Calendar of Events

Sep
21
Wed
2016
New Insight Into Protein Homeostasis – Matthew Scaglione, PhD @ Froedtert - Dynacare Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Sep 21 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Matt Scaglione, PhD

Matt Scaglione, PhD

Matthew Scaglione, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Biochemistry
Medical College of Wisconsin

About Dr. Scaglione

K. Matthew Scaglione received his Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from McKendree University in 2001 and his Doctorate in Biochemistry from Saint Louis University School of Medicine in 2007 where his research focused on ubiquitin pathways in cancer. He performed postdoctoral studies at the University of Michigan School of Medicine from 2007 until 2013 investigating the role of protein quality control pathways in neurodegenerative diseases. During his postdoctoral studies Dr. Scaglione was awarded a F32 (Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award) and a NIH K99/R00 (Pathway to Independence Award). Dr. Scaglione joined the faculty of the Medical College of Wisconsin in 2013.

Protein aggregation is a hallmark of numerous neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s Disease, Parkinson’s Disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), and the polyglutamine diseases. Dr. Scaglione’s lab focuses on understanding how protein quality control pathways counteract protein aggregation to maintain neuronal health.

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Oct
19
Wed
2016
Function of Tie-1 Antisense Long Non-Coding RNA in Vascular Development – Tamjid Chowdhury, PhD @ Froedtert - Dynacare Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Oct 19 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Tamjid Chowdhury, PhD

Tamjid Chowdhury, PhD

Tamjid Chowdhury, PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Medical College of Wisconsin

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Jan
18
Wed
2017
Non-Coding Genetic Aberrations in Ovarian Cancer – Pradeep Chaluvally-Raghavan, PhD @ Froedtert - Dynacare Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Jan 18 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Pradeep Chaluvally-Raghavan, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Medical College of Wisconsin

About Dr. Chaluvally-Raghavan

Dr. Pradeep Chaluvally-Raghavan received Ph.D. degree in 2006 from the University of Calicut, India where he focused on the role NF-kappa B activation and pro-inflammatory cytokine genes in melanoma models. After completion of graduate school, he moved to the laboratory of Dr. Yosef Yarden at the Weizmann Institute of Sciences, Israel for postdoctoral research. In Dr. Yarden’s laboratory, he studied the role of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) family members in breast cancer progression.
Pradeep Chaluvally-Raghavan, PhD

During this period, he identified that NOTCH3 and NOTCH3-associated genes deregulate the growth of mammary epithelial cells and promote the transition of normal mammary duct to Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS) in breast cancer models. Further, during this transition phase of DCIS to invasive cancer, he characterized the role of three distinct pathways hypoxia, integrin and bone morphogenetic protein (BMP) signaling pathways. In 2010, he joined the lab of Dr. Gordon Mills in the Department of Systems Biology at the MD Anderson Cancer Center. In Mills lab, he focused on genomic aberrations such as gene mutation or copy number variation (CNVs), and its effect on downstream signaling pathways in breast and ovarian cancer. In 2016, he was recruited as a tenure track Assistant Professor to the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Medical College of Wisconsin. In the current position Dr. Chaluvally continues his post-doctoral work initiated in the Mills lab, and extends this research into other areas of non-coding RNA biology. Specifically, he is studying the role of non-coding RNA in mediating transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression. Over the last 6 years, he has made major scientific contributions to our understanding of the role of non-coding RNA aberrations as part of the CNVs in cancer.

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Feb
15
Wed
2017
The Role of Sucrose Non-Fermenting Related Kinase in Cardiovascular Development – Stephanie Cossette, PhD @ Froedtert - Dynacare Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Feb 15 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by


Stephanie Cossette, PhD
Post-doctoral Fellow
Department of Pediatrics-Neonatology
Medical College of Wisconsin

About Dr. Cossette

She is currently a Post-Doc Fellow in Dr. Ramani Ramchandran’s lab. She received the 2016 Edward J. Lennon, M.D. Award for an Outstanding Women Postdoctoral Researcher. Her research focuses on understanding the role of sucrose non-fermenting related kinase (SNRK) during cardiovascular development. SNRK is involved in the metabolism-sensing pathway and is regulated by liver kinase B1 (LKB1), which is a tumor suppressor that is also associated with the Peutz-Jeghers syndrome. By using the mammalian system to systematically remove SNRK from various types of tissue/organ populations, she will be able to investigate the specific role of SRNK in development as well as investigate the developmental relationship between SNRK and LKB1.

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Mar
15
Wed
2017
Angiogenesis in Development, Regeneration, and Pathology – Akiko Mammoto, MD, PhD @ Froedtert - Dynacare Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Mar 15 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by


Akiko Mammoto, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Pediatrics
Medical College of Wisconsin

About Dr. Mammoto

Dr. Mammoto is an assistant professor in the department of Pediatrics. She is interested in cellular mechanotransduction in angiogenesis. Her recent research focuses on the role of angiogenesis in organ development and various pathological states. She has published more than 65 papers in high impact peer-reviewed journals such as Nature, Developmental Cell, Nature Communications, Journal of Biological Chemistry, etc.

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Apr
26
Wed
2017
2017 E. James Aiman Lecture @ Froedtert Hospital – MCW Alumni Center
Apr 26 @ 9:00 am – 10:00 am

Featured Speaker: Hope Ricciotti, MD – “Leadership Redefined”

Hope A. Ricciotti, mD

Hope A. Ricciotti, MD

Associate Professor and OBGYN Clerkship Committee Director
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Division of Gynecology and Reproductive Biology
Harvard Medical School

Chair and Residency Program Director
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA

About Dr. Ricciotti

Hope Ricciotti, M.D., is an Associate Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Biology at Harvard Medical School and practices obstetrics and gynecology at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. She is a contributor to many magazines and is co-author of several cookbooks and women’s health textbooks. Dr. Ricciotti oversees residency education in obstetrics, gynecology, and women’s health at Harvard Medical School. Her other research projects include evaluating innovative methods of medical education, and simulation for training medical students and residents.

Dr. Ricciotti is dedicated to educating the public and the Chair of the Medical Advisory Panel for You and Your Family Magazine and youandyourfamily.com. Her special interests include providing obstetrical care, contraception, cervical cancer prevention, and well-woman care for all phases of the lifecycle. In addition, she has special expertise in reproductive health, nutrition, and management of menopause.

