Penn Medicine
   
 

The Khurana Lab

The Present: Current members of the Lab at the Biopond, University of Pennsylvania, Standing (L to R) Sasha Bogdanovich, Caroline Ketterer, Murat T. Budak, Utpal Basu, Ulrike Zeiger, Santhosh Baby and Sitting (L to R) Eugenia C. Pacheco-Pinedo, Tejvir S. Khurana, Olga Lozynska, Neal A. Rubinstein, Martin H.J. Wiesen & Gabriel Willmann (2005). Caroline & Murat work with our collaborator on EOMs, Prof. Neal Rubinstein.

The Past: The lab started functioning in 1997-98 at the Dept. of Clinical Biochemistry and Experimental Medicine, Glostrup Hospital, Denmark. Glostrup Hospital is one of the main teaching hospitals of the University of Copenhagen. During this time the lab consisted of the P.I. along with Lisbeth Sorensen & Lene Jensen (technicians), Carsten Niemann (medical student), Mads Gyrd-Hansen & Thomas O.B. Krag (graduate students).

In 2000 the lab relocated to the University of Pennsylvania. Pix from lab @ Penn c. 2003: L to R. Thomas O.B. Krag, Sasha Bogdanovich, Kelly J. Perkins, Tejvir S. Khurana.

 
Lab Members:
 

 

Thomas O. B. Krag, Ph.D.
(1997-2003)

Thomas joined the lab as a Copenhagen University graduate student, having obtained his masters (in protein biochemistry) from Odense University, Denmark where he trained with Dr. Peter Hojrup. His Ph. D. thesis concerned Utrophin promoter regulation and was undertaken both in Denmark and at Penn. Thesis Title: Amelioration of the dystrophic mdx phenotype mediated by pharmacological compounds. He is currently a post-doc at the Copenhagen Muscle Research Center, National Hospital (Rigshospitalet), University of Copenhagen. Thomas Publications.
E-mail: thomas_krag@hotmail.com

     
 

Carsten U. Niemann, M.D.
(1998-1999)

Carsten joined the lab while he was a medical student at University of Copenhagen. His thesis undertaken as part of the OSVAL II track research elective for University of Copenhagen medical students, concerned the identification of genes expressed in the extraocular muscles. Thesis Title: Analysis of differences in gene expression between extraocular muscle and limb muscle by means of differential display: Implications for Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Carsten did his residency in Hematology/Medicine at the National Hospital (Rigshospitalet), University of Copenhagen, where he is working towards his Ph. D. Carsten Publications.
Email: niemann@dadlnet.dk

     
 

Mads Gyrd-Hansen, Ph.D.
(1998-2000)

Mads joined the lab as a graduate student at University of Copenhagen. His M.Sc. thesis concerned co-operability in the regulation of the utrophin promoter. Thesis Title: Identification and characterization of regulatory mechanisms controlling transcription of utrophin. Mads is currently in the lab of Dr. Marja Jäätellä at the Danish Cancer Society, University of Copenhagen, from where he obtained his PhD. Mads Publications.
E-mail: mgh@gyrd.dk

     
 

M. Dominik Fischer
(2001-2002)

Dominik joined the lab for a research elective as a first year medical student at University of Witten/Herdecke, Germany. His research concerned GeneChip based expression profiling of extraocular muscles. He is currently finishing his medical studies in Germany. Dominik Publications.
E-mail: m.d.fischer@web.de

     
 

Sasha Bogdanovich, M.D.
(2001-Present)

Sasha joined the lab as a post-doc after completing his medical degree and training from the University of Novi Sad, Serbia and Montenegro. He also got his masters degree (in physiology) from University of Novi Sad. He is currently a Ph.D. Candidate at the Faculty of Medicine University of Novi Sad. Thesis Title: Myostatin blockade for functional improvement of Duchenne's dystrophic phenotype. His project concerns understanding the molecular mechanisms of myostatin's actions on muscle and the development of myostatin blockade strategies for muscular dystrophy therapy. Sasha has been awarded a career developmental grant from the Muscular Dystrophy Association, USA for his research. Sasha Publications.
E-mail: sashab@mail.med.upenn.edu

     
 

Kelly J. Perkins, D. Phil.
(2003-2004)

