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Alumni News 2010

Jeremy Lavine defended his thesis and is now completing the MD portion of his MD/PhD degree. He has decided to go into ophthalmology. Summer Raines defended her thesis and is now a post-doctoral fellow at the University of New Mexico in a special program that provides mentoring in teaching. She is learning yeast genetics and hopes to develop undergraduate yeast projects in her teaching career.

Michelle Kimple joined the lab as an Associate Scientist after a post-doctoral term at Duke University. She works on G-proteins and their regulation of insulin secretion. Brendan Floyd, a MD/PhD student, joined the lab and, together with Lyndsae Schneider and Angie Oler, is studying the role of Sorcs1 in diabetes and diabetes complications. This is a gene that we positionally cloned in a genetic study and is now taking center stage for its role in Alzheimer’s Disease and diabetic nephropathy, in addition to its role in diabetes. We expect our knockout mouse model to deliver exciting insights into the function of this protein.

Chen-Yu Wang is working closely with Donnie Stapleton on a gene for hepatic steatosis, a disorder that affects ~20% of the US population. They have identified a gene and found a polymorphism that may be causative for the disease.

Sushant Bhatnagar, Angie Oler, Mary Rabaglia, and Sara Worzella have found a gene that negatively regulates insulin secretion. They are studying how post-translational modification of the protein regulates its activity.

Kathy Schueler keeps everything in check with her great dedication to the maintenance of all our mutant and congenic strains.

Muffi Soni is working on a project to understand how micro-RNAs regulate insulin secretion. He has some exciting clues related to fatty acid metabolism.

Mark Keller has taken on a co-director role in the lab, helping Alan to manage our many projects and collaborations. He has developed several new projects through insightful mining of our vast database of genomics and genetics from our large-scale studies. Alan is extremely grateful to have a partner to manage a complex project portfolio.

Jaap Twisk and Trine Ranheim recently visited the lab from Holland and Norway, respectively. It’s hard to believe how many years have transpired since they were in the lab. Trine is working on cancer in Oslo and Jaap works on a gene therapy project at a company in Amsterdam.