Center Investigators

Gillian M. Air, Ph.D.

Associate Dean, Graduate College
George Lynn Cross Research Professor
Department Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
College Medicine
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
 
Contact Information:
Email: gillian-air@ouhsc.edu
Phone: 405-271-2085
Office: Rm 258, Library Building, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK 73104
 
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Research Interests:
My expertise is in molecular and biochemical aspects of influenza. Our research had two branches, one to find ways of designing better vaccines, and the second to investigate how the virus gains entry into cells and how infection might be blocked by antiviral drugs. Using monoclonal antibodies, we determined the extent and nature of epitopes on the two major surface antigens in influenza virus, hemagglutinin and neuraminidase, studying how antibodies bind to these to inhibit activity and hence virus spread, and how the virus can mutate to escape from neutralizing antibodies. We applied these results to analyze the quality as well as quantity of antibodies present in human sera after influenza vaccination and we showed that study of the fine specificities of antibodies in people who have been vaccinated or infected with influenza might predict the direction of antigenic drift, which would allow formulation of vaccines ahead of the epidemic. We were also involved in projects to design new NA inhibitors, and to identify receptors on the cell surface that facilitate virus infection with the idea of blocking that process with new drugs. It has been known for many years that the primary receptor for influenza is sialic acid, but our recent work showed that the pattern of recognition for sialic acids and their neighboring sugars is more complex than originally thought. There is year-to-year variation in the binding profile to an array of synthetic sialylated glycans. We think this is a consequence of the mutations that drive antigenic drift and that specific glycan structures are not needed for influenza infection.

Last Updated 10/23/19

Marimuthu Andiappan, Ph.D.Dr. Marimuthu Andiappan

Assistant Professor
Department of Chemical Engineering
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact: 
Phone: 405-744-5280
Office: 420 Engineering North, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Research Support    Selected Publications
 
Research Interests: 
Plasmonic Photocatalysis, Heterogeneous Catalysis, Homogeneous Catalysis, and Process Modeling and Simulation.
 
 
 

Shanjana Awasthi, Ph.D

Associate Professor
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
College of Pharmacy
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
University of Oklahoma
 
Contact Information
Phone: 405-271-6593 Extn: 47332
Fax: 405-271-7505
Office: Rm 324 College of Pharmacy Building, University of OklahomaOklahoma City, OK 73117
 
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Research Interests:
Research in my lab is focused on developing immunotherapeutics and vaccines by harnessing our body's natural host defense mechanisms. Our research efforts have been focused on developing TLR4- interacting surfactant protein-A-derived peptides and dendritic cell-based vaccine approaches. We are interested in investigating the mechanism and efficacy of these approaches in vitro and in animal models of infection, inflammation and cancer.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

 

Earl Blewett, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Biochemistry and Microbiology
Oklahoma State University Center for Health Sciences
 
Contact:
Phone: 917-561-8405
 
 
Research Interests: 
Currently I am interested in the molecular biology of enteroviruses, especially host membrane modification. The OCRID project, testing the virus inhibiting characteristics of a compound that interferes with host cell membrane formation, is right in this area. I have been working with herpesviruses of non-human primates, for many years. I have a collaborative project, testing baboon immune cell responses to BaCMV challenge, ongoing. I also am interested in bacteriophage and have a multi-year project with Dr. Jaroni in Food and Animal Sciences, testing molecular characteristics of EHEC-specific bacteriophage.
 
Last Updated 10/31/2019

 

Melanie A. Breshears, Ph.D.

Professor, Anatomic Pathology
Department of Veterinary Pathobiology
Center for Veterinary Health Sciences
Oklahoma State University-Stillwater
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: melanie.breshears@okstate.edu
Phone: (405) 744-4463
Office: Rm 260A McElroy Hall
          Stillwater, OK 74078 
 
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Research Interests:
Research Interests:
My collaborative research interests involve providing pathology support for projects studying a wide range of diseases, including the following:
  • Bdellovibrio bacteriovorus as an experimental treatment for bovine infectious keratoconjunctivitis (P.I.-M. Boileau)
  • Pathogen vector interactions of Anaplasma phagocytophilum and Ixodes scapularis in sheep (P.I.- K. Kocan); Tissue based host cell for A. phagocytophilum infection of ticks (P.I.- E. Reppert)
  • Spectroscopy for evaluation of intervertebral disc mineralization in dogs (P.I.- D. Piao & K. McKeirnan)
  • Evaluation of effects of voriconazole injection on the equine cornea (P.I.- K. Smith & M. Gilmour)
  • microRNA effects of hyperoxia exposure on neonatal lungs (P.I.- L. Liu)
  • Effect of season on histological appearance of the equine pituitary gland (P.I.- D. McFarlane)

Anthony Burgett, Ph.D.Image result for anthony burgett ou

Assistant Professor
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
College of Arts and Sciences
The University of Oklahoma
 
Contact: 
Email: anthony.burgett@ou.edu
Phone: 214-566-5156 (cell), 405-325-3551 (office)
Office: Rm 2060, Stephenson Life Sciences Research Center, 101 Stephenson Parkway, Norman, OK 73019
 
 
Research Interests: 
Our cross-disciplinary research is focused on the molecular pharmacology and total synthesis of natural products, which are structurally complex, biologically-active molecules isolated from nature. Natural product total synthesis has long been a preeminent pursuit in organic chemistry, providing a driving force for the development of chemical reactivity and understanding. Our lab continues in this tradition, seeking to develop new approaches and new methods to achieve the synthesis of these complex structures. However, for us, the total synthesis of a natural product is a gateway and a vehicle to understanding the molecular mechanisms of action through which a compound affects biological systems. Synthesis applied to molecular pharmacology research is a uniquely powerful tool that enables full creativity and freedom to produce the natural product and derived analogs—probe analogs, analogs designed to determine the structure-activity-relations of the compound, and simplified, more-drug-like analogs. We employ, coupled to our total synthesis capabilities, a full suite of research techniques in molecular biology, protein biochemistry and cellular biology, and we seamlessly use this diverse array of methods to fully characterize the biological activity of a compound, identify its cellular target and unlock and advance any therapeutic applications.
 
Last Updated 10/31/2019

Josh Butcher, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Department of Physiological Sciences
College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Email: joshua.butcher@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-8088
Office: Rm 168, Department of Physiological Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
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Research Interests:
I am a cardiovascular physiologist by training and have a long-standing interest in blood pressure regulation, especially in the context of the cardiometabolic dysfunction that accompanies obesity. Currently, my research looks at how manipulation of skeletal muscle (using an exercise mimetic) can attenuate the aforementioned dysfunction. We are expanding into an aging paradigm, termed sarcopenic obesity, whereby the muscle loss that accompanies obesity becomes synergistic with aging (sarcopenia). The major goal of this project is to determine the mechanistic links that drive obesity-derived cardiometabolic dysfunction; emphasizing vascular health (via characterization of endothelial and smooth muscle reactivity), the role of glucose homeostasis (Type 2 and Type 1 diabetes), oxidant stress (NOX1 and NOX4) and their organ-specific roles, and skeletal muscle fiber types.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Matthew Cabeen, Ph.D. 

