiology

Director of Human Patient Simulator Laboratory and Director

Course Director


B.S., Chemistry, University of Pittsburgh, 1971


Phone: (210) 567-4486


Carrie Jo Braden, RN, Ph.D.



Carrie Jo Braden is currently the Associate Dean for Research at the University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio School of Nursing. 

She holds a masters in applied psychology from Winona State University in Winona, Minnesota and a masters degree in community health nursing, primary care family nurse practitioner degree, and a Ph.D. in nursing from the University of Arizona in Tucson. Dr. Braden has published many articles on aspects of chronic illness, published textbooks in community health and in theory based intervention, and has been awarded several research grants from the National Institute of Nursing Research, National Cancer Institute, and the National Institute of General Medical Science. Dr. Braden's program of research has included clinical trial tests of self-help promoting intervention effectiveness for women receiving breast cancer treatment. Her current research focuses on educational interventions to promote commitment to a research career among students from under represented groups. For over 30 years, Dr. Braden has taught doctoral level students concentration on courses on theory based evaluation and theory based intervention.

Selected Publications

Lapiz-Bluhm, MD, Braden CJ, Canty-Mitchell, J, Breslin ET, Peterson AL. Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Nurse Faculty Scholar Program for Junior Nurse Faculty: It Takes a Village for a Successful Application Journal of Nursing Practice Applications & Review of Research 2014 Jun;4(2):112-122.

Browne JA, Braden CJ. Definition and Relational Specification of Work-around Nurs Inform 2012 Jun;23:2012-2051.

Arevalo-Flechas LC, Braden CJ. Caregiving: A hard job done with love The Journal of Nutrition, Health & Aging 2009 Jan;13(6):S326-S327.

Associate Dean for Research

School of Nursing


Ph.D., NursingThe University of Arizona, 1986

M.S., Community Health NursingThe University of Arizona, 1983

M.S., Applied Psychology, Winona State University, 1970

B.S.N., Nursing, DePauw University, 1966


Phone: (210) 567-5808


Alex Bokov, Ph.D.

Alex bokov cropped


During Dr. Alex Bokov's Ph.D. training in physiology, he delved further and further into statistics and bioinformatics. He went on to do post-doctoral training in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at The University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio. 

Part of this time, he worked after hours to complete a second post-graduate degree, an M.S. in Applied Statistics. His cross-disciplinary training, further augmented by over a decade of practical programming and database experience, gives him the unique ability to help bridge the gap between biology, statistics, and scientific computing, helping facilitate more powerful experimental design, valid statistical analysis, and biologically relevant interpretation of results. 

In January 2014, he transitioned the Clinical Informatics Research Division where he built our flagship EMR data warehouse and, as Deputy Chief, helped Dr. Tirado-Ramos build a top-notch biomedical informatics team.

Selected Publications

Bokov A, Tirado-Ramos A, Bos, Angela B., Chen, Catherine, Manuel, Laura S. Denormalize and Delimit: How not to Make Data Extraction for Analysis More Complex than Necessary Procedia Computer Science 2016 May;80:1033-1041.

Zhang Y, Liu Y, Walsh M, Bokov A, Ikeno Y, Jang YC, Perez VI, Van Remmen H, Richardson A. Liver specific expression of Cu/ZnSOD extends the lifespan of Sod1 null mice Mech Ageing Dev 2016 Mar;154:1-8.

Mishur, RJ, Khan, M., Munkcsy, E., Sharma, L., Bokov, A., Beam, H., Radetskaya, O., Borror, M., Lane, R., Bai, Y., and Rea, S. Mitochondrial Metabolites Extend Lifespan Aging Cell 2016 Jan;.

Bai X, Wey MC, Fernandez E, Hart MJ, Gelfond J, Bokov AF, Rani S, Strong R, Bokov A. Rapamycin improves motor function, reduces 4-hydroxynonenal adducted protein in brain, and attenuates synaptic injury in a mouse model of synucleinopathy Pathobiol Aging Age Relat Dis 2015 Aug;5:28743-28743.

Sataranatarajan K, Ikeno Y, Bokov A, Feliers D, Yalamanchili H, Lee HJ, Mariappan MM, Tabatabai-Mir H, Diaz V, Prasad S, Javors MA, Choudhury GG, Hubbard GB, Barnes JL, Richardson A, Kasinath BS. Rapamycin increases mortality in db/db mice, a mouse model of type-2 diabetes. Oct 5. pii: glv170. [Epub ahead of print] J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci 2015 Jan;.

Fok W.C., Livi CB, Bokov A, Yu Z., Chen Y, Richardson AG, Perez VI. Short-term rapamycin treatment in mice has few effects on the transcriptome of white adipose tissue compared to dietary restriction Mech Ageing Dev 2014 Sep;140:23-29.

Fok, Wilson C, Bokov A, Gelfond JA, Yu, Zhen, Zhang Y, Doderer, Mark, Chen Y, Javors MA, Wood, William, Zhang, Yongqing, Becker, Kevin G, Richardson AG, Perez, Viviana I. Combined treatment of rapamycin and dietary restriction has a larger effect on the transcriptome and metabolome of liver Aging Cell 2014 Apr;13(2):311-319.

Pan H, Qin K, Guo Z, Ma Y, April C, Gao X, Andrews TG, Bokov A, Zhang J, Chen Y, Weintraub ST, Fan J-B, Wang D, Hu Y, Aune GJ, Lindsey ML, Li R. Negative elongation factor controls energy homeostasis in cardiomyocytes Cell Reports 2014 Mar;7(1):79-85.

DEB Faculty Instructor

Epidemiology & Biostatistics


M.S., Applied Statistics, University of Texas San Antonio , 2014

Ph.D., Physiology, The University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio, 2008

B.S., Cellular and Molecular Biology, University of Michigan, 2001



Phone: (210)562-4106

Charles Bowden, M.D.

Charles bowden


Dr. Charles Bowden, clinical professor in the departments of psychiatry and pharmacology who occupies the Nancy U. Karren Endowed Chair in Psychiatry, is an internationally respected authority on bipolar disorder and mood-stabilizing medications. He is recognized in the Psychiatry/Psychology category.

Dr. Bowden’s research has defined the symptoms and biology of bipolar disorders, and he has contributed major new understandings about the effectiveness and biochemical and physiological effects of mood-stabilizing drugs. He has studied many of the newest treatments for bipolar disorder in tightly designed, randomized, controlled clinical trials that have allowed their approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and wide dissemination to patients.

Notable highlights

- Recognized in Thomson Reuter’s “The World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds, 2014; and for 2015.” The honorees published the greatest number of highly cited papers (top one percent of citations by field) in 21 broad fields between 2014 and 2015. 

- Dr Bowden is one of 110 scientists worldwide recognized in the Psychiatry/psychology category and one of 8 scientists recognized whose primary research work is on bipolar disorder.

- Received the Andrew C. Leon Distinguished Career Award, The International Society for CNS Clinical Trials and Methodology, in 2016

- Served as Councilor for the International Society for Bipolar Disorders Training, Education and Research Committee in 2005

- Served on Task Force on Nomenclature and Outcome, 2007-, Task Force Expert Panel on Use of Antidepressants in Bipolar Disorders, 2012-2013, Committee on Research Diagnostic Criteria (RDC) for Bipolar Disorder 2013-, Vice President of Research, 2015

Selected Publications

Katz MM, Berman N, Bowden CL, Frazer A. The componential approach enhances the effectiveness of 2-week trials for new antidepressants J Clin Psychopharmacol 2011 Apr;31(2):253-254.

Brooks JO, Goldberg JF, Ketter TA, Miklowitz DJ, Calabrese JR, Bowden CL, Thase ME. Safety and tolerability associated with second-generation antipsychotic polytherapy in bipolar disorder: findings from the Systematic Treatment Enhancement Program for Bipolar Disorder J Clin Psychiatry 2011 Feb;72(2):240-247.

Clinical Professor, Psychiatry

Nancy U. Karren Chair of Psychiatry

Graduate Faculty, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences

Faculty, Center for Biomedical Neuroscience


M.D., Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine, 1964

B.S., Pre-med, The University of Texas at Austin, 1960


Phone: (210) 567-5405

Antonio R. Anzueto, M.D.

Antonio anzueto


Dr. Anzueto and his Pulmonary research group are currently conducting clinical studies that involve treating conditions that range from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, pneumonia, acute respiratory distress/injury, to septic shock.

Selected Publications

Christopher S. Johnson; Christopher R. Frei; Mark L. Metersky; Antonio R. Anzueto; Eric M. Mortensen Non-invasive mechanical ventilation and mortality in elderly immunocompromised patients hospitalized with pneumonia: A retrospective cohort studyBMC Pulmonary Medicine. 2014;14(1).

Allyson C. Lemay; Antonio Anzueto; Marcos I. Restrepo; Eric M. Mortensen Predictors of long-term mortality after severe sepsis in the elderlyAmerican Journal of the Medical Sciences. 2014;347(4):282-288.

Elena Laserna; Oriol Sibila; Juan Felipe Fernandez; Diego Jose Maselli; Eric M. Mortensen; Antonio Anzueto; Grant Waterer; Marcos I. Restrepo Impact of macrolide therapy in patients hospitalized with pseudomonas aeruginosa community-acquired pneumoniaChest. 2014;145(5):1114-1120.


Department of Pulmonary Diseases and Critical Care Medicine

Chief of Pulmonary Section, South Texas Veterans Health Care System


M.D., Medicin Universidad de San Carlos de Guatemala, 1979

B.S., Colegio Liceo Javier, 1972


Phone: (210) 617-5256


Alexei Tumanov, M.D., Ph.D.



Dr. Alexei Tumanov's research focuses on the regulation of mucosal immunity, cancer and host response to pathogens. We investigate how the immune system regulates the delicate balance between protective immunity and immunopathology at mucosal surfaces, in particular in the gut and lung. Our main research is centered on understanding the biology of lymphotoxin (LT), member of tumor necrosis factor superfamily of cytokines. Although LT and its receptor, LTbR are known as key regulators of lymphoid organ development and maintenance, recent studies revealed the critical role of LT in protection against several mucosal pathogens and regulation of intestinal inflammation. To understand the role of LT signaling in disease, we generated various mouse strains with genetically modified components of LT pathway. Specific ongoing projects include:

1) Understanding the role of LT in inflammatory bowel disease and colorectal cancer.

Our recent studies reveal the critical role of LT in the regulation of innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) in the gut. ILCs are heterogeneous cell population which play key roles in the regulation of inflammation and immunity at mucosal surfaces, particularly in gastrointestinal tract. Despite recent advances in dissecting the roles of different ILC populations in intestinal homeostasis, the cellular and molecular mechanisms of protective versus pathogenic responses mediated by distinct populations of ILCs in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) remain poorly understood, which limits the development of novel therapies. The goal of this project is to elucidate how LTbR signaling regulates intestinal inflammation in IBD and colitis-associated cancer, the major fatal complication for patients with IBD.

2) Defining the role of innate lymphoid cells in Campylobacter-induced colitis.

Campylobacter jejuni is a common human enteric pathogen that causes acute enterocolitis and increases the risk of developing long-term intestinal dysfunction. Our data suggest that innate immune mechanisms contribute to intestinal pathology in C. jejuni-induced colitis. We investigate how distinct populations of ILCs regulate intestinal inflammation in C. jejuni-induced colitis.

3) Regulation of influenza-induced lung pathology.

Lung pathology is a significant cause of the morbidity and mortality associated with acute respiratory virus infection. Respiratory viruses, such as influenza virus not only cause damage to the epithelium, but activate immune defense mechanisms. Although these immune mechanisms are employed to destroy and remove infected cells in an attempt to clear the virus, they can also promote lung pathology. However, the key cellular and molecular mechanisms that regulate the balance between protection and tissue damage during acute viral infection remain are not well understood. The overall goal of this project is to elucidate how LTbR regulates influenza-associated lung damage.

4) Tumor immunotherapy.

Novel immunotherapies for cancer are having major clinical impact. However, accompanying immune-mediated adverse reactions, such as liver toxicity, remain the major obstacle of these therapies. The goal of this project is to improve effectiveness of cancer therapy by targeting LTbR pathway in the liver.

Selected Publications:

Complete list of publications in PubMed:

Gubernatorova E.O., Liu X, Othman A., Muraoka W.T, Koroleva E.P., Andreescu S., Tumanov A.V. Europium-doped cerium oxide nanoparticles limit reactive oxygen species formation and ameliorate intestinal ischemia-reperfusion injury. Adv Healthc Mater, May 8. doi: 10.1002/adhm.201700176, 2017.

Koroleva E.P., Fu Y.X., Tumanov A.V. Lymphotoxin in physiology of lymphoid tissues - Implication for antiviral defense. Cytokine. Sep 9. pii: S1043-4666(16)30472-0, 2016.

Gubernatorova E.O., Koroleva E.P., Halperin S., Perez-Chanona E., Jobin C., Tumanov A.V.

Gubernatorova E.O., Koroleva E.P., Halperin S., Perez-Chanona E., Jobin C., Tumanov A.V. Murine model of intestinal ischemia-reperfusion injury. J Vis Exp, e53881, doi:10.3791/53881, 2016.

Macho-Fernandez E., Koroleva E.P., Spencer C.M., Tighe M., Torrado E., Cooper A.M, Fu Y-X, Tumanov A.V. Lymphotoxin beta receptor signaling limits mucosal damage through driving IL-23 production by epithelial cells. Mucosal Immunol, 2015 Mar;8(2):403-13.

Koroleva E.P., Halperin S., Gubernatorova E.O., Spencer C.M, Tumanov A.V. Citrobacter rodentium- induced colitis: a robust model to study mucosal immune responses in the gut. J Immunol Methods, 2015, 421:61-72.

Kruglov A.A., Grivennikov S.I., Kuprash D.V., Winsauer C., Prepens S., Seleznik G. M., Heikenwalder M., Eberl G., Littman D.R., Tumanov A.V., Nedospasov S.A. Non-redundant function of soluble LTα3 produced by innate lymphoid cells in intestinal homeostasis. Science, 342(6163):1243-6, 2013.

Tumanov AV, Koroleva EP, Guo X, Wang Y, Kruglov A, Nedospasov S, Fu YX. Lymphotoxin controls the IL-22 protection pathway in gut innate lymphoid cells during mucosal pathogen challenge. Cell Host Microbe, 10(1):44-53, 2011.

Wang Y., Koroleva E.P., Kruglov A.A., Kuprash D.V., Nedospasov S.A., Fu Y-X, Tumanov A.V. Lymphotoxin beta receptor signaling in intestinal epithelial cells orchestrates innate immune responses against mucosal bacterial infection. Immunity, 32(3): 403-13, 2010.

Tumanov A.V., Koroleva E.P., Christiansen P.A., Khan M.A., Ruddy M.J., Burnette B., Papa S., Franzoso G., Nedospasov S., Fu Y-X., Anders R.A. T cell derived lymphotoxin regulates liver regeneration. Gastroenterology, 136(2):694-704, 2009.

