Recent News


Matthias Gromeier_Secondary FacultyCan Scientists Really Harness the Poliovirus to Kill Cancer?  Dr. Matthias Gromeier, MD was recently featured in DukeForward.  Dr. Gromeier created a modified poliovirus that was awarded “breakthrough therapy” status from the Food and Drug Administration.  The modified virus has shown dramatic success in a small number of adults with aggressive brain cancer. Dr. Gromeier was also featured on 60  minutes on CBS on March 29th, 2015.  You may read the article here. Please visit CBSNews to watch the 60 minute video.

Stacy Horner Assistant ProfessorHorner featured in Duke Today.  Chemical tags affect ability of RNA viruses to infect cells.  Dr. Stacy Horner, PhD recently published a paper in Cell Host Microbe entitled, “N6-methyladenosine in Flaviviridae viral RNA genomes regulates infection” and was featured in an article published in Duke today.  Read the full article here.   Read the published paper here.

Soman Abraham_Secondary FacultyMouse Study Shows How “Hair-of-the-Dog” Approach Works to Treat Allergies. Rush desensitization is a clinical procedure employed on allergic subjects to increase their tolerance to life threatening allergens. The procedure involves administering increasing doses of specific allergens to the patient over a short period of time. This procedure is often applied on patients who react adversely to essential antibiotics and chemotherapeutic drugs. Although this procedure has been utilized for over a century, its underlying mechanism has largely remained elusive. Soman Abraham and colleagues now report that the cellular target of rush desensitization is the mast cell and reveal the underlying events leading to its inactivation.  More…

David, LawrenceLawrence David, PhD, Named one of Science News Ten Scientists to Watch. Lawrence David, PhD,  Assistant Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology was named one of Science News “10 Scientists to Watch” because of his extensive research of the microbiome. His lab works to to understand, predict, and manipulate how human microbiota behave over time.  More…

Max Villa_David LabVilla awarded a Burroughs Wellcome Fund Fellowship.  Max Villa was one of 15 postdoctoral scholars selected to receive the 2016 Postdoctoral Enrichment Program Award from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund.  The fellowship grants a total of $60,000 over three years to support the career development of underrepresented minorities conducting postdoctoral research in the US and Canada. Read more in Duke Today.

MGM News_Beth Sullivan (Feb 2015)Sullivan and team featured in Duke Today Variation in the coding region of the human genome is linked to changes in gene expression and disease and is an area of intense investigation. Conversely, few studies have focused on non-coding, repetitive DNA, sometimes called “junk” DNA because it was originally thought to have little impact on genome function. Beth Sullivan, PhD and her lab now report in Genome Research  that genomic variation in highly repetitive alpha satellite DNA influences the physical location of centromere assembly and has a direct impact on chromosome stability. Read more about this study in Duke Today.

Louis-Jan Pilaz_Silver Lab_DFTA 2013Pilaz appointed a Duke Regeneration Next Fellow.  Louis-Jan Pilaz, PhD (Silver Lab) was appointed a Duke Regeneration Next Fellow, one of 4 postdoctoral associates part of the inaugural cohort. This group of scholars will help shape and grow the regeneration science community at Duke.  The fellowship with partially support his salary for the next two years.  Regeneration Next was launched in 2016 by the School of Medicine to bring faculty, trainees, and staff together to advance discovery research and education.  Directed by Ken Poss, PhD, Regeneration Next supports eight research programs, each dedicated to a specialty within the field of stem cell and regenerative medicine, and a graduate program focused on developmental and stem cell biology.  [Announcement]

Blake Billmyre_Other Grad ProgramsShannon-Esher_MGM-GRAD-2012-150x150Kelliher_photoBillmyre, Esher, and Kelliher awarded an Interdisciplinary Colloquia initiative. Blake Billmyre (Heitman Lab), Shannon Esher (Alspaugh Lab), and Tina Kelliher (Haase Lab) received an Interdisciplinary Colloquia initiative for the Eukaryotic Pathogenesis Investigator Club (EPIC). EPIC was established in 2015 with the goal of fostering interactions among scientists studying eukaryotic pathogens at Duke and in the Triangle area. Despite the wide variety of laboratories studying mycology and parasitology at Duke, EPIC is the only seminar series focused broadly on eukaryotic pathogenesis. EPIC meets once monthly and consists of two research talks from faculty and trainees in the group, including members of the Tri-Institutional Molecular Mycology and Pathogenesis Training Program (Tri-I MMPTP). After a successful first year in which over 15 research groups at Duke and UNC-Chapel Hill Universities participated, EPIC applied for and was awarded $5000 from the School of Medicine to sustain and expand the series to include two invited outside speakers.

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