Assistant Professor
Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics
College of Arts and Sciences
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: matthew.cabeen@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-6652
Office: 416 LSE, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
 
Research Interests: 
We use advanced microfluidics and live-cell microscopy together with traditional microbiological techniques to learn how bacteria sense and respond to stress, communicate with one another, and work together to build microbial communities. We work with both the model species Bacillus subtilis and the opportunistic human pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Stephen Clarke, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Nutritional Sciences
College of Human Sciences
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Email: stephen.clarke@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-2033
Office: 417 Human Sciences, Oklahoma State Univeristy, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
 
Research Interests:
The goal of my current work is to better understand the molecular causes of symptoms associated with iron deficiency. My team is examining the microRNA profile of tissues that are central to maintaining normal iron homeostasis, and we have started to characterize the targets of iron-regulated microRNA. In slightly more applied research, I continue to collaborate with Drs. Lucas, Smith and Stoecker to assess the extent to which iron status affects an individual's risk of developing osteoporosis. Finally, more recently I have started to examine the role that iron plays in contributing to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease.
 
 

Mark Coggeshall, Ph.D.

Robert S. Kerr, Jr. Endowed Chair
Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-271-7209
Office: Rm S400 Chapman Bldg, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, Oklahoma City, OK 73104
 
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Research Interests:
We investigate mechanisms leading to microvascular dysfunction, complement activation and coagulopathic responses to S. aureus and B. anthracis. We discovered the proinflammatory effects of peptidoglycan in human immune cells, identified the cells that responded and the mechanism by which they respond. The latter includes the novel finding that IgG facilitates Fc -mediated peptidoglycan phagocytosis and lysosomal digestion to create NOD ligands, and platelet activation by FcγRIIa and complement. In signaling, we were the first to show that PLCγ activation is central to lymphocyte antigen and Fc receptor signaling, that a Src-family kinase links these receptors to PLCγ activation, and that signaling events in immune cells are regulated by FcγRII recruitment of the inositol phosphatase SHIP. Our laboratory is heavily invested in phospho-flow, flow cytometry and confocal microscopy to quantitate the stimulation of intracellular events and how they are influenced by bacterial pathogens  and cytokines. We showed that peptidoglycan is a common, shared, and central Gram-positive pathogen associated molecular pattern that contributes to the pathology of sepsis and that the presence of anti-peptidoglycan antibodies are needed for the responses. We discovered that peptidoglycan activates the classical complement pathway and that complement activation was removed after depletion of anti-peptidoglycan antibodies, indicating input from the classical pathway. Peptidoglycan stimulated human platelets to aggregate via platelet FcyRIIa through the peptidoglycananti-peptidoglycan immune complexes and through the complement products. In addition, we discovered the in vivo pathology caused by peptidoglycan infusion: vascular leakage, evidence of disseminated intravascular coagulation, and organ failure, all accompanied by complement deposition. I have long experience overseeing research of the type proposed here, and in guiding projects as they evolve in different directions. I have been the PI on a U19 multi-project grant focused on pathobiology of anthrax. The work involves successful and sustained collaborations with researchers in several foreign institutions, as are required by the project proposed here.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19 

Anthony W. Confer, Ph.D., D.V.M.

Regents Professor & Sitlington Endowed Chair,
Department of Veterinary Pathology
Center for Veterinary Health Sciences,
Oklahoma State University-Stillwater

Contact Information:
E-mail: anthony.confer@okstate.edu
Phone: (405) 271-7905
Office: Rm 250 McElroy Hall
Stillwater, OK 74078

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Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors
Research Funding    Selected Publications    Patents

Research Interests:
Major research interests are in bovine respiratory disease pathogenesis and immunity especially related to Mannheimia haemolytica and Pasteurella multocida infections. Our laboratory is currently focused on the role of outer membrane and secreted proteins in mucosal and systemic immunity against cattle bacterial pneumonia.

Tyrrell Conway,  Ph.D.ContactPci

Regents Proffessor and Head of Department
Microbiology and Molecular Genetics
College of Arts and Sciences
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Email: tconway@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-820-7329
Room: 307 Life Sciences East, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
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We study the physiological state of colonized bacteria in the mammalian large intestine. With NIH funding we characterize the symbiotic relationship between E. coli and anaerobes that degrade complex polysaccharides, which in turn release simple sugars to cross-feed E. coli. The major goal of this project is to determine mechanisms of nutrient competition between E. coli strains in a mouse model of intestinal colonization. In addition, we develop intuitive displays and computational environments for functional genomics data analysis. 
 
​Last Updated 10/31/19

Michael Scott Davis, D.V.M., Ph.D.

Professor and Endowed Chair
Department of Physiological Sciences
College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-744-8172
Office: Rm 264 McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
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Research Interests:
Exercise physiology and pathophysiology, including the effects of exercise on respiratory function.

​Last Updated 10/31/19

Junpeng Deng, Ph.D.

Professor
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources
Oklahoma State University 
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: junpeng.deng@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-6192
Office: Rm 120D Henry Belmont Research Center, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
 
Research Interests:
Structure-function studies on poxvirus membrane biogenesis and immune evasion. Poxviruses include some dangerous emerging or re-emerging pathogens as well as some promising vaccine vectors for infectious diseases and cancers. They are unique among viruses in that they encode a large number of proteins that are dedicated to evading host immune responses. These proteins include secreted inhibitors of cytokines as well as intracellular inhibitors of immune signaling or antiviral factors. Structure and function study on the cytokine inhibitors is one of the major aims in this lab. Enveloped viruses typically acquire their outer lipid bilayer by budding from cellular membranes, a process that is similar to the formation of cellular transport vesicles. Poxviruses, however, are unusual in that their primary envelope is not acquired by budding but through extending of open-ended crescent membranes. The origin and biogenesis of the crescent membranes are among the least understood aspects of poxvirus biology. Recent studies suggest that the crescents may derive from the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). At least five VACV proteins (A6, A11, A30.5, H7 and L2), collectively termed viral membrane assembly proteins (VMAPs) and conserved in all vertebrate poxviruses, have been found to be essential for the biogenesis of crescent membranes. VACV mutants deficient in VMAPs make viroplasms but fails to form crescents. We discovered VACV A6 as a key member of VMAPs and suggested that viral membranes are trafficked from ER to ‘viral factories’ through an active, A6-mediated process. Our recent results led us to the innovative hypotheses that A6 is a novel lipid-transfer protein (LTP) and that poxviruses obtain their primary envelope by mimicking or hijacking the cellular LTP-mediated nonvesicular lipid transport process. To our knowledge, LTP has not been previously identified in any viruses, and nonvesicular lipid transport is not known to play a role in viral replication. Detailed structure and function studies on poxvirus membrane biogenesis are currently being actively pursued.

 

Adam S. Duerfeldt, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Department of Chemistry & BiochemistryImage result for Adam S. Duerfeldt, Ph.D.
Institute for Natural Products Applications & Research Technologies (INPART)
University of Oklahoma
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: adam.duerfeldt@ou.edu
Phone: 405-325-2232
Office: 101 Stephenson Parkway SLSRC 2130, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019
 
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Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Other    Research Support            Selected Publications

Research Interests:
We are a highly collaborative medicinal chemistry team focused on 1) the development of chemical tools that can be utilized to enhance our understanding of disease mechanisms and 2) the development of new therapeutic leads for the treatment of cancers, bacterial infections, and ocular diseases. Our approach integrates synthetic chemistry, chemical and structural biology, and computational methods to provide innovative solutions to important scientific problems.