Learn more about the E. James Aiman, MD, Endowed Lectureship

Sep
20
Wed
2017
Mitochondrial Contribution to Regulation of Microvascular Function in Health and Disease – Andreas Beyer, PhD @ Froedtert - Dynacare Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Sep 20 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Andreas M. Beyer, PhD

Andreas M. Beyer, PhD

Andreas M. Beyer, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Medicine
Division of Cardiovascular Medicine
Medical College of Wisconsin

About Dr. Beyer

Andreas M. Beyer is an Assistant Professor in the Departments of Medicine and Physiology at the Medical College of Wisconsin. During his training in Genetics and Physiology, he has gained detailed expertise in generating and evaluating novel approaches in genetics, molecular biology and physiology. In his time spent in the lab he performs experimental troubleshooting involving video microscopy, fluorescent microvascular imaging, generation of genetic rodent models, physiological evaluation of in vivo vascular function and blood pressure. With the support of this research group and important local and national collaborators, Andreas is using live human tissues to address important questions in vascular biology that will lead to clinically relevant findings and drive further exploration of mechanism in rodent models. His lab hopes that clinically relevant data from human tissues will enable a detailed mechanistic understanding of disease that can then be used to develop novel therapeutics and translate both diagnostics and therapies themselves to the clinic.

The Beyer lab studies the complex relationship and physiological effects of vascular stress response with and aging. We are interested in how telomerase activity contributes to the regulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and nitric oxide (NO) in health and disease. The role of telomerase in aging and the development of cancer are well established. The catalytic subunit of telomerase, TERT, elongates telomeres in the nucleus to prevent cellular aging and promote proliferation. A potential role in the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD), especially via the endothelium where vascular disease begins, has not been described. This novel idea is supported by a recently described non-nuclear role for TERT in regulating levels of mitochondrial derived reactive oxygen species (mtROS) in fibroblasts. A similar function in endothelial cells would position TERT as a key regulator of oxidative stress and microvascular function.

Endothelial release of NO induces flow-mediated dilation (FMD) under physiological conditions and serves to prevent vascular smooth muscle proliferation and inflammation. In subjects with coronary artery disease (CAD), however, arteriolar FMD is mediated by mtROS, specifically hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), which is a pro-inflammatory and pro-atherosclerotic dilator. We observed that activation of telomerase restores nitric oxide (NO) as the mediator of FMD in vessels from subjects with CAD, while reduction of telomerase activity (TA) in vessels from subjects without CAD activates a CAD-like phenotype. We have generated novel decoy peptides that prevent either telomerase localization to the nucleus or translocation to the mitochondria. Inhibition of nuclear transport of TERT increases cytoplasmic (including mitochondrial) telomerase localization and activity. CAD is associated with elevations in Angiotensin II (ANG II) which contribute to elevated ROS and decreased NO-mediated endothelium-dependent dilation.

Our central hypothesis is that TERT plays a critical and previously undiscovered role in maintaining physiological NO levels while simultaneously suppressing the compensatory rise in mtROS during flow in coronary vessels of both mice and humans. Preliminary data indicate that acute stimulation of telomerase activity is sufficient to maintain NO release following vascular stress, and to decrease mtROS production, suggesting a role independent of telomere shortening. We are utilizing clinically-relevant stressors such as ANG II to deduce the role of mtTERT in relation to vascular stress responses and regulation of mtROS.

Ongoing studies integrate cell culture, in vitro vascular and whole animal approaches. We are defining the effects of telomerase inhibition or activation (global and mitochondrial) on ANG II-induced endothelial dysfunction (human and mouse). Cell culture models are used to investigate important regulators of cellular redox environment (NO/ROS balance).

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Oct
11
Wed
2017
October 2017 E. James Aiman Lecture @ Medical College of Wisconsin - HRC Auditorium
Oct 11 @ 9:00 am – 10:00 am

Featured Speaker: Magdy P Milad, MD – “Seven Habits of Highly Effective Surgeons”

Magdy P Milad, MD

Magdy P Milad, MD

Vice Chair for Education; Chief of Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery and Albert B. Gerbie Professor
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University

About Dr. Milad

As Chief of Gynecology and Gynecologic Surgery, he performs advanced minimally invasive surgeries including laparoscopy, hysteroscopy for conditions of endometriosis, fibroids, adhesions, tubal disease and ovarian cysts. He also performs laparoscopic total and subtotal hysterectomy, myomectomy, cystectomy and hysteroscopic removal of fibroids and adhesions. He has developed expertise in the area of vaginal agenesis and other Mullarian anomalies.

Learn more about the E. James Aiman, MD, Endowed Lectureship

Nov
15
Wed
2017
Accessing the Genome: Tools and Approaches for Editing Genes and Their Functions – Aron Geurts, PhD @ Froedtert - Dynacare Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Nov 15 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Aron Geurts, PhD

Aron Geurts, PhD

Aron Geurts, PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Physiology
Medical College of Wisconsin

About Dr. Geurts

Continuing research efforts in the Geurts lab are being driven by our interests in developing genetic approaches toward understanding human health and disease. For the past 12 years, we have been developing tools for genetic manipulation in a variety of cell and animal systems including stem cells, zebrafish, mice and laboratory rats. These systems are among the most widely preferred models for genetic and physiological investigation into human disease, however, genetic approaches, especially in non-mouse systems, have traditionally been limited by a lack of technologies.

After joining the Medical College in 2006, we implemented new approaches to accelerate transgenic and gene knockout studies for the PhysGen Program for Genomic Applications by adapting the Sleeping Beauty transposable element system for use in rats. Transposons are currently the most reproducible and efficient tool available for adding new genes to the rat genome and since then, we have worked with several other local investigators to create new transgenic rat models.

In 2009, we were fortunate to be the first to demonstrate that engineered proteins called Zinc Finger Nucleases (ZFNs) could be applied to rat embryos to generate the world’s first targeted gene knockout rats. This breakthrough revolutionized the local and broader research communities who use laboratory rats as a model system and other researchers are now applying these methods to other animal models such as mice, pigs, and rabbits. Site-specific modification of the rat genome using ZFNs is used to disrupt (knockout) or introduce specific gene alleles (knockin) to modify gene function. To date, we have created more than 100 knockout and knockin genetic models for several research areas related to our collaborative interests in complex diseases such as hypertension, renal disease, Type 1 Diabetes, and drug abuse.

