CHA Research Team


Jie Chen Photo

Jie Chen, PhD

Professor, Department of Population Health Science


jiechen@augusta.edu

706-721-6721

Dr. Jie Chen provides statistical bioinformatics and biostatistics support to the projects in the Center for Healthy Aging.  Dr. Chen’s research interests include, but not limited to, statistical change point analysis, applied statistics, statistical inference, model selection criteria, statistics in bioinformatics, biostatistics, statistical modeling of high throughput genomic data and biomedical data.  She is the leading author of the book entitled “Parametric Statistical Change Point Analysis: With Application to Genetics, Medicine, and Finance” (Birkhäuser, 1st edition 2000, 2nd edition 2012). In addition, Dr. Chen has rich collaborative research experience in molecular biology and bioinformatics. Her collaborative work has been published in Science, PNAS, Blood, AHA Circulations, Bioinformatics, BMC Bioinformatics, BMC Medical Genomics, Statistical Applications in Genetics and Molecular Biology, Journal of Computational Biology, Molcular and Cellular Endocrinology, etc. She has been a member of American Statistical Association (ASA) Caucus of Statistics Academic Representatives.  Dr. Chen was elected an ASA Fellow in 2014 and is currently Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Applied Statistics (a Taylor & Francis journal).

Dr. Ali Eroglu

Ali Eroglu, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine


Aeroglu@augusta.edu

706-721-7595

Dr. Ali Eroglu is a tenured Associate Professor in the Department of Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University. He graduated from Istanbul University in Istanbul, Turkey with a DVM degree and completed his PhD in Reproductive Biology at the Justus-Liebig University in Giessen, Germany. Subsequently, he worked at the Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard Medical School in Boston, USA as a post-doctoral research associate before moving to the Medical College of Georgia in Augusta, USA as a research faculty. His research interests include cell and tissue preservation, stem cell aging and rejuvenation, and stem cell models of human diseases. Dr. Eroglu is currently serving as Director of both the Human Cord Blood Stem Cell Core and the Induced Pluripotent Stem Cell (iPSC) Core Unit. He supports the research projects in the Center for Healthy Aging by biobanking and providing different stem cell models.

Dr. Mohammed Elsalanty

Mohammed Elsalanty, MD/PhD

Professor,
Department of Cellular Biology & Anatomy
Department of Oral Biology & Diagnostic Sciences
 


melsalanty@augusta.edu

706-721-2585

Dr. Mohammed Elsalanty is Professor at the department of Oral Biology and Diagnostic Sciences at the Dental College of Georgia and AU School of Graduate Studies. He holds joint appointment at the department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at the Dental College of Georgia and the department of Cellular Biology and Anatomy at the Medical College of Georgia. Dr. Elsalanty received his MBBS (medical degree) from Cairo University in 1994 and his PhD in craniofacial biology from Texas A&M University in 2004. He also received a Masters degree in clinical and translational studies from the Department of Biostatistics at the Medical College of Georgia. Since 2007, his research resulted in 66 peer-reviewed publications in major refereed journals. Most recently, the research in his lab has focused on the role of matrix-bound bisphosphonate molecules in the pathogenesis of osteonecrosis in the oral cavity. He has served as Principal Investigator on awards from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR; R15) and the National Institute of Health (NIH; S10). He also served as co-investigators on multiple major NIH-funded projects. He has supervised several research projects in his field during the last 11 years, including three PhD, eight Masters, and several pre-doctoral and undergraduate projects. These projects have resulted in several publications by these students, as well as presentations at national meetings.  His students have received multiple awards, including plenary sessions at the American Society of Bone and Mineral Research meeting, travel awards, and poster of the year at the National Honors Society. Dr. Elsalanty also received the 2017 Excellence in Teaching Award from the Dental College of Georgia.

Mark Hamrick

Mark Hamrick, PhD

Regents' Professor, Cellular Biology & Anatomy
Weiss Research Professor, Cellular Biology & Anatomy


mhamrick@augusta.edu

706-721-1958

Dr. Mark Hamrick's  research in the Center for Healthy Aging focuses on the aging musculoskeletal system, specifically mechanisms of muscle and bone loss with aging.   He has served as Chair of the Board of Directors for the National Association for Biomedical Research and served as a member of the Advocacy & Science Policy Committee for the American Society for Bone & Mineral Research.  He currently serves as Section Editor for Muscle & Bone at Current Osteoporosis Reports and has previously served as editorial board member for the Journal of Bone & Mineral Research and Associate Editor at the Journal of Musculoskeletal & Neuronal Interactions.  He is a member of the American Association of Anatomists, the Orthopaedic Research Society, the American Society for Bone & Mineral Research, and the Gerontological Society of America.  His research on muscle and bone aging has resulted in more than 150 peer-reviewed research articles published in major refereed journals.  He has received continuous funding for this research from the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Defense, and the National Science Foundation.  This work has also been presented in the form of invited presentations at the National Institute on Aging, the Gordon Conference on Musculoskeletal Biology & Bioengineering, the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, Duke University Medical Center, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, the University of Chicago, Emory University School of Medicine, and the Programs in Musculoskeletal Research at Abbott, Amgen, Pfizer and Eli Lilly. In recognition of his research accomplishments he has been awarded the Outstanding Young Faculty Award and Outstanding Basic Science Research Award in the School of Medicine and the Distinguished Research Award from the College of Graduate Studies
dave_hill