 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Richard Eberle, Ph.D.

Professor
Department of Veterinary Pathobiology
Center for Veterinary Health Sciences
Oklahoma State University-Stillwater

Contact Information:
E-mail: r.eberle@okstate.edu
Phone: (405) 744-8169
Office: 250 McElroy Hall
Stillwater, OK 74078

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Education    Academic Appointments    Other Professional Memberships
Research Funding    Selected Publications

Research Interests:

Molecular biology of simian herpesviruses, anti-viral drug therapy for zoonotic monkey B virus infections, molecular basis for differential neurovirulence of simian herpesviruses

 

Yu Feng, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Department of Chemical Engineering
College of Engineering, Architecture, and Technology 
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: yu.feng@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-7441
Office: 420 Engineering North, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK, 74078
 
 
Research Interests:
Dr. Yu Feng joined the School of Chemical Engineering at Oklahoma State University as an Assistant Professor in August 2016. He also joined the Oklahoma Center for Respiratory and Infectious Diseases (OCRID) as an investigator. Yu Feng was a Research Assistant Professor and Lab Manager of the Computational Multi-Physics Laboratory (CM-PL) at North Carolina State University. He has also held an affiliation with DoD Biotechnology HPC Software Applications Institute (BHSAI) as a Research Scientist II. He completed his B.S. in Engineering Mechanics in 2007 from the School of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China. He then joined the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at North Carolina State University and obtained his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in 2010 and 2013 respectively. His current research interests include advanced computational fluid-particle dynamics (CF-PD) modeling for the transport and deposition of inhalable drugs and toxicants in human respiratory systems, with applications of medical device improvements for effective and targeted drug deliveries, novel lung therapeutics, non-invasive disease diagnostic methodologies, and exposure health risk evaluations. The overall goal the research is to understand and consider more underlying physics and chemistry, in order to provide non-invasive, cost-effective, and accurate numerical tools with more simulating capabilities, complementing in vitro and in vivo studies for interdisciplinary engineering practice and academic research.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Ashlee N. Ford Versypt, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
School of Chemical Engineering
College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology
Oklahoma State University

Contact Information:
E-mail: ashleefv@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-5280 
Office: Rm 420, Engineering North, Stillwater, OK 74078

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Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Research Support    Selected Publications

Research Interests: Systems Biomedicine & Pharmaceutics, Mathematical & Computational Modeling, Drug Delivery, and Physiology

​Last Updated 10/23/19

Michael J. Franklin, Ph.D.

Professor
Department of Microbiology and Immunology
College of Letters and Science
Montana State University
 
Contact Information:
Email: umbfm@montana.edu 
Phone: 406-994-5658
Office: Cooley Laboratory 213, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT, 59715
 
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Research Interests: 
Dr. Franklin is a Professor of Microbiology at Montana State University. Dr. Franklin’s research has focused on several aspects of Pseudomonas aeruginosa pathogenesis, primarily based on how P. aeruginosa growing in biofilms resists treatment with antibiotics and host defensive processes.  His three main areas of research include: (i) the molecular genetics and biochemistry of extracellular capsular polysaccharide biosynthesis, (ii) gene expression and proteome contributions to antibiotic resistances of biofilm bacteria, (iii) physiological heterogeneity in biofilms.  (I) Dr. Franklin has many years of experience studying biochemistry, molecular biology, and physical properties of P. aeruginosa extracellular polysaccharides.  This work resulted in a highly cited review article in Frontiers in Microbiology, proposing models for the biosynthesis of all three secreted polysaccharides produced by P. aeruginosa.  (II) Dr. Franklin’s research group has characterized physiological changes that occur when bacteria adopt a biofilm mode of growth, how these changes in gene expression and proteome patterns influence antibiotic tolerance.  Work on the methodology for studying whole biofilms and biofilm cells, from his lab and from many other labs, is summarized in an invited review article in Microbiology Spectrum. (III) Dr. Franklin’s research group also pioneered strategies for analyzing physiological heterogeneities in biofilms.  The research was initiated by using laser capture microdissection and transcriptomics approaches to characterize the physiologies of biofilm subpopulations. Work on the physiological heterogeneity in biofilms is summarized in a review article in Nature Reviews-Microbiology. These three research foci have led to a greater understanding of how biofilm bacteria adapt to their local microenvironments and thrive within biofilms and has led to the discovery of molecular targets for potential anti-biofilm agents.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Heather Gappa-Fahlenkamp, Ph.D.Image result for Heather Gappa-Fahlenkamp, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
School of Chemical Engineering
College of Engineering and Architecture Technology
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact:
Phone: 405-744-5280
Office: 423 Engineering North, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74074
 
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Research Interests:
Tissue Engineering: Advanced Tissue-Equivalent Models to Study Inflammation Associated with Vascular Complications, Allergens, and Infectious Agents. Drug Delivery: Nanoparticles and Biomembranes for Controlled Delivery
 
 
 
 

Lucila Garcia-Contreras, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
College of Pharmacy
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

Contact Information:
E-mail: lucila-garcia-contreras@ouhsc.edu
Phone: 405-271-6593 ext. 47205
Office: Rm 321 College of Pharmacy Building, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK 73117

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Education    Academic Appointments     Awards and Honors    Other Professional Memberships   Research Support    Selected Publications

Research Interests: 

The research goal of my laboratory is “Targeted Drug Delivery” and involves the rational design of dosage forms and their in vitro evaluation, which are used to design in vivo studies. In turn, the information obtained in in vitro and in vivo studies is used to understand the underlying reasons of the performance of the dosage form with the objective of improving its formulation design to achieve the desired therapeutic effect. I am particularly interested on the design, formulation and evaluation of inhaled drugs and vaccines in powder form. For the past 12 years has focused on the designing, formulating and evaluating of drugs and vaccines delivered by the pulmonary route for local and systemic action to treat and prevent tuberculosis, and other respiratory infectious diseases. I have developed formulations for administration by the pulmonary route of a number of compounds ranging from small molecule drugs (rifampicin) to large proteins and peptides (antigen 85 and BCG). I have also been responsible for conducting studies of the pharmacokinetics and efficacy of these drugs and vaccines when delivered by the pulmonary route. Notably our pharmacokinetic and efficacy studies with capreomycin, a peptide antibiotic were the bases for Phase I clinical trials conducted by our collaborators at Harvard University. More recently, we developed an inhalable formulation to treat lung cancer and evaluated in the mouse model of adenocarcinoma. My research pulmonary drug delivery has generated interest nationally and internationally while resulting in a number of peer-reviewed articles in high impact journals, invitations to organize and speak at international conferences and consult for small pharmaceutical companies. At the OUHSC College of Pharmacy I have collaborated with other researchers in designing delivery systems and formulations for oral and vaginal administration to enhance the efficacy of their novel anti-cancer and vaccine drugs. 

​Last Updated 10/23/19

William Hildebrand, Ph.D.Image result for William Hildebrand, Ph.D.

