Cell Physiology and Molecular Biophysics
News 2000 - 2001
Clark Scholars Featured
During the past eleven summers, outstanding high school students from around the country have come to Texas Tech University to involve themselves in a unique research opportunity. The Clark Scholars program is open to gifted students in almost any area of academe, from the natural sciences and mathematics to the humanities and fine arts. Some of Physiology�s former and current Clark Scholars are featured in the Clark Scholar program published by TTU. Pictured are Michael Henne, whose project, �A subcellular analysis of cell death behavior in Sprague-Dawley rat brain tissue,� has been mentored by Dr. Jean Strahlendorf, and Ben Kahn, whose project, �Preliminary characterization of iodide transport in the South African clawed frog Xenopus laevis,� has been mentored by Dr. Tom Pressley and Ms. Debbie Carr (Physiology), and Dr. Jim Carr (TTU Biology).
Congratulations students, and thank you mentors!
Mart�nez-Zaguil�n Wins Chancellor�s Award
On December 8th, Dr. Raul Mart�nez-Zaguil�nwas recognized at the Chancellor�s Council Annual Dinner. He is the recipient of the prestigious Chancellor�s Council Award for Distinguished Research and Teaching. Avalanche-Journal article
Congratulations, Dr. Mart�nez-Zaguil�n!
Dr. Viatchenko-Karpinski Promotion
Dr. Serge Viatchenko-Karpinskih as been promoted to the position of Research Instructor. Dr. Viatchenko-Karpinski works in the laboratory of Dr. Sandor Gyorke.
Defeng Luo successfully Defends Masters Thesis
Defeng Luos uccessfully defended his Masters Thesis in November 2001. His work is titled, "Proton ATPase are involved in metastasis in human breast cancer cells." Defeng worked in the lab of Dr. Raul Martinez-Zaguilan.
Dr. McGrath Awarded Emeritus Status
At the November 2, 2001 meeting, the TTUHSC Board of Regents awarded Dr. James J. McGratht he rank of Professor Emeritus.
Congratulations, Dr. McGrath!
Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Awards
Congratulations to Dr. Raul Mart�nez-Zaguil�na nd Dr. Lorenz O. Luthererf or winning Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Awards.
Raul Mart�nez-Zaguil�n, Ph.D. received a 2001 ARP (Advanced Research Program) award in the Biological Sciences � Molecular Biology and Genetics Division for his study on �Proton Pumps at Cell�s Surface are Targets to Halt Angiogenesis and Metastasis in Breast Cancer Cell�.
Lorenz O. Lutherer, MD, Ph.D. received a 2001 ATP (Advanced Technology Program) award jointly with Dr. Cynthia Jumper (TTUHSC Internal Medicine). Their award is in the Biomedicine Division for their study on �Clinical Trial of Oral Interferon Alpha in Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis�.
2001 Seed Grant Awards
Witali Dounine-Barkowski, Ph.D., Physiology, has been awarded a School of Medicine Seed Grant for FY 2002. His work will cover �A Minimal Neural Ensemble: Model of the Respiratory Pattern Generator�.
The announcement of recipients was made by Joel Kupersmith, M.D., Dean, School of Medicine, and Vice President for Clinical Affairs, and Barbara Pence, Ph.D., Associate Vice President for Research. These grants will be funded September 1, 2001 through August 31, 2002.
For the complete list of recipients, click here.
Congratulations to Dr. Dounine-Barkowski!
Duran Awarded Fellowship
Post Doctoral Research Associate Marie-Jos�e (Marie-Jo) Duranh as been awarded a fellowship from the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Division of Curriculum Outside France. This one-year fellowship for bourse lavoisierwill enable Dr. Duran to continue her studies in the laboratory of Dr. Thomas Pressley. Congratulations Marie-Jo!Back to Top
Lovering to Study in Uruguay
Congratulations to Graduate Student Andy Lovering, who is headed for South America yet again! Andy has been awarded travel support to the SRS (Sleep Research Society) and NIMH � sponsored Trainee Workshop to be held in Uruguay in October. Andy was in Chile last Fall studying High Altitude Physiology.Back to Top
Welcome New Graduate Students!
The Physiology Department welcomes five new students to our Graduate Program.
Lee Ferrisand Zhi Panjoin our Doctoral Program, Brett McCownand Rebin Titusjoin our Masters program.
Welcome new students!
Lee Gervitz Receives Travel Award!
Double congratulations to Graduate Student Lee Gervitz. He was selected as a recipient of the Society for Neuroscience Chapters / Eli Lily Graduate Student Travel Award. This award will allow Lee to travel with his mentor, John Fowler, to San Diego for the annual Neuroscience meeting in November.
