Seminar Series

Please Note: Starting in the Fall 2016 semester, seminars are at 9:30 AM.

  • Upcoming Seminars

    • 31Aug

      "Signaling Mechanisms Old and New in Adipocyte Metabolism and Energy Expenditure" by Sheila Collins

      Where: Pinn Hall 1-17
      Hosted by Thurl Harris, Sheila Collins is a Professor of the Integrative Metabolism Program, Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute. Dr. Collins's laboratory is interested in the biochemical mechanisms that regulate body weight. Activation of the adrenaline receptors, specifically the members of the beta-adrenergic receptor (beta-AR) family, provides the major stimulus for the hydrolysis and release of stored lipids. They are also key drivers of a process called "nonshivering thermogenesis" in brown fat. Brown fat cells are specialized cells rich in mitochondria and largely defined by their ability to express the mitochondrial uncoupling protein UCP1, which allows the dissipation of the proton gradient in the inner mitochondrial membrane to yield heat at the expense of ATP production. By understanding the beta-ARs on fat cells, their signal transduction properties and how they are regulated, we hope to be able to find a way to increase energy expenditure in fat in the fight against obesity and the devastating diseases that accompany it, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and hypertension.

    • 14Sep

      Pharmacology Seminar by Jonathan Kagan

      Where: Pinn Hall 1-17
      Hosted by Bimal Desai, Jonathan Kagan, Phd, is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School Research Focus Area: Signal transduction pathways of the immune system Ancient signaling pathways lie at the base of the initiation of immunity, serving to transmit signals from Pattern Recognition Receptors (PRRs) to trigger the activation of anti-microbial defenses. All PRRs, which evolved to detect potentially pathogenic microorganisms, operate by following two cellular rules: 1) these receptors must activate cytosolic signaling with extremely fast kinetics (within seconds of ligand binding) 2) these receptors must survey multiple cellular compartments, yet still recruit a common set of signaling proteins to each location. How does a signaling network develop that has properties of near immediate responsiveness, yet the flexibility to signal from multiple locations? While most research on immune signal transduction focuses on the effector functions of signaling proteins, we are interested in understanding how these proteins are organized in the cytosol to promote both rapid responses and the flexibility of signaling locale. Using the Toll-like Receptor (TLR) family of PRRs as a model, we seek to explain the operation of cytosolic signaling proteins that function in immune defense. TLRs promote the initiation of both...

    • 12Oct

      Pharmacology Seminar by John Huguenard

      Where: Pinn Hall 1-17
      Hosted by Mark Beenhakker, John Haguenard, Phd is a Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences, Standford University Lab Summary: We study mechanisms of neural circuit synchronization and oscillation, using a combination of methods, including neurophysiological, pharmacological, neuroanatomical, and computational. Neural oscillations are associated with a variety of behaviors including selective attention, exploration, sleep and epilepsy. One powerful method of analysis is dynamic clamp, which allows the experimenter to build hybrid circuits linking computational models with biological systems in real time. Representative publications: Bacci, A and Huguenard, J.R. (2005) Enhancement of spike precision by autaptic transmission in neocortical inhibitory interneurons. Neuron 49:119-130. ( Supplemental Information) Sohal, V.S and Huguenard, J.R. (2005) Inhibitory coupling specifically generates emergent gamma oscillations in diverse cell types. PNAS 102:18638-43. (Supplemental Information ) Deleuze, C. and Huguenard, J.R. (2006) Distinct electrical and chemical connectivity maps in the thalamic reticular nucleus: potential roles in synchronization and sensation. J Neurosci 26:8633-8645. Huguenard JR, McCormick DA (2007) Thalamic synchrony and dynamic regulation of global forebrain oscillations. Trends Neurosci. 30:350-6 Dulla,C. Tani, H. Okumoto, S., Frommer, W.B., Reimer, R.J. and...