Professor
George Lynn Cross Professor
PHF Endowed Professor
Director, Clinical HLA Typing Laboratory
Department of Microbiology and Immunology
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-271-1203
Office: Rm 317, Stanton L Young Biomedical Research Center 975 NE 10th St, Oklahoma City, OK 73104
 
Research Interests:
The Hildebrand Laboratory is focused on the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I and class II molecules. These molecules mediate the rejection of organ and bone marrow transplants, the targeting of cancerous and virus-infected cells for immune destruction and autoimmune responses such as diabetes and arthritis. To delineate the role that MHC molecules play in these various immune scenarios, the Hildebrand Laboratory studies MHC genes and the proteins they encode.

​Last Updated 10/23/19

Myron Hinsdale, Ph.D., Animal Model Core

Associate Professor
Department of Physiological Sciences

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University

Contact Information:
E-mail: myron.hinsdale@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-8107
Office: Rm 264, McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078

 
Research Interests:
The objective for the Animal Models Core (AMC) is to ensure project experimental consistency, compliance with federal animal welfare regulations, and assistance in cutting-edge phenotyping of animal models of respiratory disease.  The AMC has a wide range of phenotyping strategies in respiratory disease animal models. We are interested in developing new models that can benefit the Respiratory Center. Specifically, our research program is interested in the influences of extracellular matrix on organ homeostasis. We are concentrating on the role extracellular matrix has under disease conditions and specifically in regards to influences of ECM proteins on cell signaling. We are focusing on epithelial tissue in organs including the kidney, liver, and lung with a special interest in endothelium. Using a novel mouse model of reduced ECM proteoglycans, our studies are focused on the role that ECM proteoglycans have on the reparative response subsequent to tissue damage and disease especially in COPD and polycystic kidney disease. Our group has a broad background in pathology, animal models, and genetics, and we have extensive experience in animal surgeries and physiological assessment of metabolism. 
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Wouter Hoff, Ph.D.Image result for Wouter Hoff, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics
College of Arts and Sciences
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-744-4449
Office: 307 Life Sciences East, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
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Research Interests: 
 
2013-2014 Pilot Project 4: Photoreceptors as a Novel Class Virulence Factors in Opportunistic Pathogens
 
 
 

Chaoqun Huang, M.D., Ph.D.Image result for Chaoqun Huang, M.D., Ph.D.

Associate Drector, Molecular Biology Core
Assistant Research Professor Physiological Sciences

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University

Contact Information:
Office: Rm 209A McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
Email: chaoqh@okstate.edu

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Research Interests: 
microRNA, long non-coding RNA and Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Alamdar Hussian, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
College of Pharmacy
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-271-6593  ext. 47472
Office: Rm 316, College of Pharmacy Building, 1110 N Stonewall, Oklahoma City, OK 
73117
 
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Research Interests: 
 
 

Haobo Jiang, Ph.D.

Regents Professor
Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology
Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources
Oklahoma State University 

Contact Information:
E-mail: haobo.jiang@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-5527
Office: Rm 127 Noble Research Center, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078

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Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Other Professional Memberships   Research Funding    Selected Publications

Research Interests:
We have been investigating the molecular mechanisms of insect immune responses against pathogens that cause serious human diseases. Recognition of pathogens leads to the activation of a serine protease system in a cascade mode, which activates phenoloxidases and cytokines. Phenoloxidases generate reactive compounds to kill and sequester the invading organisms whereas cytokines trigger intracellular signaling pathways to induce the expression of antimicrobial peptides that destroy the infectious agents. We are examining the serine protease pathways and their regulation by serpins in a biochemical model insect, Manduca sexta, and trying to understand the similar system in Anopheles gambiae, the African malaria mosquito.

​Last Updated 10/23/19

Gilbert John, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Microbiology and Molecular Genetics
Oklahoma State University 
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-744-7914
Office: 307 Life Sciences East, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
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Clinton Jones, Ph.D.Image result for Clinton Jones, Ph.D. okstate

Sitlington Professor of Infectious Diseases
Regents Professor
Department of Veterinary Pathobiology
College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Email: clint.jones10@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-1842
Office: Rm 157C McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
 
Research Interests: 
 
 
Last Updated: 01/29/20
 
 

Susan Kovats, Ph.D.Image result for Susan Kovats, Ph.D.

Associate Member
Arthritis & Clinical Immunology Research Program
Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-271-8583
Office: Rm A207, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, Oklahoma City, OK 73104
 
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Research Interests:
Tissue-resident cells of the innate immune system are the first responders upon infection or tissue damage at mucosal barrier sites. We use a murine model of influenza virus infection to understand the specific roles of lung resident dendritic cells and innate lymphocytes in antiviral responses. We also work with a tissue-engineered lung model in which human respiratory tract myeloid cells are exposed to respiratory syncytial virus, with the goal of understanding differences in neonatal and adult immunity.  Our newest project will explore mechanisms by which sepsis induced by Gram-positive bacteria leads to immunosuppression.
 
Females often experience increased morbidity upon influenza virus infection, as well as increased incidence and severity of autoimmune disease and asthma. A major focus of the lab is to understand sex differences in numbers and function of innate type 2 lymphocytes (ILC2s) in homeostasis and upon inflammation. We published that female mice harbor significantly greater numbers of lung ILC2s in homeostasis, and we would like to understand how this sex difference contributes to ILC2 responses during infection and inflammatory disease. Ongoing projects will dissect the molecular basis of the differential regulation of female and male ILC2s by inflammatory stimuli and sex hormones in amodel of influenza virus infection. This project also will help us to understand the female predominance of autoimmune disease.
 
 
We also seek to understand how lung-resident dendritic cells (DCs) regulate T cell memory responses to influenza virus. Acute respiratory disease caused by influenza viruses is imperfectly mitigated by annual vaccination to select strains. Understanding how DCs regulate resident memory CD8+ T cells will aid the development of vaccines that elicit more universal protection to seasonal and emerging pandemic viruses. Mice lacking lung-resident IRF4-dependent DCs showed defective CD8+ T cell memory responses, and ongoing experiments will investigate IRF4-regulated pathways in DCs that promote T cell memory. Our work suggests that vaccination strategies to harness the function of IRF4-dependent DCs could promote the development of CD8+ resident memory T cells during influenza infection.
 
 
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Sadagopan Krishnan (Gopan), Ph.D.

Image result for Sadagopan Krishnan (Gopan), Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Chemistry
College of Arts and Sciences
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-744-5946
Office: 450 Physical Sciences, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
E-mail: gopan.krishnan@okstate.edu
Group Website: http://krishnangroup.okstate.edu
 
 
Research Interests:
Clinical Biosensors, Point-of-care methods, Biocatalysis, Biomarker validation, Novel Drug-screening arrays, Bioelectrochemistry, and Biological fuel-cells. 
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Véronique A. Lacombe, Ph.D., D.V.M., Dipl. AVCIM, Dipl. ECEIM

Associate Professor
Department of Physiological Sciences

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
Contact Information:
E-mail: veronique.lacombe@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-8089
Office: Rm 283, McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Ok 74078
Research Interests: 
Metabolism, Diabetes, Insulin resistance, Striated muscle, and  Comparative medicine.
 

Shitao Li, Ph.D.

