Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences
Office: Nursing/Pharmacy Building, room B82
Our lab is broadly interested in the cross-talk of the cardiovascular and respiratory system in health and disease. Our primary research focus involves the impact of inhaled toxicants, especially common air pollutants, on vascular function and injury. We work closely with colleagues at the Lovelace Respiratory Research Institute to examine the relative vascular impact of specific components of complex pollutant mixtures, such as emissions from vehicular engines. We have identified roles for monoxide gases (link to campen et al., EHP 2010) in activating vascular metalloproteinase activity and particulate matter in promoting inflammation in vascular lesions (link to Campen et al., TAAP 2010). Research into the basic pathways underlying the biological responses to engine emissions have uncovered roles for endothelin receptors, NOS, and vascular oxidative stress (link to Lund et al, ATVB 2009 and Cherng et al AJP 2009, EHP 2010). In collaboration with LRRI and the University of Washington, we have recently been awarded a major EPA Air Quality Research Center grant, the focus of which will be to further pursue the biological mechanisms, examining roles for adaptive immunity in driving the extrapulmonary toxicity of inhaled pollutants, as well as studying the impact of physical and photochemical aging on the toxicity of complex source emissions.
We also are interested in the basic biological role of the ubiquitin proteasome pathway in regulating vascular remodeling. We have recently identified that ubiquitin ligases responsible for skeletal muscle atrophy may also have a key role in regulating smooth muscle cell growth and differentiation. In models of experimental vascular hypertrophy, as is a common outcome in pulmonary hypertension and atherosclerosis, we observe a downregulation of these ubiquitin ligases (atrogin-1 and MuRF-1) that is proportional to the severity of remodeling in the vasculature. Ongoing studies are attempting to modulate these pathways by direct and indirect means to reverse pathological growth of smooth muscle.
Mario Aragon, BS
Molly Harmon, BS
Sarah Robertson, PhD
Post Doctoral Fellow
The University of New Mexico’s Doctor of Pharmacy program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education, 20 North Clark Street, Suite 2500, Chicago, IL 60602-5109, TEL (312) 664-3575 , FAX (312) 664-4652, URL http://www.acpe-accredit.org/
06/13/2013 10:04:10 AM -0600.