Lee is also the proud papa of new baby Camille, born Aug. 10.
Dr. James McGrath Retiring
Dr. James J. McGrath, Professor, retired after 22 years of service to Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. The Department held a reception in his honor on July 27, 2001.
We wish Dr. McGrath a long and happy retirement!
Amanda Purdom Defends Masters Thesis
Graduate Student Amanda Purdomsuccessfully defended her Masters Thesis July 9, 2001. Amanda was mentored by Dr. Lorenz O. Lutherer. The title of her thesis is "INTERRUPTION OF THE OLIVOCEREBELLAR TRACT TO THE FASTIGIAL NUCLEUS ALTERS CARDIORESPIRATORY REFLEXES."
Congratulations and best of luck to you, Amanda!
Narine Sarvazyan Outstanding Teacher!
Students in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences program have voted Dr. Narine Sarvazyan�Outstanding Teacher of the Year�. The award is designed to honor those faculty members considered to possess the following characteristics:
Knowledge of material
Enthusiasm for subject matter
Demonstrated interest in learning
Flexible teaching methods to accommodate different learning styles
Patience and empathy with students
Demonstrated belief that teaching is an active process.
Dr. Sarvazyan was presented this much-deserved award at the Annual Awards and Installation Banquet for students and their guests.
This is the second year in a row that a Physiology faculty member has won the award (Dr. John Orem was last year's winner).
Department Graduates, Spring 2001
The Department would like to offer its congratulations to members who have graduated this Spring:
Shankar Sanka (Physiology Graduate Student, Resident in Internal Medicine) - Masters in Physiology
Inna Gyorke (Medical Research Asst., Dr. Gyorke�s Lab) - Masters in RHIM (Restaurant, Hotel, and Institutional Management)
Danielle Colorado (Office Assistant) - Monterey High School
Congratulations to all on your accomplishments and best wishes on your future endeavors!
Attaya is Award Winning Student!
Hesham Attaya, an HHMI fellow working in the laboratory of Dr. Mart�nez-Zaguil�n, participated in the ASMBM (American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology) fifth annual poster competition for undergraduate student research achievement and was among the 5 award winners. This national competition was held at the Experimental Biology meeting held recently in Orlando, FL (March 31-April 4).
His work was entitled: �Human metastatic pancreatic cancer cells express plasmalemmal vacuolar type proton ATPases� by Attaya H, Martinez GM, Gada R, and Mart�nez-Zaguil�n R.
Congratulations on a job well done, Hesham!
Dr. James McGrath earns Silver Star
The EPA is awarding Dr. Jim McGrath a Silver Star for his work on diesel. Dr. McGrath will travel to Washington to receive the award at a ceremony on April 10. The award is for his work on the Health Assessment Document for Diesel Emissions, which provides the scientific database for regulation of diesel engines throughout the United States.
This is the second award Dr. McGrath has received from the EPA. The first was received in 1997 for Superior Scientific Service for work on the Air Quality Criteria for Particulate Matter document, which provides the basis for regulating all sources of particulate matter (power plants, factories, etc).
Congratulations, Dr. McGrath!
Physiology's Budding Scientist
Congratulations to ANTON LUKYANENKO, High School volunteer in Dr. Escobar�s lab and sometime office assistant. He recently competed in the local South Plains Regional Science and Engineering Fair held at TTU.
Anton came away with multiple awards including:
First Place for 10th Grade in the Biological Division;
The Herbert Hoover Young Engineer Award (given by the Hoover Association to recognize the outstanding work of those just starting out in engineering);
A Health and Medicine Award from the Lubbock / Crosby / Garza County Medical Alliance;
Intel�s Excellence in Computer Science Award;
and the US Navy and Marine Corps Distinguished Achievement Award.
Congratulations Andrew Lovering!
Graduate Student Andrew Lovering has been selected to receive the 2001 Student Senate Phonathon Scholarship � Dean�s Award. He was chosen because of his outstanding commitment to his studies, motivation, high ethical standards, and academic and research abilities. Congratulations, Andy!
This is the second year in a row that a Physiology Graduate Student has won the Dean�s Award Scholarship from the Phonathon.
Congratulations Dr. Pressley and Dr. Mart�nez-Zaguil�n!
