Current Graduate Students in Comparative and Molecular Biosciences

PhD students in Comparative and Molecular Biosciences (CMB) are engaged in research in biomedical sciences at the intersection of animal and human health. Our students study infectious and zoonotic diseases, genetics and genomics, molecular mechanisms of health and disease, virology and bacteriology, among other areas of research.

Ampudia Mesias, Elisabet

Ampudia Mesias, Elisabet

Elisabet Ampudia Mesias 

ampud001@umn.edu

Degrees
M.Sc., Biomedical Sciences, Universidad del Valle, Colombia
B.Sc., Biology, Universidad del Valle, Colombia

Advisers
Dr. Michael Olin & Dr. Liz Pluhar

Research
CD200 can modulate the immune response via immunosuppression of an antitumor responses against brain tumors, particularly glioblastomas, when it engages its inhibitory receptor CD200R1. My research interest is targeting CD200 receptors to overcome the CD200 inhibitory effects and to enhance the antitumor immune response. My main project is to determine the unknown signaling pathways of the activating CD200 receptors induced by the CD200 inhibitors as potential immunotherapies to treat high-grade gliomas.

Publication
Xiong Z, E Ampudia-Mesias, R Shaver, CM Horbinski, CL Moertel & MR Olin (2016). Tumor-derived vaccines containing CD200 inhibit immune activation: implications for immunotherapy. Immunotherapy.Vol. 8:1059-1071.

Presentations
Ampudia-Mesias E, R Shaver, A Stell, Z Xiong, A Hyatt, LM Gagich, and MR Olin. Targeting CD200 Isoform Receptors to Override CD200 Inhibitory Signals. Third Neuro-Oncology Symp, 2016.

Ampudia-Mesias E, R Shaver, Z Xiong, LM Gagich, L Pluhar, and MR Olin. Tumor Derived Vaccines Containing CD200 Inhibits Immune Activation: Implications for Immunotherapy. 30th Ann Pediatric Res Educ Scholarship Symp, 2016.

Becklin, Kelsie

Becklin, Kelsie

Kelsie BecklinBecklin, Kelsie

kbecklin@umn.edu

Degree
B.S. Biology, University of MInnesota Twin Cities

Adviser
Dr. Branden Moriarity

Demos-Davies, Kimberly

Demos-Davies, Kimberly

Kim Demos-DaviesDemos-Davies, Kimberly

demos027@umn.edu

Dual D.V.M./Ph.D. student, currently in D.V.M. curriculum

Degree
B.A., Biological Sciences, University of Colorado-Boulder

Publications
Demos-Davies, K.M., Ferguson, B.S., Cavasin, M.A., Mahaffey, J.H., Williams, S.M., Spiltoir, J.I., Schuetze, K.B., Horn, T.R., Chen, B., Ferrera, C., Scellini, B., Piroddi, N., Tesi, C., Poggesi, C., Jeong, M.Y., McKinsey, T.A.  HDAC6 Contributes to Pathological Responses of Heart and Skeletal Muscle to Chronic Angiotensin II Signaling.  American J Physiol-Heart Circul Physiol. 307(2):H252-8, 2014.

Stauffer, B.L., Dockstader, K., Russell, G., Hijmans, J., Walker, L., Cecil, M., Demos-Davies K., Medway, A., McKinsey, T.A. and Sucharov, C.C. Transgenic over-expression of YY1 induces pathologic cardiac hypertrophy in a sex –specific manner. Biochem Biophys Res Comm. 462 (2):131-137, 2015.

Reid, B.G., Stratton, M.S., Bowers, S., Cavasin, M.A., Demos-Davies K.M., Susano, I., McKinsey, T. A. Discovery of novel small molecule inhibitors of cardiac hypertrophy using high throughput, high content imaging. J Molec Cell Cardiol. 97: 106-113, 2016.

Blakeslee, W.W., Demos-Davies K.M., Lemon, D.D., Lutter, K.M., Cavasin, M.A., Payne, S., Long, C.S., McKinsey, T.A., and Miyamoto, S.D. Histone Deacetylase Adaptation in Single Ventricle Heart Disease and a Young Animal Model of Right Ventricular Hypertrophy. Pediatric Res. 82(4): doi:10.1038/pr.2017.126, 2017.

