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NAPPSS Virtual Seminars

12/10/2020 - Calcium signaling microdomains in vascular disorders
Dr. Swapnil K. Sonkusare, Assistant Professor, Molecular Physiology and Biological Physics, University of Virginia - School of Medicine
Vascular dysfunction is a hallmark of vascular disorders, including hypertension. Studies over the last decade suggest that calcium signaling microdomains in the vascular walls maintain normal vascular function. We propose a novel paradigm that abnormal calcium signaling microdomains contribute to vascular dysfunction and elevate blood pressure. In this talk, I will present the mechanisms that underlie abnormal calcium signaling microdomains in obesity and pulmonary hypertension. (Physiology)

1/14/2021 - Uncovering Novel Roles for G-protein Coupled Receptors in the Kidney and Cardiovascular System
Dr. Jennifer Pluznick, Associate Professor of Physiology, Institute for Basic Biomedical Sciences, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
Our lab aims to uncover the physiological role of ‘understudied’ G-protein coupled receptors in the kidney and the cardiovascular system.  Some of the receptors we study are activated by gut microbial metabolites, and thus this presentation will also touch on the role of the gut microbiome to modulate host physiology. (Physiology)

2/11/2021 - Regulation of Mitochondrial Calcium Uptake
Dr. Vivek Garg, Assistant Professor, Department of Physiology, University of Maryland School of Medicine
Mitochondria are multifunctional organelles. Besides producing ATP, they regulate many cellular functions and communicate bidirectionally with the rest of the cell using several messengers, namely Ca2+, redox and metabolic intermediates. My lab is focused on signaling pathways that facilitate Ca2+ transport across the inner membrane of mitochondria. In this talk, I will discuss how one of these pathways, called Mitochondrial Calcium Uniporter (MCU), is regulated. (Physiology)

3/11/2021 - Characterising voltage gated calcium channel isoforms in human tissues
Dr. Elizabeth Tunbridge, Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford, Warneford Hospital, Oxford, United Kingdom
Voltage-gated calcium channel (VGCC) genes are large and encode functionally-distinct calcium channels via transcriptional mechanisms, particularly alternative splicing. We have used novel technical approaches to characterize the profiles of full-length VGCC isoforms in human tissues, with a particular focus on brain. Our aim is to use this information to better understand genetic associations with psychiatric disorders and to identify new therapeutic targets for these disorders. (Physiology)

4/8/2021 - Building the human brain? From embryos to organoids
Dr. Paola Arlotta PhD, Chair, Harvard Department of Stem cell and Regenerative Biology, Golub Family Professor of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, Harvard Institute (PIN)
The Arlotta lab seeks to define the molecular rules that shape and retain neuronal diversity in the cerebral cortex, and to model complex human cortical pathology, focusing on the development of new high-throughput in vitro models of human cortical development and neurodevelopmental disease using 3D cerebral organoids.

5/6/2021 - Molecular regulation and dysregulation of Polycystin-2
Dr. Paul DeCaen, Assistant Professor of Pharmacology, Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine
Dr. Paul DeCaen is an ion channel biologist at Northwestern University. He received his training in structural biology and biophysics at University of Washington and Harvard Medical School. Prior to his academic carrier, he worked as professional scientist for Pfizer Research and Development. He is a Gottschalk Scholar, and has published more than twenty articles in journals such as Nature, PNAS, Cell, eLife and EMBO. His lab is focused on the molecular biophysics of voltage-gated sodium channels and TRP channels, whose dysregulation is associated with human diseases. In this talk, he will discuss the structural regulation of polycystin TRP channels and his efforts to understand their dysfunction in autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD). (Physiology)

5/13/2021 - TBA
Dr. James Surmeier, PhD, Chair, Department of Physiology, Nathan Smith Davis Professor Physiology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine (PIN)

6/3/2021 - TBA

6/10/2021 - TBA
Dr. Eric Nestler, PhD, Dean for Academic and Scientific Affairs, Director Friedman Brian Institute, Professor in Neuroscience, Pharmacological Sciences and Psychiatry (PIN)