Fifth Street, TX, United States

Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
Fifth Street, TX, United States

The Texas Tech University Health science Center offers programs in Allied Health science, Biomedical science, Medicine, Nursing, and Pharmacy. TTUHSC's main campus is in Lubbock, but campuses are also located in Abilene, Amarillo, Dallas, El Paso and the Permian Basin. TTUHSC serves more than 100 counties in the western portion of Texas. The university is a separate but equal institution from Texas Tech University, and both universities are part of the Texas Tech University System. Wikipedia.

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News Article | May 4, 2017

EL PASO, TX--(Marketwired - May 04, 2017) - This week, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso (TTUHSC El Paso) officially broke ground on the Medical Sciences Building (MSB) II, an $83 million, 219,900-square-foot facility. The five-story building will more than double the campus' research capacity and add crucial instructional space to support its growing student population. "This building is integral to our vision for TTUHSC El Paso," said Richard Lange, M.D., M.B.A., president of the university. "This will enable us to recruit more researchers to tackle our region's medical challenges, increase student enrollment in our programs, and ultimately, retain some of the nation's most well-prepared, culturally competent health care professionals right here in the borderland." The MSB II second, third, and fourth floors -- more than 87,000 square feet -- will be dedicated to research, including laboratories, offices, and research administration. The first floor will house the campus' largest teaching auditorium yet -- a 9,200-square-foot space that can accommodate up to 500 people -- and will also feature a dining and food services area that will be staffed by outside vendors. The remaining space will be dedicated to a library, a reflection room for quiet space, classrooms, student study rooms and administration. "The completion of MSB II will catalyze the development of basic and translational biomedical research at TTUHSC El Paso by providing us with new laboratory facilities to grow interconnected scientific programs that address major diseases and other problems in health care," said Peter Rotwein, M.D., vice president for research. "We will have the opportunity to recruit new faculty, teach our students the newest aspects of biomedical investigation, and enhance our capabilities in translating discoveries into better treatments and cures." Like other campus facilities, the building's exterior will mirror the architecture of the Spanish Renaissance, which is distinguished by ornate columns, red-tiled roofs, and colossal archways. Funding for the MSB II was approved by the 84th Texas Legislature in 2015 under House Bill 100, which appropriated $75 million for the building's construction. TTUHSC El Paso will contribute an additional $8 million, bringing the total construction cost to $83 million. Construction of the MSB II will be complete in approximately two years. Houston-based architectural firm Perkins + Will designed the building and Sundt Construction, Inc. is contracted to build the new facility. Image Available: Image Available: Image Available: Image Available:

News Article | April 28, 2017

Bethesda, MD (April 28, 2017) -- The American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) Research Foundation is thrilled to award 52 researchers with research funding in the 2017 award year. "The AGA Research Foundation has a proven track record of funding young investigators who subsequently achieve great success in research. We are confident that the 2017 class will be no exception," said Robert S. Sandler, MD, MPH, AGAF, chair, AGA Research Foundation. "AGA is honored to invest in this year's award recipients and looks forward to seeing how each research project contributes to advancing the field of gastroenterology." The AGA Research Award Program serves to support talented investigators who are pursuing careers in digestive disease research. A grant from the AGA Research Foundation ensures that a major proportion of the recipient's time is protected for research. The awards program is made possible thanks to generous donors and funders contributing to the AGA Research Foundation. Show your support for GI research.https:/ Below are the 2017 AGA Research Foundation award recipients. To learn about upcoming research funding opportunities, visit http://www. . Shrinivas Bishu, MD, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor David Boone, PhD, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis Sarah Glover, DO, University of Florida, Gainesville Jennifer Lai, MD, MBA, The Regents of the University of California, San Francisco Jill Smith, MD, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C. Chandler Brown, Gallaudet University, Washington, D.C. Carlos Lodeiro, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso Paul L. Foster School of Medicine Alyssa Murillo, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine Kristeen Onyirioha, University of Texas San Antonio Health Sciences Center Gabriela Portilla Skerrett, San Juan Bautista School of Medicine, Puerto Rico Ray Ramirez, Eastern Virginia Medical School, Norfolk Rani Richardson, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Nefertiti Tyehemba, State University of New York Upstate Medical University, Syracuse Elsie Ureta, California State University of Los Angeles Carlos Zavala, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Edward Barnes, MD, MPH, University of North Carolina School of Medicine, Chapel Hill Daniel Duncan, MD, Boston Children's Hospital, MA Amy Engevik, PhD, Vanderbilt University, Nashville Tossapol Kerdsirichairat, MD, University of Michigan Health System, Ann Arbor Anne-Marie Overstreet, PhD, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis Shusuke Toden, PhD, Baylor University Medical Center/Baylor Research Institute, Houston Amy Tsou, MD, PhD, Boston Children's Hospital, MA Lavanya Viswanathan, MD, MS, Augusta University, GA Hongtao Wang, MD, PhD, Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children's Hospital, Houston Lauren Cole, BS, University of Arizona College of Medicine, Phoenix Cindy Law, BSc, University of Ottawa, Canada Christopher Moreau, BS, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio Satish Munigala, MBBS, MPH, St. Louis University, MO Rajiv Perinbasekar, MD, University of Maryland Medical Center, Baltimore Chung Sang Tse, MD, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN Anika Ullah, University of California, San Diego Kathy Williams, MS, Cooper Medical School of Rowan University, Camden, NJ Quan Zhou, MS, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor This year's honorees will be recognized during several AGA Research Foundation events at Digestive Disease Week® 2017, taking place May 6-9 in Chicago, IL. The American Gastroenterological Association is the trusted voice of the GI community. Founded in 1897, the AGA has grown to more than 16,000 members from around the globe who are involved in all aspects of the science, practice and advancement of gastroenterology. The AGA Institute administers the practice, research and educational programs of the organization.http://www. . Like AGA on Facebook.http://www. facebook. com/ amergastroassn> Follow us on Twitter @AmerGastroAssn.http://www. twitter. com/ amergastroassn> Check out our videos on YouTube.http://www. The AGA Research Foundation, formerly known as the Foundation for Digestive Health and Nutrition, is the cornerstone of AGA's effort to expand digestive disease research funding. Since 1984, the AGA, through its foundations, has provided more than $47 million in research grants to more than 870 scientists. The AGA Research Foundation serves as a bridge to the future of research in gastroenterology and hepatology by providing critical funding to advance the careers of young researchers between the end of training and the establishment of credentials that earn National Institutes of Health grants. Learn more about the AGA Research Foundation or make a contribution at http://www. .

I hypothesize here that the ability of probiotics to synthesize neuroactive compounds provides a unifying microbial endocrinology-based mechanism to explain the hitherto incompletely understood action of commensal microbiota that affect the host's gastrointestinal and psychological health. Once ingested, probiotics enter an interactive environment encompassing microbiological, immunological, and neurophysiological components. By utilizing a trans-disciplinary framework known as microbial endocrinology, mechanisms that would otherwise not be considered become apparent since any candidate would need to be shared among all three components. The range of neurochemicals produced by probiotics includes neurochemicals for which receptor-based targets on immune and neuronal elements (intestinal and extra-intestinal) have been well characterized. Production of neurochemicals by probiotics therefore allows for their consideration as delivery vehicles for neuroactive compounds. This unifying microbial endocrinology-based hypothesis, which may facilitate the selection and design of probiotics for clinical use, also highlights the largely unrecognized role of neuroscience in understanding how microbes may influence health. Editor's suggested further reading in BioEssays Harvesting the biological potential of the human gut microbiome Abstract Probiotics are capable of producing neurochemicals such as acetylcholine or dopamine that may influence a human's gastrointestinal and psychological health by binding to receptors on immune and neuronal cells. © 2011 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

Ferrari R.,Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
Neurobiology of aging | Year: 2012