The Texas Tech Board of Regents voted in favor of Dr. Thomas Pressley's promotion to Professor, and Dr. Raul Mart�nez-Zaguil�n's tenure and promotion to Associate Professor. The Dept. of Physiology sends congratulations to both faculty members on their well-deserved promotions, which are effective September 1, 2001.Back to Top
Welcome home, Dr. McGrath
Dr. James McGrath, who was on assignment at the EPA in North Carolina,has returned to Lubbock and his office in the Dept. of Physiology. We are pleased to have him back to continue his research and teaching.Back to Top
Dr. Lukyanenko Awarded Grant
Dr. Valeriy Lukyanenko was recently awarded a grant from the American Heart Association,Texas Affiliate. He will be studying Mechanisms of Modulation of Ca Uptake and Ca Release.Back to Top
Dr. Sarvazyan Awarded Grant
Dr. Narine Sarvazyan received an Established Investigator Award from theAmerican Heart Association. This will enable her to study the cellularmodel of ischemia/reperfusion arrhythmias.Back to Top
Dr. Pressley a NATO Host
Dr. Thomas Pressley will be a host for a NATO Collaborative Linkage Grant. This grant will allow Dr. Pressley's colleague, Dr. Karin Nazaryan, to travel from Armenia to study enolase, an enzyme responsible for glucose metabolism.Back to Top
Dr. Williams joins Department
The Physiology Dept. welcomes Dr. James Williams, Assistant Professor, Department of Exercise/ Sport Sciences (HPER), TTU Campus, as an Adjunct Asst. Professor.Back to Top
Fowler Lab at Neuroscience Meeting
Dr. John Fowler's lab traveled in Nov. 2000 to New Orleans to attend the 30th Annual Society for Neuroscience meeting. Research Associate Margaret Hamilton presented her work titled: "Hippocampal electrophysiological activity in vivo is altered by intracerebral Adenosine administration in urethane anesthetized rats". Graduate Student Lee Gervitz presented his work titled: "The role of Adenosine in the early synaptic response to hypoxia in the rat hippocampus in vivo." Click here to see Lee Gervitz and Dr. Fowler at the meeting.Back to Top
Dr. Escobar Wins Award
Congratulations to Dr. Ariel Escobar! He was awarded the "Best Scientific Contribution" in the 4th SOBLA (Sociedad de Biofísicos Latinoamericano) meeting in Alicante, Spain during his recent travel to Europe.Back to Top
Deborah Carr Earns Safety Award
For the second year in a row, our Department Safety Officer, Deborah Carr, received the "Excellence in Safety Training" Award in September.Way to go, Debbie!!Back to Top
Dr. Martinez-Zaguilan awarded grant for Study
Dr. Raul Martinez-Zaguilan has been awarded a grant by the Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health. This will enable him to study the proton pump in its relationship to diabetes.The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal highlighted this effort in their August 26 issue.Back to Top
The Interactive Heart
The website "The Interactive Heart: An Online Discovery" features interviews with Physiology Department members Dr. Thomas Pressley, Associate Professor, Luke Swift, Medical Research Technician, and Matthew Thigpen, Graduate Student. The site was submitted to the Think Quest Internet Challenge, which is an international program for students ages 12 through 19 that encourages them to use the Internet to create information-rich Web-based educational tools and materials. Students form teams with their colleagues from around the world and are mentored by teachers or other adult coaches. The "The Interactive Heart: An Online Discovery" was made by three high-school students, including Ashot Petrosian, and was coached by Dr. Narine Sarvazyan, Assistant Professor.Back to Top
National Role Models Conference
Dr. Raul Martinez-Zaguilan represented Texas Tech University School of Medicine at the National Role Models Conference in Washington DC, September 16-18, 2000. The office of SOM Dean Dr. Joel Kupersmith sponsored Dr. Martinez' trip.Back to Top
Ph.D. Qualifying Exams
Graduate students, Andrew Lovering and Leon Gervitz passed their oral and written qualifier examinations on Thursday, August 10. They have both been recommended to the graduate school for Ph.D. candidacy. Congratulations!Back to Top
Department of Physiology Center of Excellence
Dr. David Smith, President of Texas Tech University Medical Center, has announced that a group within the Department of Physiology has been awarded an institutional Center of Excellence Grant. This grant totals $125,000 to be awarded over the next two years. The grant will enable the group to expand their imaging capabilities. The goal of the center is to provide innovative in vivo visualization techniques to elucidate the mechanisms underlying specific physiological and pathological states at the subcellular, cellular, and tissue/ organ level. The directors of the Center are Dr. John Orem, administrator, and Dr. Raul Martínez-Zaguilán, scientific director.
The Center will foster interactions among interested faculty in the broad field of imaging cellular events (ion movements, membrane potential, free radicals) in subcellular compartments, single cells, and multicellular (e.g. tissue and organs) complexes in living entities. Towards this goal, five group leaders and their laboratories have joint efforts in the Center: Drs. Escobar, Györke, Martínez-Zaguilán, Nathan and Sarvazyan. These laboratories employ fluorescence-based techniques in most of their studies. The cohesiveness of this group is further enhanced by the selection of experimental models that deal with the general area of cardiovascular systems. Although the common area is cardiovascular, each one of them has created his/her own niche that covers cell imaging studies from subcellular compartments (Martínez-Zaguilán, Györke),single cells (Nathan, Györke, Sarvazyan, Martínez-Zaguilán, Escobar), cell populations (Martínez-Zaguilán, Sarvazyan), tissues (Györke), and organs (Escobar).
