The candidate will have his teaching and service load reduced so that he can spend greater than 75% of his time on research. After earning a M.S. in physics, the candidate earned a Ph.D. in biophysics at UC Berkeley in 1993. He began studying sickle cell disease during his NIH-funded postdoctoral training. He has continued his focus on sickle cell disease since joining the Physics Department at Wake Forest University in 1996. Wake Forest University has about 3800 undergraduates, 600 graduate students, and 1,500 students in the professional schools of medicine, law, and business. The candidate currently has a spacious laboratory and office as a tenured Associate Professor of Physics. He is currently the principal investigator (PI) on a NIH-funded grant (R01 HL58091) focusing on the effects of nitric oxide (NO) in sickle cell blood. Patients with sickle cell anemia have been shown to have abnormal NO-related vasoactivity due to the scavenging of NO by cell-free hemoglobin. NO therapy may restore normal NO vasoactivity, and data has also recently been published suggesting that NO may upregulate fetal hemoglobin and thereby reduce sickling. The candidate is also a key collaborator on a study of the NO donating properties of hydroxyurea (an FDA approved drug for sickle cell disease). In addition, the candidate will expand his studies looking at the effects of NO in sickle cell blood by looking at the effects of nitrite as converted to NO by deoxygenated hemoglobin and thus serves as a reservoir for NO in the body. Finally, the candidate plans to develop non-invasive imaging tools to study pathology of the microcirculation in patients with sickle cell disease and the effects of therapeutics. The candidate currently has a heavy teaching and service load. A K02 award will relieve him of some of these duties so that he can spend more time interacting with his colleagues, attending seminars and meetings, and doing research.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
Research Scientist Development Award - Research (K02)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZHL1-CSR-M (O1))
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Werner, Ellen
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Wake Forest University Health Sciences
Schools of Arts and Sciences
United States
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