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Profile: Bradley McConnell

Bradley McConnell
Bradley K. McConnell, Ph.D., FAHA, FCVS
Associate Professor of Pharmacology
Department of Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences
Physical Address: Science and Research Building 2, 3455 Cullen Blvd., Room 460, Houston, TX 77204
Mailing Address: Health and Biomedical Sciences Building 2, 4849 Calhoun Road, Room 3044, Houston, TX 77204-5037

713-743-1218 (Voice)
713-743-1232 (Fax)
bkmcconn@central.uh.edu

Education

B.S. (Biology); Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA

Ph.D. (Physiology and Biophysics); Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH

Postdoctoral Fellow (Genetics); Harvard Medical School/Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Boston, MA

Research Interests

Dr. McConnell’s research focuses on cardiac and skeletal muscle function in both normal and disease conditions. Specifically, the projects in Dr. McConnell’s laboratory focuses on the genetics, physiology and pharmacology of muscle diseases with the hope to better understand cell communication — the signaling pathways — involved in normal and pathophysiological conditions. With an increased understanding of cell signaling mechanisms, it is our goal to discover new therapeutic strategies to restore and/or enhance function during heart and skeletal muscle disease.

Heart failure is a major public health problem and defined as a chronic and complex clinical syndrome which results from any structural or functional cardiac disorder that impairs the ability of the heart to efficiently pump blood. Understanding how perturbations in cardiac cell signaling leads to the development of heart failure is lacking, although many insightful studies have identified key signaling components involved in protein/gene expression, Ca2+ cycling, and post-translational modification. In addition, peripheral artery disease (PAD) is another major health problem and occurs when blood flow decreases to the extremities due to vessel narrowing caused by atherosclerosis. This leads to ischemia and muscle denervation, which worsens over time. This loss of blood flow causes ischemia and nerve damage leading to muscle atrophy, which culminates in critical limb ischemia and patients are at risk for limb loss, myocardial infarction and death. Thus, there is also an unmet need to develop novel and innovative treatments strategies to help patients with heart failure and PAD.

Projects in Dr. McConnell’s laboratory involves applied basic science and clinically relevant research that addresses significant and innovative questions involving strategies to characterize cardiac myocyte intracellular signaling, cardiac muscle regeneration, and skeletal muscle repair. Specifically, Dr. McConnell’s research team studies (a) the characterization of scaffolding proteins (A-kinase Anchoring Proteins; AKAPs) in β-adrenergic receptor (β-AR) and local subcellular signaling; (b) the development of reprogrammed progenitor cells to form mature cardiac cells and engineered heart muscle for cardiac repair following a myocardial infarction (i.e. heart attack); and (c) the development of a gene activation system and delivery strategy to treat peripheral artery disease (PAD)-like induced skeletal muscle atrophy.

Overall, Dr. McConnell made a commitment to become “the best teacher-scholar possible.” He continues to achieve this goal through innovative educational approaches and by conducting novel research in order to provide a well-executed integration of both education and research. Dr. McConnell aims to develop future leaders who are curious and engage in intellectual inquiry, who can think critically and communicate effectively, and who will have a keener understanding—if not a full-fledged passion—for the STEM fields.

Courses

Undergraduate Classes:

PHPS 3399: Honor's Senior Thesis & Independent Studies

Graduate Classes (PhD):

PCOL 7350: Cellular Pharmacology

PCOL 6462*: Cardiovascular and Renal Physiology

PCOL 6180*: Pharmacological & Pharmaceutical Seminar

*Course Director

Professional Classes (PharmD):

PHAR 4400: Cellular Life Sciences I (Medical Biochemisty)

PHAR 4421: Organ Systems Life Sciences II (Physiology)

PHAR 4251: Skills Lab for Organ Systems Life Sciences II (Physiology Skills Lab)

PHAR 5397: Cardiac Contractility and Molecular Signaling (Special Topics Course)

Affiliations

  • Faculty; Cardiovascular Research Institute (CVRI); Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX, 2013 - Current
  • Faculty; Training in Pharmacological Sciences (TPS) Training Grant; Gulf Coast Consortia (GCC), Texas Medical Center, Houston, TX, 2011 - Current
  • Keck Faculty; Gulf Coast Consortia (GCC); Joint Program of Rice University, Baylor College of Medicine, University of Houston, University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston and University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center; Houston, TX, 2010 - Current
  • Faculty; Heart and Kidney Institute (HKI); University of Houston, Houston, TX, 2008 - Current