Assistant ProfessorImage result for li shitao
Department of Physiological Sciences

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
Contact Information:
E-mail: shitao.li@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-2158
Office: Rm 157B, McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
Research Interests:
Innate immunity; Host defense and influenza A virus; Ubiquitination; Inflammation and TNF signaling; MicroRNA.
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Dingbo Daniel Lin, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Department of Nutritional Sciences
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Email: dingbo.lin@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-5215
Fax: 405-744-1357
Office: 419 Human Sciences, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
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Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Other    Research Support    Selected Publications
 
Research Interests: 
 
 

Lin Liu, Ph.D.

Regents Professor of Physiological Sciences
Lundberg-Kienlen Endowed Chair in Biomedical Research
College of Veterinary Medicine
Director, Oklahoma Center for Respiratory and Infectious Diseases
Oklahoma State University 
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-744-4526
Office: 211 McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
 
Read More: 
 
Research Areas:
Influenza and bacterial infections with a focus on host-pathogen interactions, pathogenesis of pulmonary diseases (IPF, COPD, ARDS and BPD) with a focus on microRNAs and lncRNAs, and stem cell-based therapy with a focus on iPSCs and MSCs.

​Last Updated 12/05/19

Pamela G. Lloyd, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Physiological Sciences

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: pamela.lovern@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-9019
Fax: 405-744-8263
Office: Rm 269 McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University  OK, 74078
 
 
Research Interests:
Regulation of arteriogenesis (collateral artery enlargement); mechanisms by which diabetes inhibits arteriogenesis; mechanisms regulating placenta growth factor (PLGF) expression; regulation of arteriogenic signaling by biomechanical forces (stretch, shear stress) and reactive oxygen species; crosstalk between VEGF family growth factors and receptors; crosstalk between pulmonary epithelial and endothelial cells; stem cell therapy for vascular repair in COPD.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Erika Lutter, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department for Microbiology and Molecular Genetics
College of Arts and Sciences
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information: 
Phone: 405-744-2532
Office: 307 Life Sciences East, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
Read More:
 
 
Research Interests: 
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Jerry R. Malayer, Ph.D.

Professor and Associate Dean for Research &Image result for Jerry Malayer, Ph.D. Graduate Education
College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-744-8085
Office: Rm 222 McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK, 74078
 
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Research Interests: 
 
 

Donald Robert McCaffree, M.D.Image result for Donald Robert McCaffree, M.D.

Regents’ Professor of Medicine
Department of Medicine, Pulmonary and Critical Care
Colleg​e of Medicine
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
 
Contact Information:
Office: 825 NE 10th St Ste 2E, Oklahoma City, OK 73104
Phone: 405-271-7001
 
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Research Interests: 
Tobacco Control and Control of Breathing
 
 

Dianne McFarlane, D.V.M., Ph.D., M.S., Dip ACVIM

ProfessorImage result for Dianne McFarlane, D.V.M., okstate
Physiological Sciences

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Email: diannem@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-2072
Office: 264 McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
 
Research Interests: 
Dr. McFarlane studies age-related neurodegeneration in horses. She focuses specifically on a debilitating condition similar to Parkinson's disease in humans.
 
 

William M. McShan, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
Oklahoma City, Ok

Contact Information:
Email: William-McShan@ouhsc.edu
Phone: (405) 271-6593
Office: 1110 North Stonewall Ave.
CPB307
Oklahoma City, OK. 73117

Read More: 
Education     Academic Appointments     Awards and Honors     Professional Memberships      Selected Publications
 

Jordan P. Metcalf, M.D.Image result for Jordan P. Metcalf, M.D.

Professor of Medicine
Virginia and Jean Rumsey Briscoe Chair in Pulmonary Diseases
Department of Medicine, Pulmonary and Critical Care
College of Medicine
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-271-6173
 
Read More:
 
Research Interests:
The principal focus of Dr. Metcalf’s laboratory has, since its inception in 1994, been to understand on a molecular level lung immune responses to infectious agents, including adenovirus, influenza virus, and bacterial pathogens such as B. anthracis. Beginning in 2002, we developed a human lung organ culture model in order to determine how lung pathogens stimulate, and sometimes evade, the lung immune response, and also how the human host attempts to respond to the pathogen. We use primary lung cells and organ culture models to explore host-pathogen interactions with regards to adenovirus, influenza, and B. anthracis. He has also examined immunosuppressive effects of cigarette smoke in this model. Findings describing these results for all of these pathogens have been published in high-quality journals.

 

Kenneth E. Miller, Ph.D.

Professor and Chair of Anatomy and Cell BiologyImage result for Kenneth E. Miller okstate tulsa
Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology
College of Medicine 
Oklahoma State University- Tulsa
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 918-561-5817
Office: 1111 West 17th Street, Oklahoma State University, Tulsa, OK 74107
 
Read More:
 
 
Research Interests: 
My research effort has focused on evaluating glutamate metabolism in spinal systems during injury, inflammatory, and pain conditions. Glutamate is the major excitatory neurotransmitter in the nervous system, but the production and degradation of glutamate is poorly understood in the peripheral nervous system. My research has been carried out in three areas: 1. Primary sensory neurons under painful, inflammatory and neuropathic conditions. 2. Spinal processing of inflammatory nociceptive information from viscera and somatic structures. 3. Response of neurons to spinal injury and CNS inflammation. Pain is a debilitating complication of chronic inflammation and nerve injury and chronic pain is difficult to treat for long periods of time. We demonstrated that the glutamine cycle, a CNS enzyme system for production and degradation of glutamate, is present in the peripheral nervous system. We showed that chronic inflammation causes long-term increases in glutaminase and glutamate levels in primary sensory neurons and their peripheral nerve fibers. Increased glutamate production in peripheral nerve fibers is responsible, in part, for painful responses observed in chronic inflammations, such as rheumatoid arthritis. We determined that peripheral inhibition of glutaminase provides long-lasting pain relief in animals with chronic inflammation.

 

Sunil More BVSc & AH, MVSc, Ph.D., Diplomate ACVP

Assistant Professor
Veterinary Pathobiology
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Email: sunil.more@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-6747
Office: Rm 254, McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
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Research Interests:
The influenza virus infection is difficult to prevent in terms of the changing nature of the virus genome. The influenza virus is dependent on host factors for successful infection and replication. Our laboratory is studying the role of these host factors in the pathogenesis of influenza virus infection. In addition, influenza virus infection in a patient with COPD is very critical. Their lungs are already compromised with emphysema and bronchiolitis. Unfortunately, an animal model (cigarette smoke and elastase-induced) that closely mimics the pathology of the COPD lungs is lacking. Our laboratory is focusing on the development of this model using a different approach.
 
Last Updated 10/31/2019

Teluguakula Narasaraju, Ph.D.Image result for Telugu Akula Narasaraju, Phd. okstate

Assistant Professor
Department of Physiological Sciences
College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact:
Phone: 405-714-3046
Office: Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Research Support    Selected Publications
 
 
Research Interests: 
Respiratory infectious diseases scientist with expertise in conducting in-depth research across the field of respiratory diseases including influenza, bacterial pneumonia and acute lung injury. Extensive experience in the field of neutrophil biology and in their pathogenic role in influenza. Strong expertise in new drug development for acute lung injury in influenza pneumonia and testing combination drug strategies targeting host-mediated injury together with the pathogen-inflicted damage. Expert team leader in pre-clinical studies using mouse as well as pig-models of influenza in BSL2 and BSL3 facilities. Committed to improving learning experiences for diverse student populations, guiding them in the understanding of physiology and pathology of the respiratory diseases and importance of virus diseases in humans. Flexible, with an aptitude for high-stress, fast-paced, and diverse environments, leveraging experience and conceptual knowledge in respiratory infectious diseases, microbiology, physiology, biochemistry and in vivo drug treatment. 
 
