Tamara Roitbak Lab

Research Interests

Principal investigator Tamara Roitbak, PhD, has had a long-standing interest in the molecular mechanisms of CNS injury. The NIH-supported investigation in her laboratory has been focused on the role of microRNAs in ischemic stroke.

This study provided a strong evidence that targeted inhibition of microRNA miR-155 facilitates animal recovery after experimental ischemia. The current goal is to demonstrate that the data obtained in the animal model are applicable to human stroke. A long-term objective is to establish miR-155 as a molecular marker and potential target for therapeutic intervention.

MicroRNAs

MicroRNAs are a diverse class of small RNA molecules that function as critical regulators of gene expression and orchestrate a variety of signaling pathways involved in stroke progression. This knowledge has prompted an extensive search for specific microRNAs as biomarkers and therapeutic targets for stroke.

Current Research

The ongoing investigation is focused on stroke-induced changes of microRNA expression profiles occurring in human brain tissue and blood samples. The function of the microRNAs of interest is explored in the modeled human brain tissue.

There are a number of novel methods and techniques utilized in this project, including: microRNA next generation sequencing, bioinformatics analysis, and development of a human stroke model using an organ-on-a-chip platform