More recently, the Geurts lab has been developing TAL Effector Nuclease (TALEN) technology for targeted genome engineering. TALENs are a relatively new technology which are analogous to ZFNs, but have some attractive attributes including reduced cost and design flexibility which will facilitate their use in the field. This new technique is complemented by our recent development of the first rat embryonic stem cells from a hypertensive rat model in collaboration with the laboratory of Dr. Howard Jacob. The availability of stem cells from this disease model rat now provides unique possibilities for creating more complicated genetic models. We are currently establishing whether these cells are capable of supporting our engineering approaches for producing genetically modified rats.

Recently, Dr. Geurts’ creative and innovative contributions to the field of genetics and technology were recognized by the granting of a New Innovator Award from the Office of the Director of the National Institutes of Health. This prominent award will propel efforts in the Geurts lab toward pushing the limits of these technologies to create better models of human disease. These techniques, animal models, and resources broadly benefit the local and broader research communities and advance our collective understanding of complex human genetic diseases.

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Dec
20
Wed
2017
Mechanisms that Alternatively Activated Macrophages Exploit to Enhance Ovarian Cancer Progression – Pamela Kreeger, PhD @ Froedtert - Dynacare Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Dec 20 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Pamela Kreeger, PhD

Pamela Kreeger, PhD
Associate Professor
Vilas Associate
Dept. of Biomedical Engineering
University of Wisconsin-Madison
Dept. of Cell and Regenerative Biology,
Dept. of Obstetrics and Gynecology
University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health

Dr. Kreeger’s Research

Dr. Kreeger is working to develop a novel model of the retinal microenvironment to determine the impact of microenvironmental properties and cell-cell interactions on angiogenesis in age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Her background is in developing in vitro models of tissues (including her graduate work developing a system for the ovarian follicle and work from her independent lab to develop systems to study cell-cell interactions in ovarian cancer) and utilizing systems biology modeling to study cell behavior. Her current AMD-related project is in collaboration with Kristyn Masters (BME) and will involve interactions with McPherson ERI colleagues Jeremy Rogers and David Gamm.

About the Kreeger lab

The Kreeger lab utilizes systems biology and tissue engineering to analyze cellular behavior in a variety of biological contexts. We utilize an iterative approach, where we develop model culture systems that allow us to study a disease in a controlled environment, use high-throughput experimental methods to gather information about the cellular signaling network and cellular responses, and employ computational models to interpret the data. Ultimately, our models will be utilized to identify new drug targets, match patients to the most effective drugs, and identify methods to direct cellular behavior.

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Jan
17
Wed
2018
Cohesin Mutations in Acute Myeloid Leukemia – Sridhar Rao, MD, PhD @ Froedtert - Dynacare Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Jan 17 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Sridhar Rao, MD,PhD

Sridhar Rao, MD, PhD
Associate Investigator
Blood Research Institute
Blood Center of Wisconsin

Dr. Rao’s Research

In Dr. Rao’s laboratory, researchers are discovering how leukemia develops. Stem cells are defined by two unique properties: self-renewal, or the ability to undergo symmetric cell division to maintain a stable pool, and “potency”, or the ability to differentiate down multiple lineages. In the case of embryonic stem (ES) cells, their unique ability to differentiate into all three germ layers that form the embryo is termed pluripotency. Adult stem cells, such as the hematopoietic stem cell (HSC), are more restricted in their differentiation potential, but can fully recreate a tissue in vivo. Recently, the stem cell model has been extended into cancer, with cancer stem cells identified in certain malignancies such as acute myeloid leukemia (AML). While many of the factors required for stem cells are well described, none have been shown to play a critical role in all types of stem cells. Factors critical for all three stem cell types would likely operate by controlling a specific “stemness program” used by all stem cells for self-renewal and/or multipotency. Identification of such a program could provide new avenues to identify stem cells in vivo, enhance the reprogramming/generation of stem cells for use in regenerative medicine, and provide novel targets for the development of anti-cancer therapeutics.

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Feb
21
Wed
2018
microRNAs: Small Molecules With a Big Impact – Alison Kriegel, PhD @ Froedtert - WI Diagnostics Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Feb 21 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Alison Kriegel, PhD

Alison Kriegel, PhD

Alison Kriegel, PhD
Associate Investigator
PhD Physiology
Medical College of Wisconsin

Dr. Kriegel’s Research

Our research is broadly centered on understanding how alterations in microRNAs and protein coding genes influence cardiovascular disease, renal disease, and cardiorenal syndromes. Cardiorenal syndromes are a grouping of human clinical conditions where primary disease in either the heart or the kidney contributes to the development of secondary disease in the other organ.

Our current focus is on cardiorenal syndrome type 4 (CRS4), also known as chronic renocardiac syndrome, a condition in which chronic kidney disease (CKD) contributes to the development of cardiovascular diseases including hypertrophy, diastolic dysfunction, reduction in cardiac function and increased risk of cardiovascular events.

CRS4 is clinical problem that has received a great deal of attention in recent years because of the large number of people impacted and the high associated healthcare costs. In 2010 the Centers for Disease Control estimated that more than 10% of adults in the United States population chronic kidney disease, and cardiovascular pathology is leading cause of death in these patients. Treatment of CRS4 remains challenging because so little is understood about the pathology of the disease. Adult patients with CKD often have age associated comorbidities, such as diabetes, hypertension, and atherosclerosis, making it difficult to identifying mediators of the pathology in this population.

Our goals are focused on identifying the essential components of cardiorenal syndromes and their therapeutic targets. We have started to investigate the molecular mediators of this conditions using a 5/6 nephrectomy (5/6 NX) model of CKD in Sprague Dawley rats. This model of CKD allows us to study CRS4 related pathologies in the absence of confounding comorbidities that would independently impact the heart, such as atherosclerosis, diabetes and hypertension.

Our current goals in CRS4 research interest include:

-Identifying pathways involved with CRS4 disease progression

-Understanding miRNA regulation of pathways involved with pathological LV remodeling and dysfunction in a rat model of CKD

-Circulating factors in CKD that contribute to the development of CRS4

We combine in vivo approaches for studying cardiac and renal function with advanced molecular techniques to comprehensively study the factors that influence left ventricular pathology. Frequently utilized techniques in our laboratory include: echocardiography, left ventricle pressure-volume relationship analysis, chronic and acute blood pressure recordings, cell culture models (siRNA, miRNA), in vitro and in vivo miRNA suppression, immunohistochemistry, in situ hybridization, western blot analysis, ELISA, miRNA and mRNA next generation sequencing and qRT-PCR.