 

Antonius (Tom) Oomens, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Virology
Department of Veterinary Pathobiology

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: oomens@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-4397
Office: Rm 258 McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74074
 
 
 
Research Interests:
My main research interests are to understand entry and exit mechanisms of enveloped viruses and how to exploit knowledge of these mechanisms for vaccine and therapeutic purposes. Currently, my work is focussed on Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV), a ubiquitous and contagious paramyxovirus. Worldwide, RSV results in 200,000 deaths each year in children and yet a vaccine is not available. Through genetic manipulation of RSV, we are mapping the mechanisms underlying virus infectivity, and are creating and testing concepts for live-attenuated and virus-like-particle based RSV vaccines.

 

Chongle Pan, Ph.D.Image result for Chongle Pan, Ph.D. OU

Associate Professor
School of Computer Science
Department of Microbiology and Plant Biology 
University of Oklahoma
Contact Information:
E-mail: cpan@ou.edu 
Phone: 405-325-2972
Office: 110 W. Byod, DEH 231, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019
Research Interests: 
The research in my lab is focused in knowledge discovery from big -omics data and predictive understanding of complex biological systems.  In environment microbiology, we aim to understand the adaptation of natural microbial communities under different environmental conditions using metagenomics, metaproteomics, and stable isotope probing. In predictive genomics, we aim to predict the phenotypic traits of microorganisms, plants, and humans from their genomes and other -omics data. Our computational approaches include artificial intelligence, high-performance computing, network analysis, knowledge graph, and literature mining. Our experimental approaches include mass-spectrometry-based proteomics and metabolomics and sequencing-based genomics and transcriptomics.
 

Marianna A. Patrauchan, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics
College of Arts and Sciences
Oklahoma State University 

Contact Information:
E-mail: m.patrauchan@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-8148
Office: Rm 304A Life Sciences East, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74074

Learn More:
Education    Awards and Honors    Other    Research Funding    Selected Publications 

Research Interests:
My main research focus in on the signaling role of calcium (Ca2+) in bacterial pathogenecity. The primary model is Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a gram negative opportunistic human pathogen that is the leading cause of death in cystic fibrosis patients.Other projects include: light regulation of Pseudomonas virulence, silver-containing antimicrobials, and geophysical properties of bacterial biofilms.

​Last Updated 10/23/19

Mark Payton, Ph.D.Image result for Mark Payton, Ph.D. okstate

Regents Service Professor and Head
Department of Statistics
Oklahoma State University

Contact Information:
Email: mark.payton@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-5684
Office: 301B MSCS Bldg., Oklahoma State University, Stilwater, OK 74078

Learn More
Education    Academic Appointments   Awards and Honors    Selected Publications

Research Interests:
Biomedical statistics, experimental design, and categorical methods. 

 

Anne H. Pereira, Ph.D.Image result for Anne H. Pereira, Ph.D. ou

Dean, Graduate College
Professor and Associate Dean for Research
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
College of Pharmacy
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

Contact Information:
E-mail: anne-pereira@ouhsc.edu
Phone: 405-271-6593 ext. 58034
Office: Rm 329 College of Pharmacy Building, 1110 N Stonewall, Oklahoma City, OK 73117

Learn More:
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Other    Research Support    Selected Publications

Research Interests:
My area of expertise is innate immunity and inflammation in particular the role of cationic antimicrobial peptides in host defense against infection. My current research is focused on the preclinical development of a potential new class of antibiotic to treat Pseudomonas infections, the role of host defense peptides in ocular inflammation and healing, and neuroinflammation and microglial activation in Alzheimer’s disease.

 

Carey Pope, Ph.D.

Image result for Carey Pope, Ph.D. okstateProfessor and Sitlington Endowed Chair in Toxicology
Department of Physiological Sciences

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University

Contact Information:
E-mail: carey.pope@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-6257
Office: Rm 170 McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Ok 74078

Learn More:
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Other    Research Support    Selected Publications

Research Interests:
Neurotoxicology, Nanotoxicology, Autonomic Pharmacology, Mechanisms of Toxicity, Endocannabinoid Signaling, and Development of Countermeasures against Organophosphate Toxicity. 

 

Rajagopal Ramesh, Ph.D.Image result for Rajagopal Ramesh, Ph.D. ou

Professor
Department of Pathology
Jim and Christy Everest Endowed Chair in Cancer Developmental Therapeutics
Oklahoma TSET Cancer Research Scholar
Stanton L. Young Biomedical Research Center
College of Medicine
The University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-271-6101
Laboratory: 405-271-6104
Fax: 405-271-2472
Office: Suite 1403 975 NE 10th Street, The University of Oklahoma Health Science Center, Oklahoma City, OK, 73140
 
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Research Interests: 
Studies in my laboratory are mainly focused on novel gene-based therapeutics using viral and non-viral vectors with emphasis on translational cancer research. There are two major research areas that are actively being pursued in the laboratory. The first research area is the development and testing of non-viral and nanoparticle-based gene delivery for cancer treatment, and the second research area is studying the antitumor and anti-angiogenic properties of IL-24. Our findings have lead to Phase I clinical trials for treatment of solid tumors.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Josh Ramsey, Ph.D.Image result for Josh Ramsey, Ph.D. okstate

Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering
School of Chemical Engineering
College of Engineering and Architecture
Oklahoma State University

Contact Information:
E-mail: josh.ramsey@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-5280
Office: Rm 423 Engineering North, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078

Learn More:
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Other    Research Support    Selected Publications

Research Interests:
Dr. Ramsey's lab focuses on designing nanocarriers for drug and gene delivery. Special emphasis is placed upon designing carriers that avoid immune inactivation, target specific cells, and transport the drug or gene into the target cell.

 
​Last Updated 11/06/19

Ashish Ranjan, Ph.D.

Associate Professor and Kerr Chair
Department of Physiological Sciences

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: ashish.ranjan@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-6292
Office: Rm 169, McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078

Learn More:
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Research Support    Selected Publications

Research Interests:
Cancer Immunotherapy, Nanomedicine and Drug Development, and Focused Ultrasound Mediated Non-Invasive Treatments of Chronic Diseases. 

