Find information about the undergraduate research opportunities currently available to Augusta University students.  Use the portal below to browse different projects or use the search bar (above the opportunities listed) to look for projects in a specific major or department.

If you are unsure where to begin, please schedule an appointment with CURS through Navigate.

For faculty wishing to post a research opportunity, please complete the Undergraduate Research Mentor Registration form. Please be as detailed and specific as possible.

Research Opportunity Portal

Engineering cell communication in the fruit fly


 Dr. Paul Langridge

 plangridge@augusta.edu

 Biological Sciences

 CB2209 (office)

- In my lab we look at how cells communicate during the development of the fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster) as it grows from a single cell to a multicellular animal. We take a synthetic approach, which means we investigate how cells communicate by designing news forms of communication and testing them to see if they work. The investigation is relevant to the fundamental understanding of how animals, including humans, develop and also has potential applications in regenerative medicine, tissue engineering and anti-cancer therapies. Students build skills related to fly genetics, molecular biology, the presentation of their work to a wider audience and scientific problem solving.

Website:  http://www.langridgelab.com

 

The completion of the Genetics course is preferred.

This is part of a long term project of which involves the exploration of ligand/receptor bridges in vivo using the powerful Drosophila tools I have developed to manipulate ligand/receptor interactions.

  • Overview
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Microfluidics study


 Dr. Josefa Guerror Millan

 jguerreromillan@augusta.edu

 Physics Department

Study involves microfluidics:  selected sstudents will be looking at drop sizes, generation frequency, etc.

Student researchers will learn how to build those devices, use high-speed microscopy to do experiments and a bit of image processing to extract data.  

Good lab skills, attention to detail, and patience are key for these experiments.

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The Actin Cytoskeleton in Motor Neuron Development and Degeneration


 Dr. Eric Vitriol

 evitriol@augusta.edu

 Neuroscience & Regenerative  Medicine

 CA-3012

My lab studies the role of the actin cytoskeleton in cell motility, neural development, and in neurodegenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). We use live-cell and super-resolution imaging to understand how the dynamic regulation of actin contributes to the normal function of healthy cells, and how defects in actin can cause toxicity and cell death.

website: https://www.augusta.edu/mcg/dnrm/faculty/vitriollab.php

 

Must be willing to commit at least 8 hours per week in the lab. No previous experience needed- we will teach you everything that you need to know!

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Neural Development and Regeneration


 Dr. Lin Gan

 ligan@augusta.edu

 Neuroscience & Regenerative  Medicine

 CA3014 (office)

Goal: Our research is centered on identifying genes and genetic processes essential for the generation of neurons during mammalian embryonic development, understanding the the underlying molecular mechanisms, and using these genes and processes for neuroregeneration by promoting the differentiation of neural progenitors into neurons.

Methods: mouse genetics, CRISPR and genome editing, light and confocal imaging, molecular biology and biochemistry approaches, and systems biology approaches.

website:  https://augusta.pure.elsevier.com/en/persons/lin-gan

Curiosity, good work ethic, and persistence. No prior lab experience needed.

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Cellular mechanisms underlying the development of posttraumatic stress disorder.


 Dr. Chung Sub Kim

 ckim5@augusta.edu

 Neuroscience & Regenerative  Medicine

 CA2018 (office)

We employ a multidisciplinary approach toward neuroscience by using biochemical tools, in vitro whole-cell patch-clamp recordings (soma vs. dendrite), in vitro cell-attached recordings (soma vs dendrite), in vivo drug or viral mediated-gene delivery, and behavior to validate the physiological relevance of the findings.

Learn more:  https://www.augusta.edu/mcg/dnrm/faculty/chungsubkim.php

 

Motivation and a good work ethic

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miRNA-mediated mechanisms during CNS development and after spinal cord injury


 Dr. Hedong Li

 hedli@augusta.edu

 Neuroscience & Regenerative Medicine

 CA-4012 (office)

My research is focused on miRNA-mediated mechanisms during CNS development and after spinal cord injury (SCI). In addition, I combine the in vivo reprogramming technology with miRNA biology to induce miRNA-mediated neuronal reprogramming from endogenous reactive glial cells for SCI functional repair. Approaches include animal work, cell culture, molecular cloning, etc.