Research for this project is supported an American Heart Association Scientist Development Grant (13SDG17100095).

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Mar
21
Wed
2018
Macrophages Facilitate Resistance to Anti-VEGF Therapy by Altered VEGFR Expression – Sunila Pradeep, PhD @ Froedtert - WI Diagnostics Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Mar 21 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Sunila Pradeep, PhD
Assistant Professor
Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology
Medical College of Wisconsin

Dr. Pradeep’s Research

Peritoneal seeding is the most common pathway for the spread of ovarian cancer. Because 90% of ovarian cancers are surface epithelial carcinomas, the tumor cells are able to slough off the ovary and enter the peritoneal circulation, thereby seeding multiple sites in the abdominal cavity. Despite the widely-held view that epithelial ovarian cancer metastasizes via peritoneal seeding, the distribution of ovarian metastasis was peculiar in that the ovarian cancer cells gravitated toward the omentum, an apron tissue over the abdomen as the preferred site of metastasis. The omentum is composed of fatty tissue interspersed with immune cell aggregates or “milky spots”, consisting of macrophages, leukocytes, stem and progenitor cells, fibroblasts, and endothelial cells. It is known that disseminated tumor cells adhere to milky spots within hours, and milky spots are sources of cytokines and chemokines sites that facilitate local proliferation of tumor cells, and maturation of macrophages. Given the highly metastatic nature of ovarian cancer, we have an interest in understanding the mechanisms of how immune cells facilitate omental metastasis of ovarian cancer cells.

Our previous work at MD Anderson has demonstrated increased expression of neuregulin 1 (NRG1), the binding partner of ErbB3 (Erb-B2 Receptor Tyrosine Kinase 3), promotes homing of ovarian cancer cells to the omentum (Pradeep et al., Cancer Cell, 2014). In my lab at MCW, we will investigate how adipocytes reprogram the immune cells in omentum to enhance ovarian cancer cell progression and metastasis. We believe that these new mechanisms will offer new options for therapy targeting ovarian cancer metastasis.

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Apr
18
Wed
2018
Antimicrobial Peptides and Intestinal Homeostasis: Contributions of Both Host and Microbe – Nita Salzman, MD, PhD @ Froedtert - WI Diagnostics Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Apr 18 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Nita Salzman, MD, PhD
Professor
Department of Microbiology and Immunology
Medical College of Wisconsin

Dr. Salzman’s Research

The intestinal microbiota is a complex and primarily bacterial ecosystem that lives in a symbiotic relationship with its host. When maintained in a homeostatic relationship with the host, the microbiota carries out numerous critical functions for the host, related to nutrition, metabolism, immune maturation and host protection, and in this context becomes part of the host barrier to infection. The host immune system interacts with the intestinal microbiota, ultimately establishing and maintaining a homeostatic relationship with this vast ecosystem. Disruptions in either the host barrier or the microbial ecosystem can lead to homeostatic collapse and the development of intestinal inflammation in both animal models and in human disease.

Our laboratory is engaged in both basic and translational studies to investigate the innate mucosal immunology of the GI tract, with a focus on host-microbiome interactions and innate barriers to bacterial infection. Antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are essential components of the host barrier. These are peptides with broad-spectrum antibiotic activity against bacteria, fungi, and viruses, but have been shown to have diverse additional roles both related and unrelated to host defense. Epithelial cells and circulating immune cells endogenously produce these peptides, as do bacteria. One of our primary interests is to understand the multifaceted in vivo roles of intestinal AMPs. Our work has focused primarily on enteric alpha-defensins, produced in Paneth cells localized to the small intestinal crypts. Previous work in our lab demonstrated that Paneth cell defensins have an important role in protecting the mammalian host from enteric bacterial pathogen infection. Recent work from our laboratory has shown that Paneth cell defensins are essential regulators of the composition of the intestinal microbiota, and can modulate mucosal immune responsiveness through their regulation of the microbiota.

Recently, we have translated our findings to the study of Paneth cell antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) in pediatric Crohn’s disease (CD). CD, one of the subtypes of inflammatory bowel diseases manifests with chronic intestinal inflammation and is associated with abnormal bacterial growth at mucosal surfaces (dysbiosis). Several genetic mutations that have been associated with increased risk for the development of CD have also been associated with Paneth cell dysfunction. As part of the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America (CCFA) Microbiome Consortium, we are investigating the relationship between Paneth cell dysfunction and dysbiosis in pediatric CD patients.

A second translational study focuses on the role of the microbiome in the development and progression of pediatric non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). NAFLD is associated with obesity and metabolic syndrome and its prevalence has increased in parallel to the prevalence of obesity and type-2 diabetes. The development of NAFLD, its different phenotypes, and the heterogeneity of disease progression are not completely understood. Recent evidence suggests that there is an association between intestinal microbial colonization (the intestinal microbiome) and obesity in humans and in animal models. In addition, there is evidence of abnormalities of bacterial colonization, and intestinal bacterial product induced inflammation associated with NAFLD and progression to NASH. This study investigates the composition of the intestinal microbiome in pediatric patients with obesity and obesity plus NAFLD, to determine the relationship between alterations in the intestinal microbiome, immune activation, and the development of NAFLD.

We have recently begun to investigate the basic mechanisms of bacterial colonization of the GI tract, using Enterococcus faecalis as a model organism. E. faecalis is a common commensal of the mammalian gut, but also an opportunistic pathogen, which is currently an important cause of infection in hospitalized patients. We have developed a novel system to colonize mice with marked laboratory strains of E. faecalis and are using this system to explore both bacterial-host and bacterial-microbiome interactions in the native mouse GI tract, to understand the important host and bacterial determinants essential for colonization and permissive/protective for systemic infection.

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May
16
Wed
2018
Towards Drugging Mitochondrial Fission Protein Fis1 in Diabetic Endothelial Dysfunction – Blake Hill, PhD @ Froedtert - WI Diagnostics Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
May 16 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Blake Hill, PhD
Professor
Department of Biochemistry
Medical College of Wisconsin

Dr. Hill’s Research

Defects in mitochondrial fission and fusion cause or contribute to human diseases including cancer, neuropathies, cardiomyopathies, and even death. Our goal is to understand molecular basis of these defects in order to identify new therapeutic routes for these diseases.