Kelly joined the lab as a post-doc after receiving her D. Phil. at Oxford University, England, where she trained with Dr. Kay Davies. Thesis Title: Molecular and functional analysis of the transcriptional regulation of utrophin. Kelly got her B. Sc. (Hon) degree in Molecular Genetics at The Women's and Children's Hospital, Adelaide, Australia, where she trained with Dr. John Hopwood. She is currently back at Oxford doing a post-doc with Dr. Nick Proudfoot. Kelly Publications.
E-mail: perkinsk@mail.med.upenn.edu

     
  Olga Lozynska, M.S.
(2003-2007)
: Olga obtained her masters degree in biochemistry at Kiev State University, Ukraine. Prior to joining the lab she worked for Prof. Charles Emerson Jr. at Penn, characterizing the expression pattern and localization of the quail sulphatase gene. Her current projects focus on cloning and expression of therapeutic myostatin pro-peptide molecules. She is also performing laser capture microdissection to identify and characterize the transcriptome in extraocular muscle and other tissues. Olga Publications. Email: lozynska@mail.med.upenn.edu 
     
  Murat T. Budak, M.D., Ph.D.
(2003-2007)
: Murat joined the lab as a post-doc after completing his medical degree at Hacettepe University, Turkey and Ph. D. degree at Gazi University, Turkey. Thesis Title: EGF effect on ocular surface wound healing. He did a post-doc with Dr. J. Mario Wolosin at Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, New York on ocular surface stem cell isolation/characterization. His current project (in the Khurana & Rubinstein labs) concerns characterizing extraocular muscle transcriptome and stem cells. Murat Publications. Email: mtbudak@mail.med.upenn.edu
     
 

Ulrike Zeiger, M.Sc.
(2004-Present)

Ulrike joined the lab after receiving her masters degree in molecular medicine at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany. Her projects concern the characterization of extraocular muscles, including their calcium homeostasis, miRNA expression patterns and expression of satellite cell markers on single muscle fibers. Ulrike publications.
E-mail: ulrikez@mail.med.upenn.edu

     
 

Martin H. J. Wiesen
(2004-2005)

Martin joined the lab for a research elective as a final year medical student at University of Witten/Herdecke, Germany. His research concerns characterization of M-lines and M-line containing fibers in extraocular muscles. Martin is currently doing his internship in Cologne, Germany. Martin Publications.
E-mail: wiesenm@mail.med.upenn.edu

     
  Utpal Basu, Ph.D.
(2004-2007)
: Utpal joined the lab as a post-doc after completing his masters degree in Biochemistry at the University of Calcutta, and his Ph.D. at Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics, India, where he trained with Dr. Subrata Banerjee. Thesis Title: Development of a novel viral vector for gene therapy of hematological disorders. His project concerns understanding the molecular mechanisms of utrophin promoter regulation. Utpal Publications Email: utpal@mail.med.upenn.edu
     
  Eugenia C. Pacheco-Pinedo, M.D.
(2004-2008)
: Eugenia joined the lab as a post-doc after completing her medical degree, masters degree (Immunology) and medical training from the University of Antioquia , Colombia. Her project concerns characterizing extraocular muscle stem cells and developing their therapeutic potential. Eugenia Publications. Email: pachecop@mail.med.upenn.edu
     
 

Santhosh M. Baby, Ph.D.
(2004-2008)

Santhosh joined the lab as a post-doc, after training as a fellow in respiratory physiology, carotid body and hypoxia with Prof. Sukhamay Lahiri at Penn. He received his masters degree in general zoology at Mahatma Gandhi University, India and his Ph.D. in neuroscience from Nagpur University, India and Justus Leibig University, Germany. Thesis title: Role of neuropeptides in the regulation of reproduction in vertebrates. He is working on expression pattern of utrophin in the brain. Santhosh Publications.
E-mail: santhosh@mail.med.upenn.edu

     
 

Gabriel Willmann
(2005-Present)

Gabriel had joined the lab for a research elective as a final year medical student in 2005 and is now working as a post-doc after completing his medical degree at University of Witten/Herdecke, Germany. His research concerns the effects of hypoxia/high altitude on skeletal muscles and blood.
E-mail: gabriel.willmann@gmx.de

     
 

Caroline Ketterer
(2005-Present)