Learn more at https://www.augusta.edu/mcg/dnrm/faculty/hedonglilabwebsite.php

Basic knowledge on cell biology, molecular biology, and motivation for research.

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Neural and sensory cell regeneration


 Dr. Lynnette McCluskey

 lmccluskey@augusta.edu

 Neuroscience & Regenerative Medicine

 CA-3016 (office)

Neural and sensory cell regeneration
Our lab uses the taste system to study how neurons and sensory target cells regenerate after injury. We use transgenic mouse models to see how the immune system helps or harms regeneration. We are also beginning studies to determine how COVID-19 infection might cause taste loss, and how to promote taste bud regeneration and the recovery of sensory function. A third area of research is how gut inflammation affects taste function, relevant to conditions like inflammatory bowl disease.

Students will learn cryosectioning, immunofluorescent labeling of proteins, light and confocal microscopy, image analysis and basic statistics.

Basic pipetting skills and ability to make simple solutions is a plus. We are looking for motivated students and will train in needed techniques.

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Cancer Health Awareness through screeNinG and Education (CHANGE) for Public Housing Resident


 Dr. Marlo Vernon

 mvernon@augusta.edu

 Family Medicine and Cancer Center

 CN-2153

This project will deliver a sustainable model of evidence-based cancer awareness through health literacy and education, with an emphasis on prevention, screening, and early detection behaviors and provide access and navigation to high-quality cancer screening and early detection services. We will also develop and implement a cancer cultural competency training for health care providers, in collaboration with the community. Finally, we will conduct a cost-effectiveness analysis of these cancer prevention strategies.

Faculty profile: https://www.augusta.edu/faculty/directory/view.php?id=mvernon

 

Students will assist with conducting interviews with former patients and housing authority residents about their experiences accessing health care, and what they would like their physicians to know about how they see race affecting their healthcare. They may also participate in cancer education delivery during sessions at the Augusta Housing Authority sites.

Students who have experience or familiarity with qualitative research, health education theories and methods, and working knowledge of racial disparities in health are preferred. These skills will all be developed by the students through working on this project.

Students will be asked to commit 5-10 hours a week, to interview residents and patients about their experiences receiving health care and accessing cancer prevention and intervention services.

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Molecular mechanisms of neuronal signal decoding logic


 Dr. Brian Muntean

 bmuntean@augusta.edu

 Pharmacology & Toxicology

 Health Sciences Campus CB3616

The goal is to better understand how neurons transduce external stimuli downstream to discrete spatiotemporal patterns of second messenger signals. Integration of signaling events enables neuronal networks to communicate with high fidelity where anomalies in signal decoding mechanisms can have pathological consequences. To uncover the molecular logic utilized by neurons to interrogate a diversity of signaling events, we will investigate the contributions of key elements in the molecular pathways downstream of neurotransmitter stimulation. This will be achieved through CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing in neurons expressing biosensors that report cellular activity observable through fluorescence microscopy. The project will additionally use lenti- and adeno-associated virus technology to manipulate gene expression as well as molecular cloning approaches.

Research activities from this project will be similar to those found in some of my recent publications: Cell 2020 Oct 15;183(2):503-521.e19., Cells 2019 Nov 19;8(11):1468, PLoS Biol 2019 Oct 10;17(10):e3000477, Cell Rep 2018 Jul 17;24(3):557-568.e5, Cell Rep 2018 Jan 2;22(1):255-268.

Research will include mammalian cell culture, molecular cloning, and fluorescence microscopy. Experience in these areas preferred but not required.

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Impact of interpersonal trauma on the physical health of LGBTQ


 Dr. Tracy Casanova

 tcasanova@augusta.edu

 Psychiatry and Health Behavior

 East Central Regional Hospital

We are completing a systemic review with the aim of presentation and publication on how experiences of interpersonal trauma impact physical health outcomes in the LGBTQ community.