Jeong, M.Y., Lin, T.H., Wennersten, S.A., Demos-Davies, K.M, Cavasin, M.A., Mahaffey, J.H., Monzani, V., Saripalli, C., Mascagni, P., Reece, T.B., Ambardecker, A.V., Granzier, H.L., Dinarello, C.A. and McKinsey, T.A. Histone Deacetylase Activity Governs Diastolic Dysfunction Through a Non- Genomic Mechanism. Science Transl Med. 10 (427): eaao0144, 2018

Di, Da

Di, Da

Di, Da

ddi@umn.edu

Degree
B.S., Biopharmaceutics, Wuhan University, China

Adviser
Dr. Hinh Ly

Durward-Akhurst, Sian

Durward-Akhurst, Sian

Sian Durward-AkhurstSian Durward-Akhurst

durwa004@umn.edu

Degrees
B.V.M.S., Glasgow University
M.S., Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota

Adviser
Dr. Molly McCue

Research
Genetic variation is a key contributor to both health and disease in all species. The focus of my research is to use next-generation sequencing technology to evaluate genetic variation across the equine population and to use this information to assist in the identification of putative functional alleles present in horses with rare but important diseases.

Publications
Durward-Akhurst SA and Valberg S. Immune-mediated muscle diseases in the horse. Vet. Pathol. 2017. doi: 1177?0300985816688755.

Durward-Akhurst SA, Finno CJ, Barnes N, Shivers J, Guo LT, Shelton GD, Valberg SJ. Major Histocompatibility Complex I and II Expression and Lymphocytic Subtypes in Muscle of Horses with Immune-Mediated Myositis. J. Vet. Intern. Med. 30:1313-1231.

Durward-Akhurst SA, Mair TS, Boston R, Dunkel B. Comparison of two antimicrobial regimens on the prevalence of incisional infections after colic surgery. Vet Rec. 2013 Mar 16;172(11):287

Naylor RJ, Durward-Akhurst SA. Use of the Accutrend Plus point-of-care monitor for blood triglyceride measurement in horses. Vet Rec. 2012 Mar 3;170(9):228.

Awards
University of Washington Summer Institute Scholarship, 2017
Microbial and Plant Genomics Institute Travel Award, 2017
University of Minnesota Council of Graduate Students Career Development Award, 2017
Vaughn Larson Award, College of Veterinary Medicine, 2016
NIH Comparative Medicine and Pathology Training Fellowship, 2016-2019
Morris Animal Foundation Travel Award, 2016
University of Minnesota Council of Graduate Students Travel Scholarship, 2016
NRSP8 Horse Coordinator Fund Travel Award, 2016, 2017
ACVIM Foundation Advanced Clinical Research Training Fellowship, 2015-2016
Veterinary Medicine Travel Award, 2015
Resident Award for Excellence in Clinical and Diagnostic Education, 2013

Emmitt, Nicole

Emmitt, Nicole

Nicole EmmittEmmitt, Nicole

emmit002@umn.edu

Degrees
D.V.M. in progress, University of Minnesota Twin Cities
M.S., Clinical Embryology & Andrology, Eastern Virginia Medical School
B.S., Animal Science, California State Polytechnic University Pomona

Adviser
Dr. Paul Mermelstein

Estrada, April

Estrada, April

Estrada, AprilEstrada, April

aquin033@umn.edu

Degree
B.S., Animal Science, California State Polytechnic University

Adviser
Dr. Connie Gebhart

Feser, Colby

Feser, Colby

Colby FeserFeser, Colby

feser004@umn.edu

CMB Council of Graduate Students Representative

Degree
B.S., Animal Science, University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Adviser
Dr. Mark Osborn

Publications
Du J, Paz K, Thangavelu G, Schneidawind D, Baker J, Flynn R, Duramad O, Feser CJ, Panoskaltsis-Mortari A, Negrin RS, Blazar BR. Invariant natural killer T cells ameliorate murine chronic GVHD by expanding donor regulatory T cells. Blood. 2017 Jun 8;129(23):3121-3125. doi: 10.1182/blood-2016-11-752444. Epub 2017 Apr 17. PMID: 28416503