We determine how proteins interact with other biological macromolecules to control these basic membrane fission and fusion processes in healthy, diseased, and dying cells. We strive to understand these interactions on a physicochemical level, with an eye for gleaning universal principles of protein chemistry including interactions with membrane bilayers that are fundamental to a wide variety of cellular processes.

A key feature of some proteins that affect mitochondrial homeostasis is the structural transformation from soluble to membrane-bound conformations, a phenomenon referred to as amphitropism. Associating with, or dissociating from, a membrane (i.e. amphitropism) has significant functional consequences for numerous biological processes: it can affect enzymatic activity (CCT, PLC), can promote changes in organelle and cell morphology (MinD, dynamins), or can act as a regulatory switch in various signaling cascades (PKC, ESCRTs). However, neither what drives proteins to reversibly interact with membranes nor how this function controls biological outcomes are clearly understood. These interactions are likely governed by evolutionarily conserved mechanisms that are still being determined and is one focus of our efforts.

Towards these goals, we use a wide range of tools including genetic, cell biological, biochemical, and biophysical methods including NMR spectroscopy and x-ray crystallography for protein structure determination.

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Oct
10
Wed
2018
2018 E. James Aiman Lecture @ Medical College of Wisconsin - HRC Auditorium
Oct 10 @ 9:00 am – 10:00 am

Featured Speaker: Lee A. Learman, MD, PhD – Alternatives to Hysterectomy for Noncancerous Uterine Conditions: What does the evidence tell us?

Lee A. Learman, MD, PhD

Senior Associate Dean for Graduate Medical Education and Academic Affairs
Designated Institutional Official
Professor of Integrated Medical Science, Division of Obstetrics & Gynecology
Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine
Florida Atlantic University

About Dr. Learman

Lee A. Learman, MD, PhD, has been Senior Associate Dean for Graduate Medical Education and Academic Affairs since October 12, 2015 at the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine, Florida Atlantic University (FAU). He is the Designated Institutional Official who is responsible for all residency and fellowship programs sponsored by the college as well as the recruitment of founding program directors for planned GME programs. The Academic Affairs role will comprise development and execution of College’s faculty development strategy, leadership for medical education scholarship and ongoing accreditation with LCME standards.

Dr. Learman comes to FAU from Indiana University, where he has served as the Clarence E. Ehrlich Professor and Chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology since 2008. He received his MD and a PhD in Social Psychology at Harvard Medical School in a program supported by the MacArthur Foundation to create a cadre of physician-social scientists in academic medicine. After completing his OBGYN residency at UCLA, Learman spent 14 years on the faculty at the UC San Francisco, where he was a Professor of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Sciences, Professor of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, OBGYN Residency Program Director, Director of Curricular Affairs for the Office of Graduate Medical Education, and Chair of the Scholarship Committee for the UCSF Academy of Medical Educators.

Dr. Learman is engaged in a variety of national service roles. He is an oral examiner for the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, a former member of the ACGME Residency Review Committee for Obstetrics and Gynecology, and a former member of the USMLE Management Committee. He serves as faculty, advisor and Advisory Committee Chair for a national faculty development program in OBGYN – the APGO Academic Scholars and Leaders Program, and is the past Chair of the Council on Resident Education in Obstetrics and Gynecology. He is President of the Society of Academic Specialists in General Obstetrics and Gynecology. Dr. Learman is the author of over 70 peer-reviewed publications including several contributions to the AAMC MedEdPORTAL. His scholarly work spans topics in gynecology, obstetrics and medical education including curriculum development and evaluation, learner assessment, and professionalism in the learning environment. He provides peer review service to over 15 journals including Academic Medicine, has served on the editorial board of Obstetrics & Gynecology, and is Editor-in-Chief (Gynecology) of the Obstetrical & Gynecological Survey.

Learn more about the E. James Aiman, MD, Endowed Lectureship

Characterization of Endothelial Cilia Distribution During Cerebral-Vascular Development in Zebrafish (Daniorerio) – Shahram Eisa-Beygi, PhD @ Froedtert - WI Diagnostics Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Oct 10 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Shahram Eisa-Beygi, PhD
Kelleigh Gustafson Research Fellow
Department of Radiology
Medical College of Wisconsin

Dr. Eisa-Beygi’s Research

I am interested in identifying the mechanisms of neuro-vascular development, with a focus on the etiology of paediatric cerebral-vascular disorders, including cerebral aneurysms and arterio-venous malformations.

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Nov
21
Wed
2018
SOD2 Acetylation as a New Mitochondrial Pathway for Breast Cancer Stem Cell Reprogramming – Marcelo Bonini, PhD @ Froedtert - WI Diagnostics Lab Building, 2nd floor, Ob-Gyn conference room #252
Nov 21 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Marcelo Bonini, PhD
Associate Professor
Endocrinology
Medical College of Wisconsin

Learn more about the WHRP Seminars

Dec
19
Wed
2018
Altered Neural Calcium Signaling in HCMV Infection is Mitigated with Viral Kinase Inhibition – Amanda Johnson, MD @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Dec 19 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Amanda Johnson, MD
Maternal–Fetal Medicine Fellow
Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology
Medical College of Wisconsin

About

Dr. Mandy Johnson joined the department as a fellow in maternal fetal medicine in July 2016. She attended medical school at University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences from 2006-2010. She completed residency at Tulane University in New Orleans, LA in 2014.

Dr. Johnson’s research interests include preterm labor and infectious disease. Her residency research project compared genital and plasma HIV viral load levels in pregnant patients.

She is an active member of American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. She also received the Outstanding Residency Performance award at the end of her residency.