Duties: Reviewing abstracts and full-text articles for inclusion/exclusion, contribute to writing final manuscript (i.e. writing literature review).

Faculty webpage: https://www.augusta.edu/faculty/directory/view.php?id=TCASANOVA

 

Minimum qualifications: research methods coursework, experience conducting literature reviews, familiarity with psychological journals, and 2-5 hour weekly commitment.

Preferred qualifications: previous research experience (e.g. honors thesis, research lab), interest in research with LGBTQ community

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Determinants of Mortality in Trauma Patients Following Massive Blood Transfusion


 Dr. Lufei Young

 LUYOUNG@augusta.edu

 Physiological and Technological Nursing

 Health Sciences Campus Office location: EC-4517

This is a secondary data analysis study using AU medical records, students can do this project at home. IRB approval has been received, the student who is interested in this project will be added onto IRB protocol. The student will be given access to AU medical record and extract data from EMR. The end product includes abstract, presentation and manuscripts.

Student will need to complete CITI training.

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Development of In-vivo Transparent Transgenic Zebrafish Model In Cardio-oncology Research.


 Dr. Surendra Rajpurohit

 srajpurohit@augusta.edu

 Georgia Cancer Center

 Health Sciences Campus Office: CN 3116

Development of Transgenic Zebrafish Model Organism to study the cardiomyocyte and Microglia Function in health and disease condition with special reference to the Inflammatory process (NFkB) and Apoptosis (Annexin-V) in Brain Tumor and Heart disease. EGFR/sEGFR-Breast Cancer Research, Role of soluble isoforms (extracellular domains) of EGFR Family members in targeted therapeutics and establishment of sEGFR as Biomarker in Cancer Research. In-vivo automated HTS Drug Discovery by using Zebrafish model in Diabetes beta-cell neogenesis and proliferation, Creation of acute hypoxia in the zebrafish model and its impact on Cardiovascular Biology.

The interested candidate needs to demonstrate the passion to pursue a career in biomedical research. Strong scientific background and laboratory experience. Routine and advanced Computer skills by using research software tools and webs like MAT-LAB, End-note, J-peg, FIJI, etc.

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Modeling to Understand Physical Phenomena & Engage Teachers in Science


 Dr. Jaclyn Murray and Dr. Christi Pace

 Jmurray2@augusta.edu chpace@augusta.edu

 Department of Teaching and Leading

 Summerville

This study aims to determine the ways in which prospective elementary teachers who participate in model-based inquiry as science learners (a) develop explanations of scientific phenomena with both written and visual descriptions, (b) shift views of knowledge construction in different contexts, and (c) reconsider views of the nature of science.

The Science & Engineering Education Research (SEER) Group in the College of Education’s Department of Teaching and Leading welcomes applicants for two student assistant positions. Duties include collecting (interviews) and analyzing qualitative and quantitative data, preparing practitioner articles for publication, conducting literature reviews, organizing data, and preparing proposal(s) for extramural funding. Student assistants will learn to code, categorize, and form themes by interpreting written and visual forms of data (qualitative data).

We primarily seek applicants with a knowledge of basic physical science and English Language Arts. An interest or knowledge of creating or interacting with augmented or virtual reality environments is a bonus. The position is for Spring 2021 with the potential for Summer and Fall 2021 work. The workload is approximately ten hours per week, and the rate is $8/hr. We will meet as a team weekly or biweekly (paid) to discuss data, progress, and future plans.

To apply for this position, please write a paragraph or two discussing your interest and qualifications. Include the names, email addresses, and phone numbers of no more than three people that can speak to the following characteristics—the ability to (1) complete tasks, (2) work with others, and (3) provide and accept feedback. Review of applications is rolling;

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Aging and Circadian Rhythms in Vascular Disease


 Dr. R. Daniel Rudic

 rrudic@augusta.edu

 Pharmacology and Toxicology

 Health Sciences Campus CB3620 Lab CB3602

Studies the interactions of aging and circadian rhythms in vascular disease.  The molecular focus is in identifying the contributions of the transcriptional mechanisms that operate in the inner cell layer of the blood vessel called the endothelium.  In addition, there are new areas of research that are unfolding in the lab, which seek to query if and what molecular connections exist between the aging blood vessel and the aging brain, with potential application to Alzheimer's Disease.