    • 09Nov

      Pharmacology Seminar by Christophe Bernard

      Where: Pinn Hall 1-17
      Hosted by Mark Beenhakker, Christophe Bernard, PhD is Director of the Physiology & Physiopathology of Neuronal Networks Group(PhysioNet), Institut de Neurosciences des Systemes. After an initial training in theoretical physics and mathematics, he did a Ph.D. on "Theoretical and experimental analysis of cellular activity in the cerebellum". He then did a Post Doc in Southampton University with Howard Wheal on synaptic plasticity in an experimental model of Temporal Lobe Epilepsy. Since then, his activity has been focused on the mechanisms underlying the construction of an epileptic brain. He has been awarded with the Michael Prize in 2007. Focus of the Physiology & Physiopathology of Neuronal Networks Group (PhysioNet) that Dr. Bernard Leads: The principal objective is to understand how physiological and pathological behaviors emerge from the organization and the reorganization of the underlying neuronal architecture. The group's research is structured around five themes: 1. Cell/network dynamics and learning in physiological and pathological conditions (in epileptic patients, monkeys and rodents) 2. Mechanisms leading to the construction of an epileptic brain (in epileptic patients, monkeys and rodents) 3. Anatomo-functional organization of normal and epileptic networks (in epileptic patients, monkeys and rodents) ...

    • 30Nov

      Pharmacology Seminar by Zhiping Pang

      Where: Pinn Hall 1-17
      Hosted by Michael Scott, Zhiping Pang, PhD is an Assistant Professor and Principal Investigator, Neuroscience and Cell Biology, Child Health Institute of New Jersey, Rutgers-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School Mechanisms of synaptic regulation: From stem cell to the brain Dr. Pang's laboratory studies the neural basis of the regulation of feeding, satiety, metabolism and obesity. Studies may provide insights into the neural causes and consequences of childhood obesity. His lab also developed novel techniques for deriving neuronal cells from primary skin cells and pluripotent stem cells, providing novel opportunities to study the pathogenesis of neurological disorders, including pediatric developmental disorders and autism spectrum disorders.

    • 07Dec

      2017 Joseph Larner Memorial Lecture in Pharmacology by Daniel P. Kelley

      Where: 1st Floor PHCC (Auditorium
      A lectureship was established to honor the memory of Joseph Larner, who served as Professor and Chair of the Pharmacology Department for many years. During his time as Chair he recruited and mentored numerous successful faculty, including Al Gilman. He continued to be an inspiration to everyone who knew him, especially our graduate students, who were in awe of his energy and enthusiasm as he kept up his science and maintained an active departmental presence well into his 90s. In addition to honoring Dr. Larner's memory, the goal of this lectureship is to highlight exciting new advances in an area that held great interest for him: the pervasive role of metabolism/cell signaling in human disease. About this Year's Speaker: Hosted by Thurl Harris, Daniel P. Kelly, M.D is the Willard and Rhoda Ware Professor and Director at Penn Cardiovascular Institute, University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Kelly obtained his medical degree from the University of Illinois College of Medicine, residency training at Barnes Hospital in St. Louis, and postdoctoral and clinical cardiology training at Washington University School of Medicine. He joined the Washington University School of Medicine faculty in 1989 and rapidly moved up the ranks to Professor...

    • 06Feb

      Pharmacology/NGP Co-Hosted Seminar by Zachary Knight

      Where: TBD
      Hosted by Douglas Bayliss, Pharmacology and the Neurosciences Graduate Program, Dr. Knight is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physiology and a member of the Kavli Institute for Fundamental Neuroscience at UCSF. His laboratory investigates the neurobiology of homeostasis, especially the neural mechanisms that govern hunger, thirst, and thermoregulation. Zachary Knight received his B.A. in Chemistry from Princeton University in 1999. As an undergraduate, he developed novel chemical approaches for mapping protein phosphorylation dynamics. He then continued his chemistry training at the University of California, San Francisco, where he received a Ph.D. in Chemistry and Chemical Biology in 2006. As a graduate student in the laboratory of Kevan Shokat, Zachary discovered some of the first selective small molecule inhibitors of PI3-kinase and mTOR, two signaling enzymes critical for metabolism and cancer. In 2007, Zachary co-founded Intellikine in order to develop these compounds as drugs for the treatment of cancer, and three compounds from this effort are currently being evaluated in more than 40 clinical trials. After receiving his Ph.D., Zachary decided to switch fields from chemistry to physiology and pursued postdoctoral research in the laboratory of Jeffrey Friedman at the Rockefeller University. As a postdoctoral fellow,...

    • 08Mar

      Pharmacology Seminar by Heather Ferris

      Where: Pinn Hall 1-17
      Hosted by Thurl Harris, PhD, Heather Ferris is a 2006 UVA alumni, who joined the UVA faculty on May 1st as an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Endocrinology. She comes to UVA from the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, one of the leading centers for diabetes treatment in the country. Dr. Ferris's research focuses on the effects of diabetes on the brain.