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Jan
16
Wed
2019
Stat5 and Anti-Androgen Resistance of Prostate Cancer – Marja Nevalainen, MD, PhD @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Jan 16 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Marja Nevalainen, MD, PhD

Marja Nevalainen, MD, PhD
Professor, Eminent Scholar, Department of Pathology and Pharmacology & Toxicology
Assistant Dean of Research
Associate Director of Education & Training, Medical College Cancer Center
Director of the Prostate Cancer Center of Excellence
Medical College of Wisconsin

About

Dr. Nevalainen is an internationally recognized leader in the field of cytokine and steroid hormone signaling in prostate cancer. The focus of her laboratory is on translational prostate cancer research to develop and improve diagnostics and therapy for prostate cancer. Dr. Nevalainen holds the title of Eminent Scholar at MCW. She is also Director of Prostate Cancer Center of Excellence at MCW Cancer Center, which is a multi-disciplinary hub for prostate cancer research with an international collaborative network. Dr. Nevalainen serves as Assistant Dean for Research at MCW, and Associate Director of Education for the MCW Cancer Center. Her primary appointment is in the Department of Pathology, and a secondary appointment in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology. Dr. Nevalainen has extensive experience in collaborative research, mentoring and leadership from her previous roles at Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University as Associate Director of Education and Vice Chair of Education in the Department of Cancer Biology.

Dr. Nevalainen’s research accomplishments include development of an androgen-dependent human PC cell line which mimics the course of human disease when grown as xenograft tumors in nude mice. Specifically, the tumors response to androgen deprivation by regression but regrow eventually back as castrate-resistant tumors.

Dr. Nevalainen is further recognized in her field for early development of a long-term 3D tumor explant culture system for normal and malignant prostate tissue for efficacy testing of experimental biologics and small-molecules ex vivo in clinical PCs from patients and as an experimental model system for identification of growth factor and drug modulated signaling proteins in prostate tissue.

Current work focuses on Jak-Stat signaling in anti-androgen resistance of prostate cancer, Stat5 regulation of DNA repair and optimization of the lead compound Stat5 inhibitor.

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Feb
20
Wed
2019
Use of Far Red Light to Stimulate Vasodilation in Models of Endothelial Dysfunction – Nicole Lohr, MD, PhD, FACC @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Feb 20 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Nicole Lohr, MD, PhD, FACC

Nicole Lohr, MD, PhD, FACC
Assistant Professor, Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiovascular Disease and Internal Medicine
Medical College of Wisconsin

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Mar
20
Wed
2019
Novel Mechanisms of Endothelial Homeostasis – Magdalena Chrzanowska-Wodnicka, PhD, FAHA @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Mar 20 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Magdalena Chrzanowska-Wodnicka, PhD, FAHA

Magdalena Chrzanowska-Wodnicka, PhD, FAHA
Associate Professor, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology
Medical College of Wisconsin
Investigator
The Blood Research Institute

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Apr
17
Wed
2019
Discovering and Exploiting Selectively in BET Bromodomains in the Context of Type I Diabetes – Brian Smith, PhD @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Apr 17 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Brian Smith, PhD

Brian Smith, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Biochemistry
Medical College of Wisconsin

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May
15
Wed
2019
Jennifer McIntosh, DO – Novel Role for Placental Endothelial Mitochondria in Preeclampsia @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
May 15 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
WHEN: May 15, 2019 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Jennifer McIntosh, DO, MS
Assistant Professor, Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine
Medical College of Wisconsin

Dr. McIntosh’s Research

Maternal and neonatal morbidity and mortality caused by preeclampsia is a significant global health burden with approximately 10 million pregnancies impacted resulting in nearly half a million fetal or neonatal lives lost each year. A novel relationship may exist between mitochondrial damage and endothelial dysfunction and subsequent development of preeclampsia.

Our overall goal is to investigate the mechanism whereby placental hypoxia is responsible for release of ROS and inflammation secondary to mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and if there is altered FMD as a result of heightened mtDNA in vessels from placentas in those with preeclampsia.

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Sep
18
Wed
2019
Role of Vascular Smooth Muscle RhoBTB1/Cullin-3 in Hy-pertension: A Role in Preeclampsia? – Curt Sigmund, PhD @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Sep 18 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Curt D. Sigmund, PhD

Curt D. Sigmund, PhD
James J. Smith & Catherine Welsch Smith Professor and Chair, Department of Physiology
Associate Director, Cardiovascular Center
Medical College of Wisconsin

Dr. Sigmund’s Research

Dr. Sigmund’s major areas of research focus on central nervous system and vascular mechanisms of blood pressure regulation by the renin-angiotensin system, the transcription factor PPAR-gamma, and its downstream effectors Cullin-3/RhoBTB1, investigating these using a combination of molecular biological, genetic and physiological approaches including the generation of unique transgenic and knockout models. Dr. Sigmund’s laboratory is located within the Cardiovascular Center in the Health Research Center and Medical Education buildings.

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Sep
25
Wed
2019
2019 E. James Aiman Lecture @ Medical College of Wisconsin - HRC Auditorium
Sep 25 @ 8:30 am – 9:30 am

Featured Speaker: Gregg Nelson, MD, PhD – “ERAS – The New Standard of Surgical Care in Obstetrics & Gynecology”

Gregory S. Nelson, MD, PhD

Professor and Chair, Division of Gynecologic Oncology, University of Calgary, Tom Baker Cancer Centre

About Dr. Nelson

Dr. Gregg Nelson obtained his MD and PhD degrees at the University of Calgary in Calgary, Alberta, Canada and subsequently continued on to complete his sub-specialization in Gynecologic Oncology at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre. He joined the Section of Gynecologic Oncology at TBCC in July 2010, and was the local Gyn Tumour Team lead and Chair of the Provincial Gynecologic Oncology Tumour Team from 2011-2018. He is currently Chair of Gynecologic Oncology and is Professor in the Departments of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Oncology at the Cumming School of Medicine.

Dr. Nelson’s principal research interests are the development and study of enhanced recovery protocols in cancer surgery and interventions to improve HPV vaccination in First Nations populations. He holds the position of Surgical Lead, ERAS Alberta and he also leads the international group that published the ERAS® Guidelines for Gynecologic/Oncology Surgery. Recently he has been appointed the Secretary of the ERAS® Society Executive Committee based in Sweden. He leads the EHVINA study – Enhancing HPV Vaccination In First Nations Populations in Alberta – a $1,250,000 project funded by Alberta Innovates/Alberta Cancer Prevention Legacy Fund.

Dr. Nelson has over 100 peer-reviewed publications and has presented numerous times internationally. He currently serves on the Editorial Board of the International Journal of Gynecological Cancer.