Matta BM, Reichenbach DK, Zhang X, Mathews L, Koehn BH, Dwyer GK, Lott JM, Uhl FM, Pfeifer D, Feser CJ, Smith MJ, Liu Q, Zeiser R, Blazar BR, Turnquist HR. Peri-alloHCT IL-33 administration expands recipient T-regulatory cells that protect mice against acute GVHD. Blood. 2016 Jul 21;128(3):427-39. doi: 10.1182/blood-2015-12-684142. Epub 2016 May 24. PMID: 27222477

Geng, Qibin

Geng, Qibin

Qibin GengGeng, Qibin

qgeng@umn.edu

Degrees
M.S., Microbiology & Virology, Wuhan University, China
B.S., Biotechnology & Biopharmaceutics, Southern Medical Univeristy, China

Adviser
Dr. Yuying Liang

Guo, Liang

Guo, Liang


Liang Guo

guoxx412@umn.edu

Degree
D.V.M., China Agricultural University

Advisers
Dr. Paul Bohjanen & Dr. Irina St. Louis

Research
My long-term research goal during my PhD training is to understand the role of mRNA decay in regulating gene expression during disease states such as malignancy and viral infection.

Publication
Bohjanen PR, Moua ML, Guo L, Taye A, Vlasova-St Louis IA. Altered CELF1 binding to target transcripts in malignant T cells. RNA. 2015 Oct;21(10):1757-69. PMID: 26249002

Presentations
Liang Guo, Mai Lee Moua, Paul Bohjanen and Irina Vlasova-St. Louis. CELF1: same protein, different targets. 4th Annual Masonic Cancer Center Research Symposium. Poster session. Minneapolis, MN. 2013

Liang Guo, Daniel Beisang, Mai Lee Moua, Irina Vlasova-St. Louis and Paul Bohjanen . The GRE/CELF1 network regulates T cell activation through CELF1 phosphorylation and alternative polyadenylation. 19th Annual RNA society Meeting. Poster session. Quebec City, Canada, 2014

Liang Guo, Daniel Beisang, Mai Lee Moua, Irina Vlasova-St. Louis and Paul Bohjanen . GU-rich element-containing transcripts are differentially regulated through alternative ployadenylation and CELF1 phosphorylation following T cell activation. 2014 College of Veterinary Reseach Day. Poster session. Minneapolis, MN. 2014

Liang Guo, Daniel Beisang, Mai Lee Moua, Irina Vlasova-St. Louis and Paul Bohjanen . The GRE/CELF1 network regulates T cell activation through CELF1 phosphorylation and alternative polyadenylation. 2014 GenoFest Meeting. Poster session. Minneapolis, MN. 2014

Liang Guo, Daniel Beisang, Mai Lee Moua, Irina Vlasova-St. Louis, and Paul Bohjanen. Genome-wide analysis of alternative polyadenylation of GU-rich mRNAs during immune activation. 2015 Minnesota Supercomputing Institute Research Exhibition. Poster session. Minneapolis, MN. 2015

Liang Guo, Daniel Beisang, Mai Lee Moua, Irina Vlasova-St. Louis, and Paul Bohjanen. Differential regulation of GU-rich element-containing transcripts through alternative polyadenylation and transient phosphorylation of CELF1 following T cell activation. 2015 meeting of RNA Stability. Poster session. Colorado, CO. 2015

Liang Guo, Jose Debes, Bernd Rattenbacher, Cavan Reilly, Daniel Beisang, Irina Vlasova-St. Louis, and Paul Bohjanen. Manipulation of Host mRNA Decay by Hepatitis C Virus. 2016 Institute for Molecular Virology Annual Symposium. Oral Presentation. Minneapolis, MN. 2016

