Our research is primarily focused on molecular neurobiology, specifically in the areas of brain aging, diabetic retinopathy, and substance abuse. These areas of investigation share a common theme of understanding how stimuli, e.g., the myriad experiences across a lifetime, hyperglycemia with diabetes, chronic exposure to a drug with substance abuse, cause pathological changes to the central nervous system that remain even after the stimulus subsides. The overarching concept behind these questions is that the cells of the central nervous system are extremely long lived and could continue to express an altered phenotype long after any specific stimulus is withdrawn.
Our studies involve the full spectrum from in vivo animal models to large scale ‘omic analyses, and bioinformatics. By bringing all of these capabilities into a single team we hope to obtain more biological insight into these questions than would be possible from any of these domains alone.
An area of growing emphasis in our studies is the inclusion of both male and female animal models. Despite the well known sex differences in many human diseases of the central nervous system most studies have only used one sex or the other in studies. In several recent studies we have found that sex differences are commonly found in the brain and retina.
Our Research Community
REYNOLDS OKLAHOMA CENTER ON AGING
The Reynolds Oklahoma Center on Aging houses aging researchers at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
NATHAN SHOCK CENTER
The Oklahoma Nathan Shock Center is one of five National Institute on Aging funded biology of aging research centers. The Nathan Shock Center facilitates aging research through core facilities, pilot programs, and other activities.
HAROLD HAMM DIABETES CENTER
Harold Hamm Diabetes Center at the University of Oklahoma serves as a catalyst for eradicating the diabetes epidemic through cutting-edge research focused on progress toward a cure for diabetes and its complications, dramatically improved patient care for those suffering from the disease, and programs aimed at preventing people from developing diabetes before it starts.