Lo J.C., Wang Y., Tumanov A.V., Bamji M., Yao Z., Reardon C.A., Getz G.S., Fu Y-X. Lymphotoxin beta receptor-dependent control of lipid homeostasis. Science, 316(5822):285-8, 2007.

Grivennikov, S.I., Tumanov, A.V., Liepinsh, D. J., Kruglov, A.A., Marakusha, B.I., Shakhov, A.N., Murakami, T., Drutskaya, L.N., Förster, I., Clausen, B.E., Tessarollo, L., Ryffel, Bernhard, Kuprash, D.V., Nedospasov, S.A.: Distinct and non-redundant in vivo functions of TNF produced by T cells and macrophages/neutrophils: protective and deleterious effects. Immunity, 22 (1): 93-104, 2005.

Tumanov, A. V., Kuprash, D. V., Grivennikov, S. I., Lagarkova, M. A., Abe, K., Shakhov, A. N., Drutskaya, L. N., Stewart, C. L., Chervonsky, A. V., and Nedospasov, S. A.: Distinct role of surface lymphotoxin expressed by B cells in the organization of secondary lymphoid tissues. Immunity. 17: 239-250, 2002. 

Associate Professor

Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics


M.D., Medical Biochemistry, Russian State Medical University

Ph.D., Molecular Biology, Engelhardt Institute of Molecular Biology, Russian Academy of Sciences



Phone: (210) 450-8157

Office: MED 5.018V

Lab: MED 5.025V

Research Profile

More Info…

Luis C. Yepes, D.D.S.



Dr. Luis Camilo Yepes, D.D.S. is an Assistant Professor at the University Of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio. Following his graduation with an Endodontics certification in 1999 from Colombia’s Pontifical Xaverian University, he came to United States in 2007 to complete a General Practice Residency program at the University of Kentucky for two years. In 2009, Dr. Yepes started a Fellowship in Endodontics and General Dentistry at the University Of Kentucky College Of Dentistry, where he worked as an Instructor at the clinic and pre-clinic.

In 2012 Dr. Yepes started working as an Assistant Professor and is now as a Program Director of the Advance Education General Dentistry and Module Director for the treatment planning at the comprehensive Dentistry department at University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio. Dr. Yepes is also involved in multiple teaching activities supporting undergraduate programs.

Clinical Assistant Professor, Comprehensive Dentistry

Director, Advanced Education in General Dentistry Program, Comprehensive Dentistry

Assistant Director, Advanced General Dentistry Practice, Comprehensive Dentistry


D.D.S., Dentistry, Pontificia Universidad Javerianan, School of Dentistry, Bogotá, Colombia


Phone: (210) 450-3245


Barbara MacNeill, M.S., D.M.D.

Macneillb portrait cropped


Barbara MacNeill, D.M.D., M.S., serves as the director of the Advanced General Dentistry Clinic (AGDC) and assistant director of the Advanced Education in General Dentistry (AEGD) at the UT Health Science Center. She is a former group leader and assistant group leader of one of the eight General Practice Groups in the Department of Comprehensive Dentistry. She is a fellow in the Academy of General Dentistry. She is also a member of the American Dental Education Association (Chair for the Section on Postdoctoral General Dentistry), the American Dental Association, the Texas Dental Association, the San Antonio District Dental Society, Special Care Dentistry, and Omicron Kappa Upsil (President of the Mu Nu Chapter).

Dr. MacNeill received her B.S. (Chemistry), B.A. (Theatre) and M.S. (Chemistry) from Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Her D.M.D. degree is from University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine. Her post-graduate education includes a two-year GPR program at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio School of Dentistry, in which she served as a chief resident. Dr. MacNeill received the Department of Comprehensive Dentistry "Excellence in Predoctoral Teaching Clinical Award", Faculty Assembly "Teaching Excellence Award" and has been selected as a Assistant Marshall multiple times for their Commencement exercises.

Director of the Advanced General Dentistry Clinic 

Assistant director of the Advanced Education in General Dentistry 


D.M.D., Dentistry, University of Pennsylvania

M.S., Chemistry, Lehigh University

B.A., Theatre, Lehigh University

B.S., Chemistry, Lehigh University


Phone: (210) 450-3245


Seema Ahuja, M.D.



Dr Ahuja received her M.D. from the Armed Forces Medical College, Pune, India. She is presently a Professor at the Department of Medicine, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, Texas, USA. Her postdoctoral training was at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases and the Laboratory of Host Defenses, National Institutes of Health,Bethesda MD. Her long term goal is to elucidate the role of chemokines and chemokine receptors in generation of host immune responses using murine models of human diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, Kawasaki's Disease and atherosclerosis.

Selected Publications

Wagner BT, Tan C, Barnes JL, Ahuja SS, Davis TL, Gorin Y, Jimenez F. Nephrogenic systemic fibrosis: evidence for oxidative stress and bone marrow-derived fibrocytes in skin, liver, and heart lesions using a 5/6 nephrectomy rodent model Am J Pathol 2012 Dec;181(6):1941-1952.

Zamilpa R, Ibarra J, de Castro Bras LE, Ramirez TA, Nguyen N, Halade GV, Zhang J, Dai Q, Dayah T, Chiao YA, Lowell W, Ahuja SS, D''Armiento J, Jin YF, Lindsey ML. Transgenic overexpression of matrix metalloproteinase-9 in macrophages attenuates the inflammatory response and improves left ventricular function post-myocardial infarction J Mol Cell Cardiol 2012 Nov;53(5):599-608.

Martinez HG, Quinones MP, Jimenez F, Estrada C, Clark KM, Suzuki K, Miura N, Ohno N, Ahuja SK, Ahuja SS. Important role of CCR2 in a murine model of coronary vasculitis BMC Immunol 2012 Oct;13(1):56-56.

Kalkonde YV, Shelton R, Villarreal M, Sigala J, Mishra PK, Ahuja SS, Barea-Rodriguez E, Moretti P, Ahuja SK. The CC chemokine receptor 5 regulates olfactory and social recognition in mice Neuroscience 2011 Dec;197:153-161.

Martinez HG, Quinones MP, Jimenez F, Estrada CA, Clark K, Muscogiuri G, Sorice G, Musi N, Reddick RL, Ahuja SS. Critical role of chemokine (C-C motif) receptor 2 (CCR2) in the KKAy + Apoe -/- mouse model of the metabolic syndrome Diabetologia 2011 Oct;54(10):2660-2668.

Ibarra JM, Quinones MP, Estrada CA, Jimenez F, Martinez HG, Ahuja SS. CD8alpha+ dendritic cells improve collagen-induced arthritis in CC chemokine receptor (CCR)-2 deficient mice Immunobiology 2011 Sep;216(9):971-978.

Chiao Y, Dai Q, Zhang J, Lin J, Lopez EF, Ahuja SS, Chou Y-M, Lindsey ML, Jin Y. Multi-analyte profiling reveals matrix metalloproteinase-9 and monocyte chemotactic protein-1 as plasma biomarkers of cardiac aging Circul Cardovasc Genet 2011 Aug;4(4):455-462.

Ibarra JM, Jimenez F, Martinez HG, Clark K, Ahuja SS. MMP-Activated Fluorescence Imaging Detects Early Joint Inflammation in Collagen-Antibody-Induced Arthritis in CC-Chemokine Receptor-2-Null Mice, In-Vivo Int J Inflam 2011 Jun;2011:691587-691587.

Zamilpa R, Kanakia R, Cigarroa J, Dai Q, Escobar GP, Martinez HM, Jimenez F, Ahuja S, Lindsey ML. CC Chemokine Receptor 5 Deletion Impairs Macrophage Activation and Induces Adverse Remodeling Following Myocardial Infarction. (Note: This article was featured on the site on 2/21/11.) Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 2011 Apr;300(4):H1418-H1426.

Li G, Biju KC, Xu X, Zhao Q, Valente AJ, He W, Reddick RL, Freeman GL, Ahuja SS, Clark R, Li S. Enhanced expression of LCR alpha in macrophages ameliorates atherosclerosis in LDL receptor deficient mice Gene Therapy 2011 Mar;18(8):835-841.

Kalkonde YV, Morgan WW, Sigala J, MAFFI SK, Condello C, Kuziel W, Ahuja SS, Ahuja SK. Chemokines in the MPTP model of Parkinsons disease: absence of CCL2 and its receptor CCR2 does not protect against striatal neurodegeneration Brain Res 2007 Jan;1128(1):1-11.



B.M./B.S., Medicine, Armed Forces Medical College, 1984


Phone: (210) 218-1688


Ashley M Delgado MSDH, RDH



Ashley Delgado received her Bachelor of Science degree in Dental Hygiene from the University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston, Texas in 2010. Clinically, she has practiced dental hygiene in Periodontal and General Dentistry offices for five years. She is a strong advocate for educating the community, and this led her to work with Miles of Smiles, which provides services to school districts within the city of San Antonio.

She is currently a member of American Dental Hygiene Association and the San Antonio District Dental Hygientist Society

Assistant Professor/Clinical



M,S,Dental Hygiene, UT Health Science Center San Antonio, 2015 

B.S., Dental Hygiene, UTHSC in Houston, 2010


Phone: 210-567-3861


Jo Ann Jordan M.A., RDH



Jo Ann Jordan is an Assistant Professor/Clinical and Director in the Dental Hygiene Division.

Selected Publications

Showalter R, Nguyen CA, Curtis WJ, Jordan JD, Taverna MV. A Pilot Study Evaluating Dental Research Enrollment in Four Multi center Clinical Research Trials: Comparing Private Practice and University Settings The Clinical Researcher 2015 Oct;29:43-46.

Stein T, Jordan JD. Health Considerations For Oral Piercing and the Policies That Influence Them Tex Dent J 2012 Jul;129(7):687-693.

Jacks ME Jordan JD. Exploring Your Research Potential! Journal of Dental Hygiene 2008 Jul;82(4):31-31.

Assistant Professor/Clinical and Director, Dental Hygiene Division


M.A., University of the Incarnate Word, 2010

B.S., The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2001

Certificate, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 1995


Phone: (210) 567-3826


Lynn Smiley MEd, RDH

Smiley cropped


Lynn Smiley is the course director for the "Introduction to Clinical Theory" class offered in the fall semester. The class is an introduction to the theory associated with clinical procedures and patient care. Topics include prevention of disease transmission in the dental setting and patient assessment skills such as vital signs, health history, and oral inspection.  

Selected Publications

Nguyen CA, Jacks ME, Smiley LA, Walden CE. Statistics Anxiety Levels of Dental Hygiene Graduate Students Journal of Dental Hygiene 2015 Feb;89(1):46-54.

Clinical Assistant Professor



MEd, Education, Schreiner University, 2013

M.A., Graduate Studies, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2001

Certificate, Dental Hygiene, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 1986

MA, Graduate Studies, Northern Arizona University, 1976

B.A., Spanish/Education, Blackburn College, 1972


Phone: (210) 567-3847


Carol Nguyen, RDH, MSDH

Nguyencarol dec 2016


Carol Nguyen is an Associate Professor at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, Department of Periodontics, Division of Dental Hygiene. She began her full time teaching career in 2000. Her professional strengths are in teaching and service with focus on advocating for public health programs for vulnerable and underserved populations using interprofessional collabortations.

She serves as a core faculty member and the course director for undergraduate and graduate level courses in didactic and clinical formats. In 2016 she became a certified online teacher through the Quality Matters Program. She serves as the Division Community Outreach Director and Director of the Bachelor Completion Program in Dental Hygiene. During her tenure, she has served as committee chair and committee member for several Master of Science students resulting in numerous publications.

Her former role as Program Director for AHEC Healthcare Transition Fellowship for the Developmentally Disabled led to publications and presentation on health literacy and healthcare transition at state and national meetings. Consequently, she was awarded the state Teaching Excellence Award in 2012 from the Texas Dental Hygiene Directors. In 2013, she received the Innovative Teaching Excellence Award from The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio for efforts in interprofessional teaching. In that same year, she received the Alumna of the Year from the Division of Dental Hygiene for service to the profession and community. In 2016, she received a teaching fellowship from the Hispanic Center of Excellence. 

Ms. Nguyen has numerous publications related to topics on oral health prevention and clinical care serving vulnerable and underserved populations.

Selected Publications

Taverna MV, Nguyen C, Hicks B. Oral Hygiene and Self-Care in Older Adults with Dementia Generations 2016 Nov;40(3):43-48.

Showalter R, Nguyen CA, Curtis WJ, Jordan JD, Taverna MV. A Pilot Study Evaluating Dental Research Enrollment in Four Multi-center Clinical Research Trials: Comparing Private Practice and University Settings The Clinical Researcher 2015 Oct;29(suppl):43-46.

Nguyen CA, Jacks ME, Smiley LA, Walden CE. Statistics Anxiety Levels of Dental Hygiene Graduate Students. Journal of Dental Hygiene 2015 Feb;89(1):46-54.

Nguyen CA, Jones AA, Jacks ME, English DK. Calculus detection calibration among dental hygiene faculty members utilizing dental endoscopy: a pilot study. Journa of Dental Education 2015 Feb;79(2):124-32.

Taverna, M. Nguyen, C. Wright, R., Tysinger, J. and Sorrenson, H. Iatro-Compliance: Unintended Consequences of Excessive Autonomy in Long Term Care Facilities. Journal of Dental Hygiene 2014 Feb;88(1)

Banton, J., Nguyen CA. Public Health: Improving Access to Care through Collaboration Access 2013 Sep;27(8):26-28.

Nguyen CA, and Garza, G. Interdisciplinary Research: An Eye-Opening Experience Access 2010 Mar;24(3):6-18.

Associate Professor and Dental Hygiene BS Completion Program Director


M.S., Dental Hygiene, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2008

B.S., Dental Hygiene, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2000

Certificate, Dental Hygiene, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 1996


Phone: (210) 567-3838


Beatriz Hicks M.A., RDH

Beatriz hicks 2nd shot-4800x 5760 original cropped


Beatriz Hicks is a Clinical Associate Professor in the Department of Periodontics, Division of Dental Hygiene. She received her Master of Arts in Higher Education from the University of Texas at San Antonio, and has 28 years of teaching experience at this University.

As an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Division of Geriatrics, Gerontology and Palliative Medicine and in collaboration with the Department of Dental Hygiene she was a Co-Principal Investigator for the Geriatric Dental Hygiene Education component of a federally-funded grant (including experience with a supplemental grant), for the South, West & Central Consortium Geriatric Education Center of Texas, in collaboration with the Texas A&M Health Science Center, School of Rural Public Health. Her experience with the grants allowed her the opportunity to train dental hygiene students in geriatric assessments and in the delivery of oral health services in long term care facilities. In addition, she was able to develop Geriatric courses at the Master’s level. Currently, she serves as the dental hygiene rotation supervisor at the UT Geriatric clinic Dental School Center for Oral Health and Research.