 

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Dept of Biological Sciences


 Dept of Biological Sciences

  Dept of Biological Sciences

 Summerville Campus

Review faculty profiles to find their research interests.  The Department of Biological Sciences hosts projects from ecology, wildlife, cancer, toxins, and much more.
 Please check with the faculty mentor for specifics
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Brain Injury research


 Dr. Sangeetha Sukumari-Ramesh

 sramesh@augusta.edu

 Pharmacology & Toxicology

 Health Sciences Campus Office CB3618 / Lab CB3515

Focuses on the identification and characterization of molecular targets of brain injury after intracerebral hemorrhage, a fatal stroke subtype employing both genetic and pharmacological approaches. Serves on AHA study section.

 
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Role of Cholinergic Systems in Memory Function


 Dr. Alvin Terry

 aterry@augusta.edu

 Pharmacology & Toxicology

 Health Sciences Campus Office CB3545A / Lab CB3502

Investigates role of cholinergic systems in memory function, and how it is altered by diseases like schizophrenia and Alzheimer's Disease as well as toxins that are found in the environment such as organophosphate insecticides. He serves on NIH and DOD Study sections and is the current Secretary of the Association of Medical School Pharmacology Chairs (AMSPC).

 
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Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder research  


 Dr. Almira Vazdarjanova

 avazdarjanova@augusta.edu

 Pharmacology & Toxicology

 Health Sciences Campus Office CB3624 / Lab CB3503

Uses a multilevel approach to investigate forebrain networks involved in encoding and consolidating of memories for emotional events in models of anxiety and impaired cognitive flexibility with special focus on individual differences. The lab has created an animal model of susceptibility for developing Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. She serves on grant study review sections for NIH, NSF and DOD, and also reviews grants for the VA and the Augusta Biomedical Research Corporation. She is a reviewing editor for Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience.

 
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Molecular Microbiology


 Dr. Christopher Bates

 cbates1@augusta.edu

 Dept of Biological Sciences

 Summerville Campus

Nutrient Acquisition by bacteria; E. coli as a Biomarker of Human & Animal Fecal Contamination in Streams & Rivers; Bacterial Physiology and Identification, Antibiotic Resistance

 
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Cell Physiology/Reproductive Physiology


 Dr. Jennifer Cannon

 jcannon3@augusta.edu

 Dept of Biological Sciences

 Summerville Campus

 Effect of endocrine disruptors on mLTC-1 Leydig cells

 
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Molecular Genetics/Genome Stability/Population Genetics


 Dr. Amy Abdulovic-Cui

 aabduloviccui@augusta.edu

 Biological Sciences

 Summerville campus

Role of Hob1 protein in DNA repair and genomic stability; Genetic requirements of microsatellite instability during DNA replication; Investigating of the role of unbalanced dNTP pools on DNA mutations and DNA stability; Genetic diversity of multiple crab species along the Georgia and South Carolina coast.

Project 2:  Collaboration with Dr. Christy  Description:  Researching plants and their ability to protect themselves from fungi.  

 Student must have completed BIOL 1108 prior to joining 
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Targeting cGMP


 Dr. Darren Browning

 dbrowning@augusta.edu

 Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

 M. Bert Storey Research Building Health Sciences Campus

Signaling for the treatment and prevention of intestinal disease. My laboratory aims to understand tissue renewal in the colon, and how this can be manipulated to treat ulcerative colitis and for the prevention of colon cancer. We discovered that increasing cGMP levels with phosphodiesterase inhibitors (e.g. Viagra) can protect the colon epithelium and slow it's turnover. This is therapeutic in mouse models of colitis and colon cancer. We work with colon cancer cell lines, human and mouse intestinal organoids, andmice disease models.