Caroline is at the Rubinstein lab where she is doing a research elective as a final year medical student at University of Cologne, Germany. Her research in collaboration with our lab, concerns regional transcriptome analysis of synapses and M-line containing fibers in extraocular muscles.
E-mail: carolineketterer@gmx.de

   


  Matias Mosqueira
(2007-Present)

Matias joined the lab as a post-doc in April 2007. His PhD degree was obtained at Catholic University of Chile, Santiago, studying the genomic and physiological effects of hypoxia on carotid body. His current projects include: characterization of the hypoxic ventilatory response on mdx dystrophic mice (using whole-body plethysmograph in non-anesthetic animals and phrenic nerve recording together with intra-tracheal and ECG in anesthetic animals) and expression profiling and miRNA profiling in Drosophila dystrophic model exposed to hypoxia. Email: matiasm@mail.med.upenn.edu
Matias Publications:
     
  Gopal P. Patel, Ph.D.
(2007-Present)

Gopal received his Ph.D at the University of Guelph, Canada, with Prof. Janankur Bag, where he worked on the translational regulation of Poly(A)-binding protein expression. Prior to joining the Khurana Lab he also worked as a postdoctoral scholar at the University of Chicago Hospital with Dr. Lucy Godley, where he focused on the role of truncated DNA methyltransferase (DNMT3B) in DNA modification and cancer. Currently his is working towards understanding the role of Ets-2 Repressor Factor (ERF) in regulating extrasynaptic Utrophin expression.
E-mail: gopatel@mail.med.upenn.edu
     
  Predrag Krajacic, M.D.
(2007-Present)

Predrag joined the lab as a post-doc after completing his medical degree and training at the University of Belgrade School of Medicine, Serbia. Before joining the lab, as a medical student he did a year’s research elective in Dr Joshua Dunaief’s laboratory at the Penn Department of Ophthalmology.
His current project, in collaboration with Dr Todd Lamitina, focuses on introducing nematode C. Elegans as a possible model system for LGMD2B and other muscular dystrophies. Predrag publications: Email: predrag@mail.med.upenn.edu
     
 

Emidio Pistilli, Ph.D.
(2007-Present)

Ed joined the lab as a post-doc, after completing a one-year post-doc experience at the Research Center for Genetic Medicine at Children’s National Medical Center. He completed his PhD at the West Virginia University School of Medicine in muscle physiology, working in the laboratory of Dr. Stephen Alway. Dissertation Title: The extrinsic apoptotic pathway in aged skeletal muscle – roles of IL-15 and TNF-a. His current projects focus on myostatin inhibition as a means to treat dystrophic muscle and researching IL-15 as a potential therapy for muscle wasting diseases. Email: epist@mail.med.upenn.edu
Emidio Publications:

     
  Neha Suri
(2007-Present)

Neha joined the lab as a graduate student studying Biotechnology at
University of Pennsylvania. Her research concerns development of
cellular High Throughput Screening assay for Duchenne's Muscular
Dystrophy therapy.
Email: nehasuri@seas.upenn.edu
     
 

 

 

Catherine Moorwood, D.Phil
(2008-Present)

Catherine joined the lab as a post-doc after receiving her doctorate from the
University of Oxford, where she trained with Prof. Dame Kay Davies. Thesis
title: Neuronal Characterisation of Syncoilin. Catherine's research is
focused on developing novel strategies for the upregulation of utrophin, as a
potential therapy for Duchenne muscular dystrophy. moorwood@mail.med.upenn.edu

 

 

 

     
 

Tejvir S. Khurana, M.D., Ph.D.
Teji received his medical degree from Delhi University and his medical training in India, Kenya and Europe. He received his Ph.D. at Harvard University, where he trained with Dr. Louis M. Kunkel. Thesis Title: Identification and characterization of a chromosome 6 encoded dystrophin-related protein. After doing his post-doc at Harvard, he started his own lab. Khurana Publications.
E-mail: tsk@mail.med.upenn.edu

     

Funding

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Pennsylvania Muscle Institute
Perelman School of Medicine University of Pennsylvania
Director: E. Michael Ostap, Ph.D.

700A Clinical Research Building Philadelphia, PA 19104-6085 Phone: (215) 573-9758 Fax: (215) 898-2653