Yunmeng LiuYunmeng Liu, Ph.D.

Ph.D., New York Medical College, Valhalla, NY,  2013

Dr. Liu is a member of the Rusch Lab. She has many years of experience in molecular biology & physiology. Her research interest focuses on the molecular mechanism of pathogenesis of hypertension, in particular, salt-sensitive hypertension. Dr. Liu’s current working project involves collaboration with Dr. Mu, exploring the role of immune cells in impairing sodium-handling in the kidney, which leads to salt-retention and the development of salt-sensitive hypertension. Their work has recently been awarded by the American Heart Association.

Selected Publication(s):

Liu Y, Rafferty T, Rhee S, Webber J, Song L, Ko B, Hoover R, He B, Mu S. CD8+ T cells stimulate Na-Cl co-transporter NCC in distal convoluted tubules leading to salt-sensitive hypertension. Nat. Commun. 8, 10437; 2017 (PMID: 28067240).

Pan X, Liao Y, Liu Y, Chang, P, Liao L, Yang L, Hongquan L. Transcription of AAT•ATT Triplet Repeats in Escherichia coli is silenced by H-NS and IS1E Transposition.  PLoS One. 5(12), 2010 (PMID:21151567).

Michael Berquist II, Ph.D.

Ph.D., Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI, 2016

Michael is a post-doctoral trainee working under the NIDA T32 Translational Training in Addiction grant (Director: Clint Kilts, Ph.D.). He is jointly mentored by Dr. William Fantegrossi and Dr. Michael Owens in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology. He is primarily interested in investigating the in vivo effects of psychoactive substances using a variety of preclinical experimental procedures and in determining the behavioral effects of drug mixtures. With a strong background in behavioral statistics and experimental design, Michael also enjoys exploring novel data path analyses for psychopharmacological experiments.

Selected Publication(s):
Berquist II MD, Traxler HK, Mahler AM, Baker LE. Behavioral sensitization to the hyperlocomotor effects of “bath salt” mixtures, 4-methylmethcathinone (4-MMC) and 3, 4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV), in male Sprague-Dawley rats. Drug and Alcohol Dependence. 16:128-134, 2016 (PMID: 27181413).

Berquist II MD, Peet NM, Baker LE. Behavioral sensitization following concurrent exposure to mephedrone and d-amphetamine in female mice. Behavioural Pharmacology. 26:180-183, 2015 (PMID: 25485643).

Amanda Stolarz, Pharm.D./Ph.D.

Ph.D., University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, 2016

Amanda Stolarz is a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Nancy Rusch. Amanda’s research seeks to define the mechanisms by which the chemotherapeutic drug, doxorubicin, contributes to lymphedema. Her techniques include monitoring the contractile behavior of isolated rat mesenteric lymph vessels in vitro, and measurement of lymph flow in mesenteric loops in vivo, as well as characterization of ion channels in isolated lymphatic smooth muscle cells by patch-clamp methods. Initial studies in human lymphatic vessels may provide a strategy for designing drugs to ameliorate lymphedema.

Selected Publication(s):
Stolarz AJ, Rusch NJ. Gender Differences in Cardiovascular Drugs. Cardiovasc Drugs Ther. 29(4):403-410, 2015 (PMID: 26227895).