She has extensive experience in public health and worked as the Project Coordinator of a federally funded grant given by the US DHHS Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Office of Head Start, the program was titled “Oral Health Initiative Project.” This grant was in collaboration with the UT Health Science Center Department of Dental Hygiene, the City of San Antonio Metropolitan Health, Dental Division and Parent Child Incorporated. The preventive oral health project included the development of a Head Start program in San Antonio to provide Head Start children with limited dental screenings and follow-up services for children at risk with urgent dental needs. The grant created a fluoride varnish program that includes student rotations for dental and dental hygiene students who provide preventative services to Head Start children.

Her interests include oral health across the lifespan. She regularly gives professional and community-based presentations on topics such as Head Start, geriatrics, community oral health, veterinary oral health, and nutrition. She is a member of Sigma Phi Alpha National Dental Hygiene Society and the treasurer of the Beta Sigma Chapter in San Antonio. She is also a member of Alpha Eta Society, a society dedicated to the service of Allied Health Professionals.

Selected Publications:

Electronic/Web Publication:

Wappes, Brittany, Hicks, Beatriz, Nguyen, Carol. Denture and Partial Care San Antonio, Texas: Morningside Ministries; 2015 Mar. Available from:

Wappes, Brittany,Hicks, Beatriz, Nguyen, Carol. Dental Hygiene Care: Toothbrush Modifications for Patient‘s with Dexterity Needs San Antonio, Texas: Morningside Ministries; 2015 Mar.

Valentic, Bree, Hicks, Beatriz, Nguyen, Carol. Building Trust San Antonio, Texas: Morningside Ministries; 2015 Mar. Available from:

Galicki, Nina, Hicks, Beatriz, Nguyen, Carol. Denture Adhesives San Antonio, Texas: Morningside Ministries; 2015 Mar. Available from:

Galicki, Nina, Hicks, Beatriz, Nguyen, Carol. Oral Care of the Dementia Patient San Antonio, Texas: Morningside Ministries; 2015 Mar. Available from:

Valentic, Bree, Hicks, Beatriz, Nguyen, Carol. Identifying Normal Oral Structures, Cancers, and Suspicous Lesions San Antonio, Texas: Morningside Ministries; 2015 Mar. Available from:

Journal Articles

Conn R, Warren-Morris D, Prihoda T, Hernandez E, Hicks BM. Comparison of two manual toothbrushes in effectiveness of plaque removal: A pilot study Journal of Dental Hygiene 2017 Apr;91(2):32-39.

Taverna M, Nguyen C, Hicks B. Oral Hygiene and Self-Care in Older Adults with Dementia Generations 2016 Nov;40(3):43-48.

Delgado A, Prihoda T, Nguyen C, Hicks B, Smiley LA, Taverna M.. Professional Caregivers‘ Oral Care Practices and Beliefs for Elderly Clients Aging in Place Journal of Dental Hygiene 2016 Aug;90(4):244-248.

Galicki,Nina; Hicks, Beatriz; Nguyen,Carol; Valentic,Bree; Waapes,Brittany. Online Training for Nursing Staff to Improve the Oral Health Quality of Senior Residents American Dental Hygienist Association Access Journal 2016 Aug:12-13.

Bain C McComas M Taverna M Hicks BM Wright R. Educational Deficiencies Recognized by Independent Practice Dental Hygienists and their Suggestions for Change Journal of Dental Hygiene 2015 Dec;88(6):373-379.

Bain C McComas M Taverna M Hicks BM Wright R. Educational Deficiencies Recognized by Independent Practice Dental Hygienists and their Suggestions for Change Journal of Dental Hygiene 2015 Dec;88(6):373-379.

Hicks Beatriz, Maldonado, Stacy, Martinez, Liza, Nixon, Adriene, Tigges, Brandon, and Wallace, Juanita. A Collaborative Project in Veterinary Oral Health American Dental Hygienists‘ Access Journal 2010 Dec:10-18.

Clinical Associate Professor

Department of Periodontics 

Community Course Director 


M.A., Adult Higher Education, The University of Texas at San Antonio, 1992

B.S., Allied Health Education, Incarnate Word College, 1988

Certificate, Dental Hygiene, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 1986


Phone: (210) 567-3825


Emelda Hernandez, MSDH, RDH

Hernandez research prize1 cropped


Emelda E. Hernandez is an Assistant Professor/Clinical in Periodontics. She is also part of the graduate faculty for the Master in Science in Dental Science program. 

Selected Publications

Hernandez, Emelda, RDH, MS. Dental Hygiene Student Experiences Using Motivational Interviewing. Journal of Dental Hygiene (Online)87.6 (Dec 2013): 401.

Schramm, Stacey A, RDH, BS, MSDH; Jacks, Mary E, RDH, MS; Prihoda, Thomas J, PhD; McComas, Martha J, RDH, MS; Hernandez, Emelda E, RDH, MS. Oral Care for Pregnant Patients: A Survey of Dental Hygienists' Knowledge, Attitudes and Practice. Journal of Dental Hygiene (Online)90.2 (Apr 2016): 121-127.

Assistant Professor/Clinical 



M.S., Dental Hygiene,The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2013

B.S., Dental Hygiene, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2003

AAS, Dental Assisting, San Antonio College, 1999


Phone: (210) 567-3866


Melanie V. Taverna, MSDH, RDH

Aaeaaqaaaaaaaac aaaajdg1ztvlzjgwlta4y2ytngjjns05ytm1ltnhndu5ztrmmdbjyw


Melanie V. Taverna MS, RDH, is an Assistant Professor/Clinical Faculty, Department of Periodontics, Division of Dental Hygiene, University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio. She is also the program director for the Master in Science in Dental Hygiene program and serves as the Committee on Graduate Studies (COGS) chair for the program.

Assistant Professor/Clinical Faculty, Department of Periodontics

Program Director of the M.S. in Dental Hygiene Program 

COGS Chair

Asst. Director of South Texas Oral Health Network


M.S., Dental Hygiene, UT Health Science Center at San Antonio, 2011

B.F.A., Bachelor of Fine Arts, The University of Texas at San Antonio, 1985


Melanie Taverna, M.S. RDH

Director of Dental Hygiene Online Graduate Programs

(210) 567-3858

Evelien Bunnik, Ph.D.

Evelien bunnik


The overall research goal of the Bunnik laboratory is to understand the development and maintenance of protective immunity in malaria-exposed individuals and to use this knowledge for the design of a novel, effective malaria vaccine. To identify targets of protective anti-malaria humoral immunity, we screen and clone antibodies from protected individuals living in malaria-endemic regions, followed by further characterization of antibodies reactive against the malaria parasite. 

In addition, we study the development of this humoral immune response over time, in particular with respect to affinity maturation and the development of subsets of non-responsive (or atypical) malaria-specific memory B cells. An additional focus of the lab is the role of chromatin structure and genome organization on gene expression during normal B cell development and in dysfunctional B cells in malaria-exposed individuals.

Selected publications:

Bunnik EM, Batugedara G, Saraf A, Prudhomme J, Florens A, Le Roch KG. The mRNA-bound proteome of the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Genome Biology (2016) 17:147.

Ay F*, Bunnik EM*, Varoquaux N*, Bol SM, Prudhomme J, Vert JP, Noble WS, Le Roch KG. Three-dimensional modelling of the P. falciparum genome during the erythrocytic cycle reveals a strong connection between genome architecture and gene expression. Genome Research (2014), 24:974-988. (*contributed equally)

Bunnik EM, Polishko A, Prudhomme J, Ponts N, Gill SS, Lonardi S, Le Roch KG. DNA-encoded nucleosome occupancy is associated with transcriptional levels in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. BMC Genomics (2014), 15:347.

Bunnik EM, Chung DWD, Hamilton M, Ponts N, Saraf A, Prudhomme J, Florens L, Le Roch KG. Polysome profiling reveals translational control of gene expression in the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Genome Biology (2013), 14(11):R128.

Bunnik EM, Swenson LC, Edo-Matas D, Huang W, Dong W, Frantzell A, Petropoulos CJ, Coakley E, Schuitemaker H, Harrigan PR, van 't Wout AB. Detection of inferred CCR5- and CXCR4-using HIV-1 variants and evolutionary intermediates using ultra-deep pyrosequencing. PLoS Pathogens (2011), 7(6):e1002106.

Bunnik EM, Euler Z, Welkers MRA, Boeser-Nunnink BDM, Grijsen ML, Prins JM, Schuitemaker H. Adaptation of HIV-1 envelope gp120 to humoral immunity at a population level. Nature Medicine (2010), 16(9):995-997.

Assistant Professor

Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics


Ph.D., University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands


5.016V.3 - MED

Tel: (210) 450-8146

Bunnik Lab Website:

Graduate Students

Sebastiaan Bol, PhD – Sr. Research Scientist

Jake Gonzales – Graduate Student

Bayan Fallatah – Master’s Student

Zhao Lai, Ph.D.

Zhao lai


Dr. Lai is the founding director of the Genome Sequencing Facility (GSF) in the Greehey Children’s Cancer Research Institute (GCCRI) of UT Health Science Center at San Antonio (UTHSCSA). The GSF is also the Next Generation Sequencing Shared Resources of Cancer Center: NGSSR. The GSF utilizes high throughput sequencing platforms to generate high quality genomic data and provides support to its analysis for large number of faculty members at UTHSCSA. Dr. Lai has been leading the GSF since its inception, and have guided the establishment and development of every aspect of this core facility. At the GSF, Dr. Lai oversees the operational activities, including project budgeting and coordination, equipment acquisition and maintenance, training & supervising staff scientists, establishing all standard operating procedures (SOPs), and creating a working pipeline from experimental design through subsequent data interpretation of experiments with investigators. 

As the Director of GSF, Dr. Lai has continually established and significantly expanded the NGS services to develop a comprehensive portfolio of NGS protocols, secured NIH instrument grant S10 to improve the genomic infrastructure, and supported diverse biomedical research applications and projects. Under her leadership, with the data generated from the GSF, supported by the analytic and bioinformatics group, the GSF has quickly become an essential component in genomic studies and fundamentally transformed the genomics research environment for our faculty members, and contributed to over 80 cancer-related publications in NEJM, Cancer Cell, PNAS, and other high-impact peer-reviewed journals. 

Specially for rapid growing NGS research field, as new technologies and research directions evolve, Dr. Lai will implement them into our NGS assays and be instrumental in ensuring that researchers can fully utilize this new knowledge to enhance their current research. Overall, Dr. Lai’s research efforts supporting and implementing the NGS technologies and applications in the GSF is crucial to genomic studies of many projects.

Recent publications:

Hollister EB, Foster BA, Dahdouli M, Ramirez J, Lai Z. Characterization of the Stool Microbiome in Hispanic Preschool Children by Weight Status and Time. Childhood obesity (Print). 2017; PubMed [journal] PMID: 29028448

Liu Y, Wu P, Zhou J, Johnson-Pais TL, Lai Z, Chowdhury WH, Rodriguez R, Chen Y. XBSeq2: a fast and accurate quantification of differential expression and differential polyadenylation. BMC bioinformatics. 2017; 18(Suppl 11):384. PubMed [journal] PMID: 28984183, PMCID: PMC5629564

Sanchez HN, Shen T, Garcia D, Lai Z, Casali P, Zan H. Genome-wide Analysis of HDAC Inhibitor-mediated Modulation of microRNAs and mRNAs in B Cells Induced to Undergo Class-switch DNA Recombination and Plasma Cell Differentiation. Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE. 2017; (127). NIHMSID: NIHMS912633 PubMed [journal] PMID: 28994753, PMCID: PMC5731236

Akiel M, Guo C, Li X, Rajasekaran D, Mendoza RG, Robertson CL, Jariwala N, Yuan F, Subler MA, Windle J, Garcia DK, Lai Z, Chen HH, Chen Y, Giashuddin S, Fisher PB, Wang XY, Sarkar D. IGFBP7 Deletion Promotes Hepatocellular Carcinoma. Cancer research. 2017; 77(15):4014-4025. PubMed [journal] PMID: 28619711

Srivastava J, Robertson CL, Ebeid K, Dozmorov M, Rajasekaran D, Mendoza R, Siddiq A, Akiel MA, Jariwala N, Shen XN, Windle JJ, Subler MA, Mukhopadhyay ND, Giashuddin S, Ghosh S, Lai Z, Chen Y, Fisher PB, Salem AK, Sanyal AJ, Sarkar D. A novel role of astrocyte elevated gene-1 (AEG-1) in regulating nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). Hepatology (Baltimore, Md.). 2017; 66(2):466-480. NIHMSID: NIHMS870715 PubMed [journal] PMID: 28437865, PMCID: PMC5519412

Shen-Gunther J, Wang Y, Lai Z, Poage GM, Perez L, Huang TH. Deep sequencing of HPV E6/E7 genes reveals loss of genotypic diversity and gain of clonal dominance in high-grade intraepithelial lesions of the cervix. BMC genomics. 2017; 18(1):231. PubMed [journal] PMID: 28288568, PMCID: PMC5348809

Jadhav RR, Wang YV, Hsu YT, Liu J, Garcia D, Lai Z, Huang TH, Jin VX. Methyl-binding DNA capture Sequencing for Patient Tissues. Journal of visualized experiments : JoVE. 2016; (116). NIHMSID: NIHMS837224 PubMed [journal] PMID: 27842364, PMCID: PMC5203769

Horning AM, Awe JA, Wang CM, Liu J, Lai Z, Wang VY, Jadhav RR, Louie AD, Lin CL, Kroczak T, Chen Y, Jin VX, Abboud-Werner SL, Leach RJ, Hernandez J, Thompson IM, Saranchuk J, Drachenberg D, Chen CL, Mai S, Huang TH. DNA methylation screening of primary prostate tumors identifies SRD5A2 and CYP11A1 as candidate markers for assessing risk of biochemical recurrence. The Prostate. 2015; 75(15):1790-801.PubMed [journal] PMID: 26332453

Director of Genome Sequencing Facility

Greehey Children's Cancer Research Institute

Assistant Professor/Research, Department of Molecular Medicine 


Ph.D., Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 2000


Greehey Children's Cancer Research Institute - 2.120,

UT Health San Antonio
8403 Floyd Curl Dr.
San Antonio, Texas 78229

Tel: (210) 562.9246


Myron Ignatius, Ph.D.

Myron ignatius, ph.d.


Dr. Myron Ignatius's lab seeks to discover novel treatments in relapsed pediatric cancer by defining tumor heterogeneity and its effects on self-renewal and metastasis.


The Ignatius laboratory is interested in understanding the effects of tumor heterogeneity on relapse and resistance to therapies in Rhabdomyosarcoma and other sarcomas. Relapse is a major problem in the clinic where less that 40% of patients with relapse will survive their disease. Rhabdomyosarcoma is a pediatric malignancy of the muscle that is also the most common soft tissue sarcoma in children. Specifically, the Ignatius laboratory will study how subsets of tumor cells self-renew, metastasize and evolve at relapse using a combination of zebrafish, murine xenograft and human cell culture systems.

