College of Graduate Studies

Cardiovascular Biology

Donald R. Menick, Ph.D. - Division Director

The Cardiovascular Biology Division is made up of over thirty faculty members from basic science and clinical departments with the goal of training students for careers as independent investigators studying the molecular and cellular aspects of cardiovascular physiology and disease. One of the medical triumphs of the latter half of the twentieth century is the remarkable advancement that has been made in the diagnosis and treatment of heart disease. Despite these advances, cardiovascular disease still remains the most common fatal and disabling disorder in the United States. Over the last two decades we have made tremendous progress in our understanding of the molecular aspects of biology. Now we have the opportunity to use these new and powerful molecular tools to explore complex biological systems, such as the heart.

The research focus of the Cardiovascular Biology Division is to find bold new approaches to aid our understanding, diagnosis and treatment of heart disease. Some areas of research interests in this program include gene regulation in heart development, differentiation and disease, regulation of cardiovascular function and metabolism, regulation of muscle contraction and protein turnover, and signal tranduction pathways in development and disease.

The Cardiovascular Biology Division is one of the divisions of the Molecular and Cellular Biology Program. Students who have satisfactorily completed the First Year Curriculum are qualified to enter the program. During their second and third year, students will complete at least 12 semester hours of advanced course work. Six of these units will be taken from courses offered in the Cardiovascular Biology Division. Courses cover topics such as signal transduction, gene expression, genetic engineering and gene therapy, and genetics and development of the cardiovascular system. The remaining units may be chosen from any of the Graduate Program courses. In addition, students will participate in the Cardiovascular journal club.


Cardiovascular Biology Course Descriptions

MCBP - 762 Cardiovascular Developmental Mechanisms
This course will provide a current multidisciplinary view of the processes governing embryonic development. It will consist of four major sections: (1) the morphological and molecular events underlying organ formation in multiple model organisms (fly, fish, frog, bird, mouse, and human); (2) gene regulation of developmental processes, including axis formation, embryonic patterning and cell lineage determination; (3) cell biology of the embryo, including a discussion of stem cells, cell migration, apoptosis, cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions; and (4) an in-depth examination of selected organ systems (brain, cardiovascular system, and limb). The course is intended for graduate students.
This Course will be taught every other year in the fall.
3 units
Course Director: Yukiko Sugi, PhD

MCBP-728 Integrative Biology of the Cardiovascular System
This course is designed to build on the Receptors and Signaling and Systems Biology units of the first year curriculum for Ph.D. students to provide the students with an in depth understanding of the structure, function and integration of the cardiovascular system at the human and whole animal levels and the assessment of cardiovascular function in whole animal models including transgenic animals. Current concepts of the cell and molecular biology bases of cardiovascular function, dysfunction and responsiveness to therapeutic interventions will be explored. Course faculty include investigators from Adult Cardiology, Adult Endocrinology, Cell Biology and Anatomy, Pharmacology, Physiology and Neuroscience and Surgery. Relevant material will be addressed through a combination of lectures, discussion of papers from the literature and problem solving exercises (open book).
3 credit hours
Course Directors: Lindenmayer & Webb
Offered in Fall Semester of alternate years.

MCBP-739 The Molecular Basis of Cardiovascular Disease
This course is designed to highlight the advances in cardiovascular science and medicine which will soon form the foundation for novel diagonstic, prognostic and therapeutic approaches to treating heart disease. Over the past decade a growing number of genes, receptors, channels and signaling factors have been shown to play a role in cardiovascular disorders. This course will examine the new approaches and technology that are being utilized to identify the molecular mechanism that these factors play in cardiovascular function and disease. We will discuss the power of utilizing molecular genetics to unravel heart diseases. We will also look at advances in our understanding of cardiovascular development, and electrophysiology. We will also discuss how new breakthroughs in tissue engineering may allow for the replacement of diseased myocardium. The course will also include sections on vascular biology and atherogenesis.
3 credit hours.
Offered Spring Semester of alternate years.

PATH-792 Anatomy, Histology and Histopathology of the Laboratory Mouse
This course is offered as an elective course during the first three weeks of the summer semester. The anatomy, histology, and histopathology of the laboratory mouse will be presented. Emphasis will be placed on differences between human and mouse so future investigators who may use a mouse model of human disease will understand approaches to developing new modes as well as limitations of a given model. Lectures will present anatomy, histology, basic principles of pathobiology and unique mouse pathology. Lab sessions will be used to demonstrate the proper way to perform a pathological examination on properly euthanized animals. Tutorials using glass and virtual slides will be included. Students will learn and execute a necropsy (term for post-mortem examination in veterinary medicine) of the mouse. Two Genetically Engineered Mouse (GEM) models will be introduced by Drs. Awgulewitsch and Spyropoulos at the end of the course to reinforce the significance of understanding differences between mouse and human anatomy, histology, and pathology. Due to the brevity of the course, only a limited number of pathological entities will be included. 3 credit hours. Prerequisite: PATH 789, Graduate Histology: Introduction to Pathology, or CELL 609: Medical Histology, or by permission of the course directors.
Robert W. Olilvie, Ph.D. (ogilvieb@musc.edu), Kristi L. Helke, DVM, Ph.D. (helke@musc.edu)

MCBP - 782 Cardiovascular Biology Journal Club
The Cardiovascular Biology Journal Club course is designed to highlight the advances in cardiovascular science and medicine that will soon form the foundation for novel diagnostic, prognostic and therapeutic approaches to treating heart disease. Publications will be presented by the students weekly, which address current concepts of the cell and molecular biology bases of cardiovascular function, dysfunction and responsiveness to therapeutic interventions. Students, postdoctoral fellows and faculty who will take part in the weekly discussion include investigators from adult cardiology, adult Endocrinology, Cell Biology and Anatomy, Pharmacology, and Surgery.