Must have a passion for medical research and be an enthusiastic learner. Baskic knowledge in cell/molecular/biochm would be beneficial but not essential. Tasks depend on student effort/time in the lab. You can "hang out" to learn how the lab works, the systems/techniques we use. More effort will allow you to learn a technique or two (e.g. histology, qPCR, Western blot) to generate some data. Students who are driven can take on their own project using multiple techniques, possibly resulting in publication of results.
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Mechanisms Leading to Hypertension in Obesity


 Eric J. Belin de Chantemele

 ebelindechanteme@augusta.edu

 Vascular Biology

   Health Sciences Campus

The main goal of the project is to identify the mechanisms leading to hypertension in obesity and to determine whether these mechanisms are sex-specific. Experiments will include characterization of the cardiovascular phenotype of mouse models of obesity and collaboration with clinicians working with human patients.
Genuine interest for research, scientific curiosity and strong motivation.
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Herpetology/Wetland Ecology


 Dr. Brandon Cromer

 rcromer@augusta.edu

 Biology

 Summerville campus

A census of frog populations of aquatic habitats in South Carolina; Aquatic turtle species composition, population evaluation, and environmental toxicology

 
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Molecular Pharmacology 


  Dr. Nevin Lambert

 nelambert@augusta.edu

 Pharmacology and Toxicology

  Health Sciences Campus CB3522 Lab CB3517

Investigates structure and function of G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) signaling complexes.  His work uses biophysical methods such as resonance energy transfer and confocal imaging in living cells to investigate receptor quaternary structure and receptor-G protein coupling. Serves on NIH study sections.

 
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 Fish & Wildlife Management/Marine & Wildlife Ecology


  Dr. Bruce Saul

 bsaul@augusta.edu

  Biology

  Summerville Campus

RESEARCH #1: Fish & Wildlife Management/Marine & Wildlife Ecology
Description: Monitoring of deer and wild hog populations along the Savannah River; Monitoring the diversity of fish species in local streams and assessing barrier island fish communities around St. Catherines Island, Georgia

RESEARCH #2: Categorization of Ichthyofauna around St. Catherines Island, GA
Description:  MOnthly collections of fishes via seining, trawling, and gill netting.  Maintain a database for east coast researchers and the American Museum of Natural HIstory.

Student tasks:  Maintain database and occasionally accompany collection crew to the island on a monthly collection trip (Fri, Sat, Sun).  

  Students need ability to work independently, competency with EXCEL, swimming proficiency, capability to pull heavy seine, and people skills.
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Marine & Freshwater Population/Community Ecology


 Dr. Jessica Reichmuth

 jreichmu@augusta.edu

 Biology

 Summerville Campus

Description: Oceanic fish diversity among barrier islands along the Georgia-lina coasts; Diel variation in fish communities on a Georgia barrier island; Differences in tidal creek and oceanic fish diversity on a Georgia barrier island; Snail densities and movement in tidal salt marshes in South Carolina and Georgia barrier islands; Snail plant preference in tidal salt marshes in South Carolina and Georgia barrier islands; Macroinvertebrate diversity in Butler Creek as an indicator of stream health; Assessing man-made cuts on estuarine systems in Georgia; Biofilm diversity on marine organisms

 
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General Ecology/Urban Ecology


 Dr. Donna Wear

 dwear@augusta.edu

 Biology

 Summerville Campus

Description: Recovery of the endangered Shoals Spider Lily; The endangered gopher tortoise and its habitat: tracking, monitoring, and management; Effects of pollution on reproductive physiology of fish

 
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Congenital Heart Disease Birth Defect and Cardiac Development