Figure 1: Research using a Zebrafish tumor model of Embryonal Rhabdomyosarcoma employs a combination of approaches and assays including Bioinformatic, High-throughput cell transplantation, Chemical-Genetic Screens and In vivo imaging.

Figure 2: ERMS tumors are generated in vivo using the human kRASG12D oncogene. RAS is the major driver of this disease in children with ERMS. Tumors arise as quickly as 10 days after transgene expression.


Ignatius, M. S., Moose, H. E., El - Hodiri, H. M. and Henion, P. D. (2008). Colgate/hdac1 repression of foxd3 expression is required to permit mitfa-dependent melanogenesis, Dev. Biol.313(2), 568-83.

Ignatius, M. S. and Langenau, D. M. (2009). Zebrafish as a Model for Cancer Self-renewal. Zebrafish. Dec;6(4):377-87. Author, Review.

Ignatius M.S., Chen E., Elpek N.M., Fuller A., Tenente I.M., Clagg R., Liu S., Blackburn J.S., Linardic C., Rosenberg A., Neilsen P.G., Mempel T.R., Langenau D.M. (2012). In vivo imaging of tumor-propagating cells, regional tumor heterogeneity, and dynamic cell movements in embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma. Cancer Cell. 2012; 21(5):680-93.

Chen E.Y., DeRan M., Ignatius M.S., Grandinetti K.B., Ryan Clagg, McCarthy K, Lobbardi R.M., Brockmann J., Keller C., Wu X., Langenau D.M. (2014). GSK3 inhibitors induce the canonical WNT/-catenin pathway to suppress growth and self-renewal in embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma. PNAS. 2014; 111(14):55349-54. 10.

Tang Q., Moore J.C., Ignatius M.S., Hayes M.N., Tenente I, Bourque C., He S., Look A.T., Garcia E.C., Blackburn J.S., Houvras Y., Langenau D.M. (2016). Imaging the dynamics of tumour cell heterogeneity following cell transplantation into optically-clear rag2E450fs zebrafish. Nature Communications. 2016 Jan 21; 7:10358.

Link to lab page.

Assistant Professor

Greehey Children's Cancer Research Institute


Postdoctoral Research, Harvard Medical School/ Massachusetts General Hospital

Ph.D., Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, 2008

BSc. Life Sciences and Biochemistry, St. Xavier’s College, Bombay, India


Office: Greehey Children’s Cancer Research Institute, Room 3.100.12

Phone: (210) 562-9030


Andrew Pickering, Ph.D.



Dr. Andrew Pickering's laboratory is a new lab at UT Health San Antonio. He is hiring and eager to meet with bright enthusiastic students.

The goal of his laboratory is to identify novel factors and pathways that regulate aging or age-associated diseases. In this work, he uses two model systems. The first is a cross-species cell culture model. The second is genetic manipulation of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster

He uses a cross-species model as there is extraordinary variation in lifespan amongst the animal kingdom. Some species will only live a few months or years while other species will live many decades. A few species can even live multiple centuries.

This variation in lifespan is the product of different evolutionary pressures in different species. For instance, species with few predators, a long development time and few offspring are under greater pressure to evolve strategies to slow aging rates than species with many predators, many offspring and short development times.

His lab is interested in investigating factors that are enriched in species under selection for a longer lifespan. He considers this a powerful screening tool to identify factors which may be important regulators of aging. This approach has the advantage of enabling an evaluation of many factors relatively quickly without the time and cost constraints to lifespan analysis in transgenic animals.

A second area of research in my lab makes use of is the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. This animal has powerful genetic tools which allow us to directly test whether augmentation or depletion of the factors we found to be interesting in our cross species model can slow progression of aging or age associate diseases.

Selected Publications 

Pickering A M, Lehr M, Miller RA. Lifespan of mice and primates correlates with immunoproteasome expression. J Clin Invest. 2015 May;125(5):2059-68. doi: 10.1172/JCI80514. PMCID: PMC4463211

Pickering, A M., Lehr, M., Kohler, W. J., Han, M. L. & Miller, R. A. (2014) Fibroblasts From Longer-Lived Species of Primates, Rodents, Bats, Carnivores, and Birds Resist Protein Damage. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci, 2015 Jul;70(7):791-9. doi: 10.1093/gerona/glu115 PMCID: PMC4481684

Pickering A M, Staab T A, Tower J, Sieburth S, Davies K J A. (2013) A Conserved Role for the 20S Proteasome and Nrf2 Transcription Factor in Oxidative-Stress Adaptation in Mammals, C. elegans and D. melanogaster. J Exp Biol. Vol. 15;216(Pt 4), pp.543-53. PMCID: PMC3561776

Pickering A M, Vojtovicha L, Tower J, Davies K J A. (2013) Oxidative Stress Adaption with Acute, Chronic and Repeated Stress. Free Radic Biol Med. Vol. 55, pp. 109-18. PMCID: PMC3687790

Pickering A M, Linder RA, Zhang H, Forman H J, Davies K J A. (2012). Nrf2-dependent Induction of Proteasome and Pa28αβ Regulator Are Required for Adaptation to Oxidative Stress. J Biol Chem. Vol. 23;287(13), pp. 10021-31. PMCID: PMC3323025

Pickering A M, Davies K J A. (2012) Differential roles of proteasome and immunoproteasome regulators Pa28αβ, Pa28γ and Pa200 in the degradation of oxidized proteins. Arch Biochem Biophys. Vol. 15;523(2), pp.181-90. PMCID: PMC3384713

Pickering A M, Davies K J A.(2012) Degradation of damaged proteins: the main function of the 20S proteasome. Prog Mol Biol Transl Sci. Vol. 109, pp. 227-48 PMCID: PMC3710712

Grune T, Catalgol B, Licht A, Ermak G, Pickering, A M, Ngo J K, Davies K J A. (2011). HSP70 mediates dissociation and reassociation of the 26S proteasome during adaptation to oxidative stress. Free Radic Biol Med. Vol. 51 (7), pp. 1355-64. PMCID: PMC3172204

Pickering, A M, Koop A L, Teoh C Y, Ermak G, Grune T, Davies K J A. (2010). The immunoproteasome, the 20S proteasome, and the PA28aß proteasome regulator are oxidative stress-adaptive proteolytic complexes. Biochem J. Vol. 15;432(3), pp. 585-94. PMCID: PMC3133595

Assistant Professor

Department of Molecular Medicine

Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies


Ph.D., Molecular Biology, University of Southern California, 2012

B.A., Biological Sciences, Oxford University, 2007



Phone: (310) 613-3609

Office: STCBM 3.100.07 (Texas Research Park)

Mengwei Zang, M.D., Ph.D.



Dr. Mengwei Zang is a faculty member in the Sam and Ann Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging as well as the Department of Molecular Medicine The Zang lab focuses on the molecular mechanisms underlying diabetes and fatty liver disease.

We seek to develop new therapeutic strategies for obesity, diabetes, and fatty liver disease by building a better understanding of molecular mechanisms of nutrient sensing network. Recent studies from our laboratory have identified several nutrient sensors, such as AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), the NAD-dependent deacetylase (SIRT1), mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR), the hepatocyte-derived hormone FGF21, and retinoic acid receptor in studies published in Cell Metabolism, Diabetes, Gastroenterology, and Hepatology. Dysregulation of AMPK or SIRT1 appears to be involved in the pathogenesis of fatty liver disease and white adipose tissue fibrosis in obesity and type 2 diabetes. 

We have also elucidated AMPK-dependent inhibition of de novo lipogenesis as a molecular mechanism for the beneficial effects of metformin, the most widely prescribed type 2 diabetes drugs, and polyphenols, on hepatic steatosis, hyperlipidemia, and atherogenesis in type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Further studies demonstrated that SIRT1 is functionally linked to FGF21 and the regulation of fatty acid metabolism, providing major therapeutic targets for the treatment of fatty liver disease. Our research will combine a variety of biochemical, cellular biology, metabolic and screening approaches both in cell culture and whole animals to identify the molecular mechanisms by which mammalian cells sense, communicate, and respond to nutrients. The ultimate goal is to provide new insight into the pathological mechanisms of diabetes and obesity as well as to identify potential therapeutic interventions of metabolic disease and age-associated metabolic diseases.

Other profile: See more at:

Selective Publications

Luo T, Nocon A, Fry J, Sherban A, Rui X, Jiang B, Xu XJ, Han J, Yan Y, Yang Q,Li Q, Zang MAMPK activation by metformin suppresses abnormal adipose tissue extracellular matrix remodeling and ameliorates insulin resistance in obesity. Diabetes,2016; 65:2295-2310.

Gong Q, Hu Z, Zhang F, Cui A, Chen X, Jiang H, Gao J, Chen X, Han Y, Liang Q, Ye D, Shi L, Eugene Chin Y, Wang Y, Xiao H, Guo F, Liu Y, Zang M, Xu A, Li Y. Fibroblast Growth Factor 21 Improves hepatic insulin sensitivity by inhibiting mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1. Hepatology, 2016; 64:425-438.

Li XY, Kover K, Heruth D, Watkins DJ, Moore WV, Zang M, Clements M, and Yun Yan. New insight into metformin action: regulation of ChREBP and FoXO1 activities in endothelial cells. Molecular Endocrinology, 2015; 29:1184-94.

Li Y, Wong K, Giles A, Lee JW, Jiang J, Adams AC, Kharitonenkov A, Yang Q, Gao B, Guarente L, Zang MHepatic SIRT1 attenuates hepatic steatosis and controls energy balance in mice by inducing fibroblast growth factor 21. Gastroenterology, 2014; 146: 539-549.

Li Y, Xu S, Jiang B, Cohen RA, Zang MActivation of sterol regulatory element binding protein and NLRP3 inflammasome in atherosclerotic lesion development in diabetic pigs: Implications for human atherosclerosis progression. 2013; 8:e67532. doi:10.1371.

Li Y, Wong K, Walsh K, Gao B, Zang MRetinoic acid receptor β stimulates hepatic induction of fibroblast growth factor 21 to promote fatty acid oxidation and control whole-body energy homeostasis in mice.Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2013; 288: 10490-10540.

Li Y, Xu S, Mihaylova M, Zheng B, Hou X, Jiang B, Park O, Luo Z, Lefai E, Shyy JY, Gao B, Wierzbicki M, Verbeuren TJ, Shaw RJ, Cohen RA, Zang MAMPK phosphorylates and inhibits SREBP activity to attenuate hepatic steatosis and atherosclerosis in diet-induced insulin resistant mice. Cell Metabolism, 2011; 13: 376-388.Selected as the most cited article in Cell Metabolism

Li Y, Xu S, Giles A, Nakamura K, Lee JW, Hou X, Donmez G, Li J, Luo Z, Walsh K, Guarente L, Zang M. Hepatic overexpression of SIRT1 in mice attenuates endoplasmic reticulum stress and insulin resistance in the liver. FASEB Journal, 2011; 25: 1664-1679. 

Associate Professor

The Ewing Halsell Distinguished Chair in Aging Research


Ph.D., Pharmacology, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences & Peking Union Medical College, 1998 

M.S., Pathophysiology, Henan Medical University, China, 1987 

M.D., Wannan Medical College, China, 1984


Contact Email:

Phone: (210) 562-4213

Linda Y. Johnson, Ph.D.



Dr. Linda Johnson is the course director of Medical Gross Anatomy and Embryology, a 185 contact hour dissection course which over 225 medical and graduate students take yearly. She additionally supervises senior medical student electives in Advanced Anatomy covering major regions of the body. Dr. Johnson lectures and supervises laboratories in Medical Neuroscience. During the past decade, she was the course director of the UTHSCSA Basic Science Review Course preparing sophomore medical students for the USMLE Step 1 Exam. 

Dr. Johnson is also the departmental Committee on Graduate Studies liaison for the Masters in Anatomy program. Dr. Johnson was named a Minnie Stevens Piper Professor as one of the state's top educators in 1995. She was the first UTHSCSA faculty member to receive the Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching three times (1985, 1994 and 2004). Dr. Johnson has served for over 15 years on committees of the National Board of Medical Examiners and chaired the Gross Anatomy Committee of the NBME for two years. In 2005, Dr. Johnson was selected as one of 12 founding members of the UT Academy of Health Science Education, and in 2007 she received the title of Distinguished Teaching Professor. This honor recognizes faculty members with outstanding and sustained contributions to education in the University of Texas System.

My main interests lie in the field of medical education: curriculum development and integration with clinical science, the integration of educational software into course curricula, examination development and curriculum evaluation. I was actively involved in the development of the current integrated medical school curriculum (initiated in 1998) which emphasizes clinical application and experience throughout the years of basic science education. I have served on the National Board of Medical Examiners (responsible for the production of the United States Medical Licensure Exam) since 1993, and play an active role in faculty education development at UTHSCSA.

Johnson L.Y. (2001) Women in Medicine: Observing Two Decades of Change.
San Antonio Medicine, September.

Vaughan M. K., Johnson L. Y., Richardson B. A., Brieno E. G., Reiter R. J. (1984) Acute injections of thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) stimulate prolactin release in unanesthesized male Syrian hamsters. Neuroendocr. Letters 6:49-52.

Blask DE, Vaughan MK, Champney TH, Johnson LY, Vaughan GM, Becker RA, Reiter RJ. (1984)Opioid and dopamine involvement in prolactin release induced by arginine vasotocin and vasopressin in the male rat. Neuroendocrinology. 1984 Jan;38(1):56-61.

Johnson LY, Vaughan MK, Richardson BA, Petterborg LJ, Reiter RJ. (1982) Variation in pineal melatonin content during the estrous cycle of the rat. Proc Soc Exp Biol Med. 1982 Mar;169(3):416-9.

Johnson L. Y. (1982) The pineal gland as a modulator of the adrenal and thyroid axes, In: The Pineal Gland: Vol. III, Extra-reproductive Effects, R. J. Reiter, ed., CRC Press, Inc., Boca Raton, pp. 107-152.


Cell Systems and Anatomy


University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 1978


Phone: (210) 567-3836 


Arunabh Bhattacharya, Ph.D.

Arunabh bhattacharya


Dr. Arunabh Bhattacharya's laboratory is interested in the biochemical and molecular mechanisms underlying sarcopenia, the age-related loss of skeletal muscle mass and function that significantly compromises the quality of life and increases the risk of morbidity and mortality in the elderly. Specifically, the laboratory is investigating the role of lipid metabolic pathways that generate oxidized fatty acids (e.g., 5- and 12/15-lipoxygenase) in inflammation and oxidative damage and its impact on sarcopenia.