Liang Guo, Jose Debes, Bernd Rattenbacher, Cavan Reilly, Daniel Beisang, Irina Vlasova-St. Louis, and Paul Bohjanen. Manipulation of Host mRNA Decay by Hepatitis C Virus. 21st Annual International RNA society Meeting. Poster session. Kyoto, Japan. 2016

Awards
Comparative and Molecular Biosciences Graduate Program Travel Award, Spring 2014
19th Annual International RNA society Meeting Travel fellowship, 2014
Comparative and Molecular Biosciences Graduate Program Travel Award, Spring 2015
Best Poster Award on the College of Veterinary Medicine Points of Pride Research Day, Oct 2015
21st Annual International RNA society Meeting Travel fellowship, 2016
Comparative and Molecular Biosciences Graduate Program Travel Award, Spring 2016
Institute for Molecular Virology Training Program fellowship, 2016-2017

Isakson, Sara

Isakson, Sara

Sara IsaksonIsakson, Sara

isaks047@umn.edu

Degrees
D.V.M., University of Minnesota
B.S., Biological Sciences, University of California, Santa Cruz

Adviser
Dr. David Largaespada

Research
Neurofibromatosis Type I (NF1) is a common tumor predisposition syndrome characterized by a variety of debilitating clinical manifestations. Many mouse models have been developed to better understand the disease, but none of these models display the complexity of disease seen in humans. In partnership with the biotechnology company Recombinetics, Inc., we have developed a novel swine model of NF1 that fully recapitulates the human disease. I am working to characterize the disease phenotype in these genetically engineered pigs with the goal of using them as a preclinical model to better inform treatment strategies for human NF1 patients. I am also using genetically engineered human Schwann cell lines to elucidate the precise cell signaling aberrations associated with peripheral nerve tumors in NF1 patients. This research will ideally lead to the development of novel therapies to be further tested in our preclinical models.

Publications
Isakson, S. H., Katzman, S. D., & Hoyer, K. K. (2012). Spontaneous Autoimmunity in the Absence of IL-2 Is Driven by Uncontrolled Dendritic Cells. The Journal of Immunology, 189(4), 1585 LP-1593.

Katzman, S. D., Hoyer, K. K., Dooms, H., Gratz, I. K., Rosenblum, M. D., Paw, J. S., Isakson, S.H., Abbas, A. K. (2011). Opposing functions of IL-2 and IL-7 in the regulation of immune responses. Cytokine, 56(1), 116–121.

Presentations
Isakson, SH, Coutts, A, William, K, et al. A porcine model of neurofibromatosis type I-associated nervous system tumors. Soc. Neuro-Oncology Annual Scientific Meeting, San Francisco, CA. Nov. 2017

Isakson SH, Malhotra D, Jenkins, MK. Qualitative effects of thymic atrophy on self-reactive CD4+ T cells. UMN CVM Research Days, St. Paul, MN. October 2014.

Isakson SH, Malhotra D, Jenkins, MK. Qualitative effects of thymic atrophy on self-reactive CD4+ T cells. Merial-NIH Veterinary Scholars Symposium, Ithaca, NY. August 2014.

Awards
Brain Tumor Program Travel Award, 2017
CMB Student Travel Award, 2017
NIH Comparative Medicine and Pathology Training Fellowship, 2017
First Place Poster Presentation Points of Pride Research Day October 2014
Merial-NIH Summer Scholars Award 2014



Jahan, Nusrat

Jahan, Nusrat

Nusrat JahanJahan, Nusrat

jahan036@umn.edu

Degrees
M.S., Cell and Molecular Biology, St. Cloud State University
B.S., Microbiology, North South University, Bangladesh

Adviser
First Year Research Rotations

Johnson, Abigail

Johnson, Abigail

Abigail JohnsonJohnson, Abigail

joh09451@umn.edu

Degrees
M.S., Immunology, University of Cincinnati
B.S., Animal Science, University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Adviser
First Year Research Rotations

Korpela, Derek

Korpela, Derek

Derek KorpelaDerek Korpela

korp0033@umn.edu

Degrees
D.V.M., University of Minnesota
B.S., Veterinary Science, University of Minnesota

Advisers
Dr. Erin Dickerson & Dr. Michael Murtaugh

Research
The research topics that I am focused on are hemangiosarcomas in canines and angiosarcomas in humans, as well as head and neck carcinomas in felines and humans. In particular, with hemangiosarcomas and angiosarcomas I am interested in the metabolic drivers of cellular replication and the influences of the tumor microenvironment on tumor cell mitochondrial function. Additionally, with the head and neck carcinoma research, I am examining the function of glucose/glutamine uptake and the ability to disrupt fuel sources as a therapeutic option.

