Ranjana Poddar Lab

The Ranjana Poddar Lab seeks to characterize the adverse effects of hyperhomocysteinemia on neurological disorders and develop potential therapeutic approaches.


Poddar Lab

Research Interests

Principal Investigator Ranjana Poddar, PhD, leads this lab with a goal to understand the role of hyperhomocysteinemia in the progression of age-associated neurological diseases. Hyperhomocysteinemia, a metabolic disorder characterized by systemic elevation of the amino acid homocysteine, occurs primarily due to nutritional deficiency of dietary folic acid, vitamin B12 and vitamin B6. A primary focus of Dr. Poddar’s research is to determine how predisposition to hyperhomocysteinemia impacts the outcome of cerebral stroke and to develop potential therapeutic targets to mitigate ischemic brain injury under hyperhomocysteinemic condition.

Current Research

Studies from Dr. Poddar’s group have demonstrated that even mild hyperhomocysteinemic conditions could exacerbate brain damage in both rat and mice models of ischemic stroke, and negatively impact behavioral outcome. This adverse effect of hyperhomocysteinemia on ischemic stroke outcome involves activation of a unique signaling pathway downstream of GluN2A subunit containing NMDA receptor stimulation, which is generally thought to promote neuronal survival. Dr. Poddar’s NIH funded RO1 grant is focused on evaluating:

  • Long-term pathological and behavioral outcome of ischemic insult under hyperhomocysteinemic condition
  • Signaling mechanisms involved in hyperhomocysteinemia-induced exacerbation of ischemic brain injury
  • Role of neuroinflammation in enhancing ischemic brain injury under hyperhomocysteinemic conditions
  • Develop potential therapeutic targets to minimize the severity of ischemic brain damage under hyperhomocysteinemic conditions

These projects utilize rodent models of ischemic stroke (middle cerebral artery occlusion) and hyperhomocysteinemia, transgenic and knockout mice, magnetic resonance imaging, behavioral studies, tissue culture, pharmacology, molecular biology, biochemistry, microscopy and flow-cytometry.

Additional Research

Dr. Poddar’s laboratory is also interested in understanding the pathological consequences of intracerebral hemorrhage and vascular dementia under hyperhomocysteinemic conditions. Her laboratory is actively involved in collaborative research with Dr. Surojit Paul’s laboratory at UNM Neurology department investigating the mechanisms of ischemic brain damage in other comorbid conditions.

Contact Lab

Lab Physical Address:
Neuroscience Research Facility - Pete and Nancy Domenici Hall
1101 Yale Blvd NE
Albuquerque, NM 87106

Lab Mailing Address:
MSC10 5620
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0001

Phone: 505-272-5859
E-mail: rpoddar@salud.unm.edu

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