Samar M. Hammad, Ph.D.
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
The Hammad laboratory studies the role of a special class of lipids, the sphingolipids, in accelerated vascular complications in metabolic and autoimmune disorders. Sphingolipids have emerged as key signaling molecules involved in the regulation of a variety of cellular functions including cell differentiation, proliferation and death. The focus of Hammad's laboratory has been on deciphering sphingolipid metabolic and signaling mechanisms that mediate the survival of lipid-laden macrophages (foam cells) and their sustained cell activation in response to modified lipoproteins. Clinically, the Hammad laboratory established a reference range for circulating sphingolipids in human plasma to be used for translational research and clinical practices detecting disease biomarkers in both men and women. Currently, the focus has been on several large collaborative studies in lupus, obesity, diabetes, and pre-eclampsia. The aim is to characterize profiles of sphingolipid species not only in plasma but also in isolated plasma lipoprotein fractions in an effort to determine the contribution of body organs, mainly the liver and intestine, to plasma pools of sphingolipids in health and disease.
Hammad Lab web site
Antonis Kourtidis, Ph.D.
The Kourtidis lab investigates various aspects of cell biology including the following topics; Molecular Biology; Epithelial Biology; Biology of Cancer; Colon cancer; Breast Cancer; Melanoma; Cell-cell adhesion; Adherens Junctions; Cadherins; RNA interference; RNAi, miRNAs; long non-coding RNAs; post-transcriptional expression regulation; bio-mechanical cell regulation
Kourtidis Lab web site
Henry Sucov, Ph.D.
The lab of Henry Sucov studies heart disease and heart regeneration. Dr. Sucov is a SmartState endowed professor in the Dept. of Regenerative Medicine and in the Div. of Cardiology. Among other approaches, the lab uses genetic strategies in mice to identify pathways and processes that impact cardiomyocyte proliferation and regeneration after adult heart injury (Patterson 2017 Nature Genetics, PMID 28783163; Gan 2019 PLOS Genetics, in press) and neonatal heart injury (Shen 2019, submitted), with surprisingly extensive application to human genetics and human heart pathophysiology. In addition to gene/pathway discovery and associated mechanisms, related projects address heart physiology, drug discovery, developmental biology, and bioengineering.
Sucov Lab web site