Department of Physiology and Pharmacology

2008 News

November 13, 2008: Department meets for dinner to celebrate the retirement of Dr. Doug Wilkerson

Dr. Askari reviews Doug's long history with the department and institution, which included a successful research career, teaching of pharmacology and as head of Research and Grants Administration overseeing and assisting faculty throughout the instituion in gaining research grants (see below).


Left: Doug admiring one of the gifts presented to him, a water color painting by Paul Brand, PhD, a well-known local artist, who also happens to be a long-time member of our department.  Right: Eddie Sanchez, Paul Brand and Pat Metting


October 2, 2008: Wilkerson and Xie receive awards at Annual Faculty Recognition Dinner

RD Wilkerson zx

Dr. Doug Wilkerson received a career achievemnt award.  He joined the Pharmacology Department in 1979.  Since 1991, he has promoted research in the institution as Vice-President for Research Administration and more recently added the duties of Associate Dean for Graduate Studies in the College of Medicine.  Despite his many responsiblities, he has always reserved time to teach pharmacokinetics and cardiovascular pharmacology to medical students.  Dr. Wilkerson will retire in January.  Congratulations Doug, the department wishes you the best for the next phase of your life and thanks you for all you have done over the years.  See UTNews article Oct 13, 2008

Dr. ZiJian Xie received the College of Medicine Award for Sustained Research (see below) for his work on the role of the Na+/K+ ATPase in signal transduction independent of its role as the cell's "sodium pump".  Congratulations and well done Jian!

Dr. ZiJian Xie receives the Award for Sustained Research from Dr. Jeffrey Gold, Dean of the College of Medicine


Dr. Bina Joe receives NIH Grant to Support Hypertension Research

Dr. Bina Joe, UT Associate Professor of Physiology and Pharmacology on the Health Science Campus, has received a four-year, $1.62 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to continue investigating genetics of high blood pressure.  Known as “the silent killer,” hypertension shows few warning signs, but it can lead to serious, life-threatening illnesses such as permanent damage to arteries, blocked or ruptured blood vessels in the brain causing a stroke, and heart failure.  Dr. Joe's award was reported in the UTNEWS (Sept. 8, 2008 Vol 9, Issue 3).

Dr. Bina Joe


September 10, 2008: Yiliang Chen wins the Retirees' Scholarship Award

Congratulations to Yiliang Chen!  Yiliang was selected from among the CVMD students to receive the 2008 Retirees' Scholarhip award.  The award is given to the best overall student in each of the four biomedical research tracks.  Each winner will receive $250.

The winners in the other graduate tracks were:

Goleeta Alam, (CB)
Miao Chen, (IIT)
Tyler Hendershot, (NND)

Yiliang Chen (right) with his advisor Dr. ZiJian Xie after receiving the news


September 4, 2008: Zhichuan Li successfully defends his dissertation

Congratulations to Zhichuan Li who successfully defended his Doctor of Physiology dissertation in Biomedical Sciences (Concentration in Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases) on September 4.  The title of his dissertation was the Na/K-ATPase Signaling:  from Bench to Bedside.  Zhichuan gave an excellent presentation of his very interesting project. 

        Zhichuan Li and Dr. Zi-Jian Xie


June 27, 2008: The 35th Annual Pharmacology Colloquium in Ann Arbor

Thirty-five students and 6 faculty members of the Physiology and Pharmacology Department and CVMD graduate track attended the 35th Annual Pharmacology Research Colloquium held this year in the Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.  This colloquium brings together graduate students and faculty from the “pharmacology” departments of the Michigan State University, the University of Michigan, Wayne State University, and the University of Toledo, College of Medicine for a day long scientific program.  This year faculty from the four schools judged the posters and talks.  Five out of the 6 selected finalists among the posters were students from the CVMD track.  These were Zhichuan Li in ZiJian Xie's lab, Sima Rahman in Beata Lecka-Czernik's lab, Gargi Roy in Robert Wang's lab, Katye Smedland in Guillermo Vazquez lab, and Cory Stebal in Sandrine Pierre's lab.  Congratulations to all of you!  As icing on the cake, Gargi Roy was awarded first place and will recieve a check for $300 and an enscribed plaque will be sent to display in the department until next year when the colloquium will be held at Wayne State university in Detroit.  (More details and pictures of the event)  




Congratulations! to Dr. Kathirvel Gopalakrishnan

Dr. Gopalakrishnan's abstract has been selected for a oral presentation in "Trainee Highlights in Physiological Genomics" at Experimental Biology 2010 in Anaheim, CA. This special session is sponsored by the Physiological Genomics Interest Group of the American Physiological Society. The session will be held on April 27, 2010.  Dr. Gopalakrishnan is a postdoctoral Researcher in Dr. Bina Joe's laboratory.

Congratulations! to Dr. Kathirvel Gopalakrishnan

Dr. Gopalakrishnan's abstract has been selected for a platform oral presentation at the CSHL Meeting - Rat Genomics and Models at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.  The abstract entitled “Alleles of a S.LEW congenic rat spanning 320.6KB further increase the BP of the hypertensive Dahl S rat - Evidence for Rffl and/or two miRNAs as potential QTL effectors”.  The meeting will be held Wednesday, December 12 through Saturday December 5, 2009.   Dr. Gopalakrishnan is a postdoctoral Researcher in Dr. Bina Joe's laboratory.

