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  • Duke University Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology
    is sensitive to the immunosuppressive and antiproliferative drug rapamycin physically associated with endomembranes and controls cell growth When nutrients such as amino acids are abundant TORC1 maintains robust nutrient transport ribosome biogenesis and protein synthesis and concomitantly inhibits autophagy We focus on the antiproliferative drug rapamycin which suppresses the immune system by blocking signaling events required for the activation of T lymphocytes Rapamycin is used to treat and prevent graft rejection in organ transplant recipients and in cancer chemotherapy Rapamycin is a product of a soil bacterium and likely plays a role in nature distinct from immunosuppression possibly as a toxin to inhibit growth of competing microorganisms Based on this hypothesis we have analyzed in detail the mechanisms of rapamycin action in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae Saccharomyces cerevisiae is an outstanding model system the complete genomic sequence has been determined and annotated and whole genome DNA microarrays for gene expression studies and complete sets of gene disruption and epitope tagged strains are available These advances are revolutionizing our understanding of cellular function Over the past several years we have conducted a structure function analysis of the yeast and mammalian Tor kinases that revealed a novel toxic domain that interacts with effectors or regulators of this signaling cascade and showed that the Tor kinase domain is functionally conserved between yeast and humans Through transcriptional profiling we discovered a novel role for the TORC1 signaling cascade in orchestrating gene expression in response to nutrients We characterized a role for the TORC1 pathway in governing filamentous differentiation of Saccharomyces cerevisiae and other fungi in response to nutrient limitation More recently our genetic screens established a strong link between TORC1 and the vesicular secretory system congruent with our previous localization of TORC1 to the vacuolar membrane In particular we are characterizing a role for

    Original URL path: http://mgm.duke.edu/faculty/cardenas/index.htm (2014-06-13)
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  • Duke University Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology
    I am a clinical microbiologist and our laboratory is responsible for detecting isolating identifying and performing antimicrobial susceptibility tests on microorganisms that cause infections in patients seen at Duke University Medical Center My research interests include investigating emerging antibiotic resistant bacteria and the use of molecular methods for diagnosing infectious diseases All of these activities involve collaboration with the Infectious Diseases service the Infection Control group the Medical Microbiology Fellows

    Original URL path: http://mgm.duke.edu/faculty/harrell/index.htm (2014-06-13)
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  • Duke University Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology
    interactions on animal health is most evident in the intestine where digestion and absorption of dietary nutrients occur in the presence of complex communities of microorganisms microbiota Interactions between diet microbiota and animal hosts regulate immune and metabolic homeostasis and also contribute to a spectrum of human diseases including the inflammatory bowel diseases obesity and malnutrition Our research interests are focused on understanding how environmental factors such as the intestinal microbiota and diet interact with host genome encoded processes to influence host physiology and pathophysiology We are using the zebrafish as a vertebrate model system for this research The small size and optical transparency of the zebrafish facilitate high resolution in vivo imaging as well as genetic and chemical manipulations that complement the technical limitations of mammalian models Extensive anatomic physiologic and genomic homologies between zebrafish and mammals permit translation of insights gained in zebrafish into advances in human medicine To facilitate our research we have developed methods for rearing zebrafish under germ free conditions and for introducing selected microbial communities and sterilized diets into germ free fish We are currently using zebrafish and mouse models to investigate how microbial communities are assembled in the intestine and how microbes and

    Original URL path: http://mgm.duke.edu/faculty/rawls/index.htm (2014-06-13)
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  • Duke University Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology
    more about basic fungal biology we are taking a somewhat different approach By characterizing the genomes of related organisms starting with the filamentous fungus Ashbya gossypii we hope to more precisely define what are the set of genes in S cerevisiae as well as to identify genes found in related fungi that have been lost from the genome of this yeast Considerably more than 90 of the genes found in S cerevisiae are found in Ashbya gossypii and likewise well over 90 of the genes found in Ashbya gossypii are found in S cerevisiae This suggests that the set of genes found in this family of fungi is somewhat larger than the set of genes found in the standard research yeast but not by very much How much genetic variation is there within a fungal pathogen species Our interest in this human pathogen is to expand beyond looking at one isolate and to investigate the diversity in the population Are there genes found in some Cryptococcus neoformans isolates but not in others Are there regions of the genome or individual genes which are highly diverged between Cryptococcus isolates Efforts are now underway at Stanford University to sequence the genome of