Two recent genome-wide association studies (GWAS) for late onset Alzheimer's disease (LOAD) revealed 3 new genes: clusterin (CLU), phosphatidylinositol binding clathrin assembly protein (PICALM), and complement receptor 1 (CR1). In order to evaluate association with these genome-wide association study-identified genes and to isolate the variants contributing to the pathogenesis of LOAD, we genotyped the top single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), rs11136000 (CLU), rs3818361 (CR1), and rs3851179 (PICALM), and sequenced the entire coding regions of these genes in our cohort of 342 LOAD patients and 277 control subjects. We confirmed the association of rs3851179 (PICALM) (p = 7.4 × 10(-3)) with the disease status. Through sequencing we identified 18 variants in CLU, 3 of which were found exclusively in patients; 8 variants (out of 65) in CR1 gene were only found in patients and the 16 variants identified in PICALM gene were present in both patients and controls. In silico analysis of the variants in PICALM did not predict any damaging effect on the protein. The haplotype analysis of the variants in each gene predicted a common haplotype when the 3 single nucleotide polymorphisms rs11136000 (CLU), rs3818361 (CR1), and rs3851179 (PICALM), respectively, were included. For each gene the haplotype structure and size differed between patients and controls. In conclusion, we confirmed association of CLU, CR1, and PICALM genes with the disease status in our cohort through identification of a number of disease-specific variants among patients through the sequencing of the coding region of these genes. Published by Elsevier Inc.

Grammas P.,Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
Expert reviews in molecular medicine | Year: 2011

Diseases of the central nervous system (CNS) pose a significant health challenge, but despite their diversity, they share many common features and mechanisms. For example, endothelial dysfunction has been implicated as a crucial event in the development of several CNS disorders, such as Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, multiple sclerosis, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-1-associated neurocognitive disorder and traumatic brain injury. Breakdown of the blood-brain barrier (BBB) as a result of disruption of tight junctions and transporters, leads to increased leukocyte transmigration and is an early event in the pathology of these disorders. The brain endothelium is highly reactive because it serves as both a source of, and a target for, inflammatory proteins and reactive oxygen species. BBB breakdown thus leads to neuroinflammation and oxidative stress, which are implicated in the pathogenesis of CNS disease. Furthermore, the physiology and pathophysiology of endothelial cells are closely linked to the functioning of their mitochondria, and mitochondrial dysfunction is another important mediator of disease pathology in the brain. The high concentration of mitochondria in cerebrovascular endothelial cells might account for the sensitivity of the BBB to oxidant stressors. Here, we discuss how greater understanding of the role of BBB function could lead to new therapeutic approaches for diseases of the CNS that target the dynamic properties of brain endothelial cells.

Gonzalez R.,Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
Journal of Clinical Psychiatry | Year: 2014

Background: Rhythm disruption is a core feature of bipolar disorder and it has been hypothesized that disturbances of the circadian timing system play a fundamental role in the etiology of the disorder. Objective: We sought to investigate (1) theoretical models for biological rhythm disruptions in bipolar disorde (2) physiological disturbances of biological rhythms in bipolar disorder, (3) clinical and therapeutic implications of biological rhythm disturbances in bipolar disorder, and (4) associations between circadian gene variations and bipolar disorder DataSources: PubMed database was searched systematically for articles that were published on or before May 5, 2013, and were written in English using the terms bipolardisorder, clock genes, endogenous clock, molecular clock, biological rhythms, circadian, suprachiasmatic nucleus, circadian rhythm, melatonin, and sleep. Study Selection: Seventy-four articles highlighting the objectives were included in the review. Data Extraction: Data regarding exploring the association between bipolar disorder and circadian and chronobiological phenomena were reviewed and findings summarized. Results:The literature reviewed suggests that circadian rhythm disturbance may be a feature of bipolar disorder Conclusions: In toto, the literature suggests that circadian rhythm disturbances may be a feature of bipolar disorderlhis area of research has received theoretical consideration as playing a significant role in the pathophysiology of the illness but has been understudied to this point. Further research in the field is warranted. © 2014 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: BIOMATERIALS PROGRAM | Award Amount: 398.32K | Year: 2015


