Dr. Brian Parks, Postdoctoral Scholar at the University of California, Los Angeles, and graduate of the UAB Microbiology Department, will speak May 7, 2013 at Noon in the Learning Resource Center (1714 9th Ave South) Room 102.
Parks, a graduate student in Dr. Janusz Kabarowski’s lab from 2004 to 2009, is studying the genetic nature of obesity and weight gain at the University of California, Los Angeles. His recent study using a systems genetics approach in mice analyzed genetic and environmental interactions affecting obesity, metabolic syndrome and gut microbiota composition. The results indicated that body-fat responses and gut microbe changes to high-fat, high-sugar diets have a very strong genetic component. “We have identified several genetic factors potentially regulating these responses,” says Parks.
Read Dr. Parks’ most recent results, “Genetic Control of Obesity and Gut Microbiota Composition in Response to High-Fat, High-Sucrose Diet in Mice,” in the January 2013 issue of Cell Metabolism and a commentary at http://www.nih.gov/researchmatters/january2013/01282013weight.htm.
This provides new genetic clues to understanding IgA nephropathy, an autoimmune kidney disease that commonly causes kidney failure. The findings are relevant to IgA nephropathy and other diseases with similar underlying molecular defects, such as inflammatory bowel disease, certain types of blood disease and cancer.
“Very little is known about the causes of IgA nephropathy, genetic or otherwise, so our discovery represents an important step toward developing better therapies for this disease,” said lead author Krzysztof Kiryluk, M.D., the Herbert Irving Assistant Professor of Medicine at Columba University Medical Center. Read more ... It doesn’t matter whether you live in Beverly Hills or a Brazilian favela — every human being is only a few inches away from disaster. From birth to death, on our arms, legs and everywhere else, each of us carries microbes that would love to get under our skin and reproduce, with potentially fatal results. A paper cut, an insect bite, an untimely rubbing of the eyes — it takes very little for bacteria, viruses and other invaders to get inside and start wreaking havoc. Read more ... University of Alabama at Birmingham’s College of Arts and Sciences and School of Medicine have been named fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
The AAAS is the world’s largest multidisciplinary scientific society and a leading publisher of cutting-edge research through its Science family of journals.
Charles Amsler, Ph.D., professor in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Biology, Steven Austad, Ph.D., distinguished professor and chair of the Department of Biology, and David Briles, Ph.D., professor in the School of Medicine’s Department of Microbiology and Department of Pediatrics, are UAB’s three representatives in the 2016 class of AAAS fellows. Read more ... The hygiene hypothesis proposes that a 20th century surge in allergies and asthma is because people are living in increasingly hygienic environments. Rather than the rural farm life of the agricultural 19th century, families live in urban and suburban communities, have fewer children who can exchange infections, bathe and wash their hands more frequently, and use antibiotics excessively. This all means reduced infant exposure to microbes that would have tempered excessive immune reactions, such as asthma, later in life. Read more ...