Larson, Christina

Larson, Christina

Larson, ChristinaLarson, Christina

larsoncm@umn.edu

Degrees
D.V.M., University of Minnesota
B.A., Biology, University of Minnesota-Morris

Adviser
Dr. Carolyn Fairbanks

Research
The lab's research focus is the spinal neurotransmission of pain and mechanisms underlying hyperalgesia, analgesia, chronic pain, opioid-induced tolerance and opioid addiction. Work utilizes behavioral, electrophysiological, immunocytochemical, and molecular techniques. We seek to develop a novel class of spinally-delivered drugs to reverse rather than alleviate the effects of chronic pain, and to create more potent opioid drugs that lack the central nervous system side effects such as respiratory depression or addictive potential.

Awards
MVMA Power of Ten Leadership Program, 2016-17
AVMA Future Leaders Program, 2016
NIH Comparative Medicine and Pathology Training Fellowship 2017-20

Luong, Nhungoc

Luong, Nhungoc

Nhungoc Ti LuongNhungoc Luong

luong044@umn.edu

Degree
B.S., Biology, Concordia University, Saint Paul

Adviser
Dr. Julie Olson & Dr. Michael Murtaugh

Research
Exosomes are nanovesicles secreted from most cell types and constantly taken up by other cells, thus mediating intercellular communication. Exosomes can contain a wide range of materials including mRNAs, miRNAs, and proteins. My research focuses on the exosomes secreted from microglia during viral infection of the central nervous system (CNS) and how they might contribute to the pathogenesis of demyelinating disease such as human multiple sclerosis.

Publications
Singh, A., Mor , S.K., Jindal, N., Patnayak, D., Sobhy, N.M., Luong, N., Goyal, S.M. (2016). Detection and molecular characterization of astroviruses in turkeys. Archives of Virology 

Aboubakr, HA., Nauertz, A., Luong, N., Agrawal, S., El-Sohaimy, S.A., Youssef, M.M., Goyal, S.M. (2016). In vitro antiviral activity of clove and ginger aqueous extracts against feline calicivirus, a surrogate to human norovirus. Journal of Food Protection.

Presentations
Luong, N. and Olson, JK. (2018) Exosomes secreted by microglia during virus-induced demyelinating disease contribute to viral persistence and neuroinflammation. ASV Meeting, Bethesda, MD (Oral)

Luong, N. and Olson, JK. (2018) Exosomes secreted by microglia during virus-induced demyelinating disease contribute to neuroinflammation. Institute of Molecular Virology Symposium, Minneapolis, MN (Oral)

Luong, N. and Olson, JK. (2017). Role of exosomes secreted from microglia in demyelinating disease. Wis-e-sota, Lacrosse, WI. (Oral)

Luong, N. and Olson, JK. (2017). Role of exosomes from microglia secreted by microglia in virus-induced demyelinating disease. PNI retreat, Saint Paul, MN. (Oral)

Luong, N. and Olson, JK. (2017). Exosomes secreted from virus- infected microglia can activate an inflammatory response in the central nervous system. CVM Point of Research, Saint Paul, MN. (Poster)

Luong, N and Olson, JK (2017). Exosomes from virus-infected microglia can activate an inflammatory response in the central nervous system. Amer. Assn. for Immunol. Conference, Washington, D.C.

Luong, N and Olson, JK (2017). Exosomes from virus-infected microglia can activate an inflammatory response in the central nervous system. Amer. Assn. for Virol. Meeting, Madison, WI. 

