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Pharmaceutical Sciences research lectures scheduled

Published: 08 April 2013

The NDSU Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences and College of Pharmacy, Nursing, and Allied Sciences have invited three distinguished scientists to deliver research lectures and meet with faculty and graduate students. The seminars are open to everyone interested in pharmaceutical and biomedical research. 

Jianhua Zhang, associate professor of pathology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine, is scheduled to present “Autophagy in Cellular Response to Bioenergetic and Oxidative Stress” on Thursday, April 11, at 2:30 p.m. in Sudro Hall room 21. 

Zhang’s long-term research interests are to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms responsible for cell death in the context of a variety of human diseases. In particular, her research group specializes in genetic perturbations of genes encoding cell death regulators and executioners and their influences on disease propensity. 

Recently, Zhang’s research group has focused on autophagy-lysosomal regulation, their impact on protein and organelle homeostasis, cellular bioenergetics and oxidative stress in neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson’s and Huntington’s diseases. Her research group is generating and characterizing novel mouse models that are capable of dissecting the role of key autophagy-lysosomal proteins in pathogenesis and therapy. Zhang has more than 80 publications and her research has been supported by National Institutes of Health RO1 grants and VA Merit Award. 

Zhang earned his doctorate from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and postdoctoral training from Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research. 

Victor Darley-Usmar, professor of pathology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine, is scheduled to present “Bioenergetics, Oxidative Stress and the Development of Therapeutics” on Friday, April 12, at 9 a.m. in Sudro Hall room 21. 

The research focus of Darley-Usmar’s laboratory is to understand how the signaling pathways are altered in vascular disease and how free radicals play a role. Two areas are of particular interest: Those involving oxidized lipoproteins and the free radical signaling molecule nitric oxide. Darley-Usmar’s research group is particularly interested in how the interaction of mitochondria with nitric oxide can modulate cell signaling, and defining the molecular events which control nitric oxide-signaling pathways in the diseased vessel wall. 

Recently, Darley-Usmar’s group defined new approaches to integrating bioenergetic analysis into the pathophysiology of human disease. He uses molecular biology, proteomics and cellular approaches to address these problems. 

Darley-Usmar has published more than 270 publications in high-impact journals such as PNAS and others. He has been funded continuously with multiple RO1 grants and program project. Darley-Usmar earned a doctorate from the University of Essex, England, and postdoctoral training from the University of Oregon. 

Zvonimir Katusic, professor of pharmacology and anesthesiology at Mayo Clinic, is scheduled to present “Endothelial Dysfunction in the Cerebral Circulation” on Wednesday, April 17, at 8:30 a.m. in Sudro Hall room 27. Katusic’s group has a long history of studying human cerebral blood vessels. Their studies are performed on experimental models of stroke and Alzheimer’s disease. Katusic’s research focuses on morphological, functional and biochemical characteristics of cerebral vasculature. In addition, experiments on isolated blood vessels enable his team to directly test vascular effects of novel drugs. 

He has more than 160 publications and his research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, American Heart Association and other funding agencies and organizations. 

Katusic earned doctoral and doctor of medicine degrees from the University of Belgrade. 

For more information on the seminars, contact Jagdish Singh at 701-231-7943. 

NDSU is recognized as one of the nation's top 108 public and private universities by the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education.

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Last Updated: Sunday, August 25, 2013