Learn more about the E. James Aiman, MD, Endowed Lectureship

Oct
16
Wed
2019
Diagnosing and Treating Preeclampsia: What Does The Brain and Urine Have To Do With It? – Mark Santillan, MD, PhD, FACOG, FAHA @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Oct 16 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Mark Santillan, MD, PhD, FACOG, FAHA

Mark Santillan, MD, PhD, FACOG, FAHA
Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology – Maternal Fetal Medicine
Faculty, Molecular and Cellular Biology
Clinical Research Director, Maternal Fetal Tissue Bank
Co-Director, OB/GYN Residency Research
Carver College of Medicine

Dr. Santillan’s Research

The Santillan lab is particularly interested in the relationship between maternal health during pregnancy and the short and long-term health effects to the mother and child. Specifically, our current work focuses on the early mechanisms involved in the development of preeclampsia, including immunological and vascular function changes during pregnancy. A central focus in the lab is investigating the predictive, preventative, therapeutic and curative potential of the arginine vasopressin pathway in preeclampsia. Leveraging the group’s novel discovery of a very early biomarker for preeclampsia and a novel mouse model for preeclampsia, our lab works to investigate the mechanistic underpinnings of the predictive and therapeutic potential of vasopressin in the management of preeclampsia in a translational manner. As a practicing academic high-risk obstetrician, Dr. Santillan is very qualified in caring for women with high risk pregnancies, in understanding their clinical management, and in conducting clinical/translational research in perinatal biology. He has been successful in conducting studies in both murine and human pregnancies. As the clinical research director and co-founder of the Maternal Fetal Tissue Bank, Dr. Santillan has significant experience in clinical data acquisition, management, and analysis as well as molecular biology techniques needed for translational studies. Furthermore, as the Principal Investigator of the Population project of the University of Iowa American Heart Association Strategically Focused Research Network in Hypertension, Dr. Santillan has developed the PREDICTV network of prenatal providers around the state of Iowa to collect samples and clinical information from a diverse cohort of pregnant women.

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Nov
13
Wed
2019
Developing Novel Biomarkers and Therapies Against Ovarian Cancer – Manish Patankar, PhD @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Nov 13 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Manish Patankar, PhD
Professor, Obstetrics & Gynecology, Division of Reproductive Sciences
Associate Director, Endocrine and Reproductive Physiology (ERP) Program
University of Wisconsin-Madison, School of Medicine and Public Health

About

Dr. Manish Patankar is a Professor in the Division of Reproductive Sciences. Dr. Patankar grew up in Thane, India, a city that borders Mumbai (Bombay). His wife is a physical therapist at the American Family Children’s Hospital and they have a 7 year old daughter who is in first grade at Glenn Stephens Elementary.

Dr. Patankar graduated from the University of Bombay, India with a B.S. in Chemistry in 1987. Subsequently, he received his Masters of Science in Organic Chemistry from the University of Bombay in 1990, and his Masters of Chemistry from Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia in 1993. Dr. Patankar then completed his PhD in Biomedical Sciences at Eastern Virginia Medical School/Old Dominion University in 1998.

Dr. Patankar was an instructor and Research Professor at Eastern Virginia Medical School until 2004 when he joined the department as Professor and also became a member of the UW-Madison Carbone Cancer Center. His current research includes developing diagnostic tests for ovarian cancer and preeclampsia and strategies for treating ovarian cancer.

Collaborations at UW-Madison include: Drs. Joseph Connor, David Abbott, Paul Sondel, David Beebe, Ralph Albrecht, Mark Cook, Sean Fain, Ian Rowland, Hirak Basu and and Lingjun Li. Non UW-Madison collaborations include: Drs. Mitchell Ho and Ira Pastan (National Cancer Institute), Dr. Jennifer Gubbels (Augustana College, SD), Rebecca Whelan (Oberlin College, OH), Biotech Industry: Neoclone Biotechnology (Madison), and Gentel Biosciences (Fitchburg).

Dr. Patankar teaches Endocrine Physiology, Biology 151, and lectures on immunology in several different courses on campus.

What does he do in this spare time? He loves music and watching SpongeBob with his daughter.

One of the most interesting places that Dr. Patankar has visited is Bergen, Norway.

Research Focus

The primary focus of my research is to devise specific methods for early diagnosis of epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) and to understand the effect of factors produced by ovarian tumors on the functional capacity of tumor infiltrating lymphocytes. This research involves extensive utilization of glycoproteomic analysis in conjunction with cellular immunology, molecular biology and glycobiology.

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Dec
18
Wed
2019
Investigating Sugars and Artificial Sweeteners Exposure in Pregnancy and Lactation – Stephanie Olivier-Van Stichelen, PhD @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Dec 18 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Stephanie Olivier-Van Stichelen, PhD
Assistant Professor, Biochemistry
Medical College of Wisconsin

About

Dr. Olivier-Van Stichelen received her PhD degree in Biochemistry from the University of Lille, France in 2012. Her work was focused on the understanding of the nutrient-sensing O-GlcNAcylation in colorectal cancer development with a special interest in diet-dependent modification of the oncogene beta-catenin.

After completion of her degree, she was appointed as a post-doctoral Fellow in the Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Biology at the National Institute of Health, Bethesda, MD, USA. In this lab, Dr. Olivier-Van Stichelen worked on different aspects of O-GlcNAcylation during development including X-inactivation of the O-GlcNAc Transferase gene. She also developed a brain O-GlcNAcase knockout model and studied the impact of sugar consumption during pregnancy on O-GlcNAc-dependent development of metabolic homeostasis. More recently, she developed interests in understanding the importance of artificial sweeteners for offspring’s metabolism and microbiome.

Dr. Olivier-Van Stichelen established her lab at the Medical College of Wisconsin at the crossroad of sweeteners, pregnancy, development and metabolism.

Research Focus

Due to the global trend of growing sweetener consumption, determining the interplay between diet and pre- and post-natal development is emerging as a critical area for research. Currently, the average American eats around 22 teaspoons of added sugar every day (30 sugar cubes/day hidden in foods). This modern glucose-rich diet correlates with an increase in the prevalence of obesity, diabetes and others metabolic syndromes. Moreover, the effort to reduce sugar consumption has led people to consume more non-caloric sweeteners (Aspartame, Sucralose, Acesulfame-K…). While they appear healthier for glucose homeostasis than a high carbohydrate diet, recent studies have shown that artificial sweeteners impact glucose metabolism as well as gut microbiota, rising questions about their excessive use.