 Dr. Huabo Su

 hsu@augusta.edu

 Vascular Biology Center

   Health Sciences Campus

Congenital heart disease (CHD) remains the most common birth defect worldwide, affecting ~ 1% of live births, and arises, at least in part, from defects in cardiovascular development. NEDD8 is a novel ubiquitin-like protein that modifies protein targets in a process similar to ubiquitination (termed “neddylation”), and is mediated by NEDD8-specific E1, E2 and E3 enzymes. Though neddylation participates in diverse cellular processes (cell growth, viability, adipogensis, etc) and pathophysiological events (tumorigenesis, etc.), the importance of neddylation in cardiovascular development remains unknown. In order to study this, we have developed an NAE1 flox/flox mouse, enabling deletion of the only NEDD8 E1 enzyme, and thus inhibition of neddylation, in various tissues. We have several different Cre strains, including aMHC, SM22a, and Nkx2-5, allowing us to study cardiac-specific deletion of NAE1 during different developmental stages in the heart. Preliminary data has shown that aMHC-Cre driven NAE1 deletion leads to perinatal death and defects in ventricular chamber maturation, with a phenotype resembling left ventricular noncompaction, an increasingly recognized primary cardiomyopathy. We will use the many cellular and molecular biology techniques and biochemical assays at our disposal to 1) identify novel signaling pathways regulated by neddylation during cardiac development, and 2) tease apart the underlying mechanisms behind how these pathways contribute to cardiac disease.

No prior experience necessary. Curiosity, desire to learn, and a good work ethic greatly appreciated. Main student responsibilities would include animal handling, management and maintenance of mouse colonies, genotyping, RNA isolation, biochemical assays, tissue sectioning and staining, etc. Publication is expected.

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Vascular Cognitive Impairment


 Professor M B Khan

 mkhan@augusta.edu

 Neurology

   Health Sciences Campus

Background and Purpose: Vascular dysfunction and resultant chronic cerebral hypoperfusion leads to vascular cognitive impairment (VCI), the second most common cause of dementia. We reported that Remote Ischemic conditioning (RIC)-therapy improves cerebral blood flow (CBF) in both murine stroke and VCI models. RIC is a non-invasive, simple, inexpensive, and safe use of repetitive inflation of a blood pressure (BP) cuff on the arm or leg to protect distant organs such as the brain from ischemic injury. We have some preliminary data after Bilateral Carotid Artery Stenosis (BCAS) in the mouse (model of VCI) that daily remote ischemic postcondtioning (RIPostC) using a BP cuff for 2 weeks increases CBF in a sustained manner, improves cognitive performance, and decreases aggregation of amyloid-beta 42 protein (Aβ42) in the brain. Our central hypothesis is that RIPostC therapy after BCAS improves cognitive function in animal model of vascular cognitive impairment (VCI).

Our specific aims are:

Aim 1: Determine if RIPostC therapy after BCAS attenuate hippocampal CA1 neuron integrity. It is well understood that spatial learning and memory is a hippocampal dependent phenomena and pyramidal neuron in the hippocampal CA1 field.

Aim 2: Determine if RIPostC therapy after BCAS protects axonal damage. Aggregation of tau is a well-known causative agent for neurodegeneration and pathological symptom that leads to learning and memory loss in early dementia.

Aims 3: Determine if RIPostC therapy after BCAS improves synaptic maker protein in hippocampal CA1 field.

Methods: Microcoil induced bilateral common carotid artery (BCAS) model will be used to induce chronic hypoperfusion. Adult C57BL/6J male mice of (10-12 weeks) will be assigned to 3-different groups (N=10), and subjected to Sham- (procedures of BCAS and RIC), BCAS- (induced VCI followed by RIC-Sham), and BCAS+RIC (induced VCI followed by RIC-therapy). RIC will started 1 week of post-surgery for 3-4wks. At 4-5 weeks post-surgery (1-wk after the cessation of RIC) CBF will be determined using laser speckle contrast imager (LSCI). Functional outcomes will be assessed using novel object recognition (NOR) test for non-spatial working memory, and hanging wire test for motor impairment. Histopathology and immunohistochemistry for BDNF and VGEF. Biochemistry will be also performed on the of the brain tissue collected after the neurobehavioral tests.

  • Minimum of 6 months commitment.
  • At least 5-6 hours per day (Monday –Friday)
  • Some time they need to work all day as we do in the lab (Exception for class hour /course work).
  • Trainings required: Chemical Safety, Biosafety, Animal safety, etc. (We will manage about these training procedure through concern office).
  • We will trained him/her with different lab techniques (if required) and make them independent before starting new experiment by themselves.
  • Their contribution cannot be ignore when published the paper. We will give authorship in the publications.
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Toxicology


 Dr. Faith Wiley

 fwiley@augusta.edu

 Biology

 Summerville Campus

Study of the chemical and biological properties of the toxin responsible for avian vacuolar myelinopathy.