This award by the Biomaterials Program in the Division of Materials Research to Colorado School of Mines aims to overcome the materials challenge on harnessing membrane protein (MP) functions in engineered systems. MPs represent a family of biologically-derived and bio-renewable high-performance nanomaterials that are largely unexplored. These proteins are the gate-keepers of cells, and are involved in critical life processes, such as energy conversion, matter transport and information processing. These same MP-mediated functions are also highly coveted nanoengineering feats in synthetic systems. Exploiting MPs for nanoengineering may help understand, predict, and ultimately control recognition and transport at the nanoscale, but is greatly impeded by the fluidic and labile nature of biomembranes. This study bridges the gap between biotic and abiotic systems by developing chemically versatile synthetic membranes to support MP functions. The successful outcome of this study will help unleash the full potential of MPs to create novel nanotechnologies ranging from solar conversion to high throughput diagnostics. With respect to broad impact on education, this project builds a multi-tiered education program on renewable materials. The objective of this program is to bring societal awareness on sustainability, and motivate undergraduate and K-12 students to pursue career paths on bio-renewable materials. A focused outreach component, Summer Experience @ Mines, targets minority students at a local high school by hosting their first exposure to engineering studies and college life, and develop curriculum materials for their Biotechnology class. A broader outreach component includes training K-12 science teachers and dissemination of the curriculum materials to local and nearby school districts.


This award is to develop bio-hybrid materials with membrane-protein-mediated transport performance. Membrane proteins (MPs) are biologically-derived and bio-renewable high-performance nanomaterials. Despite numerous proof-of-concept demonstrations of MPs great potential in engineered systems, little is known on how to design synthetic MP-supporting membranes that balance a dichotomy between fluidity and stability, and how to direct spontaneous MP reconstitution into these robust membranes to form 2-dimensional (2-D) or 3-D proteomembrane arrays. Using proteorhodopsin, a light-driven proton pump as a model, this study will elucidate: (1) the directed assembly principles to reconstitute proteorhodopsin into hierarchically organized proteomembrane arrays; and (2) the roles of synthetic membranes in shaping proteorhodopsin function. Since proteorhodopsin has a common seven transmembrane (7 TM) architecture of G protein-coupled receptors, a large family of MPs that regulate energy conversion, matter transport and biosensing. The guiding concepts learnt from this study have the potential to benefit a broad range of MP-based nanotechnologies. This multidisciplinary study provides ample opportunities to train students at the interdisciplinary area of materials engineering, synthetic chemistry, biophysics, and protein engineering. With this award, this research group will design a multi-tiered soft matter education program entitled Renewable Materials for Sustainable Future. This program aims to: (1) improve educational components on soft matter by course development; (2) support undergraduate students from the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program, the Society of Women Engineering, and International Exchange Students Program to have hands-on research experience; and (3) build regular and systematic outreach activities to K-12 students in local and nearby school districts.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: Cellular Dynamics and Function | Award Amount: 825.00K | Year: 2015

Cells maintain large differences in the concentration of ions (electrically charged atoms or molecules) across the membrane that separates the cell from its environment. This concentration difference is used to drive many essential cellular processes and it is established and maintained by numerous membrane pumps, which are proteins responsible for transporting these ions across the membrane. This project will engage undergraduate students (including members of minorities underrepresented in science) and graduate students in investigations of the fundamental properties by which a particular membrane pump selects and transports sodium and potassium ions across membranes. In addition to training in biophysical techniques, the students will be supported to attend national scientific meetings at which they will be able to present the results of their research.

The Na/K pump is electrogenic because it transports 3 Na+ out of the cell in exchange for 2 K+, in each catalytic cycle. One out of three sites can exclusively bind Na+ (a feature that distinguishes the Na/K pump from other P-type ATPases). All P-type ATPases alternate between two major conformations, E1 with inward facing ion binding sites and E2 with outward facing ion binding sites. The molecular mechanisms of ion selectivity by the Na/K pump remain unclear, yet knowledge of these is critical to an understanding of how these proteins couple the chemical energy of ATP hydrolysis to the mechanical work required for ion translocation. This project will study the mechanisms of ion selection in the Na/K pump with an innovative approach that integrates high-temporal-resolution electrophysiology, computational chemistry and biochemistry. The available crystal structures and results from our laboratory will be used to generate hypotheses with respect to (a) Elucidating the mechanisms of ion selectivity in the two major pump conformations; (b) Determining the order of intracellular Na+ binding and external Na+ release; and (c) Identifying the pathway and mechanisms of uncoupled H+ influx through Na/K pumps.

Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: CDS&E-MSS | Award Amount: 45.00K | Year: 2016

This project aims to develop a system of statistical analysis tools to tackle several important challenges in analysis of complex bioinformatics data, which involves a variety of response variables and tens of thousands independent variables. The interest often lies in identifying the key independent variables associated with the response variables, and understanding such associations as well as the interactions among the independent variables.

The extreme magnitude and complexity of bioinformatics data have posed serious challenges for data analysis. To overcome these challenges, we propose (i) to systematically and properly integrate multi-scale data before we can apply our novel modeling and analysis methods since the data we explore are collected by numerous independent studies at phenotypic, cellular, protein, and genetic levels with information from very different time and dimension scales; (ii) to develop feature screening criteria for a mixed type of longitudinal data using the combination of correlation tests in bivariate longitudinal regression models and the Benjamini-Hochberg-Yekutieli procedure, (iii) to develop graphical models that allow the variables being a mix of continuous and discrete longitudinal variables, with the nodes representing variables and each edge indicating the dependence of the two relevant variables conditional on the other variables; and (iv) to investigate the functioning form of each predictor by resorting to the data themselves under the framework of a mixed effects regression model with a continuous or discrete response and a high dimensional vector of predictors, with the resulting procedure allowing a user to simultaneously determine the form of each predictor effect to be zero, linear or nonlinear.

Gupta P.,Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
BMC medicine | Year: 2012

HER2 is an oncogene, expression of which leads to poor prognosis in 30% of breast cancer patients. Although trastuzumab is apparently an effective therapy against HER2-positive tumors, its systemic toxicity and resistance in the majority of patients restricts its applicability. In this study we evaluated the effects of phenethyl isothiocyanate (PEITC) in HER2-positive breast cancer cells. MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 breast cancer cells stably transfected with HER2 (high HER2 (HH)) were used in this study. The effect of PEITC was evaluated using cytotoxicity and apoptosis assay in these syngeneic cells. Western blotting was used to delineate HER2 signaling. SCID/NOD mice were implanted with MDA-MB-231 (HH) xenografts. Our results show that treatment of MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 cells with varying concentrations of PEITC for 24 h extensively reduced the survival of the cells with a 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) of 8 μM in MDA-MB-231 and 14 μM in MCF-7 cells. PEITC treatment substantially decreased the expression of HER2, epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and phosphorylation of signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) at Tyr-705. The expression of BCL-2-associated × (BAX) and BIM proteins were increased, whereas the levels of B cell lymphoma-extra large (BCL-XL) and X-linked inhibitor of apoptosis protein (XIAP) were significantly decreased in both the cell lines in response to PEITC treatment. Substantial cleavage of caspase 3 and poly-ADP ribose polymerase (PARP) were associated with PEITC-mediated apoptosis in MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 cells. Notably, transient silencing of HER2 decreased and overexpressing HER2 increased the effects of PEITC. Furthermore, reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation, mitochondrial depolarization and apoptosis by PEITC treatment were much higher in breast cancer cells expressing higher levels of HER2 (HH) as compared to parent cell lines. The IC50 of PEITC following 24 h of treatment was reduced remarkably to 5 μM in MDA-MB-231 (HH) and 4 μM in MCF-7 (HH) cells, stably overexpressing HER2. Oral administration of 12 μM PEITC significantly suppressed the growth of breast tumor xenografts in SCID/NOD mice. In agreement with our in vitro results, tumors from PEITC-treated mice demonstrated reduced HER2, EGFR and STAT3 expression and increased apoptosis as revealed by cleavage of caspase 3 and PARP. In addition our results show that PEITC can enhance the efficacy of doxorubicin. Our results show a unique specificity of PEITC in inducing apoptosis in HER2-expressing tumor cells in vitro and in vivo and enhancing the effects of doxorubicin. This unique specificity of PEITC offers promise to a subset of breast cancer patients overexpressing HER2.

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