|Title||Research Assistant Professor|
|Institution||School of Medicine and Dentistry|
|Department||Microbiology and Immunology|
|Address||University of Rochester Medical Center|
School of Medicine and Dentistry
601 Elmwood Ave, Box 672
Rochester NY 14642
|Title||Assistant Professor of Clinical|
|Institution||School of Nursing|
My current focus is on understanding of neuropathology related to HIV-1 infection (NeuroAIDS). I am looking at the role of vascular dysfunction as a possible cause of neuronal dysfunction leading to cognitive deficit. One additional aspect of this work concerns short term and long term effects of methamphetamine exposure, in combination with HIV virotoxin. The main model I use for these studies is a mouse expressing HIV-1 virotoxin Tat in brain under an inducible promoter. I use two-photon microscopy to visualize 3D structure of cerebral vasculature in vivo and ex vivo, and laser Doppler flowmetry to detect changes in cerebral blood flow.
Another aspect of NeuroAIDS is developing a therapeutic molecule to counteract HIV-1 related neuroinflammation. I am part of the team (lead by Drs. Dewhurst and Gelbard) which develops such a molecule, an inhibitor of Mixed Lineage Kinase 3 (MLK3). MLK3 is an upstream kinase which mediates both microglia activation and neuronal degradation, therefore its inhibition might alleviate inflammation-mediated neuronal dysfunction.
The MLK3 studies lead me to discovering the role of MLK3 in neutrophil migration. I am studying possible implication of MLK3 inhibition in sepsis, since neutrophils play an important role in this condition.
I earned Ph.D. from Institute of Medical Genetics (Moscow, Russia), then worked in Molecular Neurobiology Branch in NIDA/NIH, in Dr. Uhl lab. My research was focused on studying changes in genome which are associated with complex disorders, such as schizophrenia and drug abuse. My postdoctoral research in George Mason University in Dr. Fryxell's lab was related to the biology of drug abuse, focusing on the expression changes caused in brain of adolescent rats by exposure to nicotine.
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