Luong, N., Penm, S., and Olson, JK. (2016). Exosomes can transfer viral components between cells. iCOMOS 2nd Conference, Minnesota

Luong, N., Trudeau, M.,Verma, H., Mor, S.K., Erber, J., Goyal, S.M. (2014). Cultivation and molecular characterization of U.S. strains of porcine sapelovirus. Leman Swine Conference

Awards
American Society for Virology Student Travel Award, 2018
Development Initiative Grant sponsored by Coca-Cola, 2018
Student Service Fees Event Grant, 2018
Amer. Soc. for Virol. Student Travel Award, 2017
Amer. Assn. of Immunol. Laboratory Travel Grant, 2017
NIDA PharmacoNeuroImmunology Fellowship, 2016-2018

Munsey, Anna

Munsey, Anna

Munsey, AnnaMunsey, Anna

munse010@umn.edu

Degrees
D.V.M., University of Wisconsin-Madison
B.A., Biology, University of Virginia

Advisers
Dr. Andres Perez & Dr. Kim VanderWaal

Research
My research is focused on understanding the epidemiology of foot-and-mouth disease in endemic countries.

Norton, Elaine

Norton, Elaine

Elaine NortonElaine Norton

norto253@umn.edu

Degrees
M.S., Biomedical Sciences, Auburn University
D.V.M., Colorado State University
B.S., Arizona State University Tempe

Adviser
Dr. Molly McCue

Research
Equine metabolic syndrome (EMS) is a metabolic derangement in horses defined by increased insulin resistance and has been described as an animal model for type two diabetes in humans. The focus of my research is using genome-wide association studies and next-generation sequencing technologies to look at associations between known EMS phenotypes, metabolic derangements, and breed susceptibility to identify genes and putative functional alleles associated with EMS and laminitis risk, using Welsh Ponies and Morgans as a model population.

Awards
NIH Comparative Medicine and Pathology Training Fellowship, 2013-2016

Olson, Michaela

Olson, Michaela

Michaela OlsonOlson, Michaela

olso6667@umn.edu

Degree
B.S., Animal Science, University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Adviser
Dr. Kent Reed

Oppler, Scott

Oppler, Scott

Oppler, Scott

opple001@umn.edu

Dual D.V.M./Ph.D. student, currently in D.V.M. curriculum

Degree
B.S., Biology & Psychology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Oram, Marissa

Oram, Marissa

Marissa OramOram, Marissa

oramx003@umn.edu

Degree
B.A., Chemistry, College of St. Benedict

Adviser
Dr. Anja-Katrin Bielinsky

Research
Genome instability is a major driver of cancer genome evolution. Replication stress is the primary source of genome instability when stalled replication forks are processed into DNA double strand breaks. Cancer cells live under chronic replication stress and, therefore, they must have adopted replication stress tolerance pathways. We hypothesize that replication stress tolerance can also lead to drug resistance making effective cancer therapies unattainable. We have shown that the yeast ubiquitin ligase, Slx5/8, promotes replication stress tolerance by allowing cells to enter mitosis with under replicated DNA. Now, we want to understand the role of the mammalian ortholog, RING finger protein 4 (RNF4), in response to replication stress. This research will lead to a better mechanistic understanding of replication stress tolerance and chemoresistance which could reveal potential anti-cancer drug targets.

Pope, Emily

Pope, Emily

Emily PopePope, Emily

popex102@umn.edu 

Dual D.V.M./Ph.D. student, currently in D.V.M. curriculum

Degree
B.S., Animal Science, University of Minnesota

Advisers
Dr. David Largaespada & Dr. Liz Pluhar

Presentations
Pope, E., Kurata, M., Shu, J., Sarver, A., Temiz, N., Hudson, W., Slipek, N., Yuan, W., Seshagiri, S., Largaespada, D.  A forward genetic screen for drivers of mammary tumorigenesis and progression in the context of PI3K hyperactivation.  Univ. MN College of Veterinary Medicine Comparative Oncology Seminar, August 2017.