Recent studies in older humans suggest a strong association between decline in peripheral motor nerve function and decrease in muscle power. Structural changes in peripheral nerves during aging include the loss of axons and demyelination. Myelin sheath produced by Schwann cells that surround the large myelinated nerve fibers is highly enriched in both lipids and proteins, making it highly susceptible to oxidative damage. Using longitudinal measures of peripheral motor nerve and muscle function, the laboratory is investigating if rescuing oxidative damage mediated degenerative changes in peripheral nerves from aging mice protects peripheral nerve dysfunction and the loss of skeletal muscle mass and function.

Finally, pilot studies are underway in the laboratory to investigate the role of mitochondrial oxidative stress and oxidative damage in Traumatic Brain Injury. This project is in collaboration with Dr. Lora Talley Watts, Assistant Professor/Research, Department of Cellular and Structural Biology, UTHSCSA.
(A) Respresentative chromatograms of 5- and 12-HETE in sciatic nerves from young (8 mo) and old (30 mo) C57BL/6 mice that were analyzed by LC-MS/MS.
(B) Quantification of 5-LO, 12/15-LO and COX pathway derived oxidized fatty acids in sciatic nerves from young and old C57BL/6 mice.

Selected Publications

Bhattacharya A, Wei R, Hamilton RT, Chaudhuri AR. (2014) Neuronal cells but not muscle cells are resistant to oxidative stress mediated protein misfolding and cell death: Role of molecular chaperones. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2014 Apr 18;446(4):1250-4.

Bhattacharya A, Hamilton R, Jernigan A, Zhang Y, Sabia M, Rahman MM, Li Y, Wei R, Chaudhuri A, Van Remmen H. (2014) Genetic ablation of 12/15-lipoxygenase but not 5-lipoxygenase protects against denervation-induced muscle atrophy. Free Radic Biol Med. 2014 Feb;67:30-40.

Wei R, Bhattacharya A, Hamilton RT, Jernigan AL, Chaudhuri AR. (2013) Differential effects of mutant SOD1 on protein structure of skeletal muscle and spinal cord of familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: role of chaperone network. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2013 Aug 16;438(1):218-23.

Pulliam DA, Bhattacharya A, Van Remmen H. (2013) Mitochondrial dysfunction in aging and longevity: a causal or protective role? Antioxid Redox Signal. 2013 Oct 20;19(12):1373-87.

Assistant Professor/Research

Cell Systems and Anatomy

Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies


Jadavpur University, India, 2001


Office: MED 240D
Phone: (210) 567-3848

Mary K. Vaughan, Ph.D.



Dr. Mary K. Vaughan is course director, lecturer, and laboratory instructor for Medical Neuroscience, lecturer and laboratory instructor in Dental Microscopic Anatomy and Dental Hygiene Head and Neck Anatomy and offers Advanced Neuroanatomy as an enrichment selective for sophomores or seniors at UTHSCSA. She is active in the community in providing enrichment activities for children from elementary to high school.

My main interests at the present time involve the development and programming of educational software for the health professional student. I have developed a unique tutorial approach to Medical Neuroscience laboratory along with a bank of 2300 questions for lecture and laboratory. Similarly, CD-ROMS for neuroscience for the undergraduate student and the dental student are available. With the collaboration of Drs. Weaker and King, several CD-ROMS have been developed for the Medical Microscopic Anatomy, Dental Microscopic Anatomy and Dental Hygiene Head and Neck Anatomy course. A list and a link to a short virtual tour of the CD-ROMS are on the THP Innovative Teaching Projects webpage. Upgrades are planned for the future in all of these study aids. Student feedback on these instructional aids has been overwhelmingly positive.

Rubio, A., A. Menendez-Pelaez, G.R. Buzzell, M.K. Vaughan, G. N. Vaughan, and R.J. Reiter. (1996) Sexual differences in 5ί-deiodinase activity in the Harderian gland of Syrian hamsters and the effect of pinealecotmy: Regulation by androgens. J. Cell. Biochem. 62:397-404.

Buzzell, G.R., J.L. Blank, V.K. Vaughan, and R.J. Reiter. (1995) Control of secretory lipid droplets in the Harderian gland by testosterone and the photoperiod: comparison of two species of hamsters. Gen. Comp. Endocr. 99: 230-238.

Vaughan, M.K., Menendez-Pelaez, G.R. Buzzell, G.M. Vaughan, J.C. Little, and R.J. Reiter (1994) Circadian rhythms in reproductive and thyroid hormones in gonadally regressed male hamsters exposed to natural autumn photoperiod and temperature conditions. Neuroendocrinology 60:96-104.

Rodriguez, C., A. Menendez-Palaez, R.J. Reiter, G..R. Buzzell, and M.K. Vaughan. (1992) Porphyrin metabolism in the Harderian glands of Syrian hamsters: In vivo regulation by testicular hormones, lighting conditions, pineal gland, and pituitary hormones. Proc. Soc. Exp. Biol. Med. 200:25-29

Associate Professor

Cell Systems and Anatomy


University of Texas Medical Branch, 1970


Phone: (210) 567-3835 


​Ramaswamy Sharma, Ph.D.

Sharmaramaswamy cropped


Our laboratory is interested in identifying novel targets for treating osteoporosis and cerebral ischemic stroke and thereby improve the decreased quality of life associated with aging.

Osteoporosis currently affects approximately 10 million Americans; another 34 million are osteopenic. A direct consequence of bone fragility is an increased risk of painful fractures leading to functional disabilities, increased mortality at older ages, and a huge cost burden on families and health providers. Current treatment of osteoporotic patients mostly involves fracture prevention; there are few viable treatments after fractures have occurred. Therefore, an understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying osteoporosis and subsequent development of novel therapies are required. We have recently demonstrated that loss of caspase-2, a cysteine-aspartate protease, results in increased bone porosity. We have generated transgenic and conditional null models of caspase-2 to better understand caspase-2 function in bone. Our long-term goal is to determine the feasibility of targeting caspase-2 for improving bone mass and bone quality.

Cerebral ischemic stroke (CIS) accounts for 87% of all strokes and is the third leading cause of death in the United States, with 1 death occurring every 4 minutes. The only FDA-approved treatment for ischemic strokes is recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) that dissolves the clot; however, tPA, which can itself cause bleeding and is contra-indicated in hemorrhagic stroke, has to be administered within 3-4.5 hours after a stroke for possible recovery. Indeed, less than 2% of patients can receive tPA. Therefore, identification of new molecular players that enhance stroke recovery are urgently needed. We find that caspase-2 plays an important role in regulating stroke pathology by inhibiting autophagy and we are pursuing novel treatment modalities based on this finding.

Representative Publications:

Sharma R, Williams PJ, Gupta A, McCluskey B, Bhaskaran S, Muñoz S, Oyajobi BO. (2015) A dominant-negative F-box deleted mutant of E3 ubiquitin ligase, β-TrCP1/FWD1, markedly reduces myeloma cell growth and survival in mice. Oncotarget. Aug 28;6(25):21589-602.

Sharma R, Callaway D, Vanegas D, Bendele M, Lopez-Cruzan M, Horn D, Guda T, Fajardo R, Abboud-Werner S, Herman B. (2014) Caspase-2 maintains bone homeostasis by inducing apoptosis of oxidatively-damaged osteoclasts. PLoS One. Apr 1;9(4):e93696.

Sharma R, Gow A. (2007) Minimal role for caspase 12 in the unfolded protein response in oligodendrocytes in vivo. J Neurochem. May;101(4):889-97.

Recent Publications:

Lopez-Cruzan M, Sharma R*, Tiwari M, Karbach S, Holstein D, Martin CR, Lechleiter JD, Herman B. (2016)Caspase-2 resides in the mitochondria and mediates apoptosis directly from the mitochondrial compartment.Cell Death Discov. Feb 15;2. pii: 16005. *Corresponding author

Branch SY, Sharma R, Beckstead MJ. (2014) Aging decreases L-type calcium channel currents and pacemaker firing fidelity in substantia nigra dopamine neurons. J Neurosci. Jul 9;34(28):9310-8.

Sharma R, Tsuchiya M, Skobe Z, Tannous BA, Bartlett JD. (2010) The acid test of fluoride: how pH modulates toxicity. PLoS One. May 28;5(5):e10895.

Sharma R, Tsuchiya M, Bartlett JD. (2008) Fluoride induces endoplasmic reticulum stress and inhibits protein synthesis and secretion. Environ Health Perspect. Sep;116(9):1142-6.

Sharma R, Jiang H, Zhong L, Tseng J, Gow A. (2007) Minimal role for activating transcription factor 3 in the oligodendrocyte unfolded protein response in vivo. J Neurochem. Sep;102(5):1703-12.

Click here for a complete listing of my publications.

Assistant Professor/Research

Cell Systems and Anatomy


Ph.D. Wayne State University School of Medicine, 2006


MED 2.024V1

Phone:(210) 567 3845


Alan Y. Sakaguchi, Ph.D.



Dr. Alan Sakaguchi is a lecturer and laboratory instructor in Gross Anatomy and Embryology for 1st year medical students and in Gross Anatomy for the Occupational Therapy program. He directs the section on In vitro Cell Growth and Transfection for Core Course IV: Methods in Cell Biology. Dr. Sakaguchi currently serves on the Preclinical Promotions Committee in the School of Medicine.

My research interests include the role of telomeres in genome stability, cell growth regulation, oncogenesis, and human disease. Telomeres protect chromosome termini and prevent chromosome rearrangements, end-to-end fusion and illegitimate recombination. The shortening of telomeres during replication of most normal somatic cells may function as a tumor suppressor mechanism that prevents the immortalization step in carcinogenesis, and might also contribute to human diseases such as Werner syndrome, ataxia telangiectasia, and dyskeratosis congenita. We are interested in the roles of telomere binding proteins in telomere metabolism and chromosome stability. Our research focuses on mammalian TRF1 and TRF2 proteins that bind the double-stranded vertebrate telomere repeat (TTAGGG) and the KU70 protein which has a dual role in DNA repair and telomere stability. TRF1 can regulate telomere length through poorly understood mechanisms whereas TRF2 prevents end-to-end telomere fusions which may result from attrition of telomeric DNA.

We have identified new cDNA isoforms of human and mouse TRF proteins and are testing the hypothesis that they carry out distinct functions in telomere regulation, perhaps via an altered interaction with other telomere-associated proteins such as KU70. We employ RNA-ligation mediated RACE to isolation new TRF isoforms, and epitope tagging with green fluorescent protein to track the locations of isoforms in cells. We are also testing the hypothesis that TRF2 protein, which is over-expressed in over 2/3 of human breast carcinomas, may promote carcinogenesis in this human disease.

Research Techniques:
In vitro mutagenesis
Epitope tagging

Sakaguchi, A. Y., S. S. Padalecki, V. Mattern, A. Rodriguez, R. J. Leach, J. R. McGill, M. Chavez, and T. A. Giambernardi. (1998) Chromosomal localization of the transcribed human telomere repeat binding factor 2 gene and comparative mapping in the mouse. Somat. Cell and Molec. Genet. 24:157-163.

Young, A. C., M. Chavez, T. A. Giambernardi, V. Mattern, J. R. McGill, J. M. Harris, M. F. Sarosdy, P. Patel, and A. Y. Sakaguchi. (1997) Organization and expression of human telomere repeat binding factor genes. Somat. Cell and Molec. Genet. 23:275-286.

Sakaguchi, A. Y., M. Sedlak, V. Rogeness, J. M. Harris, and M. F. Sarosdy. (1996) Determining exon-intron junctions using uncloned genomic walking libraries and direct P1 sequencing. Genetics (Life Sci. Adv.)14:19-25.

Sakaguchi, A. Y. (1996) Cautionary note on the use of dUMP-containing PCR primers with Pfu and VentR DNA polymerases. BioTechniques 21:368-370.

Associate Professor

Cell Systems and Anatomy


University of Southern California, 1978


Phone: (210) 567-3857 


Russel J. Reiter, Ph.D.



Dr. Russel Reiter teaches in the Medical Neuroscience and Dental Microscopic Anatomy courses at the Health Science Center. He also gives lectures in the History of Anatomy, Introduction to Research and in Journal Clubs of several departments. He is the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Pineal Research and on the Editorial Board of 7 other journals. He is the recipient of numerous awards including three honorary doctor of medicine degrees and, most recently, the Presidential Distinguished Scholar Award from UTHSCSA.

Dr. Reiter's research interests relate to free radical aspects of disease processes and aging. Of particular interest is defining the role of oxygen derivatives in neurodegenerative diseases and their function in apoptosis, necrosis and neuronal degeneration. These studies typically involve measurements of oxidatively damaged polyunsaturated fatty acids, proteins and DNA.

Besides investigating the functional relevance of free radicals to age-associated organ deterioration, Dr. Reiter's group is investigating the free radical scavenging and antioxidant properties of pineal indoleamines, most notably melatonin. The investigations include the mechanisms of interaction of melatonin with free radicals and the resulting products. 

These studies have utilized thermodynamic analyses, electron ionization mass spectroscopy, nuclear magnetic resonance, high performance liquid chromotography, electron spin resonance spectroscopy and biochemical and molecular biological techniques to unravel the processes involved. This research group is also investigating the role of melatonin as a antitoxin against a variety of xenobiotics and environmental pollutants and the functional significance of melatonin and other indoleamines with processes of aging.

Tan, D.X., Reiter, R.J., Manchester, L.C., Yan, M.T., El-Sawi, M., Sainz, R.M., Mayo, J.C., Kohen, R., Allegra, M., Hardeland, R. (2002) Chemical and physical properties and potential mechanisms: Melatonin as a broad spectrum antioxidant and free radical scavenger. Curr. Topics Med. Chem., 2:181-197.

El-Sokkary, G.H., Omar, H.M., Hassanien, A.F.M.M., Cuzzocrea, S., Reiter, R.J. (2002) Melatonin reduces oxidative damage and increases survival of mice infected with Schistosoma mansoni. Free Radical Biol. Med., 32:319-332.

Reiter, R.J., Tan, D.X., Manchester, LC., Qi, W. (2001) Biochemical reactivity of melatonin with reactive oxygen and nitrogen species. Cell. Biochem. Biophys., 34:237-256.

Gitto, E., Karbownik, M., Reiter, R.J., Tan, D.X., Cuzzocrea, S., Chiurazzi, P., Cordaro, S., Corona, G., Trimarchi, G., Barberi, I. (2001) Effects of melatonin in septic newborns. Pediatr. Res., 50:756-760.

Professor, Cell Systems and Anatomy

Bowman Gray School of Medicine, 1964


Phone: (210) 567-3859 


Anthony Kuchta, CMD

Kuchta anthony


Anthony Kuchta, CMD is a certified medical dosimetrist and helps teach the Dosimetry Review course. 

Certified Medical Dosimetrist 


Certified Medical Dosimetrist (CMD) Certification

B.S., Biology, University of Wisconsin, 2013 



Phone: (210) 450 5677

Samy L. Habib, Ph.D.

