Supported by a new $25M award from the National Institutes of Health, the HIV/AIDS ‘BELIEVE’ project is a collaborative effort between researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, George Washington University's School of Medicine and Health Sciences, and 16 other institutions nationwide.  The goal of this collaborative project is to eliminate latent HIV reservoirs by stimulating the anti-HIV response of the immune system.

Dr. Thomas Smithgall, William S. McEllroy Professor of Biochemistry and Chairman of the Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, is part of the BELIEVE project and was recently interviewed by Wes Venteicher from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review regarding the role of Dr. Smithgall and his research team in this exciting multi-disciplinary project.

Dr. Cecilia Lo is a recipient of the 2016 Chancellor's Award for Distinguished Research for Senior Scholars. In his award letter, the Chancellor told Lo that the selection committee was impressed by her unique research on the genetic and developmental etiology of congenital heart disease. "You are highly respected in both the basic and clinical sciences for your ability to bring your work in the basic sciences to use in the clinical research field," Gallagher stated. He cited as well Lo's mentorship of junior faculty, prominence as an invited speaker—including more than 15 scientific conferences last year, and publication record in journals including Science, Nature, and the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

Dr. Jianhua Xing receives a 4-year, $700,000 grant from the NSF. Xing and Co-PI,Guang Yao (U Arizona) Collaborated on "Modeling the Coupling of Epigenetic and Transcriptional Regulation"

"Understanding how genes co-evolve in animals could reveal links between human diseases"

Dr. Nathan Clark and his lab are looking at connections between what we think of as different diseases and how these connections can help lead to innovations in treatment of those diseases.  See the complete article in Pitt Med

Congratulations to Dr. Cecilia Lo and Dr. Michael Tsang on their recently funded NIH administrative supplement, "Assaying Heterotaxy Patient Genes in a Cilia Motility and Left-Right Patterning". This project will examine whether expression of the RCV can rescue the HTX phenotype elicited by MO gene knockdown in the zebrafish embryo. Also, it will establish genotype-phenotype correlation in ciliary motion defects and develop software for quantitative classification of ciliary motion defects using a computational approach with computer vision and machine learning algorithms for visual pattern recognition. Using this software, we will determine whether different RCVs are associated with different ciliary motion defects. This will provide insights into structure-function relationships in the regulation of cilia motility.

Congratulations to Dr. Carlton Bates and Co-Investigator Dr. Dennis Kostka on their recently funded National Institutes of Health proposal, "Critical Roles for Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptors in Bladder Development". The broad long-term objective of this project is to elucidate the molecular control of bladder development to develop effective therapies for structural bladder disease.