Dr. Jernigan is a vascular physiologist. She received her Ph.D. from the University of New Mexico School of Medicine and did her post-doctoral training at the Center for Cardiovascular-Renal Research at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, Mississippi. Her research program focuses on understanding the signaling mechanisms leading to cardiovascular disease.

Areas of Specialty

  • Cardiovascular Physiology
  • Pulmonary Hypertension

Achievements & Awards

Dr. Jernigan has built a highly successful NIH-funded research program that has been recognized by multiple research and education awards, invitations to give international symposia, editorship of high-impact journals, service on NIH, VA, and American Heart Association (AHA) study sections.

Key Publications




  • English


Dr. Jernigan’s research program focuses on a unique class of voltage-insensitive, non-selective cation channels called acid-sensing ion channels (ASIC). Her laboratory identified a unique role for ASIC1 to contribute to the development of hypoxia pulmonary hypertension, which is a progressive and often fatal outcome of chronic lung diseases (4th leading cause of death in the US). More specifically, her lab examines the contribution of ASIC1 to the metabolic-mitochondrial dysfunction in pulmonary hypertension. In addition, her work is at the forefront of determining the involvement of ASIC1 in the systemic hypertensive circulation and its association with aging and diabetes. The outcomes of this research will enable a fundamental understanding of ASIC1 in cardiovascular disease which will permit further evaluation of the therapeutic potential of ASIC1.

Courses Taught

  • Graduate Physiology
  • Advanced Physiology
  • Ion Channels