Dr. JoEllen Welsh - Current Lab Members

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JoEllen Welsh, Ph.D.

Carmen J Narvaez, PhD, Rutgers University.Senior Research Associate.

picture of Carmen J. Narvaez

“Judy” Narvaez originally joined the Welsh lab as a post-doctoral fellow to study mechanisms of vitamin D mediated apoptosis in breast cancer cells. She has pursued multiple projects since that time, including characterization of vitamin D resistant cell lines, examination of interactions between breast cancer cells and bone, and analysis of VDR phosphorylation. As Senior Research Associate, Judy continues to be an essential resource for undergraduate and graduate students in the Welsh lab. Her expertise in all aspects of cell biology, including flow cytometry, western blotting, ELISA analyses and mammalian cell culture, is legendary. Judy´s current project focuses on the role of the VDR in mesenchymal stem cell differentiation, with an emphasis on adipogenesis and osteoblastogenesis. This project relies on the use of genetic mouse models of vitamin D deficiency (VDRKO and CYP27B1 KO).

Don Matthews, MSc, Lakehead University. PhD Student, Biomedical Sciences.

picture of Don Matthews

Don came to the Welsh lab from Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada, where he completed a Masters degree in Biology in 2005. Don´s project involves the use of mammary gland organ culture and genetically engineered mouse models to identify genomic profiles downstream of VDR signaling. Don is funded by a Pre-Doctoral Traineeship from the DOD Breast Cancer Research Program entitled “Vitamin D pathway status and the identification of target genes in the mouse mammary gland.”

Erika LaPorta, BSc, College of St. Rose; MSc, University at Albany Department of Biomedical Sciences. PhD Student, Biomedical Sciences.

picture of Erika LaPorta

Erika completed her MSc degree in Dr. Derek Symula´s lab, where she worked on lung development in mouse models. She joined the Welsh lab in the summer of 2008 to study molecular functions of VDR in breast cancer cell models.

Kate Simmons, BSc, Connecticut College; MSc, University of Maryland School of Medicine, PhD Student, Biomedical Sciences.

picture of Kate Simmons

Kate completed her MSc in Human Genetics at the University of Maryland where she studied genotype-phenotype correlations of the dopamine receptor. Kate joined the Welsh lab in 2009 to study the regulation of immune function by vitamin D in mammary epithelial cells. Kate was awarded an F31 Individual National Research Service Award (NRSA) through NCCAM entitled “Vitamin D regulation of CD14 in mammary epithelial cells.” At EB2013, Kate was selected for a Travel Award, and her abstract was promoted to an oral presentation in the Nutritional Immunology category.

Sarah Beaudin, BSc, Siena College, PhD Student, Biomedical Sciences.

picture of Sarah Beaudin

After completing her undergraduate Biology degree in 2010 at Siena College, Sarah joined the Welsh lab to study regulation of energy and amino acid metabolism by vitamin D in mammary cells. Based on her work demonstrating regulation of glutamine metabolism by vitamin D, Sarah received a Young Investigator award and presented a Promoted Talk at the 15th Workshop on Vitamin D in 2012.