    • 22Mar

      Pharmacology Seminar by Josh Huang

      Where: Pinn Hall 1-17
      Hosted by Julius Zhu; Co-Sponsored by the Brain Institute, Josh Huang, PhD, is a Professor at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory About Huang's Lab: Cellular basis of neocortex circuit architecture Our goal is to understand the cellular basis of fundamental aspects of neural circuit architecture in the neocortex that process information and guide intelligent behavior. Our overarching hypothesis is that the basic inter-areal and inter-hemisphere cortical processing networks and cortical output channels are mediated by a large set of distinct glutamatergic pyramidal neuron types, and local circuit modules that shape functional neural ensembles are regulated by a diverse set of GABAergic interneuron types. We use state-of-the-art genetic and viral approaches to systematically discover and target cortical cell types. This provides the intellectual and technical starting point to explore cortical circuits by leveraging and integrating a full range of modern technologies. As the basic cortical circuit architecture is built through developmental genetic programs, we complement and synergize our studies of the assembly and functional organization of cortical circuits by integrating molecular, developmental genetic, anatomical, physiological approaches. Recently, we began to integrate our studies in the context of the assembly and function of motor cortex circuits that control volitional forelimb movements.

    • 29Mar

      Pharmacology Seminar by Kevin Foskett

      Where: Pinn Hall 1-17
      Hosted by Adi Narahari/Pharm Students Research Description The Foskett lab is interested, most generally, in membrane transport and cell signaling. The techniques we employ in the lab span the spectrum from biophysical to molecular. Biochemical and molecular tools are used within the context of physiological measurement, with the goal to understand how molecular behavior results in complex cell physiological processes in normal and disease states. We employ electrophysiology, including single ion channel patch clamping and two-electrode voltage clamping; digital low light-level fluorescence imaging microscopy of single living cells; micro-injection; yeast 2-hybrid system to examine and discover protein interactions; recombinant protein expression; molecular biology; and biochemistry.

    • 12Apr

      Pharmacology Seminar by James Grannerman

      Where: Pinn Hall 1-17
      Hosted by Thurl Harris, James Grannerman, PhD is a Professor of Molecular Medicine and Genetics and Internal Medicine, Director, Center for Integrative Metabolic and Endocrine Research(CIMER), Wayne State University Research Focus: Adipose tissue cell and molecular biology, target identification and high through-put screening for novel obesity and diabetes therapeutics Recent Publications: Lee YH, Mottillo EP, Granneman JG. Adipose tissue plasticity from WAT to BAT and in between. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2014 Mar;1842(3):358-69. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2013.05.011. Epub 2013 May 17. PubMed PMID: 23688783. Lee YH, Thacker RI, Hall BE, Kong R, Granneman JG. Exploring the activated adipogenic niche: interactions of macrophages and adipocyte progenitors. Cell Cycle. 2014 Jan 15;13(2):184-90. doi: 10.4161/cc.27647. Epub 2014 Jan 6. PubMed PMID: 24394850; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3906235. Mottillo EP, Paul GM, Moore HP, Granneman JG. Use of fluorescence microscopy to probe intracellular lipolysis. Methods Enzymol. 2014;538:263-78. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-800280-3.00015-3. PubMed PMID: 24529444. Donato M, Xu Z, Tomoiaga A, Granneman JG, Mackenzie RG, Bao R, Than NG, Westfall PH, Romero R, Draghici S. Analysis and correction of crosstalk effects in pathway analysis. Genome Res. 2013 Nov;23(11):1885-93. doi: 10.1101/gr.153551.112. Epub 2013 Aug 9. PubMed PMID: 23934932; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3814888. Lee YH, Petkova AP, Granneman JG. Identification of an adipogenic niche for...

    • 17Apr

      Pharmacology/NGP Co-hosted Seminar by Yiyang Gong

      Where: TBD
      Hosted by Julius Zhu and the Neurosciences Graduate Program Seminar Series, Yiyang Gong is an Associate Professor, Biomedical Engineering, Duke University Research Interests: Recording and understanding brain activity by developing novel combinations of optical microscopy and genetically encoded sensors. Using these technologies to dissect neural circuit function and investigate how neural activity drives complex behaviors. Lab focus: Understanding brain function using the combination of genetically encoded sensors and optical techniques. Using genetically encoded tools, we can target specific neuron types or specific projection pathways for recording or perturbation. Using optical microscopy, we can access individual neurons with high spatial and temporal accuracy. By employing and developing tools in both categories, we study brain circuitry by recording, perturbing, and controlling brain activity in various preparations.