Calcium Signaling and Apoptosis
A key feature of established models of apoptosis is the regulation of mitochondrial permeability by both pro- and antiapoptotic members of the Bcl-2 protein family. These proteins also function to modulate intracellular calcium in a highly complex fashion that promotes both prosurvival while inhibiting proapoptotic calcium signals. Our research is focused on identifying the mechanisms involved in translating Bcl-2-modulated calcium signaling into changes in the cellular sensitivity to apoptosis.
Calcium and Redox Signaling in Type-2 Diabetes
Structural and functional alterations in the microcirculation contribute to the pathogenesis of type-2 diabetic complications. Here, our research seeks to define how diabetes affects the molecular mechanisms important in regulating vessel contractility and blood flow in the microcirculation. We are currently exploring how the disease modulates reactive oxygen species and calcium signaling pathways in the smooth muscle cells of resistance arterioles in mouse models. Ultimately, our goal is to identify novel therapeutic strategies that target microvascular dysfunction in type-2 diabetes.