Current ongoing projects are involved in the study of smooth muscle and endothelial cells (lining blood vessels), cardiac myocytes and very specialized cells in the heart (pacemakers). The Center will involve graduate students from our department, as well as from the Department of Chemical Engineering at TTU. Undergraduate students from TTU will also be involved in several research projects. The Center will support a seminar series in which speakers from other institutions present their work in several aspects of imaging. The training environment of undergraduate, graduate, post doctorates and technicians will allow them to use state-of-the-art cell visualization techniques.Back to Top
Sanka Successful Thesis Defense
On June 19, 2000, Shankar Sanka defended his Master thesis, "Regulation of Calcium Stores in Normal and Diabetic Microvascular Endothelial Cells." Shankar's work was approved by his Graduate committee. He will begin his Residency in Internal Medicine at Texas Tech University HSC shortly. Shankar worked in the laboratory of Dr. Raul Martinez-Zaguilan.
Joe Rojas Chosen as Student Marshal
Joe Rojas has been chosen by the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences to be the Student Marshal for the Graduate School Commencement Ceremony on May 19th. He was chosen because of his outstanding academic record during his doctoral program at TTUHSC. Congratulations Joe!Back to Top
Dr. Orem voted Outstanding Teacher
Dr. John Orem was chosen by the students in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences as the "Outstanding Teacher of the Year". This award is sponsored by the HSC Student Senate and is designed to honor those faculty members considered to possess the following characteristics:
Knowledge of material, Enthusiasm for subject matter, Demonstrated interest in learning, Flexible teaching methods to accommodate different learning styles, Patience and empathy with students, Demonstrated belief that teaching is an active process.
Congratulations Dr. Orem!
Local Teacher to Visit Department for Summer Research
On March 10, the American Physiological Society announced that Sue Diggs, a science teacher from Lubbock High School, was selected as an APS Fellow in the Frontiers in Physiology Science Teacher Summer Research Program. Her research project will focus on the energetics of ion transport in the thyroid gland, and she will be working in the laboratory of Dr. Thomas A. PressleyBack to Top
The Department congratulates Dr. Jean Strahlendorf, who was recently promoted to Professor.
Dr. Strahlendorf studies synaptic receptors and intracellular signal transduction in the cerebellum.
Rojas Successful Dissertation Defense
On March 30, 2000, Jose D. Rojas defended his Ph.D. thesis, "Intracellular pH Regulation in Microvascular Endothelial Cells." Jose's work was approved by his Graduate committee. He will begin his post doc at Yale shortly after his graduation on May 19th. Dr. Rojas worked in the laboratory of Dr. Raul Martinez-ZaguilanBack to Top
Dr. Fowler Awarded Supplement
Dr. John Fowler was awarded an NIH Minority Supplement to help fund his current Ph.D. Graduate Student, Leon Gervitz. Mr. Gervitz is in his second year of study.Back to Top
Beth Pressley Receives Award
Congratulations to Beth Pressley, Clerical Specialist IV, for being selected to receive a Texas Tech Quality Service Award. This award is given for making a significant contribution to Tech's quality improvement effort by exhibiting an exemplary daily commitment to quality service and by encouraging and involving others in providing quality service by example and mentoring. A selection committee chose the top nominations from submissions across the TTUHSC.Back to Top
Physiology Student takes the Prize
Congratulations to Leon Gervitz for placing 3rd in the annual Student Research Day competition sponsored by the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. Lee's poster is entitled: "The Development of an in vivo Rat Model to Study the Effects of Moderate Hypoxia on Hippocampal Electrophysiology." Lee is a Research Assistant in the laboratory of Dr. John Fowler.Back to Top
Martínez-Zaguilán Lab News
Dr. Raul Martínez-Zaguilán was highlighted in the Dec. 30, 1999 Lubbock Avalanche-Journal. The article "Proton Pumps: Cancer's Ally" featured Dr. Martínez-Zaguilán's research on breast cancer.Back to Top
New Graduate Student
The department would like to welcome our newest Graduate Student, Sowmini Oomman. We look forward to working with her.Back to Top
|Cindy Rolfe, Administrator|
|Department of Cell Physiology|
|Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center|
|3601 4th Street at Indiana Avenue|
|Lubbock, TX 79430-6551|