Alumni in faculty positions or other careers

Melissa Powell, Ph.D. (2016)
Assistant Professor, Department of Biology
Virginia State University
Petersburg, VA
Dissertation: The role of matrix metalloproteinase 9 and osteopontin in synaptogenesis and reinnervation of the olfactory bulb following brain injury

Jason Younkin, Ph.D. (2016)
Assistant Professor, Department of Biology
Virginia State University
Petersburg, VA
Dissertation: Allosteric effects upon G-Protein coupled receptor heteromerization: Relevance to psychosis

Natalie Wheeler, Ph.D. (2016)
Clinical Educator
Braeburn Pharmaceuticals
Philadelphia, PA
Dissertation: Autotaxin in central nervous system development and disease

Joyce Balinang, Ph.D. (2016)
Medical Science Liason
Assurex Health
Washington, DC
Dissertation: Human neural progenitor cells are productively infected by R5-tropic HIV-1: Opiate interactions on infection and function involve Cdk5 signaling

Shiping Zou, Ph.D. (2015)
Scientist – Neuroscience
Boston, MA
Dissertation: Effects of HIV-1 viral protein Tat on the viability and function of oligodendroglial cells

Matthew Lazenka, Ph.D. (2013)
Assistant Professor
Liberty University
Lynchburg, VA
Dissertation: THC-mediated induction of delta-fosB and its modulation of CB1R signalling and adaptation

Ahmad Altarifi, Ph.D. (2013)
Assistant Professor
Jordan Univeristy of Science and Technology
Ar Ramtha, Jordan
Dissertation: Effects of mu opioid receptor agonists on intracranial self-stimulation in the absence and presence of “pain” in rats

Julie Chan, MD, Ph.D. (2013)
Resident Physician
Los Angeles, CA
Dissertation: Osteopontin expression during the acute immune response mediates reactive synaptogenesis and adaptive outcome

John Greer, MD, Ph.D. (2013)
Neurosurgery Resident
Virginia Commonwealth University Health System
Dissertation: The characterization of the anterograde and retrograde consequences of traumatic axonal injury in a mouse model of diffuse brain injury

Jiaqiong Wang, Ph.D. (2013)
Neurological Research Scientist
Quantitative Imaging Inc
Dissertation: Diffuse traumatic axonal injury within the visual system: implications for visual pathway reorganization

Arco Paul, Ph.D. (2012)
Assistant Professor
Radford University
Roanoke, VA
Dissertation: Over-expression of serum response factor in astrocytes restore ocular dominance plasticity in a model of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders

Julie Ziobro, MD, Ph.D. (2012)
Child Neurology Fellow
Children’s Hospital Colorado
Denver, CO
Dissertation: Characterization and development of a stroke-induced model of acquired epilepsy in organotypic hippocampal slice cultures: role of the cannabinoid CB1 receptors in modulation of neuronal excitation and inhibition

Peter T. Nguyen, MD, Ph.D. (2012)
Neurology Resident
UCLA Health
Glendora, CA
Dissertation: Cannabinoid receptors in the 3D reconstructed mouse brain: function and regulation

Andrew Bell, Ph.D. (2011)
Academic Technology Consultant
University of Richmond
Richmond, VA
Dissertation: Age dependent spatial characteristics of epileptiform activity in malformed cortex

Nisha Nagarkatti, MD, Ph.D. (2011)
Portland, OR
Dissertation: Inhibition of the calcium plateau following in vitro status epilepticus prevents the development of spontaneous recurrent epileptiform discharges

Emily Dilger, Ph.D., (2010)
Bay Area STEM Ecosystem Representative
San Francisco, CA
Dissertation: The role of synaptically evoked plateau potentials in retinogeniculate development

Larra Walling Yuelling, Ph.D. (2010)
Medical Writer
Chrysalis Medical Communications
Hamilton, NJ
Dissertation: Autotaxin: A regulator of oligodendrocyte differentiation

Michelle Hoot, Ph.D. (2008)
Research Coordinator
Division of Pediatric Critical Care
Children’s Hospital of Richmond – VCU Medical Center
Richmond, VA
Dissertation: The effect of chronic constriction injury on cellular systems within nociceptive pathways in the mouse

Sheine (Schanuel) Martin, Ph.D., RN (2008)
Research Coordinator
Mcguire Veterans Hospital
Richmond, Va.
Dissertation: Heterologous expression and subcellular targeting of the invertebrate FMRFamide-gated sodium channel (FaNaC) in different subtypes of mammalian neurons
Alumni in the medical phase of the M.D.-Ph.D. program

Jennifer Wolstenholme, Ph.D. (2008)
Assistant Professor
Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology
Virginia Commonwealth University
Dissertation: Molecular characterization of mesocorticolimbic brain regions in DBA/2J mice sensitized to the locomotor activating effects of ethanol

Jonathan E. Kurz, MD, Ph.D (2007)
Department of Pediatric Neurology
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Chicago, IL
Dissertation: Pathological upregulation of a calcium-stimulated phosphatase, calcineurin, in two models of neuronal injury

Katherine (Falenski) Sayers, Ph.D. (2006)
Assistant Professor
Towson Univeristy
Baltimore, MD
Dissertation: Functional redistribution of hippocampal cannabinoid CB(1) receptors in the rat pilocarpine model of acquired epilepsy

Mary Cage, M.D., Ph.D. (2005)
Family practice
Front Royal, Va.
Dissertation: Molecular characterization of mesocorticolimbic brain regions in DBA/2J mice sensitized to the locomotor activating effects of ethanol

Amanda Mower, Ph.D. (2003)
Associate Medical Director
Impact Communication Partners
New York, NY
Dissertation: Cyclic AMP response element-binding protein in ocular dominance plasticity

Cristina Falo, Ph.D. (2003)
Director of Clinical Transplant Reserach
Columbia University Medical Center
New York, NY

David A. Sun, MD., Ph.D. (2002)
Norton Neuroscience Institute
Louisville, KY

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