​Last Updated 10/23/19

Charles V. Rice, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
University of Oklahoma
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: rice@ou.edu
Phone: 405-325-5831
Office: 
 
 
Research Interests:
At the University of Oklahoma, I lead a research group using NMR spectroscopy to answer questions relevant to vertical advancement in chemistry and biochemistry. These projects characterize molecular structures of both organic and inorganic materials using solid state nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. We are particularly interested in changes to prokaryotic molecular structures at different stages of the organism’s life cycle. For instance, we have extensively investigated the bacterial cell wall structure and interactions of cell wall components with the microbial external environment. These studies have focused on teichoic acid polymers and peptidoglycan with the cell wall of Gram-positive bacteria, in particular the absorption of essential minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and other metal cations. This work as allowed our group to gain expertise in skills that can contribute to the proposed work: bacterial cell culture and growth curves, SEM, TEM, and Fluorescence microscopy, sterilization assessment with colony forming units (CFUs). The new models of metal chelation by the bacterial cell wall build on prior work where we provided new models describing the effect of metal ion chelation on polymer hydrogels and polymer electrolytes. As a direct logical extension of information gained from studying metal chelation in the bacterial cell wall, these data led us to consider the biochemical structures as the basis for new approaches to kill bacterial pathogens. Gram-positive bacteria use anionic teichoic acid to chelate metals and we have been able to block this process with cationic polymers that displace metal ions from the teichoic acid sites. This led to the discovery that branched poly(ethylenimine) restores β-lactam antibiotic activity against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). We have worked with the University of Oklahoma intellectual property office to protect our invention with a patent.
 
 

Jerry William Ritchey, Ph.D., D.V.M., Immunopathology Core

Professor of Pathology
Department of Veterinary Pathobiology

College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University

Contact Information:
E-mail: jerry.ritchey@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-8219
Office: Rm 250 McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078

 
Research Interests:
Immunopathogenesis of infectious diseases and Pathology of the heart, lungs, and central nervous systems. 
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Valentin V. Rybenkov, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
College of Arts and Sciences
The University of Oklahoma
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: valya@ou.edu
Phone: 405-325-1677
Office: 101 Stephenson Parkway, The University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019
 
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Research Interests:
Our current research proceeds in three directions. First, we continue mechanistic exploration of condensins with the focus on their activity within its native substrate, the chromosome. Second, we develop single DNA nanomanipulation and microfluidics methods for studies of multi-component macromolecular assemblies with complex architectures. Third, we are engaged in drug discovery studies aimed at development of new antimicrobials against currently intractable and emerging pathogens.
 
 

Susan Schroeder, Ph.D.

Susan J. Schroeder
Associate Professor
Department of Chemistry and Biochemisty
Department of Microbiology and Plant Biology
College of Arts and Sciences 
University of Oklahoma
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: Susan.schroeder@ou.edu
Phone: 405-744-2158
Office: 101 Stephenson Parkway, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019
 
Read More:
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors     Research Support     Selected Publications

Research Interests:
My long-term research goal is to understand the fundamental physical interactions in RNA in order to predict RNA three-dimensional structures, functions, and drug targets from sequence. My lab probes structure-function relations in viral RNA and virus-host interactions using Illumina sequencing, chemical probing, nuclear magnetic resonance, crystallography, and UV optical melting, as well as a diverse array of biophysical, molecular biology, sequencing, and computational techniques.

 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Kenneth Michael Smith, Ph.D.

Research Assistant Member
Arthritis and Clinical Immunology Program
Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-271-3275
Office: Rm 5, Multiple Sclerosis Center, 825 N.E. 13th Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73104
 
Read More:
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Research Support     Selected Publications
 
Research Interests:
Our lab’s goal is the discovery and characterization of full length, fully human monoclonal antibodies cloned from single B cells after vaccination. We explore the use of these antibodies as novel therapeutics and diagnostics for infectious agents and also elucidate the B cell immunology which leads to these antibodies and the biology of the B cells that make them. Our primary focus is antibodies that bind to polysaccharide antigens, specifically from the Streptococcus pneumoniae (SPN) capsule. We are working to use these antibodies as novel treatments for severe pneumonia, as well as for diagnostics to both diagnose SPN infections and explore the epidemiology of SPN, for example, the distribution of antibiotic resistant and non-vaccine serotypes. We also have active projects producing and characterizing antibodies to anthrax toxins and rabies virus. We are developing new methods for characterizing monoclonal antibodies from patients with systemic lupus erythematosus. We are working to better understand the B cell immunology that leads to autoantibody production, epitope spreading and affinity maturation. We also explore aspects of general B cell immunology, including Vgene, light chain and isotype usage in immune responses to vaccination, infection, allergy and autoimmunity. Finally, we produce highly engineered antibody formats, such as bispecific antibodies and antibody-drug conjugates.

 

Timothy A. Snider, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Pathology
Department of Veterinary Pathobiology
College of Veterinary Medicine
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-744-0488
Office: 250 McElroy Hall, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
Read More:
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Other    Research Support    Selected Publications
 
Research Interests: 
 
 

Ramanjulu Sunkar, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-744-8496
Office: Rm 359, Noble Research Center, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078 
 
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Rodney K. Tweten, Ph.D.

OU Presidential ProfessorDr. Tweten
George Lynn Cross Research Professor
Department of Microbiology and Immunology 
Oklahoma University Health Sciences Center
 
Contact Information: 
Email: Rod-Tweten@ouhsc.edu 
Phone: 
Office: BRC 309, Oklahoma University Health Sciences Center, Norman, OK 73104
 
 
Research Interests: 
Our research centers on the study of the mechanism of pore-forming toxins and proteins from prokaryotic and eukaryotic sources. Our studies are focused on the pore-forming mechanisms of the cholesterol dependent cytolysins (CDCs) from various pathogenic bacteria and more recently the membrane attack complex/perforin (MACPF) family of proteins that are involved in immune defense, development and pathogenesis of eukaryotic pathogens. An intriguing characteristic of these proteins is the ability of these soluble proteins to make the transition to a homo-oligomeric pore-forming complex on the membrane of eukaryotic cells. The mechanism by which they accomplish this transition is complex and each protein family contributes unique aspects to this process. 
 
 

Mathew S. Walters, Ph.D. 

Matthew S. Walters, Ph.D
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine
Department of Medicine
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

Contact Information:
E-mail: Matthew-S-Walters@ouhsc.edu
Phone: 405-271-3803
Office: 800 N. Research Parkway, Rm 410, Oklahoma City, OK 73014

Read More:
Education    Academic Appointments     Awards and Honors    Other    Research Support    Selected Publications

Reasearch Interests: 
The major focus of my research program is to understand the cellular processes that regulate epithelial stem/progenitor cell fate decisions during repair and regeneration of the lung. Alterations in the normal ratio of differentiated epithelial cell types (defined as epithelial remodeling) are associated with multiple chronic lung diseases including asthma, cystic fibrosis (CF), idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). The overarching goal of my research is to identify signaling pathways that regulate differentiation of epithelial stem/progenitor cells into specific cell types thus providing novel targets for developing new therapies to treat chronic lung disease.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Jun Wang, Ph.D., PE, CIH, CSP, CoPH, OU

Assistant Professor
Laboratory for Aerosol Exposure Science and Engineering Control
Department of Occupational & Environmental Health
College of Public Health
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center

Contact Information:
E-mail: junwang@ou.edu
Website: http://laesec.org
Phone: 405-271-2070 ext. 46767
Fax: 405-271-1971
Office: Rm 425 College of Health Building, 801 NE 13TH ST, Oklahoma City, OK 73104


Read More:
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Research Support    Selected Publications

Research Interests:
My research interests range from studying the formation mechanism and measuring aerosol exposure in workplaces, examining the pulmonary toxicity of aerosols, developing the next generation engineering detection and control to reduce occupational inhalation exposure, and utilizing an interdisciplinary approach to solve public, environmental, and occupational health issues.

