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Joseph Houmard
ECU part of groundbreaking, $170 million NIH-funded national study (December 2016)
ECU will receive about $1.5 million over the next six years as part of a total $170 million in funding from the National Institutes of Health Common Fund. The grants were announced Dec. 13 as part of the NIH Molecular Transducers of Physical Activity in Humans Program. The funding will support clinical research sites in analyzing how physical activity changes the chemical molecules within the body, which could lead to more targeted types of exercise.
Read the full story.
Darrell Neufer
R01 Awarded (July 2016)
Dr. Neufer was awarded an R01 in the amount of $1,753,867.00 over a 4 year period from the NIDDK looking at the "Impact of organic cations on mitochondrial energetic driving forces and metabolic efficiency". Understanding and manipulating the functions of mitochondria may advance our techniques in treating type II diabetes and other metabolic disorders.
Tim Heden
American Heart Association Mid-Atlantic Affiliate postdoctoral fellowship. (July 2016)
Tim Heden, Ph.D. received a 2-year AHA postdoctoral fellowship award that will help to prepare Tim for a career as an independent scientist. The goal of the research project is to more completely understand how skeletal muscle mitochondrial phosphatidylethanolamine (PE) impacts skeletal muscle aerobic capacity and insulin resistance, two major risk factors for heart disease. Tim will study how mice with skeletal muscle specific knockout of phosphatidylserine decarboxylase (enzyme that makes mitochondrial PE) alters skeletal muscle aerobic capacity, insulin resistance, and mitochondrial content and dynamics. Data from these studies will provide fundamental insights into the regulation of skeletal muscle respiration and substrate metabolism and introduce mitochondrial PE as a potential key player in metabolic disease development.
Terence Ryan
NHLBI NRSA F32 Award (May 2016)
Terence Ryan, Ph.D. was awarded an NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Postdoctoral Fellowship (Parent F32). The award will support Terence for in training for 3 years with a stipend and institutional allowance to further his research in "Skeletal Muscle Mitochondria and Peripheral Arterial Disease Pathology".
Maria Torres
APS Minority Travel Fellowship Award
Maria Torres was awarded the Minority Travel Fellowship to attend the APS Conference Cardiovascular, Renal and Metabolic Diseases: Physiology and Gender (November 17-20, 2015 Annapolis, MD). This program is designed to encourage highly qualified racial/ethnic minorities to pursue professional careers in physiological/biomedical sciences, by granting $2000 to attend an annual meeting.
Dr. McCLung
R01 Awarded
Dr. McClung was recently awarded a 5-year award from the NHLBI in the amount of $1,901,154.00 to study one of the most under-recognized aspects of cardiovascular disease, peripheral arterial disease (PAD). There are currently few effective treatments for PAD in general, but particularly for the most severe manifestation of the disease known as Critical Limb Ischemia (CLI). This grant will use genetics to identify the reasons why some patients are more likely to develop CLI than others, and investigate communication between differing cell types in the diseased tissue. The lab will use a "culture-to-clinic" approach, utilizing cells and animal models of the disease in conjunction with CLI patients. Given the stark lack of success of traditional surgical approaches for CLI, the goal of this project will be to develop new therapeutics to promote limb/tissue salvage.
R01 Awarded
Dr. Shaikh received a R01 entitled "Suppressing inflammation and boosting humoral immunity with n-3 PUFAs". This award is a 5-year, $1.65 million award.
Brown & Shaikh
R15 Awarded
Dr. Brown received a R15 entitled "Treatment of cardiac reperfusion injury by optimizing the mitochondrial membrane." This award is in collaboration with Dr. Shaikh's lab and is a 3-year, $434,202 award to study new ways to treat mitochondria during a heart attack.
Tony 1--
Keystone Symposia Scholarship
Tony Verkerke, a Bioenergetics Ph.D. student, was awarded a Keystone Symposia scholarship for Systems Biology of Lipid Metabolism conference in Breckenridge, Colorado. A 1st year PhD student in the Funai lab, Tony presented his research entitled:"Reduced efficiency of sarcolipin-dependent respiration in myocytes from severely obese humans". The award provided Tony with $1,700 to attend the Keystone symposia. This award was made possible through funds from NIDDK.