Awards
Al Weber DVM/PhD Fellowship, 2017
First Place Poster Presentation, CVM Points of Pride Research Day, 2017

Robbins, Gabrielle

Robbins, Gabrielle

Gabrielle RobbinsRobbins, Gabrielle

robbi264@umn.edu

Dual D.V.M./Ph.D. student, currently in D.V.M. curriculum

Degree
B.S., Animal Science, North Carolina State University Raleigh

Smeester, Branden

Smeester, Branden

Branden SmeesterSmeester, Branden

smees001@umn.edu

Degree
B.S., Biology, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

Advisers
Dr. Branden Moriarity & Dr. David Largaespada

Research
I aim to develop an understanding of the genes and pathways that control osteosarcomagenesis and metastasis. One of the major obstacles facing osteosarcoma (OSA) research is the lack of targeted therapies to treat human and animal osteosarcoma patients. While some genes have been definitively implicated in osteosarcoma, it is quite difficult to determine which are actually causing osteosarcoma development, progression and metastasis without functional validation and mechanistic study. I am utilizing cutting-edge genome engineering tools such as the PiggyBac/Sleeping Beauty (PB/SB) and CRISPR nuclease systems to target candidate osteosarcoma cancer genes identified for the first time via a forward genetic screen.

Publications
Smeester, BA, Lee JH, Beitz, AJ.  Influence of social interaction on nociceptive-induced changes in locomotor activity in a mouse model of acute inflammatory pain: use of novel thermal assays.  Brain Res. Bull. 2017 134:47-54. PMID: 28652168 PMCID: PMC5597466

Smeester BA, O’Brien EE, Michlitsch KS, Lee JH, Beitz AJ. The relationship of bone-tumor-induced spinal cord astrocyte activation and aromatase expression to mechanical hyperalgesia and cold hypersensitivity in intact female and ovariectomized mice. Neuroscience. 2016 Jun 2;324:344-54. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2016.03.030. Epub 2016 Mar 16. PMID: 26995084

O'Brien EE, Smeester BA, Michlitsch KS, Lee JH, Beitz AJ. Colocalization of aromatase in spinal cord astrocytes: Differences in expression and relationship to mechanical and thermal hyperalgesia in murine models of a painful and a non-painful bone tumor. Neuroscience. 2015 Aug 20;301:235-45. PubMed PMID: 26071956; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4504775.

Smeester BA, Lunzer MM, Akgün E, Beitz AJ, Portoghese PS. Targeting putative mu opioid/metabotropic glutamate receptor-5 heteromers produces potent antinociception in a chronic murine bone cancer model. Eur J Pharmacol. 2014 Nov 15;743:48-52. PubMed PMID: 25239072; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4259840.

Akgün E, Javed MI, Lunzer MM, Smeester BA, Beitz AJ, Portoghese PS. Ligands that interact with putative MOR-mGluR5 heteromer in mice with inflammatory pain produce potent antinociception. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Jul 9;110(28):11595-9. PubMed PMID: 23798416; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3710855.

Presentations
Smeester BA, Wolf NK, Weg MT, Largaespada DA, Moriarity BS. "Validation of Candidate Osteosarcoma genes using the CRISPR System." Conference on Transposition and Genome Engineering (2015). Nara, Japan. Invited Speaker.

Awards
NIH T32 Musculoskeletal Training Grant Renewal, 2017
Member, AAAS/Science Program for Excellence in Science, 2017
Randy Shaver Research and Community Fund Co-Awardee, 2017
Honorable Mention, CVM Points of Pride Research Day Poster Presentation, 2016
Center for Genome Engineering (CGE) Travel Award, 2016, 2017
NIH T32 Musculoskeletal Training Grant Awardee, 2016​-2019
Comparative and Molecular Biosciences (CMB) Travel Award, 2015, 2017

Smith, Emily

Smith, Emily

Emily SmithSmith, Emily

smit8380@umn.edu

Degrees
M.P.H., Epidemiology, University of Minnesota Twin Cities
B.A., Biology & History, University of Missouri Columbia

Adviser
First Year Research Rotations

 

Treeful, Amy

Treeful, Amy

Amy TreefulTreeful, Amy

tree0002@umn.edu

Degrees
M.S., Comparative and Molecular Biosciences, University of Minnesota
B.S., Biology, University of Minnesota
B.A., East Asian Studies, University of Minnesota

Adviser
Dr. Steven Friedenberg

Publications
Steven G. Friedenberg, Daniella Vansteenkiste, Oriana Yost, Amy E. Treeful, Kathryn M. Meurs, Debra A. Tokarz, Natasha J. Olby. A de novo mutation in the EXT2 gene associated with osteochondromatosis in a litter of American Staffordshire Terriers. Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine. (2018). Feb 27.

