for update 12

Hi, my name is Olivia Osborne. I graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill with a B.S. in Biology and a minor in Art History, '15. Following graduation, I worked at Duke University in translational research labs supporting various clinical trials in the Department of Surgery. I am very interested in studying molecular neuroscience and brain-related diseases. In my spare time, I enjoy playing tennis, attending concerts, walking my dog, and learning how to sail.. 

for update 12

Dr. Marta Kopańska attended the Cerebral Vascular Biology conference, and then stayed for a research internship in the laboratory. She worked with Dr. Silvia Torices and learned several molecular biology techniques. Dr. Kopańska is employed in the Department of Physiology, Medical Faculty of the University of Rzeszow, Poland. The internship was both pleasant and very productive. 

Good Luck with your research Marta!

July 2019

for update 12

The invited review paper on cerebral vascular toxicity of antiretroviral therapy by Luc Bertrand and Martina Velichkovska has been published in the J Neuroimmune Pharmacol. Congratulations Luc and Martina!! Cerebral Vascular Toxicity of Antiretroviral Therapy Luc Bertrand*, Martina Velichkovska*, Michal Toborek *equal contribution J Neuroimmune Pharmacol 2019 Jun 17. doi: 10.1007/s11481-019-09858-x. 

Abstract HIV infection is associated with comorbidities that are likely to be driven not only by HIV itself, but also by the toxicity of long-term use of antiretroviral therapy (ART). Indeed, increasing evidence demonstrates that the antiretroviral drugs used for HIV treatment have toxic effects resulting in various cellular and tissue pathologies. The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a modulated anatomophysiological interface which separates and controls substance exchange between the blood and the brain parenchyma; therefore, it is particularly exposed to ART-induced toxicity. Balancing the health risks and gains of ART has to be considered in order to maximize the positive effects of therapy. The current review discusses the cerebrovascular toxicity of ART, with the focus on mitochondrial dysfunction. Graphical Abstract Graphical representation of the interactions between HIV, antiretroviral therapy (ART), and the blood-brain barrier (BBB)

June 2019

for update 12

Sita Ramaswamy, undergraduate student in the laboratory has been selected to participate in the 2019 National Symposium for Undergraduate Research (NSUR), June 12-15, 2019 at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. The conference covered Sita flight, accommodations and meals during the symposium. 


June 2019

for update 11Martina Velichkovska, our undergraduate student, graduated from the University of Miami in three years, and was admitted as a graduate student to the University of California, Berkeley. Martina was a star student who performed an outstanding undergraduate research in the laboratory, publishing four papers in three years:

Bertrand L*, Velichkovska M*, Toborek M. Cerebral vascular toxicity of antiretroviral therapy. J Neuroimmune Pharmacol, in press. (*equal contribution)

Velichkovska M, Surnar B, Nair M, Dhar S, Toborek M. Targeted mitochondrial CoQ10 delivery attenuates antiretroviral drug-induced senescence of neural progenitor cells. Mol Pharm 16, 724-736, 2019.

Skowronska M, McDonald M, Velichkovska M, Leda AR, Park M, Toborek M. Methamphetamine increases HIV infectivity in neural progenitor cells. J Biol Chem 293, 296-311, 2018.

Castro V, Skowronska M, He J, Seth N, Velichkovska M, Toborek M. Occludin regulates glucose uptake and ATP production in pericytes by influencing AMPK activity. J Cereb Blood Flow Metab 38, 317-333, 2018.

We will miss her grately.
Congratulations on being accepted to UC Berkley and Good Luck!

May 2019