Samy habib


Dr. Samy Habib joined the Department of Cell Systems and Anatomy in April 2011. He also hold the position as Research Scientist in the South Texas Veterans Health Care System at Audie Murphy VA Hospital since 2005. He was a recipient of several research grant awards from American Diabetes Association, American Heart Association, National Kidney Foundation, New Investigator Award and Merit Review Award from Veterans Affairs, and Pilot Reserach Award from NIH/NIDDK. He has recently received the Excellent of Performance Award from the VA. Dr. Habib has been a regular member of the Kidney Cancer Study Section of the Medical Research Program, Department of Defense. He is also an editorial board member of 5 journals.

The major emphasis of the work in my laboratory is on identifying the molecular mechanisms mediating fibrosis, hypertrophy and apoptosis in diabetic nephropathy, as well as defining the role of diabetes in the development of renal tumors. Novel finding from our lab confirmed that tuberin, a tumor suppressor protein, regulates the DNA repair enzyme OGG1 pathway. Dysregulation of this pathway leads to accumulation of oxidative DNA damage and predisposes tissue to cancer. Our studies are carried out in cultured cells, animal models, and in kidney tumors of patient with Tuberous Sclerosis Complex(TSC) disease.

Selected publications:

Velagapudi C, Bhandari BS, Abboud-Werner S, Simone S, Abboud HE, Habib SL. (2011) The tuberin/mTOR pathway promotes apoptosis of tubular epithelial cells in diabetes. J Am Soc Nephrol. 2011 Feb;22(2):262-73.

Habib SL, Bhandari BK, Sadek N, Abboud-Werner SL, Abboud HE. (2010) Novel mechanism of regulation of the DNA repair enzyme OGG1 in tuberin-deficient cells. Carcinogenesis. 2010 Nov;31(11):2022-30.

Lai KP, Leong WF, Chau JF, Jia D, Zeng L, Liu H, He L, Hao A, Zhang H, Meek D, Velagapudi C, Habib SL, Li B. (2010) S6K1 is a multifaceted regulator of Mdm2 that connects nutrient status and DNA damage response. EMBO J. 2010 Sep 1;29(17):2994-3006.

Habib SL, Kasinath BS, Arya RR, Vexler S, Velagapudi C. (2010) Novel mechanism of reducing tumourigenesis: upregulation of the DNA repair enzyme OGG1 by rapamycin-mediated AMPK activation and mTOR inhibition. Eur J Cancer. 2010 Oct;46(15):2806-20.

Mahimainathan L, Ghosh-Choudhury N, Venkatesan B, Das F, Mandal CC, Dey N, Habib SL, Kasinath BS, Abboud HE, Ghosh Choudhury G. (2009) TSC2 deficiency increases PTEN via HIF1alpha. J Biol Chem. 2009 Oct 9;284(41):27790-8.


Cell Systems and Anatomy


Ph.D., Molecular Carcinogenesis, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, 1993

M.S., Molecular Biology, Alexandria University, 1986

B.S., Food Technology, Alexandria University, 1981


(210) 567- 3816

William Kaiser, Ph.D.



Dr. William Kaiser's research program focuses on the host defense role of programmed cell death (apoptosis and necroptosis). 

Our studies demonstrate that programmed necrosis functions as a critical defense against viral infection; however, dysregulated necroptosis results in lethal inflammation in mice and understanding this process may reveal therapeutic strategies to treat chronic inflammatory diseases. Though once regarding as an unregulated pathological endpoint, necrosis can be orchestrated by the activity of a protein complex composed of the kinases RIP1 and RIP3. A number of cell stress and host defense pathways prime cells for necroptosis, and in the context of viral infection, elimination of infected cells benefits the host. In contrast, dysregulated pronecrotic kinase activity leads to vasculature defects, collapse in hematopoiesis, and lethal skin and gut inflammation. 

These findings suggest necroptosis may drive a spectrum of disease states, thus elevating expectations for therapies targeting necrotic cell death. At present, the pathways engaged by RIP1/RIP3 to induce necrosis remain incomplete. To define the molecular basis of necroptosis, we will (1) characterize the signal transduction pathways upstream and downstream of RIP1/ RIP3, (2) identify new programmed necrosis signaling components, (3) develop strategies for therapeutic intervention, and (4) extend these finding to genetic mouse models of disease caused by excessive cell death.

Selected Publications

Guo H, Omoto S, Bertin JS, Gough PJ, Kaiser WJ*, Mocarski ES*. (2015) Herpes Simplex Virus R1 Suppresses Necroptosis. Cell Host & Microbe. 17, 243-251.

MandalP, BergerSB, PillayS, MoriwakiK, HuangC, Guo H, LichJD, FingerJ, KasparcovaV, VottaB, OuelletteM, KingBW, WisnoskiD, Lakdawala AS, DeMartinoMP, Casillas LN, HailePA, SehonCA, MarquisRW, UptonJW, RobackL, RamiaN, DoveyCM, Carette J, ChanF, BertinJS, GoughPJ, MocarskiES, KaiserWJ. (2014) RIP3 induces apoptosis independent of pro-necrotic kinase activity. Molecular Cell. 56: 481-495.

RickardJA, Anderton H, EtemadiN, Nachbur U,Darding M, Peltzer N, LalaouiN, LawlorKE, VanyaiH, HallC, BankovackiA, GangodaL, WongWW, CorbinJ, HuangC, Mocarski ES, MurphyJM, AlexanderWS, VossAK, VauxDL, KaiserWJ, Walczak H, Silke J(2014) TNFR1-dependent cell death drives inflammation in Sharpin-deficient mice. eLIFE. 03464.

Kaiser WJ, Daley-Bauer LP, Thapa RJ, Mandal P, Berger SB, Huang C, Sundararajan A, Guo H, Roback L, Speck SH, Bertin JS, Gough PJ, Balachandran S, Mocarski MS. (2014) RIP1 suppresses innate immune necrotic as well as apoptotic cell death during mammalian parturition. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 111: 7753-7758.

Berger SB, Kasparcova V, Hoffman S, Swift B, Dare L, Schaeffer M, Capriotti C, Cook M, Finger J, Hughes-Earle A, Harris PA, Kaiser WJ, Mocarski ES, Bertin JS, Gough PJ (2014) Cutting Edge: RIP1 kinase activity is dispensable for normal development but is a key regulator of inflammation in SHARPIN-deficient mice. Journal of Immunology. 192: 5476-5480.

Upton JU, Kaiser WJ, Mocarski ES. (2012) DAI/ZBP1/DLM-1 complexes with RIP3 to mediate virus-induced programmed necrosis that is targeted by murine cytomegalovirus vIRA. Cell Host & Microbe. 11: 290-297.

Kaiser WJ, UptonJW, Long AB, Livingston-Rosanoff D, Daley LP, Hakem R, Caspary T, Mocarski ES. (2011) RIP3 mediates the embryonic lethality of caspase-8-deficient mice. Nature. 471(7338): 368-372.

Mocarski ES, Upton JU, Kaiser WJ. (2011) Viral infection and the evolution of capase-8 regulated apoptotic and necrotic death pathways. Nature Reviews Immunology. 12: 79-88.

Upton JW*, Kaiser WJ*, Mocarski ES. (2010) Virus Inhibition of RIP3-dependent Necrosis. Cell Host & Microbe. 7: 302-13.

* authors contributed equally

corresponding author

Associate Professor

Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics


Ph.D., Microbiology and Immunology, Emory University, 2012

A.B. & B.S., English and Cell Biology, University of Georgia, 1998


Room 5.020V

Phone: (210) 567-0706


Gregory Collins, Ph.D.

Collins gt


Research in Dr. Greg Collins’ laboratory is broadly aimed at understanding the determinants of drug-taking and drug-seeking behaviors. 

Accordingly, we utilize a variety of behavioral and physiological procedures including intravenous self-administration and implantable telemetry combined with quantitative analyses to (1) identify factors that alter vulnerability to drug abuse and relapse; (2) characterize the abuse-related and toxic effects of drugs of abuse; and (3) develop and test novel pharmacotherapies for the treatment of substance use disorders.

Current research is focused on characterizing the abuse-related and toxic effects of synthetic cathinones (e.g., MDPV, α-PVP, and methylone), an emerging class of abused drugs commonly referred to as “bath salts.” Although their composition can vary greatly, “bath salts” are most often mixtures of multiple pharmacologically active compounds. 

Thus, these studies utilize highly quantitative behavioral and pharmacological procedures to determining whether the reinforcing, discriminative stimulus, and toxic (behavioral and cardiovascular) effects of synthetic cathinones are enhanced when administered in combination with common “bath salts” constituents (e.g., other cathinones or caffeine).

Selected Publications 

Gannon BM, Galindo KI, Mesmin MP, Sulima A, Rice KC, Collins GT. (2017) Relative reinforcing effects of second-generation synthetic cathinones: acquisition of self-administration and fixed ratio dose-response curves in rats. Neuropharmacology. (In Press) [PMID: 28811192]

Gannon BM, Galindo KI, Mesmin MP, Rice KC, Collins GT. (2017) Reinforcing effects of binary mixtures of common bath salts constituents: studies with 3,4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV), 3,4-methylenedioxymethcathinone (methylone), and caffeine in rats. Neuropsychopharmacology. (In Press) [PMID: 28677665]

Gannon BM, Galindo KI, Rice KC, Collins GT. (2017) Individual differences in the relative reinforcing effects of 3,4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) under fixed and progressive ratio schedules of reinforcement in rats. Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. 361(1):181-189. [PMID: 28179474]

Collins GT, Gerak LR, Javors MA, and France CP. (2016) Lorcaserin reduces the discriminative stimulus and reinforcing effects of cocaine in rhesus monkeys. Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics. 356(1):85-95. [PMID: 26534942]

For a full list, click here

Assistant Professor / Tenure Track


Ph.D., Pharmacology, University of Michigan Medical School


Office: (210) 567-4172


Department Website

Zhijie (Jason) Liu, Ph.D.



Different signals, including hormones, inflammatory cytokines and metabolic signals, work in a collaborative way to regulate context-specific gene programs in normal growth and disease conditions. However many questions are still open: How do these different signals crosstalk with each other for a specific gene expression program? How do signals affect the composition and organization of transcriptional machinery including transcription factors and their cofactors? How are epigenetic alterations and chromatin 3D architectural changes achieved in response to signals?

Dr. Jason Liu’s research is to understand how signal-dependent gene programs are regulated in cell differentiation/dedifferentiation and in the development of cancer and other diseases. Currently, his lab is combining biochemical, cellular, and animal model-related studies with different NGS-based assays to work on the following projects to understand gene regulation mechanisms and find their connection to clinical applications:

(1) Explore the roles and regulation mechanisms of signaling-dependent gene regulation programs in normal development and disease conditions, and study how context-specific gene programs are regulated by the crosstalk of different signaling pathways.

(2) Decipher the epigenetic and 3D architectural changes of the cis-regulatory elements upon developmental/pathological stimuli and during hormone/drug resistance acquisition in cancers.

(3) Based on our understanding of gene regulation mechanisms, identify diagnostic/prognostic biomarkers and therapeutic targets for multiple human cancer types.

(4) Develop drugs and therapeutics for pre-clinical studies and potential clinical applications.

Selected Publications

Jianxun Wang, Francesca Telese, Yuliang Tan, Wenbo Li, Chunyu Jin, Xin He, Harihar Basnet, Qi Ma, Daria Merkurjev, Xiaoyan Zhu, Zhijie Liu, et al., and Michael G. Rosenfeld. LSD1n is an H4K20 demethylase regulating memory formation via transcriptional elongation control. Nature Neuroscience. 2015 Sep;18(9):1256-64. PMID: 26214369

Wenbo Li, Yiren Hu, Soohwan Oh, Qi Ma, Daria Merkurjev, Xiaoyuan Song, Xiang Zhou, Zhijie Liu, et al., and Michael G. Rosenfeld. Condensin I and II complexes license full estrogen receptor α-dependent enhancer activation. Molecular Cell. 2015 Jul 16; 59(2): 188–202. PMID: 26166704

Feng Zhang, Bogdan Tanasa, Daria Merkurjev, Chijen Lin, Xiaoyuan Song, Wenbo Li, Yuliang Tan, Zhijie Liu, et al., and Michael G. Rosenfeld. Enhancer-bound LDB1 regulates a corticotrope promoter pausing repression program. PNAS. 2015 Feb 3; 112(5): 1380-5. PMID: 25605944

Janusz Puc, Piotr Kozbial, Wenbo Li, Yuliang Tan, Zhijie Liu, Tom Suter, Kenneth A. Ohgi, Jie Zhang, Aneel K. Aggarwal, and Michael G. Rosenfeld. Ligand-dependent enhancer activation requires topoisomerase-I catalytic activity. Cell. 2015 Jan 29; 160(3): 367-80. PMID: 25619691

Zhijie Liu*, Daria Merkurjev, Feng Yang, Wenbo Li, et al., and Michael G. Rosenfeld. Enhancer activation requires trans-recruitment of a mega transcription factor complex. Cell. 2014 Oct 9; 159(2): 358-73. PMID: 25303530 (*first and co-corresponding author)

Zhijie Liu*, Qidong Hu, and Michael G. Rosenfeld. Complexity of the RAR-mediated transcriptional regulatory programs. Chapter 10 of BookThe biochemistry of retinoic acid receptors I: structure, activation, and function at the molecular Level.” Subcellular Biochemistry. 2014; 70: 203-225. PMID: 24962887 (*first and co-corresponding author)

Dorota Skowronska-Krawczyk, Qi Ma, Michal Schwartz, Kathleen Scully, Wenbo Li, Zhijie Liu, et al., and Michael G. Rosenfeld. Required interactions of enhancers with Matrin-3 nuclear architecture for transcriptional activation by homeodomain factors. Nature. 2014 Aug 3; 514(7521): 257-61. PMID: 25119036

Kaitlin A. G. Reeh, Kim T. Cardenas, Virginia E. Bain, Zhijie Liu, Micheline Laurent, Nancy R. Manley and Ellen R. Richie. Ectopic TBX1 suppresses thymic epithelial cell differentiation and proliferation during thymus organogenesis. Development. 2014 Aug; 141(15): 2950-8. PMID: 25053428

Jie Li, Zhijie Liu, Shiyun Xiao and Nancy Manley. Transdifferentiation of parathyroid cells into cervical thymi promotes atypical T cell development. Nature Communications. 2013 Dec 17;4:2959. PMID: 24343363

Zhijie Liu, Alison Farley, Lizhen Chen, Beth J. Kirby, Christopher S. Kovacs, C. Clare Blackburn, Nancy Manley. Thymus-associated parathyroid hormone has two cellular origins with distinct endocrine and immunological functions. PLoS Genetics. 2010 Dec 23; 6(12):e1001251. PMID: 21203493

Zhijie Liu, Shannon Yu, Nancy Manley. Gcm2 is required for the differentiation and survival of parathyroid precursor cells in parathyroid/thymus primordia. Developmental Biology. 2007 May 1; 305(1): 333-46. PMID: 17382312

Cunlan Liu, Fumi Saito, Zhijie Liu, Yu Lei, Shoji Uehara, Paul Love, Martin Lipp, Shunzo Kondo, Nancy Manley, and Yousuke Takahama. Coordination between CCR7- and CCR9-mediated chemokine signals in prevascular fetal thymus colonization. Blood. 2006 Oct 15; 108(8): 2531-9. PMID: 16809609

Liu Zhijie, Yanzehong, Wan Yongfang, Liu Kunfan, Zheng Youliang, Wang Daowen. Analysis of HMW glutenin subunits and their coding sequences in two diploid Aegilops species. Theoretical and Applied Genetics. 2003; 106: 1368-1378. PMID: 12750780

Assistant Professor, Department of Molecular Medicine


Ph.D., Genetics, University of Georgia, 2007

M.S., Molecular Genetics, Institute of Genetics & Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 2002

B.S., Biochemistry, Lanzhou University, 1999 



Phone: (210) 567-8734

Yuguang (Roger) Shi, Ph.D.

