Graduate Student in Dr. Peng Zhang’s Laboratory (Project 4) Receives American Heart Association (AHA) Predoctoral Fellowship Award

We are pleased to announce that Nedyalka (Nelly) Valkov, a graduate student in the laboratory of Dr. Peng Zhang, MD & MS (PI of the Project 4), has been awarded an American Heart Association (AHA) Predoctoral Fellowship. The 2 year fellowship award entitled “A novel inhibitory role of microRNA-1 in cardiac fibroblast activation” from 07/01/2015 to 6/30/2017 has a total amount of $46,000 to support Nelly on investigation of the regulatory effects of microRNA-1 and its mechanisms of action in cardiac fibroblasts. Nelly is currently a 3rd year graduate student in the Graduate Program of the Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology (MPP) at Brown University. Dr. Peng Zhang is Nelly’s Thesis Advisor and Sponsor for the awarded AHA Predoctoral Fellowship.

Pilot Project PI Receives American Heart Association (AHA) Grant-in-Aid Award

We are pleased to announce that CPVB COBRE pilot project PI Jun Feng, MD & PhD, has received an American Heart Association (AHA) Grant-in-Aid award. The 3 year award titled Metabolic Regulation of Endothelial SKCa/IKCa Channels and Coronary Endothelial Function will begin 7/1/2015 to 6/30/2018, totaling $198,000. For this AHA project application, Dr. Feng employed pilot data from his ongoing CPVB-COBRE pilot project. The new AHA award is for Dr. Feng to continue to investigate the mechanism responsible for metabolic regulation of small and intermediate calcium-activated potassium channels and endothelial function in an animal model of metabolic syndrome. Dr. Frank Sellke is Dr. Feng’s Mentor for current ongoing pilot project of CPVB.COBRE.

Celebrating big science in a small state

Dr. Corey Ventetuolo is featured in an article titled “Celebrating big science in a small state” on Brown University’s News from Brown website. The article describes nine major NIH-funded biomedical research centers in the last 15 years have helped Rhode Island build a significant national profile.

Anyu Zhou, PhD Awarded 5 Month Pilot Project

Anyu Zhou, PhD, was awarded a 5 month pilot project with the CardioPulmonary Vascular Biology COBRE at the Ocean State Research Institute. Zhou is currently an Assistant Professor (Research) of Medicine at The Alpert Medical School of Brown University and the Cardiovascular Research Center, Rhode Island Hospital. His pilot project is entitled “Desregulated pre-mRNA Splicing by RBM25 in Endothelial Injury Under Hypoxia Stress.” This project will investigate the role of alternative pre-mRNA splicing regulation in the onset and progression of endothelial injury and ultimately aims to find druggable targets for treatment of human diseases related to endothelial injury and repair.

Craig Lefort, PhD Awarded 5 month Pilot Project

Craig Lefort, PhD, was awarded a 5 month pilot project with the CardioPulmonary Vascular Biology COBRE at the Ocean State Research Institute. Lefort is currently an Assistant Professor Surgery (Research) at Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital. His pilot project is entitled “Integrin Activation Regulates Neutrophil Trafficking within the Murine Lung.” The proposed work will provide a better understanding of how neutrophils, the first responders of the immune system, travel from the circulation into the airways of the lung during a respiratory infection This work will use a new lung infection model and expand his research interests into pulmonary inflammation, including neutrophil trafficking and integrin biology. This will serve as the basis for translational studies with the goal of blocking unwanted immune cell responses while preserving host defense.

Jillian McCullough, PhD Awarded 5 month Pilot Project

Jillian McCullough, PhD, was awarded a 5 month pilot project with the CardioPulmonary Vascular Biology COBRE at the Ocean State Research Institute. McCullough is completing her Postdoctoral training in Pulmonary Hypertension at the Vascular Research Laboratory at Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Providence VA Medical Center. Her pilot project is entitled “Peripheral Blood Flow and Exercise Intolerance in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension.” The goal of the proposed research grant is to elucidate the role of the peripheral microvasculature as a potential contributor to exercise intolerance in pulmonary arterial hypertension.

Yang Zhou, PhD Awarded 5 month Pilot Project

Yang Zhou, PhD, was awarded a 5 month pilot project with the CardioPulmonary Vascular Biology COBRE at the Ocean State Research Institute. Zhou is currently an Assistant Professor (Research) in Molecular Microbiology and Immunology at Alpert Medical School of Brown University. His pilot project is entitled “ChI3L1and Pulmonary Hypertension Associated with Interstitial Lung Disease.” The experiments designed in this proposal will combine extensive experience in animal models of ILD and the expertise from investigators at CardioPulmonary Vascular Biology Center to obtain novel and important insights into the pathways leading to vascular remodeling responses in fibrotic lung diseases.

Brown Medicine Magazine Features CardioPulmonary Vascular Biology COBRE

Article on some of the research currently underway with CPVB COBRE investigators. Featuring Amanda Jamieson, Sharon Rounds, Elizabeth Harrington, Julie Newton, and Qing Lu.

Dr. Jun Feng Awarded Pilot Project with the CPVB COBRE

Dr. Jun Feng was awarded a 12 month pilot project with the CPVB COBRE at the Ocean State Research Institute. Feng is currently an Assistant Professor of Surgery (Research) at Warren Alpert Medical School Brown University and at Department of Surgery, Cardiovascular Research Center, Rhode Island Hospital. His pilot project is entitled Down Regulation of SKCa/IKCa Channels Contributes to Coronary Arterial Endothelial Dysfunction in Diabetic Patients. The aim of this pilot study is to advance understanding of coronary artery diseases, particularly macrovascular and microvascular diseases caused by metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and hypertension and to develop novel therapeutic strategies to effectively treat patients with metabolic syndrome, diabetes, hypertension and coronary artery diseases.

Dr. Olin Liang Awarded 12 Month Pilot Project with CPVB COBRE

Dr. Olin Liang was awarded a 12 month pilot project with the CPVB COBRE at the Ocean State Research Institute. Liang is currently a faculty member of the Center for Regenerative Medicine at Rhode Island Hospital and Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University. His pilot project is entitled The Role of Endothelial to Hematopoietic Transition in Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension.

The aim of this pilot study is to determine whether a developmental process such as EHT may play a role in the pathogenesis of PAH, which may lead to identifying novel therapeutic targets.