Lounsbury Lab

Research in Dr. Lounsbury's laboratory is focused on understanding mechanisms whereby signals generated at the plasma membrane are communicated to the nucleus to mediate vascular remodeling and tumor angiogenesis. Signaling pathways of current interest include protein kinase cascades, hypoxia signaling and mechanisms of calcium-regulated gene transcription in arterial smooth muscle cells and ovarian tumor cells. The laboratory uses a multidisciplined approach to study these pathways using techniques from biochemistry, molecular biology, and cell biology.

The model systems are vascular smooth muscle cell and ovarian cancer cell cultures as well as intact arteries, in situ tumors and human samples.  The techniques used in these projects include cell culture, RNA isolation, quantitative RT-PCR, Western blotting, cell imaging, arterial dissection and tumor analysis. The results of these studies will give a better understanding of how vascular and tumor cells respond to their environment and whether transcriptional changes are subject to therapeutic intervention.

Ongoing Research Projects:

Regulation of angiogenesis by hypoxia in cancer cells and vascular smooth muscle cells 

Calcium-regulated gene transcription in vascular smooth muscle cells during hypertension

Protein synthesis regulators as mediators of inflammation and angiogenesis in the tumor microenvironment 

Recent Publications:

  1. Mirando AC, Abdi K, Wo P, Lounsbury KM.  Assessing the effects of threonly-tRNA synthetase on angiogenesis-related responses.  Methods.  2017 Jan 15;  113:  132-138.  doi:  10.1016/j.ymeth.2016.11.007.  PMID:  27847344, PMCID:  PMC5292763
  2. Lounsbury KM, Francklyn CS.  Aminoacyl-Transfer RNA Synthetases:  Connecting Nutrient Status to Angiogenesis Through the Unfolded Protein Response.  Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol.  2016 Apr;  36(4):  582-583.  doi:  10.1161/ATVBAHA.116.307193.  PMID:  27010025,  PMCID:  PMC4807867
  3. Mirando AC, Frang P, Williams TF, Baldor LC, Howe AK, Ebert AM, Wilkinson B, Lounsbury KM, Guo M, Francklyn CS.  Amnioacyl-tRNA synthetase dependent angiogenesis revealed by a bioengineering macrolide inhibitor.  Sci Rep.  2015 Aug 14;  5:  13160.  doi:  10.1038/srep13160.  PMID:  26271225, PMCID:  PMC4536658
  4. Mirando AC, Francklyn CS, Lounsbury KM.  Regulation of angiogenesis by aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases.  Int J Mol Sci.  2014 Dec 19;  15(12):  23725-23748.  doi:  10.3390.ijms151223725. Review.  PMID:  25535072, PMCID:  P{MC4284789 
  5. Wellman TL, Eckenstein M, Wong C, Rincon M, Ashitaga T, Mount SL, Francklyn CS, Lounsbury KM.  Threonyl-tRNA synthetase overexpression correlates with angiogenic markers and progression of human ovarian cancer.  BMC Cancer.  14: 620, 201
  6. Shao Y, Wellman TL, Lounsbury KM, Zhao FQ.  Differential regulation of GLUT1 and GLUT8 expression by hypoxia in mammary epithelial cells.  AM J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol.  2014 Aug 1;  307(3):  R237-E247.  doi:  10.1152/ajpregu.00093.2014.  PMID:  24920730 
  7. Williams TF, Mirando AT, Wilkinson B, Francklyn CS, Lounsbury KM.  Secreted Threonyl-tRNA Synthetase Stimulates Endothelial Cell Migration and Angiogenesis.  Sci Rep, 2013;  3:1317.  doi:  10.1038/srep01317. PMID:  23425968, PMCID: PMC3578223


    Karen M. Lounsbury, Ph.D.

    Department of Pharmacology

    Contact information:

    Email:  Karen.Lounsbury@uvm.edu

    Phone:  (802) 656-1319

    Fax:  (802) 656-4523

    Office Location:  Health Science Research Facility, Rm. 320

    149 Beaumont Ave.

    Burlington, VT