Yuguang shi


Aging is the primary driving force for the development of obesity, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular, neurodegenerative, and other aging-related diseases. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms remain poorly identified. 

Dr. Yuguang (Roger) Shi’s lab focuses on translational aspects of aging-related metabolic diseases using molecular, cellular, metabolic, and transgenic approaches. Our work has recently identified a critical missing link between mitochondrial dysfunction in aging and the onset of various aging-related diseases, paving the way for the development of novel treatment for these pathogenic conditions. 

We are also uncovering novel signaling pathways that regulates glucose-sensing by pancreatic beta cells, since a loss of glucose responsiveness by pancreatic beta cell is a major pathological event that triggers the onset of type 2 diabetes. The lab is recruiting graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.

Selected Publications

Hsu, P., Liu, X., Zhang, J., and Shi*, Y. (2015). Cardiolipin Remodeling by Tafazzin Is Selectively Required for the Initiation of Mitophagy. Autophagy 11(4):643-52.

Wang L, Liu X, Nie J, Zhang J, Kimball SR, Zhang H, Zhang WJ, Jefferson LS, Cheng Z, Ji Q, Shi Y.ALCAT1 controls mitochondrial etiology of fatty liver diseases, linking defective mitophagy to steatosis. Hepatology. 2015 Feb;61(2):486-96.

Nie J, Liu X, Lilley BN, Zhang H, Pan YA, Kimball SR, Zhang J, Zhang W, Wang L, Jefferson LS, Sanes JR, Han X, Shi Y. SAD-A kinase controls islet β-cell size and function as a mediator of mTORC1 signaling. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2013 Aug 20;110(34):13857-62.

Nie J, Lilley BN, Pan YA, Faruque O, Liu X, Zhang W, Sanes JR, Han X, Shi Y. SAD-A potentiates glucose-stimulated insulin secretion as a mediator of glucagon-like peptide 1 response in pancreatic β cells. Mol Cell Biol. 2013 Jul;33(13):2527-34.

Li J, Liu X, Wang H, Zhang W, Chan DC, Shi Y. Lysocardiolipin acyltransferase 1 (ALCAT1) controls mitochondrial DNA fidelity and biogenesis through modulation of MFN2 expression. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2012 May 1;109(18):6975-80.

Li J, Romestaing C, Han X, Li Y, Hao X, Wu Y, Sun C, Liu X, Jefferson LS, Xiong J, Lanoue KF, Chang Z, Lynch CJ, Wang H, Shi Y. Cardiolipin remodeling by ALCAT1 links oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction to obesity.Cell Metab. 2010 Aug 4;12(2):154-65.

Complete List of Published Work in MyBibliography:

Joe R. & Teresa Lozano Long Distinguished Chair in Metabolic Biology,

Professor of Pharmacology,

Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies,



Ph.D., Molecular Biology, Australian National University, Australia, 1992

M.S., Genetics, University of New England, Australia, 1986

B.S., Animal Science, Northwestern A&F University, China, 1982



Phone: (210) 567-7292 

Fax: (210) 562-6150

Graduate Students

John-Paul Andersen

Naomi Sayre, Ph.D.

Naomi sayre labcoat


The laboratory of Dr. Naomi Sayre is interested in the processes that affect repair and recovery after brain damage, with particular emphasis on the role that cholesterol homeostasis plays in these processes. Our research focuses on understanding how cholesterol homeostasis affects two cell types-astrocytes and neural stem cells. As the primary supportive cells in the brain, astrocytes also regulate cholesterol homeostasis, and so have unique potential to affect recovery after brain damage due to trauma or stroke. Neural stem cells travel to the site of brain injury, where they play a role in recovery that has not been fully elucidated.

Selected publications:

Naomi L. Sayre , Mikaela Sifuentes, Deborah Holstein, Sheue-yann Cheng, Xuguang Zhu, James D. Lechleiter. Stimulation of astrocyte fatty acid oxidation by thyroid hormone is protective against ischemic stroke-induced damage. JCBFM in press.

Sayre NL, Rimkunas VM, Graham MJ, Crooke RM, Liscum L. Recovery from liver disease in a Niemann-Pick type C mouse model. J Lipid Res. 2010 Aug;51(8):2372-83. doi: 10.1194/jlr.M007211. Epub 2010 Apr 24.

Sayre NL, Chen Y, Sifuentes M, Stoveken B, Lechleiter JD. Purinergic receptor stimulation decreases ischemic brain damage by energizing astrocyte mitochondria. Adv Neurobiol. 2014;11:121-50. doi: 10.1007/978-3-319-08894-5_7.

Chocron ES, Sayre NL, Holstein D, Saelim N, Ibdah JA, Dong LQ, Zhu X, Cheng SY, Lechleiter JD. The trifunctional protein mediates thyroid hormone receptor-dependent stimulation of mitochondria metabolism. Mol Endocrinol. 2012 Jul;26(7):1117-28. doi: 10.1210/me.2011-1348. Epub 2012 May 8.

Assistant Professor/Research

Department of Neurosurgery


Ph.D., Tufts Sackler School of Graduate Biomedical Sciences, 2009



Phone: (210) 567-9241

Graduate Students

Sadiya Ahmad, CMP (Ph.D)

Marcel M. Daadi, Ph.D.

Marcel daadi-pic-wscs2015


Dr. Marcel Daadi is an expert in regulated translational research, especially in stem cell therapeutic applications for Parkinson’s disease and brain injuries. He discovered growth and differentiation conditions to direct human neural stem cells toward the dopaminergic lineage. This work produced two hallmark studies, both of scientific importance and therapeutic application for Parkinson’s disease.

In an industrial setting (NeuroSpheres Ltd. and Layton Biosciences Inc.), he developed therapeutic neural stem cell lines for clinical use in stroke, Parkinson’s disease and other diseases and injuries. He is involved in the development of the world’s first cryopreserved neural product manufactured under current Good Manufacturing Practices and transplanted into patients afflicted with stroke at Layton Biosciences Inc., Sunnyvale CA.

At the University of California San Francisco, he was involved in pivotal Investigational New Drug-enabling gene therapy non-human primate studies that allowed Avigen, Inc. to conduct clinical trials for treating patients with Parkinson’s disease. At Stanford University, he started and led the human embryonic stem cell program focused on developing therapeutic stem cell lines for treating ischemic stroke. He also discovered and patented a novel technique of engineering neural cells from pluripotent human embryonic stem cells that is currently in development for treating patients with stroke.

Dr. Daadi's current and future research is centered on the following areas:

1. Development of technologies to establish pluripotent stem cells, isolate self-renewable multipotent NSCs and generate specific neuronal lineages, such as dopaminergic neurons for treating Parkinson’s disease.

2. Pursuing reprogramming and genome-editing technologies to model neurological disorders in vitro and to understand mechanisms mediating disease development and degenerative processes following injury or disease.

3. Developing therapeutic stem cell lines in our current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP) facility at the Southwest National Primate Research Center.

4. Preclinical development using nonhuman primates models of a variety of diseases and applying cell delivery and multimodal molecular imaging techniques to monitor the safety and efficacy..

5. Genetica engineering of NSCs to investigate the role of optogenetics on their fate after grafting. These studies will help determine the mechanisms mediating stem cell graft–host interactions in enhancing neuro-regeneration and restoring function.

Results from our studies are the foundation of translational research aimed at repairing diseased or injured brain through transplantation of highly purified NSCs or stimulation of endogenous repair mechanisms.

Selected Publications

Malloy K., Li J., Choudhury G., Torres A., Gupta S., Kantorak C., Goble T., Fox P., Clarke G., Daadi M.M.MRI Guided Delivery of Neural Stem Cells into the Basal Ganglia of Nonhuman Primates. STEM CELLS Translational Medicine. 2017, 6(3):877-885.

McEntire CR, Choudhury GR, Torres A, Steinberg GK, Redmond DE Jr, Daadi M.M. Impaired Arm Function and Finger Dexterity in a Nonhuman Primate Model of Stroke: Motor and Cognitive Assessments. Stroke. 2016, 47(4):1109-16.

Choudhury G., Kim J., Frost P.A., Bastarrachea R.A., Daadi M.M. (2016). Nonhuman Primate Model in Clinical Modeling of Diseases for Stem Cell Therapy. BRAIN CIRCULATION. 2016, 2(3):141-145

Daadi M.M., Barberi T, Shi Q, Lanford RE. (2014) Nonhuman primate models in translational regenerative medicine.Stem Cells Dev. 23, Suppl 1:83-7.

Daadi M.M.,Grueter B.A., MalenkaR.C., Redmond DE, Steinberg G.K. (2012) Dopaminergic Neurons from Midbrain-Specified Human Embryonic Stem Cell-Derived Neural Stem Cells Engrafted in a Monkey Model of Parkinson's Disease. PLoS ONE, 2012;7(7):e41120.

Daadi M.M., Hu S., Klausner J.Q., Li Z., Sofilos M., Sun G., Wu J.C. and Steinberg G.K. (2013) Imaging Neural Stem Cell Graft-Induced Structural Repair in Stroke. Cell Transplantation, 2013;22(5):881-92.

Daadi M.M. (2011) Novel paths towards neural cellular products for neurological disorders. Regenerative Medicine 6(6 Suppl):25-30.

Daadi M.M. (2011) Engineering Therapeutic Neural Stem Cell Lines For Parkinson’s Disease. In Embryonic Stem Cells - Recent Advances in Pluripotent Stem Cell-Based Regenerative Medicine. (Craig Atwood, ed.) InTech Publisher, ISBN 978-953-307-198-5.

Daadi M.M. (2010) The Common path: Tumor suppression in the generation of iPS cells and cancer stem cells. Regenerative Medicine 5:21-22.

Martinez-Cerdeno V, Noctor SC, Espinosa A, Ariza J, Parker P, Orasji S, Daadi M.M, Bankiewicz K, Alvarez-Buylla A, Kriegstein AR (2010) Embryonic MGE precursor cells grafted into adult rat striatum integrate and ameliorate motor symptoms in 6-OHDA-lesioned rats. Cell Stem Cell 6:238-250

Daadi M.M., Davis A., Arac A., Li Z., Maag A.L., Bhatnagar R., Guohua S., Wu J.C. and Steinberg G.K. (2010) Human neural stem cell grafts modify microglial response and enhance axonal sprouting in neonatal hypoxic-ischemic brain injury. Stroke 41:516-523.

Associate Scientist & Director, Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine

Texas Biomedical Research Institute

Leader of the Regenerative Medicine & Aging Unit, Southwest National Primate Research Center

Adjunct Associate professor

Department of Cell Systems and Anatomy

Department of Radiology, Medical School


Ph.D., Neuroscience, Universite De La Mediterranee, 1992

M.S., Neuroscience, Universite De La Mediterranee, 1988



Phone: (210) 258-9210

Graduate Students

Jeffrey Kim 

Bess Frost, Ph.D.

Bess frost - copy


My research group studies fundamental processes in cell biology that drive age-related neurodegenerative disorders. We employ a multi-system approach to rapidly identify, test, and validate hypotheses. Early discovery takes place in Drosophila, a model organism that is well-suited for investigating issues of causality in disease processes. We complement our  Drosophila work with comparative analyses in postmortem human brain to ensure that our findings are relevant to human disorders.

A major focus of the laboratory is on tauopathy. Tauopathies, including Alzheimer’s disease, are characterized by the deposition of tau protein aggregates in the brains of affected individuals. Motivated by my previous work, which identified relaxation of heterochromatic DNA as a novel disease mechanism in Alzheimer’s disease and related tauopathies, we are currently investigating:

1) Repercussions of nucleoplasmic reticulum expansion (Figure 1) in tauopathy in regard to nucleocytoplasmic transport and nuclear calcium signaling

2) Transposable element and piRNA misregulation as a consequence of heterochromatin relaxation in tauopathy 


Frost B, Bardai FH, Feany MB. Lamin Dysfunction Mediates Neurodegeneration in Tauopathies. Curr Biol. 2016 Jan 11;26(1):129-36. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2015.11.039. Epub 2015 Dec 24.

Orr ME, Sullivan AC, Frost BA Brief Overview of Tauopathy: Causes, Consequences, and Therapeutic Strategies.Trends Pharmacol Sci. 2017 Jul;38(7):637-648. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2017 Apr 25.

Sun W, Yan C, Frost B, Wang X, Hou C, Zeng M, Gao H, Kang Y, Liu J. Pomegranate extract decreases oxidative stress and alleviates mitochondrial impairment by activating AMPK-Nrf2 in hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus of spontaneously hypertensive rats. Sci Rep. 2016 Oct 7;6:34246. doi: 10.1038/srep34246.

Frost B, Gotz J, Feany M (2015) Connecting the dots between tau dysfunction and neurodegeneration. Trends in Cell Biology, 25(1):46-53. PMCID: PMC4275400 .

Merlo P, Frost B, Peng S, Yang Y, Park P, Feany M (2014)  p53 prevents neurodegeneration by regulating synaptic genes. PNAS, 111(50):18055-60. PMCID: PMC4273405.

Frost B, Hemberg M, Lewis J, Feany M (2014)  Tau promotes neurodegeneration through global chromatin relaxation. Nature Neuroscience, 17(3):357-66. PMCID: PMC4012297. (See also accompanying News and Views in same issue.)

Frost B, Diamond MI (2010) Prion-like mechanisms in neurodegenerative diseases. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 11(3)155-9. PMCID: PMC3648341.

Frost B, Diamond MI (2009) The expanding realm of prion phenomena in neurodegenerative disease. Prion, 3(2)74-7. PMCID: PMC2712602.

Frost B, Jacks RL, Diamond MI (2009)  Propagation of tau misfolding from the outside to the inside of a cell. J Biol Chem., 284(19):12845-52. PMCID: PMC2676015.

Frost B, Ollesch J, Wille H, Diamond MI (2009)  Conformational diversity of wild-type Tau fibrils specified by templated conformation change. J Biol Chem ., 284(6):3546-51. PMCID: PMC2635036.