    Original URL path: http://mgm.duke.edu/faculty/dietrich/index.htm (2014-06-13)
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  • Duke University Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology
    to help Dr Matsunami draft grants critique manuscripts and assess reviews of literature At the end of my two years in the Matsunami lab I published a first author manuscript in Science Signaling as a featured cover article and developed a provisional patent to develop our findings this technology to the smell and taste industry Most recently with Dr Matsunami and a faculty mentor with whom I worked with at the University of Pennsylvania we have now submitted an NIH R01 grant to support future studies on the role of M3 in olfaction Since matriculating in the MD PhD program at the University of Pennsylvania in the fall of 2010 I have joined the lab of Professor Patrick Seale a NIH New Innovator Awardee to study the molecular regulation of human metabolism and the genetic basis of brown adipocyte development This field has direct applications in the understanding of diabetes obesity and endocrinology which has been a field that has interested me during the second year of my medical training I hope that a physician scientist I can combine my passion for science with my desire to make a difference in the care of my patients by developing translationally adaptable therapies for diabetes and metabolic diseases Publications Research papers 1 Li Yun R and H Matsunami Activation State of the M3 Muscarinic Acetylcholine Receptor Modulates Mammalian Odorant Receptor Signaling Sci Signal January 2011 PMCID PMC3034603 2 Teresa Lee B A Yun R Li B S Caroline Ingre Thomas Meyer Torsten Grehl Ole Gredal Mamede de Carvalho Markus Weber Ole Björn Tysnes Georg Auburger M D Suzana Gispert Ph D Peter M Andersen M D Ph D Aaron D Gitler Ph D Ataxin 2 intermediate length polyglutamine expansions in European ALS patients Human Molecular Genetics 20 9 1697 700 Denotes equal

    Original URL path: http://mgm.duke.edu/faculty/matsunami/lab/li_1.html (2014-06-13)
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  • Duke University Center for Microbial Pathogenesis
    in research and more importantly with a true passion for basic laboratory science I had the wonderful luck to fall into a lab technician job with Dr Joseph Heitman during my undergraduate years at Duke University It was my first experience in a laboratory setting and as a result of Dr Heitman s insistence I was exposed to not only glasswear cleaning and autoclaving but also the scientific method in action as well as classic genetic techniques I fell in love with the lab during my first few years and joined on as a full time technician after completing college During medical school I again returned to the Heitman lab and through Dr Heitman s mentorship was awarded a Howard Hughes medical student research fellowship My time in Dr Heitman s lab provided me with a solid foundation in research and more importantly with a true passion for basic laboratory science I work now at Vanderbilt University as a physician scientist and am indebted to Dr Heitman for initiating my career in research Laura McGirt M D left examines Diane Ray at a recent Dermatology Clinic Employee Skin Screening Day photo by Anne Rayner Publications Young LY Hull CM Heitman

    Original URL path: http://mgm.duke.edu/microbial/mycology/heitman/lab/mcgirt_1.html (2014-06-13)
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  • Duke University Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology
    Trinity College Deans Fellowship and a Goldwater Scholarship With Dr Aballay Dr Kylie Haskins a graduate student at the time and others we discovered that the apoptotic receptor CED 1 modulates expression of unfolded protein response genes in order to ward off infection This work was published in Developmental Cell 15 1 87 97 and constituted my senior thesis My immersion in the laboratory cemented my conviction to be a

    Original URL path: http://mgm.duke.edu/faculty/aballay/lab/russell_1.html (2014-06-13)
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  • Duke University Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology
    Research Fellowship in 2007 and I began working with Dr Alejandro Aballay in the Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology I continued in the Aballay lab for two more years graduated with distinction and was published in Science for my work elucidating a neural control of innate immunity in C elegans Interested in an application of the basic sciences I matriculated to the Georgetown University School of Medicine in the fall of 2010 At Georgetown I have enjoyed volunteering with the HOYA clinic a free clinic for the poor in Washington DC and spent a week in South America volunteering with Villa la Paz a pediatric clinic for the destitute children of Peru Last summer I was awarded a Georgetown Summer Research Scholarship to work with Dr Gabriel Hauser MD the Chief of Pediatric inpatient care examining pharmacologic safety and efficacy in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit I greatly appreciate the work I accomplished in Dr Aballay s laboratory during my time at Duke and I credit this experience for teaching me the basic principles of hard work and creativity that are essential for medical work I am looking forward to rotating through patient care next year and am excited

    Original URL path: http://mgm.duke.edu/faculty/aballay/lab/steele_1.html (2014-06-13)
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