 
​Last Updated 10/31/19

Robert C. Welliver Sr., M.D.Image result for Robert C. Welliver Sr., M.D. ouhsc

Professor of Pediatrics
Children’s Hospital Foundation Hobbs-Recknagel Endowed Chair in Pediatrics
Chief, Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases
Children’s Hospital at University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
Department of Pediatrics
College of Medicine
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: robert-welliver@ouhsc.edu
Office: 1200 Children’s Avenue, Suite 12112, Oklahoma City, OK  73104
Phone 405-271-5703
Fax 405-271-2281
 
Read More:
Education   Academic Appointments   Awards and Honors   Research Support   Selected Publications

Research Areas:
Clinic: Pediatric infectious diseases; Research: RSV and influenza virus Infections

Last Updated 11/06/19

Kevin S. Wilson, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Email: kevin.s.wilson@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-6810
Office: 149 Noble Research Center, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
Read More:
Education      Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Research Support    Selected Publications 
 
Research Interests: 
In 2010, I spent a year as a visiting professor in Montreal, at McGill University in Professor Nahum Sonenberg’s lab. After that year, I returned to America and moved my lab to its heartland in Stillwater, Oklahoma, at Oklahoma State University. While in Alberta, my lab had developed along mechanistic themes of bacterial translation. During that decade, my interests in antibiotics and more applied research grew, partially because I was located in a medical school. My interests were also influenced by Professor Diane Taylor, a microbiologist who was studying antibiotic resistance of bacteria in my research building. Since arriving at Oklahoma State University in 2011, I am embarking on a major new chapter in research. My new students and I are excited by how bacteria become resistant to antibiotics, especially those that target the ribosome or associated translation factors. Our current projects originated when I was still in Alberta. A postdoctoral fellow, Nehal Thakor, worked in collaboration with Taylor’s and my lab. Nehal introduced my lab to Tet(O), a translation factor in Campylobacter jejuni that is homologous to EF-G and that confers resistance to tetracycline. This was an opportunity to study a common form of resistance of a pathogenic bacterium to an antibiotic that is widely used in medicine and agriculture.

​Last Updated 10/23/19

Karen Wozniak, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Department Microbiology and Molecular Genetics
College of Arts and Sciences
Oklahoma State University 
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: karen.wozniak@okstate.edu
Phone: 405-744-7914
Office: 405 Life Sciences East, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
 
Research Interests: 
Our lab is interested in studying the role of innate immune cells in protection against fungal infections, particularly their role in protection against the opportunistic fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans, which is the leading cause of fungal meningitis. Our current research focuses understanding the mechanisms of interaction between C. neoformans and dendritic cells (DCs) and macrophages, and understanding their role in the initial control of this infection.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Wenxin Wu, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Research
Department of Medicine
University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: Wenxin-Wu@ouhsc.edu
Phone: 405-271-1966
Office: Rm 425, URP1, 800 N. Research Pkwy., Oklahoma City, OK 73104
 
 
Research Interests:
My principal and long-term career goal is to develop efficient therapeutic tool for modulation of host innate immune response to pathogens, especially to influenza virus. Innate immune response is the first line of defensive strategies in human against attack of infectious agents. For most respiratory pathogens, the first local immediate response organ is lung. Two major components of the innate systems are cytokine/Chemokine defenses and cellular defenses. There is compelling evidence to suggest that cytokine and chemokine induction is important in the pathophysiology of influenza virus infection and the human response to this pathogen. Our work is to understand how cigarette smoking and secondhand smoke compromise the human innate immune system’s response to influenza virus infection, and to find novel methods to control the infection. Cigarette smoking suppresses the immune system, and smoking is a well-known major risk factor for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and respiratory tract infections. Epidemiological studies show that influenza infection is seven times more common and is much more severe in smokers than nonsmokers. We have set up several human models and mouse models to study cigarette smoking and its effects on the innate immune system.
 
​Last Updated 10/23/19

Lijun Xia, Ph.D.Image result for Lijun Xia, Ph.D.

Member and Program Chair, Cardiovascular Biology Research Program
Merrick Foundation Chair in Biomedical Research
Adjunct Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation
 
Contact Information:
E-mail: Lijun-Xia@omrf.org
Phone: 405-271-7892
Office: Mail Stop 45, Room 6203 Research Tower, 825 N.E. 13th Street, Oklahoma City, OK 73104 

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Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors   Other    Research Support    Selected Publications

 
Research Interests:
My research focuses on O-glycans, a sugar that your body makes. In my lab, we’ve found O-glycans are important in the development of the blood and lymphatic vascular system. Without this sugar, the body doesn’t know if it should grow blood vessels or pieces of the lymphatic system, or how to connect them properly. This can lead to many diseases such as cancer metastasis and fatty liver disease. We are working to understand how to prevent these potentially deadly conditions. My lab also studies the role of glycans on platelets, the smallest blood cell, in the formation of abnormal blood clots, which are the cause of common forms of heart attack and stroke. In patients with colitis and colorectal tumors, we’ve found that O-glycans are different than in patients with normal intestinal systems. So, we’re also exploring whether abnormalities of this sugar in the intestines might actually cause these diseases—in hopes of using the knowledge we gain to treat these intestinal diseases.

Xiangming Xiao, Ph.D.

Xiangming Xiao, PhD
Professor and Associate Director
Center for Spatial Analysis
Department of Microbiology and Plant Biology
College of Arts and Sciences
The University of Oklahoma 

Contact Information:
E-mail: xiangming.xiao@ou.edu
Phone: 405-325-8941
Office: Rm 2107, Stephenson Research and Technology Center, 101 David L. Boren Blvd, Norman, OK 73019

Learn More:
Education    Academic Appointments    Awards and Honors    Other    Research Support    Selected Publications

Research Interests:

Applications of remote sensing and GIS in ecosystems science and natural resources; land use and cover changes; ecosystem service assessment; biogeochemistry of terrestrial ecosystems; ecosystem modeling at large spatial scales; integrated impact assessment of climate change; ecology and epidemiology of infectious diseases.
 
 

Noha H. Youssef, Ph.D.

Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics
Department of Arts and Sciences
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Office: OSU Labs at Venture, 1110 South Innovation Way Drive, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74074
Office: 405-744-1192
Lab: 405-744-3193
Fax: 405-744-1112
E-mail: noha@okstate.edu
Website: http://youssef.okstate.edu
 
 
Research Interests: 
 
 

Guolong "Glenn" Zhang, Ph.D.Dr. Glenn Zhang

Professor
Boulware Endowed Chair
Department of Animal and Food Sciences
Oklahoma State University
 
Contact Information:
Phone: 405-744-8867
Office: 212D Animal Science, Oklahoma State Unversity, Stillwater, OK 74078
 
 
Research Interests:
Dr. Zhang is the research coordinator for our department. Dr. Zhang’s research has been focused on the manipulation of animal innate immunity and intestinal microbiota, with the long-term goal of developing novel antibiotic-free strategies to achieve optimal animal health and productivity. He has received over $6.5 million in grants to support his research while at OSU. He has authored 65 peer-reviewed publications in journals such as Science and Journal of Clinical Investigation. His papers have received nearly 6,600 citations currently with an H-index of 35.