 
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Areas of study include:  Stress, depression, Alzheimer's disease, neural plasticity, epigenetics.


 Dr. XinYun Lu

 xylu@augusta.edu

 Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine

   Health Sciences Campus CA3006  

Research Interests:
Depression, PTSD, Alzheimer’s disease, neural plasticity, epigenetics

 The long-term goal of our research is to understand the molecular, cellular and circuit bases of neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative disorders, especially those with comorbid metabolic conditions. Obesity and type 2 diabetes are associated with higher rates of depression, anxiety and dementia. Adipose tissue has been recognized as a highly active metabolic and endocrine organ, secreting a number of proteins, termed adipokines, that function as hormones. We are interested in how adipokines participate in synaptic transmission, regulate the activity of neural circuitry, orchestrate behavioral and cognitive responses to emotionally and motivationally relevant stimuli and tune adaptation to experiences and environmental changes in a sex-specific and age-dependent manner. The laboratory’s strengths are in our multidisciplinary capabilities and systemic approaches.

Current projects:
The adipocyte-PPARγ/adiponectin/AdipoR-neuron axis in Alzheimer’s disease
Epigenetics, aging and Alzheimer’s disease
Distinct roles of POMC and AgRP neurons in chronic stress-induced depressive behaviors
Adipokines (leptin and adiponectin), depression and PTSD

 

Lab Website:

https://www.augusta.edu/mcg/dnrm/faculty/xylulab.php

We accept motivated undergraduate students who are interested in biomedical research.

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Early signs of Alzheimer's Disease caused by dysregulation of Synaptic Neurotransmission


 Dr. Ferenc Deak

 fdeak@augusta.edu

 Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine

   Health Sciences Campus CA4010

Research Interests:
Alzheimer's disease and Memory
Project:  How does Aging effect Synaptic Neurotransmission and contribute to Alzheimer’s Disease
Title:  Early signs of Alzheimer's Disease caused by dysregulation of Synaptic Neurotransmission.

There are more than 5 million patients in the USA, who suffer from Alzheimer's disease (AD). Cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease is thought to be the result of disturbed neuronal communication due to synaptic dysfunction. Aggregated amyloid beta protein accumulates in AD, a process leading to impaired neuronal communication. In a series of studies we investigate why aging is the most relevant risk factor to Alzheimer’s dementia. We test the age-related changes in a set of essential synaptic proteins, which regulate vesicular neurotransmitter release from synapses and their effect on beta-amyloid secretion. Maintaining physiological synaptic function while reducing amyloid secretion may provide a breakthrough to design effective therapies that halt progression of dementia in Alzheimer's disease.

 

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Brain injury, Alzheimer's disease, neuroprotection.


 Dr. Quanguang Zhang

 qzhang@augusta.edu

 Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine

   Health Sciences Campus . CA3020

Research Interests:
Neurodegeneration, resulting from ischemic brain injury or conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD), results in lifelong neurological impairments. Clinically, there are no effective drugs available to protect the brain from cerebral ischemia-induced neuronal impairment or from the progressive cognitive decline associated with AD. Work in our lab seeks potential neuroprotective treatments and/or therapies against brain damage and cognitive decline caused by ischemic stroke, cardiac arrest, AD, and neonatal hypoxia-ischemia. Our research interests include ischemic neuroprotection, photobiomodulation therapy, brain repair, exercise, and repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS) treatment.

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Stem cell aging, tissue preservation, regenerative medicine.


 Dr. Ali Eroglu

 aeroglu@augusta.edu

 Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine

   Health Sciences Campus CA2004

My lab is interested in developing defined, clinical-grade cell and tissue preservation methods for regenerative medicine, as well as, in rejuvenating stem cells for their therapeutic applications. 

 

 

Current projects:
Tissue preservation, Biobanking, Stem cell aging

 

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