jon with awards - website

Jon Busada Receives Awards
(8/07/14)Recently, Dr. Chris Geyer and Jonathan Busada attended the Society for the Study of Reproduction conference in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Jon received the Lalor Foundation Merit Award and was named 1 of 6 finalist to compete in the Trainee Platform Competition. Jon presented a talk entitled "Retinoic acid (RA) Regulates Kit translation in Prospermatogonia in the Neonatal Testis: A Novel Non-genomic Mechanism of RA-regulated Gene Expression" and won second place in the competition.
jon award - website
Jon Busada receives Lalor Foundation Award
(4/18/14) Jon Busada recently received a 2014 Lalor Foundation Merit Award. In addition, Jon will compete as a finalist in the Society for the Study of Reproduction (SSR) Trainee Research Award competition. As a part of the competition, he will present a platform presentation at the SSR 2014 meeting in Grand Rapids, MI on July 22. Jon is a PhD student in the Anatomy & Cell Biology Department.
Lei - website
Lei Wang receives Research and Creative Achievement Award
(4/4/14) ECU Research and Creative Achievement Week (RCAW) provides students with an excellent opportunity to practice their presentation skills and meet other creative scholars at ECU with similar interests. Lei Wang presented a poster in the Biomedical Sciences category at this years RCAW and was the winner of the graduate poster presentations. Lei and her mentor Dr. Bridges were invited to attend the RCAW Awards Luncheon on Friday April 4 where she accepted her award.
(2/14/14) Article by Kathryn Kennedy, ECU News Services: "A new space for collaborative medical research and robotics training was lauded by East Carolina University officials this week as a visionary project at the heart of the university's mission and talents. The fourth floor of the East Carolina Heart Institute at ECU officially opened Feb. 13 as part of the regular two-day Board of Trustees meeting. Board members, faculty and other guests toured the 37,000-square-foot space...
(11/25/13) Dr. Skip Cummings and colleagues are to be congratulated for being awarded a second grant from the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation in the amount of $450,000. The team will develop and implement a program to address the management of diabetes, depression, and distress. East Carolina was invited to submit this second proposal after achieving successful outcomes with its first...
(11/6/13) Dr. S. Raza Shaikh's lab has published a paper that appears on the cover of November 2013 issue of the Journal of Lipid Research. The article is entitled: "N-3 PUFAs enhance the frequency of murine B cell subsets and restore the impairment of antibody production to a T-independent antigen in obesity." Heather Teague, PhD student in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology is the first author on the paper...
Office hall
(10/30/13) As the first moving date draws closer, I have put together some notes and details to help you prepare. Please make sure to read through them and contact Drew Rockett with any questions. This article will be updated periodically.
- All packing materials for Brody are located in 7W-44. Contact Drew Rockett to have them delivered to your lab, otherwise just come get them....
Office Construction
(9/25/13, updated 10/9/13) It is time to start getting excited about the new ECDOI home. On November 23-24 the first stage of the moving process will occur. Construction is nearing completion and planning has begun to get everything fully operational in our new space. During this process, all research equipment will be briefly out of operation at various times. Since much of this research equipment is also used by numerous other investigators around the university, I have compiled a detailed list ....
Construction 7-30-13
Construction Update
(7/31/13) Construction of the brand new East Carolina Diabetes and Obesity Institute (ECDOI) research facility on the 4th floor of the East Carolina Heart Institute (ECHI) is underway and ahead of schedule. Later this fall we will be moving into this world class research facility. We will continue to update you with details as they become available. We are very excited about all the possibilities such a facility will offer. Check back soon for more pictures.
Old ECDOI website
The East Carolina Diabetes and Obesity Institute (ECDOI) is getting a whole new look. Soon, we will be physically moving into a world class research facility, which is currently under construction. However, today we are here to show off our brand new digital headquarters. On this site you will find out all about what's happening at the ECDOI. Look for featured news, research updates, current information on diabetes and obesity in the media, introductions to our faculty, staff, and students...

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