Congratulations! to Dr. Paromita Das

Paromita Das, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow submitted an abstract to the Neuropharmacology Division Postdoctoral Award Competition has been selected for presentation at the EB09 meeting in New Orleans in the Neuropharmacology Division Postdoctoral Scientists Award Finalists Session to be held on Tuesday, April 21 from 2:30-5:00 PM in the New Orleans Convention Center.    A panel of judges will select the 3  best presentations. The winners will be announced at the Neuropharmacology Division mixer which will follow the Session and will receive cash awards.  Dr. Das works with Dr. Elizabeth Tietz.

Congratulations! to Hussein Bagalb

Hussein successfully defended his M.S.B.S. degree entitled: "Cellular and Molecular Biological Studies of Breast Milk Transmitted Retrovirus Induced Lymphomagensis in a Mouse Model" on September 15, 2008.  Hussein's advisor is Dr. Joana Chakraborty.


Congratulations! to Damien Earl

Damien Earl, M.D./Ph.D. candidate, along with two other Ph.D. candidates (Trisha Dwyer and Liping Wang) have a review paper in the prestigious Journal of Neuroscience, the official periodical of the Society of Neuroscience, entitled "The Utility of a New In Vitro Model of the Stroke Penumbra".  Damien is working on his Ph.D. studies with Dr. Elizabeth Tietz.

Congratulations! to Payal Patel

Payal Patel, Ph.D. candidate, in Dr. Sonia Najjar's lab presented a poster entitled, "A novel role for CEACAM1 in the regulation of insulin action by dietary fat", at the Endocrine Society's 90th Annual Meeting in San Francisco, June 15-18, 2008.

Congratulations! to Jehnan Liu

Jehnan Liu, M.D./Ph.D. candidate, in Dr. Sonia Najjar's lab had his abstract entitled  "CEACAM2: A Protective Role Against Diet Induced Insulin Resistance" accepted for presentation as a poster at the American Diabetes Association (ADA) 68th Scientific Session, June 6-10, 2008 in San Francisco, California. 


Congratulations! to Carmen Quatman

Carmen Quatman, a fourth-year M.D./Ph.D. candidate, has received a $5,000 grant from the American College of Sports Medicine Foundation to further develop a mathematical model to learn more about the biomechanics of ACL injuries and to determine why women are more susceptible to ACL tears that can sideline athletes for up to one year.  Carmen is working on the study with Dr. Vijay Goel, adjunct professor of orthopedic surgery, the McMaster-Gardner Professor of Orthopedic Bioengineering, and co-director of the Engineering Center for Orthopedic Research Excellence on the Main and Health Science campuses.  Carmen is working on her Ph.D. studies in Dr. Sonia Najjar's lab.

Congratulations! to Gargi Roy

Gargi Roy, Ph.D. Candidate, in Xiaodong (Robert) Wang's lab was awarded first place at the 35th Annual Pharmacology Colloquium at the University of Michigan (June 27, 2008).  She recieved a check for $300 and an enscribed plaque will be sent to display in the department until next year when the colloquium will be held at Wayne State university in Detroit.

Congratulations! to Edward Toland

Ed Toland, Ph.D. Candidate, was selected and gave an oral presentation at the 7th Annual Meeting of the Complex Trait Consortium, May 31-June 3, 2008, Montreal, Canada.  His presentation was entitled "Multiple Quantitative Trait Loci on Rat Chromosome 9 in which Spontaneously Hypertensive Rat Alleles Confer a Reduction in Blood Pressure of a Salt-Sensitive Model" Dr. Bina Joe (Major Advisor).
Congratulations! Dr. Askari

Dr. Amir Askari, Professor and Chairman, was recipient of the Graduate School's Alumni Award of Distinction at Cornell University, Thursday, May 29, 2008 when the Weill Cornell Medical College and Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences held commencement exercises at Manhattan's famed Carnegie Hall.
Congratulations! to Garrett Heinrich

Garrett Heinrich, Ph.D. Candidate, in Dr. Sonia Najjar's lab (CeDER) has been awarded a Predoctoral Fellowship from Great Rivers Affiliate Research Committee of the American Heart Association (AHA), the application is entitled, "CEACAM2: A Novel Mechanism of Diabetes and Complications" (July 2007 - June 2009).
Congratulations! to Jehnan Liu

Jehnan Liu, M.D./Ph.D. Candidate, in Dr. Sonia Najjar's lab (CeDER) has been awarded the Physician Scientist Training Award for the application, "CEACAM2: A Novel Mechanism of Diabetes and Complications" from the American Diabetes Association.

Congratulations! to Eric E. Morgan, Ph.D.
Eric E. Morgan, Ph.D. was awarded the 2008 Caroline tum Suden/Francis Hellebrandt Professional Opportunity Award at the Experimental Biology Meeting. Dr. Morgan (left) is shown receiving this award from Jane F. Reckelhoff, Ph.D, Chair of the Women in Physiology Committee. The Caroline tum Suden Professional Opportunity Award is a fellowship that enabled Dr. Morgan to present his work at the Experimental Biology Meeting in San Diego this April 5-9, 2008 and an article was recently published in The Physiologist 51(4):141, 2008. He presented a poster entitled “In vivo assessment of resting and catecholamine stimulated cardiac function in rat models of low and high aerobic running capacity.” These experiments were conducted in Dr. George Cicila’s laboratory in the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology while Dr. Morgan was a medical student. Dr. Morgan is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Cardiovascular Physiology Core Laboratory of the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, working under Dr. Sandrine Pierre.

Congratulations! to Tanoya Harris

Tanoya Harris, Ph.D. candidate has been awarded a 3-year graduate student fellowship award suppported by NIH and sponsored by Dr. Zi-Jian Xie (Major Advisor).

Last Updated: 8/9/17