Lezi E, PhD

Yan – Lab Members


Headshot of Lezi E, PhDPostdotoral Associate
344 CARL Building
Box 3054 DUMC
Durham, N.C. 27710
Phone: (919) 684-1103
Fax: TBD

I received my PhD degree in 2013, under the supervision of Dr. Russell H. Swerdlow from the University of Kansas Medical Center. Mitochondrial defects have recently been recognized to play important roles in the development of aging-related neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Using mice, my dissertation work focused on how to improve brain mitochondrial function by inducing mitochondrial biogenesis through physical exercise, aiming to support hippocampal neurogenesis and prevent or eventually treat neurodegeneration. However, the causal relationship between mitochondrial dysfunction and aging-associated neurodegeneration is still a controversial topic in the field. As a postdoctoral fellow, I joined the Yan lab in August 2014. With the mitochondrial research experience from my PhD training and my strong interest in neurodegenerative diseases, here in the Yan lab I will be usingCaenorhabditis elegans to further study this interesting subject at the in vivo level, and to unravel the molecular mechanisms behind the interrelation of mitochondrial dynamic changes and neurodegeneration during normal aging as well as prolonged aging

Outside of the lab, I enjoy movies, all kinds of music, traveling, local hiking, cooking, and playing with my 12-year old cat!


E L, Burns JM, Swerdlow RH. (2014). Effect of High-Intensity Exercise on Aged Mouse Brain Mitochondria, Neurogenesis, and Inflammation. Neurobiol Aging. [Epub ahead of print].

Tan E, Villar MT, E L, Lu J, Selfridge JE, Artigues A, Swerdlow RH, Slawson C. (2014). Altering O-linked β-N-Acetylglucosamine cycling disrupts mitochondrial function. J Biochem. 289(21):14719-30.

E L, Lu J, Selfridge JE, Burns JM, Swerdlow RH. (2013). Lactate Administration Reproduces Specific Brain and Liver Exercise-Related Changes. J Neurochem. 127(1):91-100.

Silva DF, Selfridge JE, Lu J, E L, Roy N, Hutfles L, Burns JM, Michaelis EK, Yan SS, Cardoso SM, Swerdlow RH. (2013) Bioenergetic Flux, Mitochondrial Mass, and Mitochondrial Morphology Dynamics in AD and MCI Cybrid Cell Lines. Hum Mol Genet. 22(19):3931-46.

Swerdlow RH, E L, Aires D, Lu J. (2013). Glycolysis-respiration relationships in a neuroblastoma cell line. Biochim Biophys Acta. 1830(4):2891-8.

E L, Lu J, Burns JM, Swerdlow RH. (2012). Effect of Exercise on Mouse Liver and Brain Bioenergetic Infrastructures. Exp Physiol. 98(1):207-19.

E L, Swerdlow RH. (2012). Mitochondria in Nuerodegeneration. Adv Exp Med Biol. 942: 269-86.

Selfridge JE, E L, Lu J, Swerdlow RH. (2012). Role of Mitochondrial Homeostasis and Dynamics in Alzheimer’s Disease. Neurobiol Dis. 51:3-12.