William Hill, PhD

Retiree- Emertius Faculty of the Department of Cellular Biology & Anatomy


706-721-2019

Dr. William D. Hill, is an Emeritus Professor of the Department of Cellular Biology and Anatomy of the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University. Currently he is a Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the Medical University of South Carolina and Staff Scientist, Ralph H. Johnson VAMC in Charleston SC. He is an active collaborator with the Augusta University “Bone” research and CHA groups. He received his Ph.D. from the Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology at the Bowman Gray School of Medicine of Wake Forest University in Winston Salem, NC. He completed his NRSA Post-doctoral Fellowship in the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA prior to joining MCG. Dr. Hill holds 2 awarded patents and has additional submitted patents under review. He is interested in Clinical Translation of his research including the development of drug and unique biological molecule delivery platforms for bone, bone injury, as well as other tissues and diseases associated with aging.  He is a member of the American Society of Bone and Mineral Research and the Gerontological Society of America, he is a reviewer for numerous Journals, and serves on study sections for NIH and the VA. His research interests focus on the role of the cytokine CXCL12 and its cryptic downstream metabolites via known and novel receptors and cell signaling pathways related to cell function, including stem cell niche sites, cellular differentiation, mobilization, migration and homing. He is interested in the role of the CXCL12 axis in bone biology, cellular and tissue pathologies, cancer and aging.
Maribeth Johnson

Maribeth Johnson

Retiree- Emerius
Assistant Professor, Department of Neuroscience & Regenerative Medicine


Majohnso@augusta.edu

706-721-0813

 Maribeth H. Johnson has MS degrees in Animal Breeding and Genetics from VA Tech (1982) and Statistics from the University of Georgia (1992). She began working for the University System of Georgia in 1982 as a statistical programmer in the Department of Animal and Dairy Science at UGA.   She came to the Medical College of Georgia in 1993 as a Research Statistician in the Office of Biostatistics and became an Assistant Professor in the fledgling Department of Biostatistics in 2005.  She has spent her career consulting with researchers, designing studies, analyzing data, summarizing results and teaching others to do the same.  Since 2011 she has been a co-investigator on Dr. Isales’ P01 grant (Age-induced Impairment of Nutrient Signaling Results in Bone Loss) providing biostatistical and data management expertise.
Dr. Meghan  McGee-Lawrence

Meghan McGee-Lawrence, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Cellular Biology& Anatomy


mmcgeelawerence@augusta.edu

706-446-0128

Dr. Meghan McGee-Lawrence is an Associate Professor in the Department of Cellular Biology and Anatomy at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University.  She received her PhD in Biomedical Engineering (emphasis in skeletal biomechanics) from Michigan Technological University and completed postdoctoral training in Cell / Molecular Biology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN.  Dr. McGee-Lawrence serves as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Orthopaedic Surgery and Research (Springer Nature), and serves as a member of the Communications committee of the Orthopaedic Research Society, the Women in Bone and Mineral Research committee of the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research, and the Future Global Leaders committee for the International Federation of Musculoskeletal Research Societies.  She is also an Ambassador for the National Osteoporosis Foundation, and has served on the Skeletal Biology Development and Disease (SBDD) study section for the National Institutes of Health. Dr. McGee-Lawrence’s research focuses on the roles of epigenetics, hormone signaling, and mechanobiological changes in skeletal degeneration during aging.  In particular, the goal of her research program is to understand mechanisms involved in the maintenance and regeneration of bone structure and biomechanical strength, and uncovering the integrative physiological mechanisms by which the skeleton interacts with other body systems like fat and muscle. This program emphasizes epigenetic and mechanobiological therapeutic targets for skeletal treatment, mechanical competence of tissue, and pathways involved in skeletal communication, and has produced more than 60 peer-reviewed research articles published in major refereed journals.  Dr. McGee-Lawrence is currently a Principal Investigator on research funded by the NIH National Institute on Aging, the National Science Foundation, and the American Diabetes Association.
xingming shi

Xingming Shi, PhD

 Professor, Department of Neuroscience & Regenerative Medicine


Xshi@augusta.edu

706-721-1097

Dr. Xingming Shi is studying the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying aging and anti-inflammatory steroid hormone glucocorticoud-induced bone loss and marrow fat accumulation, focusing on how aging and glucocorticoids regulate bone marrow mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) lineage commitment towards osteoblast and adipocyte differentiation pathways. The approaches used in his studies include cell and molecular biology, stem cell biology, and transgenic and conditional gene knockout animal models. The ultimate goal of his research is to develop new strategies preventing aging- and pharmacological agent-induced bone loss. Current projects include Inflammation and bone loss with aging. The major goal is to investigate how PPARg, via regulating fat and fat-generated factors, controls bone homeostasis and immune functions during aging process.