Cummings, C., Walder, J., Treeful, A., Jemmerson, R., (2006). Serum leucine-rich alpha-2 glycoprotein 1 binds cytochrome c and inhibits antibody detection of the apoptotic marker in enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Apoptosis. 11 (7), 1121-9.

McNiel, EA., Madrill, NJ., Treeful, AE., Buoen, LC., Weber, AF. (2006). Comparison of cytogenetics and polymerase chain reaction based detection of the amelogenin gene polymorphism for the diagnosis of freemartinism in cattle. Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation. 18(5), 469-72.

Jemmerson, R., LaPlante, B., Treeful, A., (2002). The Release of Intact Monomeric Cytochrome c from Apoptotic and Necrotic Cells. Cell Death and Differentiation. 9(5), 538-48.

Truckenbrod, Emily

Truckenbrod, Emily

Emily TruckenbrodEmily Truckenbrod

truck018@umn.edu

Degrees
D.V.M., Cornell University
B.S., Biology, Iowa State University

Adviser
Dr. Stephen Jameson

Research
I am interested in understanding the mechanisms governing peripheral immune tolerance to self. Defining these mechanisms is critical for optimal prevention and treatment of autoimmune disease and for safely and effectively triggering a directed autoimmune response against tumor-associated self-antigens. To clarify these mechanisms, we are using a mouse model to examine the CD8+ T cell response to a melanocyte/melanoma-associated enzyme.

Awards
NIH Comparative Medicine and Pathology Training Fellowship
WTS Thorp Memorial Scholarship

Wang, Haiguang

Wang, Haiguang

Haiguang WangWang, Haiguang

wang4226@umn.edu 

Degrees
M.S., Preventive Veterinary Medicine, China Institute of Veterinary Drug Control
D.V.M., Sichuan Agricultural Institute

Adviser
Dr. Kristin Hogquist

Research
Invariant natural killer T cell (iNKT) is hybrid of innate and adaptive immunity, bridging the innate and adaptive immune response. iNKT can rapidly produce both type I and type II cytokines post antigen-dependent or independent activation and exert modulation of immune response, such as enhancing anti-microbial and -tumor immunity, promoting tolerance and suppressing autoimmune diseases. Recent studies in our lab showed that iNKT cells are comprised of NKT1, NKT2 and NKT17 effector subsets. We further confirmed the localization of iNKT subsets (reflected by differential blood accessibility) determines lipid response and cytokine production. My current research focuses on the migration and localization of iNKT subsets with an effort elucidate the differential effector functions of iNKT subsets, since our RNA-seq data and FACS staining identified distinct expression patterns of adhesion molecules and chemokine receptors on these subsets. I’m also trying to study the self-lipid agonist for thymic selection and peripheral activation of iNKT cells.

Presentations
Haiguang Wang, You Jeong Lee, Kristin A. Hogquist. Localization of iNKT subsets determines lipid response. Oral & Poster presentation; Autumn Immunology Conference, November 21-24, 2014; Chicago, Illinois.

Awards
Vaughn Larson Award, 2017
University of Minnesota Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship, 2017-2018

Comparative and Molecular Biosciences (CMB) Travel Award, 2014

Yang, Huixin

Yang, Huixin

Huixin YangYang, Huixin

yang5928@umn.edu

Degree
B.S., Veterinary Medicine, Nanjing Agricultural University

Adviser
Dr. Michael Murtaugh

Young, Jordan

Young, Jordan

Jordan YoungJordan Young

youn1620@umn.edu

Degrees
D.V.M., University of Minnesota
B.S., Biology, Purdue University

Adviser
Dr. Michael Murtaugh