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Research Lab Results for aging

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  • Andrew Feinberg Laboratory

    Lab Website
    Principal Investigator:
    Andrew Feinberg, M.D., M.P.H.
    Medicine

    The Feinberg Laboratory studies the epigenetic basis of normal development and disease, includi...ng cancer, aging and neuropsychiatric illness. Early work from our group involved the discovery of altered DNA methylation in cancer as well as common epigenetic (methylation and imprinting) variants in the population that may be responsible for a significant population-attributable risk of cancer.

    Over the last few years, we have pioneered the field of epigenomics (i.e., epigenetics at a genome-scale level), founding the first NIH-supported NIH epigenome center in the country and developing many novel tools for molecular and statistical analysis. Current research examines the mechanisms of epigenetic modification, the epigenetic basis of cancer, the invention of new molecular, statistical, and epidemiological tools for genome-scale epigenetics and the epigenetic basis of neuropsychiatric disease, including schizophrenia and autism.
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    Research Areas: autism, cancer, epigenetics, schizophrenia, human development, aging, DNA, genomics, neuropsychiatric disease
  • Brain Health Program

    Lab Website

    The Brain Health Program is a multidisciplinary team of faculty from the departments of neurolo...gy, psychiatry, epidemiology, and radiology lead by Leah Rubin and Jennifer Coughlin. In the hope of revealing new directions for therapies, the group studies molecular biomarkers identified from tissue and brain imaging that are associated with memory problems related to HIV infection, aging, dementia, mental illness and traumatic brain injury. The team seeks to advance policies and practices to optimize brain health in vulnerable populations while destigmatizing these brain disorders.

    Current and future projects include research on: the roles of the stress response, glucocorticoids, and inflammation in conditions that affect memory and the related factors that make people protected or or vulnerable to memory decline; new mobile apps that use iPads to improve our detection of memory deficits; clinical trials looking at short-term effects of low dose hydrocortisone and randomized to 28 days of treatment; imaging brain injury and repair in NFL players to guide players and the game; and the role of inflammation in memory deterioration in healthy aging, patients with HIV, and other neurodegenerative conditions.
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    Research Areas: HIV infection, mental illness, aging, traumatic brain injury, dementia
  • J. Marie Hardwick Laboratory

    Lab Website

    Our research is focused on understanding the basic mechanisms of programmed cell death in disea...se pathogenesis. Billions of cells die per day in the human body. Like cell division and differentiation, cell death is also critical for normal development and maintenance of healthy tissues. Apoptosis and other forms of cell death are required for trimming excess, expired and damaged cells. Therefore, many genetically programmed cell suicide pathways have evolved to promote long-term survival of species from yeast to humans. Defective cell death programs cause disease states. Insufficient cell death underlies human cancer and autoimmune disease, while excessive cell death underlies human neurological disorders and aging. Of particular interest to our group are the mechanisms by which Bcl-2 family proteins and other factors regulate programmed cell death, particularly in the nervous system, in cancer and in virus infections. Interestingly, cell death regulators also regulate many other cellular processes prior to a death stimulus, including neuronal activity, mitochondrial dynamics and energetics. We study these unknown mechanisms.

    We have reported that many insults can trigger cells to activate a cellular death pathway (Nature, 361:739-742, 1993), that several viruses encode proteins to block attempted cell suicide (Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 94: 690-694, 1997), that cellular anti-death genes can alter the pathogenesis of virus infections (Nature Med. 5:832-835, 1999) and of genetic diseases (PNAS. 97:13312-7, 2000) reflective of many human disorders. We have shown that anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins can be converted into killer molecules (Science 278:1966-8, 1997), that Bcl-2 family proteins interact with regulators of caspases and regulators of cell cycle check point activation (Molecular Cell 6:31-40, 2000). In addition, Bcl-2 family proteins have normal physiological roles in regulating mitochondrial fission/fusion and mitochondrial energetics to facilitate neuronal activity in healthy brains.
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    Research Areas: cell death
  • Katherine Wilson Lab

    Principal Investigator:
    Katherine Wilson, Ph.D.
    Cell Biology

    Research in the Wilson Lab focuses on three components of nuclear lamina structure: lamins, LEM...-domain proteins (emerin), and BAF.

    These three proteins all bind each other directly, and are collectively required to organize and regulate chromatin, efficiently segregate chromosomes and rebuild nuclear structure after mitosis. Mutations in one or more of these proteins cause a variety of diseases including Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy (EDMD), cardiomyopathy, lipodystrophy and diabetes, and accelerated aging.

    We are examining emerin's role in mechanotransduction, how emerin and lamin A are regulated, and whether misregulation contributes to disease.
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    Research Areas: cell biology, Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy (EDMD), accelerated aging, chromatin, diabetes, genomics, emerin, nuclear lamina, lipodystrophy, cardiomyopathy
  • Peter Abadir Lab

    Principal Investigator:
    Peter Abadir, M.D.
    Medicine

    Research in the Peter Abadir Lab focuses on the renin-angiotensin system (RAS), a signaling pat...hway that regulates blood pressure and has been linked independently to both aging and inflammation. We’re particularly interested in changes in RAS that occur with aging. We also study signal transduction and the role of the crosstalk between angiotensin II receptor in aging and are interested in understanding the function of angiotensin II in the process of vascular aging. view more

    Research Areas: renin-angiotensin system, aging, inflammation, gerontology
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