June 11, 2024
Announcing the appointment of Erika L. F. Holzbaur, PhD, as the new Director of the Pennsylvania Muscle Institute
I am pleased to join with Dr. Kevin Foskett, Chair of the Department of Physiology, to announce the appointment of Dr. Erika L. F. Holzbaur as the new director of the Pennsylvania Muscle Institute (PMI), effective May 1, 2024. Dr. Holzbaur is a world-renowned scientist with a research program focused on the cytoskeleton and dynamics of organelle transport in neurons. As former program chair of the Cell Biology, Physiology, and Metabolism graduate program, and former president of the American Society for Cell Biology, Dr. Holzbaur brings a proven track record of leading and fostering strong collaboration within scientific communities. Her skills and collaborative spirit make her a perfect fit to lead the PMI in its mission. As PMI director, Dr. Holzbaur will lead an interdisciplinary group of research investigators from PSOM and across the Penn campus. Established more than half a century ago, the mission of the PMI is to discover the mechanisms of muscle function, muscle disease and motile biological systems; develop state-of-the art technologies for the study of muscle and motile systems; and provide education and training in muscle biology and motility to scientists, physicians, and students. Research is conducted by its more than 50 laboratories using biophysics, biochemistry, genetics, physiology and ultrastructure to understand cell migration and intracellular transport, molecular motors, cell division, muscle contraction and development, muscle pathologies and therapies targeted to muscle disease. For more information about Dr. Holzbaur's impressive background, please see her bio below. Having directed the PMI for the last 14 years, collaborating with exceptional scientists like Dr. Holzbaur has been a highlight of my career. I have every confidence that she will further elevate the rich scientific and mentoring environment for which the PMI is known. Please join in thanking Dr. Holzbaur for serving in this important leadership role. Thank you, Mike E. Michael Ostap, PhD Professor of Physiology Interim Senior Vice Dean and Chief Scientific Officer, Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania
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June 10, 2024
Congratulations to the Dominguez Lab!
In 2002, Sally Zigmond and other UPenn/PMI scientists made the seminal discovery of formin’s ability to nucleate and elongate actin filaments (Science; DOI: 10.1126/science.1072309). Utilizing UPenn’s cryo-EM facility, Nick Palmer and Kyle Barrie, students in the Dominguez lab, have just published in Nature (https://rdcu.be/dJ8mW) the cryo-EM structures of INF2 and Dia1 that now provide a step-by-step visualization of the mechanisms of actin filament severing and elongation, bringing this story full-circle here at Penn! The implications of this study are profound since formin dysfunction is linked to pathologies, including cardiomyopathies, cancers, and neurological disorders. Mutations in the two formins studied in their paper, INF2 and Dia1, produce focal segmental glomerulosclerosis and Charcot-Marie-Tooth neuropathy (INF2), and deafness (Dia1). Please join me in congratulating the Dominguez lab on this accomplishment!
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May 10, 2024
Congratulations Paul Titchenell!
Congratulations Paul Titchenell for being selected to the 2024-2025 cohort of Penn Faculty Fellows! This competitive program provides leadership development to select Penn faculty in mid-career. Begun in 2009, it includes opportunities to build alliances across the university, meet distinguished academic leaders, think strategically about university governance, and consult with Penn’s senior administrators. Please join me in celebrating Paul’s selection to this prestigious program.
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April 17, 2024
Congratulations E. Michael Ostap, PhD!
Appointment of Michael Ostap, PhD, as interim Senior Vice Dean and Chief Scientific Officer for the Perelman School of Medicine
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February 12, 2024
Congratulations Melike Lakadamyali, PhD!
Congratulations Melike Lakadamyali on her promotion to FULL PROFESSOR!! This promotion recognizes Melike’s outstanding contributions to the Department and the University, and importantly, her international stature in the research community. Please join me in applauding Melike on her success and in achieving this distinguished milestone.
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January 23, 2024
Congratulations to Rob Lee, PhD!
CONGRATULATIONS to Rob Lee on his promotion to Associate Professor of Otorhinolaryngology with tenure!! Rob has been a fully-engaged secondary member of the Department of Physiology, and has excelled in all of our missions. This is well-deserved, not a surprise, and awesome news!! Please join me in applauding Rob on this fantastic accomplishment!
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October 17, 2023
Congratulations to Tejvir S. Khurana, MD, PhD!
Congratulations to Tejvir S. Khurana, MD, PhD for winning the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching! This award was established in 1961 with the help of the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Foundation to recognize excellence in teaching. Awards are granted each year for distinguished teaching in health and non-health areas. The receipt of their respective Lindback Awards is a testament to Drs. Ferrari and Khurana's exceptional dedication to education, and their profound influence on students' intellectual and personal growth. Their recognition signifies their outstanding teaching abilities, as well as their enduring commitment to fostering a vibrant and inspiring learning environment within the Penn community.
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