Therefore, understanding what happens when caloric and non-caloric sweeteners are metabolized is of utmost importance for public health and the focus of my research group.

Nutrient-dependent O-GlcNAc cycling in development and disease

O-GlcNAcylation is one of the key components of diet-responsive signaling. This unique glucose rheostat is a ubiquitous and dynamic glycosylation of intracellular proteins with approximately 1000 modified proteins described to date. Two key enzymes drive O-GlcNAc cycling: The O-GlcNAc transferase (OGT) adds the modification and the O-GlcNAcase (OGA) removes it. Although many studies have focused on the decrease or complete absence of O-GlcNAc cycling by modulating the expression or activity of OGT, only a few studies have targeted hyper-O-GlcNAcylation by disturbing OGA. Because this post-translational modification is directly dependent on glucose input, depleting OGA creates an artificial and constant hyperglycemia-induced O-GlcNAcylation state. Using Oga and Ogt knockout (KO) cellular and mouse models, we can decipher the impact of high carbohydrate diet on embryonic development.

Non-Nutritive Sweeteners in pregnancy and lactation

Part of my lab is interested in understanding the impact of Non-Nutritive Sweetener (NNS) consumption through pregnancy and lactation. Although, NNS have been found in mother’s milk and in placental blood circulation, no study has focused on the fundamental effect of those non-caloric sweeteners on the developing organism.

Among the impacts described in adults are changes in intestinal hormonal secretion, glucose metabolism and most fascinating, re- duction of the gut microbiota. Nevertheless, the fundamental mechanisms of those changes are far from understood. Glycoproteins found on the surface of the intestinal epithelium define the glycocalyx and are an essential mammalian mechanism of communication with the gut microbiome. Their reciprocal relationship with the gut microbiome regulates not only nutrient breakdown, and food absorption, but also infection. We are convinced that by altering both microbiome and the detoxification process, NNS exposure in early life will impact metabolic homeostasis later in life.

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Jan
15
Wed
2020
Alcohol-Induced Developmental Brain Injury – Xiaowen Bai, MD, PhD @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Jan 15 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Xiaowen Bai, MD, PhD

Xiaowen Bai, MD, PhD

Xiaowen Bai, MD, PhD
Associate Professor, Cell Biology, Neurobiology & Anatomy
Medical College of Wisconsin

About

Dr. Bai’s research interests are centered on the application of stem cells on disease modeling and tissue regeneration. The current major focus of the laboratory is to utilize gain- and loss-of-function approaches to examine the novel molecular mechanisms underlying the roles of non-coding RNAs, mitochondria, and genetic factors in neurodegeneration and cardiotoxicity in mice, and translate the findings to humans using stem cell-derived brain cells, heart cells, three-dimensional mini brains, and heart organoids.

Research Area 1:

Non-coding RNAs, mitochondria, and cell stress-related genes in neurodegeneration:
Neurological disorders have emerged as a predominant healthcare concern in recent years due to their severe consequences on quality of life and prevalence throughout the world. Understanding the underlying mechanisms of these diseases and the interactions between different brain cell types is essential for the development of new therapeutics. Many drugs (e.g., anesthetics), environmental factors (e.g., alcohol), diseases, and genetic risks are related to neurodegeneration. We examine the novel molecular mechanisms underlying the roles of microRNAs, long non-coding RNAs, mitochondria, immediate early and other cell stress-related genes in neurodegeneration using both mouse, and human stem cell-derived brain cell and three-dimensional mini brain models

Research Area 2:

Stem cell-mediated myocardial regeneration
Myocardial infarction is one of the major causes of death throughout the world. Currently, there is not a highly effective approach for treatment. Stem cells hold promise in repairing injured cardiac tissue. Our lab is involved in studying the effect of the transplantation of adipose tissue-derived stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes on myocardial regeneration following ischemia injury. A molecular imaging method has been developed to investigate the molecular mechanisms controlling homing, engraftment, and survival of injected cells in vivo.

Research Area 3:

The mechanisms of impaired cardioprotection under diabetic conditions
Hyperglycemia has been shown to be particularly detrimental to the cardioprotective effects, with the underlying mechanisms remaining largely unknown. We have developed and validated a clinically relevant model of functional human cardiomyocytes derived from both normal induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and diabetes mellitus iPSCs. This in vitro model of human disease will enable developmental and comparative studies of normal and diabetic cardiomyocytes to address genetic and environmental mechanisms responsible for attenuation of cardioprotection signaling in diabetics.

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Feb
19
Wed
2020
Analysis of Collagen Alterations in Human Ovarian Cancer by High Resolution Optical Microscopy – Paul Campagnola, PhD @ Ob-Gyn Conference Room #252 (2nd floor Wisconsin Diagnostic Lab Building)
Feb 19 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by

Paul Campagnola, PhD
Professor, Biomedical Engineering
University of Wisconsin-Madison

About

Campagnola’s research is directed toward developing high resolution imaging modalities. The technologies his group has developed can readily be applied to problems in eye and vision research. For example, the technique of Second Harmonic Generation (SHG) to image collagen fibrillar structure has been used by other labs to image the corneal structure. Expanding into eye research is a natural direction for the Campagnola Laboratory.

Alterations to the extracellular matrix (ECM) composition and structure are thought to be critical for tumor initiation and progression for several epithelial carcinomas, including those of the ovary and breast. Our lab develops Second Harmonic Generation (SHG) microscopy tools to quantitative assess these alterations in the stroma where we correlate the optical signatures with structural changes in the fibrillar assembly between normal and diseased tissues. This physical approach provides objective measurements that may be used to understand disease progression. To further investigate how remodeling enables invasion and metastasis in vivo we use multiphoton excited (MPE) photochemistry to fabricate biomimetic in vitro models of the ovarian ECM. The nano/microstructured models simulate the crosslinked fibrillar structure of the native ECM.

Tissue engineering has vast potential to improve human health by repair and maintenance of existing tissue or generation of replacement of tissues and organs. A major limitation has been an incomplete understanding of the underlying cell-ECM interactions that govern cell adhesion which will ultimately affect downstream functions. Our approach to this problem utilizes MPE photochemistry to create 3D biomimetic scaffolds directly from crosslinked proteins. Beginning with bio-inspired designs we will seek to achieve improved function.

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