‎Assistant Professor at the Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies

Cell Systems and Anatomy


Ph.D., Biomedical Sciences, University of California San Francisco, 2009

B.S., Cellular and Molecular Biology, The University of Texas at Austin, 2004



Office: (210) 562-5037

Graduate Students

Paul Beckman

Gabrielle Zuniga

Simon Levy 

Elizabeth Leadbetter, Ph.D.



Dr. Elizabeth Leadbetter's lab looks at the cooperation of NKT cells and B cells in response to lipid antigens.

Different from protein-reactive T cells, NK T cells are a unique cell population that recognizes lipids in the context of the CD1 family of antigen presenting molecules. Certain B cells recognize and internalize lipids and also express CD1 molecules on their surface, which makes them ideal partners for NK T cells.

Upon activation, NKT cells express co-stimulatory molecules and release cytokines which helps CD1d-expressing B cells to proliferate and increase their secretion of antibodies. Thus, NK T cells can improve a B cell’s response to antigens that they recognize in common.

They have already demonstrated that this cooperation happens using a model lipid conjugate. Future studies will investigate whether this same cooperation happens during the normal course of a bacterial infection and is important for defense against that infection.

They will also investigate the mechanism of this cooperation including the localization of these cells and their antigens in vivo.

Lipid-based vaccine strategies.

Another area of study in the lab includes testing vaccine candidates that couple the lipid component of our model antigen (the NKT cell-stimulating adjuvant) to unique B cell epitope-containing fragments from pathogens. 

In this way, they will harness the ‘helper’ function of the NK T cells to activate and enhance the responses of B cells to otherwise weakly antigenic lipid or carbohydrate components of bacteria. It will be a universal approach that could apply to most types of bacteria, fungi, parasites, or other pathogens.

Recent Publications  

Lynch L, Michelet X, Zhang S, Brennan PJ, Moseman A, Lester C, Besra G,Vomhof-Dekrey EE, Tighe M, Koay HF, Godfrey DI, Leadbetter EA, Sant'Angelo DB, von Andrian U, Brenner MB. Regulatory iNKT cells lack expression of the transcription factor PLZF and control the homeostasis of T(reg) cells and macrophages in adipose tissue. Nat Immunol. 2015 Jan;16(1):85-95. doi:10.1038/ni.3047. Epub 2014 Dec 1.

Associate Professor

Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics


B.S., Biology with High Honors, Bates College, 1993 

Ph.D., Microbiology/Immunology Training Program, Boston University School of Medicine, 2002



Tel: (210) 567-3950

Fax: (210) 567-6612

Lab Rooms: 4.041V


Georgianna Gould, Ph.D.



Social behavior, its serotonergic underpinnings and developmental disruption of the social brain in autism, schizophrenia, and other psychiatric disorders are the focus of Dr. Georgianna Gould’s research. 

Her goals are to aid in developing improved treatment interventions for sociability deficits, and to identify common temporal and physiological vulnerabilities to environmental risk factors for autism. 

Her approach combines a battery of drug-treatment sensitive translational behavior tests of sociability, cognition and emotionality with in vitro measures of monoamine receptor and transporter density and function, and circulating levels of hormones such as oxytocin and corticosterone by immunoassay. 

Her postdoctoral studies in the laboratory of Dr. Alan Frazer (Pharmacology) focused on the role of transporter function in antidepressant action and on behavioral depression models in rats. 

Dr. Lynette Daws is her faculty sponsor, and together they investigate auxiliary monoamine transporters as promising pharmaceutical targets.  

Selected Publications

Zhang WQ, Smolik CM, Barba-Escobedo PA, Gamez M, Sanchez JJ, Javors MA, Daws LC, Gould GG. 2015. Acute dietary tryptophan manipulation differentially alters social behavior, brain serotonin and plasma corticosterone in three inbred mouse strains. Neuropharmacology. 90:1-8.

Gould GG, Burke TF, Osorio MD, Smolik CM, Zhang WQ, Onaivi ES, Gu TT, DeSilva MN, Hensler JG. 2014. Enhanced novelty-induced corticosterone spike and upregulated serotonin 5-HT1A and cannabinoid CB1 receptors in adolescent BTBR mice. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 39:158-69.

Barba-Escobedo PA, Gould GG. 2012. Visual social preferences of lone zebrafish in a novel environment: strain and anxiolytic effects. Genes Brain Behav. 11:366-73.

Gould GG, Seillier A, Weiss G, Giuffrida A, Burke TF, Hensler JG, Rock C, Tristan A, McMahon LR, Salazar A, O'Connor JC, Satsangi N, Satsangi RK, Gu TT, Treat K, Smolik C, Schultz ST. 2012. Acetaminophen differentially enhances social behavior and cortical cannabinoid levels in inbred mice. Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 238:260-9.

Daws LC, Gould GG. 2011. Ontogeny and regulation of the serotonin transporter: providing insights into human disorders. Pharmacol Ther. 131:61-79.

Lau BY, Mathur P, Gould GG, Guo S. 2011. Identification of a brain center whose activity discriminates a choice behavior in zebrafish. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 108:2581-6. 

Associate Professor, Research, Department of Cellular and Integrative Physiology


Ph.D., Ecology, Evolution & Behavior, Syracuse University, 2001

M.S., Zoology, Texas A&M University, 1994

B.S., Biology, Cornell University, 1992



Phone: (210) 567-6541

Gek-Ming Sia, Ph.D.

Sia photo


Research in my lab focuses on the molecular mechanisms of synapse formation and elimination. Neuronal synapses are anatomical structures through which neurons communicate, and formation of the appropriate synapses in various brain circuits require a balance between the processes of synapse formation and elimination. Abnormal synapse density is associated with neurodevelopmental diseases, such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and schizophrenia (SZ), as well as neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The long term goals of my research are:

1)To identify and characterize molecular mechanisms that regulate synapse formation, maturation, maintenance, and elimination.

2)To determine the cell types and cellular processes that mediate synapse formation and elimination.

3)To determine the behavioral domains that are affected when specific synapse populations are in excess or deficit as a result of perturbations in the processes of synapse formation and elimination.

We make heavy use of mouse genetic models in our studies. Our work utilizes a variety of molecular, cellular and behavioral techniques. Please contact any member of our lab if you are interested in our work. 

Selected Publications 

Sia, GM., Clem, R. and Huganir, RL. (2013) The human language-associated gene SRPX2 regulates synapse formation and vocalization in mice.Science. 342(6161):987-91

Assistant Professor of Pharmacology


Ph.D., Neuroscience, Johns Hopkins University, 2006



Phone: (210) 567-4235

Graduate Students

Elizabeth Ochoa

Breeanne Soteros

Kexin Xu, Ph.D.



Dr. Kexin Xu's research seeks to understand the fundamental roles of the epigenome in control of the context-specific transcriptional programs and how this control contributes to normal development or cancer progression. Specifically, she focus on the following topics:

1) The interaction between tissue-specific transcription factors and epigenetic regulators in transcriptional control

2) The crosstalk among distinct types of epigenetic modifications in shaping the physical structure of genome

3) The response of epigenetic tags to the external and internal stimuli

4) The development of new chemical probes targeting the master epigenetic enzymes in cancer pathogenesis

Her work is highly interdisciplinary and covers the fields of epigenomics, functional genomics, genome editing, biochemistry, bioinformatics and drug discovery. 

Findings from our studies will not only provide critical insights into the mechanisms of the epigenetic aberrations driving the pathogenesis of human cancers, but also lay solid foundations for the design of novel therapeutic targets or approaches.

Selected Publications

Reiter, R.J., Rosales-Corral, S.A., Tan, D.X., Acuna-Castroviejo, D., Qin, L., Yang, S.F., Xu, K. (2017). Melatonin, a full service anti-cancer agent: inhibition of initiation, progression and metastasis. Review. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 18(4), 843. PMID: 28420185

Yanming Wu, Zhao Zhang, Mauro Ezequiel Cenciarini,Cecilia Jazmín Proietti, Matias Amasino, Tao Hong, Mei Yang, Yiji Liao, Huai-Chin Chiang, Virginia Kaklamani, Rinath Jeselsohn, Ratna K. Vadlamudi, Tim Hui-Ming Huang, Rong Li, Carmine De Angelis, Xiaoyong Fu, Patricia V. Elizalde, Rachel Schiff, Myles Brown, Kexin Xu. Transcriptional Axis of EZH2-ERa-GREB1 Regulates Tamoxifen Resistance in Breast Cancer. Cancer Research, In press.

Kexin Xu*, Christopher McNair*, Amy C. Mandigo, Matteo Benelli, Benjamin Leiby, Daniel Rodrigues, Johan Lindberg, Henrik Gronberg, Bram De Laere, Luc Dirix, Tapio Visakorpi, Fugen Li, Felix Y. Feng, Johann de Bono, Francesca Demichelis, Mark A Rubin, Myles Brown and Karen E. Knudsen. Differential impact of RB status on E2F1 reprogramming in human cancer. The Journal of Clinical Investigation, In press. (*, co-first authors)

Kexin Xu*, Lixin Wan*, Yongkun Wei*, Jinfang Zhang*, Tao Han, Christopher Fry,Zhao Zhang, Yao Vickie Wang,Liyu Huang, Weiya Xia,Wei-Chao Chang,Wen-Chien Huang,Chien-Liang Liu, Yuan-Ching Chang,Yun Wu, Jinsong Liu, Victor X Jin, Jin Li, Xiangpeng Dai, Jianfeng Guo, Jia Liu, John M. Asara,Myles Brown, Mien-Chie Hung and Wenyi Wei. Phosphorylation of EZH2 by AMPK Suppresses PRC2 MethyltransferaseActivity and Oncogenic Function. Molecular Cell, Accepted. (*, co-first authors)

Kunhua Qin, Ning Zhang, Zhao Zhang, Michael Nipper, Zhenxin Zhu, Jake Leighton,Kexin Xu, Nicolas Musi, Pei Wang. The histone deacetylase SIRT6 regulates Txnip in β-cells.Diabetologia,Accepted.

Xu, K.*, Xu, H.*, He, H.H., Zang, C., Chen, CH., Chen, Y., Qin, Q., Wang, S., Wang, C., Hu, S., Li, F., Long, H., Brown, M. & Liu, X.S. (2015). Integrative analysis reveals the transcriptional collaboration between EZH2 and E2F1 in the regulation of cancer-related gene expression. Molecular Cancer Research, 14(2):163-72 (*: co-first authors) (selected as MCR Highlights)

Assistant Professor, Department of Molecular Medicine


Ph.D., Pharmacology, University of Maryland, 2008

B.S., Biological Sciences, Wuhan University, 2001



Phone: (210) 562-4148

Graduate Students

Richard DeLa Rosa

Adam Salmon, Ph.D.



Dr. Adam Salmon's lab is focused on understanding the basic biology of aging by using targeted interventions to delay the aging process in mammals. Specifically, understanding how the inhibition of the mTOR signaling pathway can be used to delay aging and improve health. 

We use both rodents and non-human primates as model systems to address these questions. Some key questions that we address are 1) does mTOR inhibition have similar effects in both model systems, 2) can diet interact with the pro-longevity effects of mTOR inhibition, 3) could multi-drug treatments be used to promote longevity and reduce potential side-effects.

Another focus is determining whether modulation of oxidative stress could regulate healthy lifespan; i.e., does reduction of oxidative stress slow the development of age-related disease? 

In particular, we are interested in studying the role of oxidative stress and protein oxidation in the development of metabolic dysfunction with age and obesity. 

The oxidative stress theory of aging has been one of the most prominent theories of why organisms age. Both aging and increased fat accumulation promote dysregulation of glucose metabolism, alterations in adipose tissue homeostasis, and declines in cellular function that are detrimental to overall health. Metabolic diseases like Type 2 diabetes currently affect a significant proportion of the world's population and their prevention could certainly lead to longer, healthier lives.

Selected publications:

Liu R, Pulliam DA, Liu Y, Salmon ABDynamic differences in oxidative stress and the regulation of metabolism with age in visceral versus subcutaneous adipose. Redox Biol. (2015). in press.

Salmon AB, Lerner C, Ikeno Y, Motch Perrine S, McCarter R, Sell C. Altered metabolism and resistance to obesity in long-lived mice producing reduced levels of IGF-1. Am J Physiol Endo Metabol 308(7):E545-E553. (2015). PMCID: PMC4385875.

3.Zhang Y, Fischer KE, Soto V, Liu Y, Sosnowska D, Richardson A, Salmon ABObesity-induced oxidative stress, accelerated functional decline with age and increased mortality in mice. Arch Biochem Biophys 576:39-48. (2015). PMCID: PMC4456198.

Liu Y, Diaz V, Fernandez E, Strong R, Ye L, Baur JA, Lamming DA, Richardson A, Salmon ABRapamycin-induced metabolic defects are reversible in both lean and obese mice. Aging (Albany, NY) 6(9):742-754.(2014). PMCID: PMC4221917.

Tardif S, Ross C, Bergman P, Fernandez E, Javors M, Salmon A, Spross J, Strong R, Richardson A. Testing efficacy of administration of the anti-aging drug rapamycin in a non-human primate, the common marmoset. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 70(5):577-588. (2015). PMCID: PMC4400395

Edrey YH, Salmon ABRevisiting an age-old question regarding oxidative stress. Free Rad Biol Med 71C:368-378. (2014). PMCID: PMC4049226.

Liu Y, Qi W, Richardson A, Van Remmen H, Ikeno Y, Salmon ABOxidative damage associated with obesity is prevented by overexpression of CuZn- or Mn-superoxide dismutase. Biochem Biophys Res Comm 438(1):78-83. (2013). PMCID: PMC3768142.

Styskal J, Nwagwu FA, Watkins YN, Liang H, Richardson A, Musi N, Salmon ABMethionine sulfoxide reductase A affects insulin resistance by protecting insulin receptor function. Free Rad Biol Med 56:123-32. (2013). PMCID: PMC3578155.

Salmon AB, Pérez VI, Bokov A, Jernigan A, Kim G, Zhao H, Levine RL, Richardson A.Lack of methionine sulfoxide reductase A in mice increases sensitivity to oxidative stress but does not diminish lifespan. FASEB J 23(10):3601-8. (2009). PMCID: PMC2747676.

Salmon AB, Leonard SL, Masamsetti V, Pierce A, Podlutsky AJ, Podlutskaya N, Richardson A, Austad SN, Chaudhuri AR. The long lifespan of two bat species is correlated with resistance to protein oxidation and enhanced protein homeostasis. FASEB J 23(7):2317-2326. (2009). PMCID: PMC2704589.

Assistant Professor with Tenure

Department of Molecular Medicine

Barshop Institute for Longevity and Aging Studies


Ph.D., Cellular and Molecular Biology, University of Michigan, 2007

M.S., Biological Sciences, University of Nebraska, 2000

B.S., Biological Sciences, University of Nebraska, 1997



Phone: (210) 562-6136

Graduate Students

Johnathan Dorigatti