Credits: 1.00 CEUs
Academic Level: PD - Doctorate

Cardiovascular Journal Club
Director - Sundaravadivel Balasubramanian, Ph.D.
Phone - 876-5065
Email - balasubr@musc.edu
Fall 2013 Schedule: "Fridays, 8:30am - 9:30am"
Bioengineering Building, room 201

Cardiovascular Training Grant Retreat


Cardiovascular Biology Faculty

Zsolt Ablonczy, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Ophthalmology
RPE Cell Biology, age-related muscular degeneration, mass spectrometry

W. Scott Argraves, Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Extracellular matrix (ECM) biology

Sundaravadivel Balasubramanian. Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Cardiology
Integrin, mTOR, Cytoskeletal Signaling

Craig Beeson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Drug Discovery and Biomedical Science
Myocardial bioenergetics and protection from ischemia/reperfusion cell damage

Amy Bradshaw, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Medicine
Function of Collagen and Extracellular Matrix in the Heart

Maria G. Buse, M.D.
Professor, Division of Endocrinology
Complications of diabetes, cell and hormonal regulation

Julie Chao, M.S., Ph.D.
Professor
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Cardiovascular remodeling, hypertrophy, fibrosis, and angiogenesis

Lee Chao, Ph.D.
Professor, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Eukaryotic gene structure, function, regulation, and evolution

L. Ashley Cowart, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Role of sphingolipids in diabetic cardiomyopathy

Craig Crosson, Ph.D.
Professor and Vice Chairman for Research
Department of Ophthalmology
Ischemia & neovascularization

Rosalie K. Crouch, Ph.D.
Professor of Ophthalmology and Biochemistry
Rhodopsin as a model for G-protein receptors

Thomas A. Dix, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
College of Pharmacy
SCCP Drug Discovery and Biomedical Sciences
Design and Development of New Drugs Targeting Stroke

Christopher J. Drake, Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Mechanism regulating the formation of the endocardium and the coronary vasculature

Monika Gooz, M.D., Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Medicine
Disintegrin and Metalloenzymes (ADAMs) in Angiogenesis

Perry Halushka, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor
Director, Medical Scientist Training Program
Regulation of expression and structural characterization of thromboxane A2 receptors

Samar M. Hammad, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Sphingolipid signaling induced by modified LDL and LDL-immune complexes in human macrophages: relevance to inflammation and atheroscleroisis

Stanley R. Hoffman, Ph.D.
Professor
Rheumatology/Immunology
Function of specific ECM proteins and MMP's in epithelial-mesenchymal transformation & blood vessel formation

Yan Huang, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor of Medicine
Endocrinology
Atherosclerosis

Walter Huda, Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Radiology and Radiological Science
Radiation exposure in medical imaging

Michael Kern, Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Developmental and disease consequences of the cardiac specific post-transcriptional regulation of homeobox transcription.

Steven W. Kubalak, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Cell and molecular biology of the developing heart

Dhandapani Kuppuswamy, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology
Integrin dependent and independent signaling events triggered during hypertrophic cardiac growth

John Lazarchick, M.D.
Professor
Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Role of the vascular endothelium in thrombotic thrombocytopenia purpura and heccp syndro

John J. Lemasters, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor
CoEE Endowed Chair in Advanced Cellular Technologies
College of Pharmacy/Drug Discovery and Biomedical Science
Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy
Cellular and Molecular Mechanisms of apoptosis and necrosis

Maria F. Lopes-Virella, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor
Endocrinology
Cell activation in the development of atherosclerosis & plaque rupture, and inflammation & immune mechanisms in atherosclerosis & acute cardiac events

Roger R. Markwald, Ph.D.
Professor and Chairman
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Cardiac morphogenesis

Paul J. McDermott, Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology
Cardiac hypertrophy, protein synthesis, and translation

Donald R. Menick, Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Medicine, Division of Cardiology
Structure and function of the Na+/Ca++ exchanger and transcriptional regulation in the heart

Thomas A. Morinelli, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Pharmacology
Angiotensin II signal-transduction
    

Robin C. Muise-Helmericks, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Hollings Cancer Institute
Role of the Ets family of transcription factors in angiogenesis and lymphoid development

Terrence O'Brien, M.D.
Professor of Medicine (Cardiology) Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Transcriptional regulation in models of cardiac hypertrophy & molecular biology of conduction system cardiomyocytes

David W. Ploth, M.D.
Professor, Endowed Chair
Division of Nephrology
Role of mechanisms of altered renal function in hypertension state, particularly the role of the angiotensin system in renal hypertension

Chandrakala Puligilla, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Pathology & Laboratory Medicine
Molecular Induction, Cellular Fate Specification and Patterning of the Mammalian Auditory System

Ann F. Ramsdell, Ph.D.
Adjunct Associa Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Morphogenetic and molecular mechanisms that direct generation of cardiac left-right asymmetry

Michael G. Schmidt, B.S., M.A., Ph.D.
Professor
Microbiology and Immunology
Role of chlamydia pneumoniae in cardiovascular disease

U. Joseph Schoepf.M.D.
Professor
Department of Radiology and Radiological Science
Clinical cardio-thoracic imaging
  
Bryan Toole , Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Role of hyaluronan and emmprin in angiogenesis, atherosclerosis, and cardiovascular development, especially cushion formation

Xuejun Wen, M.D., Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Stem cell biology, cardiovascular tissue engineering and regenerative medicine
   

Andy Wessels, Ph.D.
Professor
Department of Regenerative Medicine and Cell Biology
Cardiovascular Developmental Biology Center
Cardiovascular Development

 
 
 

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