Department of Physiology and Pharmacology

Program in Physiological Genomics

Physiological Genomics Lab (PGL) is part of the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology at the UToledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences. It is also part of the Center for Hypertension and Precision MedicinePGL utilizes an integrated approach of Genetics, Epigenetics, Genomics, Physiology of Model organisms and Bioinformatics to delineate the Genetic elements controlling blood pressure, dysfunctional actions of which may lead to the development of elevated blood pressure or hypertension.


Principal Investigator:

Bina Joe, PhD

Research Interest:

The Physiological Genomics Laboratory (Joe Lab) of the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology is focused on understanding the genetic components of pathophysiological conditions of the cardiovascular, renal and autoimmune systems.  The most prominent of all complex traits investigated in the Joe laboratory is blood pressure regulation. Rat models serve as valuable alternatives to human studies for the identification and characterization of genetic factors/genes. The main strategy is to identify the disease causative genetic factor/gene based on its location on the rat genome by linkage analysis and substitution mapping and/or gene expression and protein expression profiling using whole genome systems biology approaches.  We have identified at least 16 different genomic regions that harbor quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for hypertension in rats and successfully mapped several of these regions to unparalleled resolutions of a few kilobases.  Positional cloning projects have progressed to the identification of multiple novel genes as prominent BP QTLs in rats. Methodical mechanistic studies spanning from molecular to whole-organism physiology/pathophysiology are underway to determine the functional significance of the novel BP QTLs identified.  Genetic-engineering technologies such as the application of Crispr/Cas9 targeted gene disruption for creation of 'knock-out' and 'knock-in' rat models are also strategies integrated into our research for validation of the positionally cloned causal genetic biomarkers of blood pressure regulation.  Finally, the translational significance of our work is exemplified by the validation of the positionally cloned rat genes as being associated or linked with human hypertension.  The lab has also started focusing on the gut microbiome/microbiota and its link to salt-sensitive hypertension.

See a complete list of Dr. Joe's publications



Read Lab News and Announcements

Listen to Dr. Joe on the Academic Minute

Lab Members:


Blair Mell
Lab Manager
Manager of Physiological and Genomics Core Facility

Research Interest:
-The link between gut microbiota and salt-sensitive hypertension.
-Fine mapping 2 genomic regions on rat Chromosome 1 that harbor blood pressure QTLs.

Saroj Chakraborty

Saroj Chakraborty
Postdoctoral Fellow

Research Interest:

-Bile acid metabolism and hypertension.

-Chronotherapeutic approach to treat hypertension.

-Ketone body as a regulator for salt-sensitive hypertension.


Tao Yang
Assistant Professor

Research Interest:
- the brain-gut axis in regulation of blood pressure
- interaction between gut microbiota and anti-hypertensive drug

Current Trainees:

 aryal Sachin Aryal
Research Interest:
-Microbiology and genomics research using bioinformatics tools.
Juthika Juthika Mandal
Research Interest:

-Amino acid metabolism in blood pressure regulation.
-Role of holobiont derived metabolites in circadian control of blood pressure.

 manandhar Ishan Manandhar
Research Interest:

-Role of microbiota in inflammatory bowel disease and human health
-Application of bioinformatics in biomarker identification and better understanding of human diseases

mei Xue Mei
Research Interest:

-Microbiota and the gut brain axis in blood pressure regulation.




Graduate Students:

  • Saroj Chakravarti Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2016-2020 Ph.D.
  • Ahmad Alimadadi Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2019-2020 Ph.D. 
  • Sarah McMasters Galla Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2016-MD/Ph.D. Completed Ph.D. 2019
  • Muhtasham Sifaat Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2017-2018 MS/BS 
  • Youjie (Eric) Zhang, Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2014-2018 Ph.D.
  • Naveena Luke Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2017 MS/BS (ongoing)
  • Barbara Konku, Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2016-2017 MS/BS
  • Ying Nie, Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2011-2015 Ph.D
  • Resmi Pillai, Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2011- 2015 Ph.D
  • Harshal Waghulde, Department of Physiology and Pharmacology 2012-2016 Ph.D
  • Edward Toland, Department of Physiology, Pharmacology, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Sciences 2005-2009 Ph.D.
  • Seema Dhindaw, Department of Physiology, Pharmacology, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Sciences 2004-2007 MS. 
  • Jagannath Saikumar, Department of Physiology, Pharmacology, Metabolism and Cardiovascular Sciences 2006-2008 MS. 
  • Michael Bush-Arnold, MS/BS student, UT College of Medicine. Completed in Aug 2009
  • Dipali Nemade, MPH Research, UT College of Medicine. Completed in June 2013

Post Doctoral Fellows:

  • Suresh Koneshwaran, Cardiology fellow at UTHSC (2007)
  • Kathirvel Gopalakrishnan (2008- 2011)
  • Sivarajan Kumarasamy (2009-2014)
  • Jayakumar Thangavel (2009-2010)
  • Shakila Abdul-Majeed (2011- 2013)
  • Cameron McCarthy (2019-2021)
  • Tao Yang (2019-2021)

Research Assistant Professors:

  • Yasser Saad, Ph.D. (2005-2006, 2007-2008)
  • Kathirvel Gopalakrishnan (2011-2014)
  • Sivarajan Kumarasamy (2014-2016)

Summer Undergraduate Students:

  • Steven Ummel, 2004 SURF program, MUO
  • Sapna Shah 2005, SURF program, MUO
  • Diona Grefer 2005, SURF program, MUO
  • Heidi Haufmann 2006, SURF program, UTHSC
  • Amal Dudar 2006, UTHSC

MD/PhD Rotation Students:

  • Joseph Lee, 2014
  • Sarah McMasters Galla, 2014


  • Nelish Ardeshna: Nelish is now pursuing his Internal Medicine residency at U of M. 
  • Stephanie Clark: currently in Medical School at the University of Toledo.

 Summer Research for Educators:

  • Jeremy Nixon, Teacher, Springfield High School; 2009 and 2012 IMAGINE 2 Program funded by Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI).
  • Tamra Bacon, Teacher, Toledo Public School; 2010 IMAGINE 2 Program (HHMI)
  • Anthony Schiciano, Teacher, Ursula High School; 2011 IMAGINE 2 Program (HHMI)
  • Jeremy Nixon, Teacher, Ottawa Hills High School; 2012 IMAGINE 2 Program funded by Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI).

Contact Us:

Physiological Genomics Lab
Block Health Science Bldg., MS #1008
Department of Physiology and Pharmacology
University of Toledo College of Medicine and Life Sciences
3000 Transverse Drive
Toledo, OH 43614-2598
Tel (Lab): 419-383-5174

  facebook logo

Last Updated: 6/27/22