Professional Societies

  • Catecholamine Society, 2015 - Current
  • American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, 2013 - Current
  • Federation of American Societies for Experimental Therapeutics (ASPET), 2013 - Current
  • Basic Cardiovascular Science (BCVS) Council of the AHA 2008 - Current
  • American Physiological Society (APS), 2008 - Current
  • American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) 2008 - Current
  • American Heart Association (AHA), 2003 - Current
  • Biophysical Society, 1993 - Current
  • Cardiac Muscle Society, 1993 - Current

Selected Publications

  1. Complex cellular functions are controlled by a small number of second messengers, including Ca2+ and cAMP. The diversity of this complex network of cellular responses is mediated by second messengers and achieved in part, by scaffolding proteins. Scaffolding proteins assemble intracellular signaling components of a network cascade into a specific complex within the cell, thereby enhancing signaling specificity as well as enhancing signaling efficiency. A-Kinase Anchoring Proteins (AKAPs) is an example of scaffolding proteins that fine-tunes cellular responses – cellular proximity & protein effective concentrations – by forming protein complexes.

    1. Rababa'h A, Singh S, Suryavanshi SV, Altarabsheh SE, Deo SV, McConnell BK. Compartmentalization role of A-kinase anchoring proteins (AKAPs) in mediating protein kinase A (PKA) signaling and cardiomyocyte hypertrophy. Int J Mol Sci. 2014 Dec 24;16(1):218-29. doi: 10.3390/ijms16010218. Review. PubMed PMID: 25547489; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4307244.
    2. Motawea HK, Blazek AD, Zirwas MJ, Pleister AP, Ahmed AA, McConnell BK, Chotani MA. Delocalization of Endogenous A-kinase Antagonizes Rap1-Rho-α<sub>2C</sub>-Adrenoceptor Signaling in Human Microvascular Smooth Muscle Cells. J Cytol Mol Biol. 2014 Jan 10;1(1). pii: 1000002. PubMed PMID: 24701590; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3970818.
    3. Rababa'h A, Craft JW Jr, Wijaya CS, Atrooz F, Fan Q, Singh S, Guillory AN, Katsonis P, Lichtarge O, McConnell BK. Protein kinase A and phosphodiesterase-4D3 binding to coding -polymorphisms of cardiac muscle anchoring protein (mAKAP). J Mol Biol. 2013 Sep 23;425(18):3277-88. doi: 10.1016/j.jmb.2013.06.014. Epub 2013 Jun 25. PubMed PMID: 23806656; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3808176.
    4. Guillory AN*, Yin X*, Wijaya CS, Diaz Diaz AC, Rababa'h A, Singh S, Atrooz F, Sadayappan S, McConnell BK. Enhanced cardiac function in Gravin mutant mice involves alterations in the β-adrenergic receptor signaling cascade. PLoS One. 2013 Sep 18;8(9):e74784. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0074784. eCollection 2013. PubMed PMID: 24058627; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3776749.
    5. Nguyen VT, Wu Y, Guillory AN, McConnell BK, Fujise K, Huang MH. Delta-opioid augments cardiac contraction through β-adrenergic and CGRP-receptor co-signaling. Peptides. 2012 Jan;33(1):77-82. doi: 10.1016/j.peptides.2011.11.010. Epub 2011 Nov 15. PubMed PMID: 22108711; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3396132.
    6. Huang MH, Wu Y, Nguyen V, Rastogi S, McConnell BK, Wijaya C, Uretsky BF, Poh KK, Tan HC, Fujise K. Heart protection by combination therapy with esmolol and milrinone at late-ischemia and early reperfusion. Cardiovasc Drugs Ther. 2011 Jun;25(3):223-32. doi: 10.1007/s10557-011-6302-z. PubMed PMID: 21562974; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3110274.
    7. Wu Y, Yin X, Wijaya C, Huang MH, McConnell BK. Acute myocardial infarction in rats. J Vis Exp. 2011 Feb 16;(48). pii: 2464. doi: 10.3791/2464. PubMed PMID: 21372786; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3197402.
    8. McConnell BK, Popovic Z, Mal N, Lee K, Bautista J, Forudi F, Schwartzman R, Jin JP, Penn M, Bond M. Disruption of protein kinase A interaction with A-kinase-anchoring proteins in the heart in vivo: effects on cardiac contractility, protein kinase A phosphorylation, and troponin I proteolysis. J Biol Chem. 2009 Jan 16;284(3):1583-92. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M806321200. Epub 2008 Oct 21. PubMed PMID: 18945669; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2615525.
  2. Mice carrying hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) disease mutations where studied to gain insights into the physiological processes of human genetic pathologies that alter cardiac structure and function. HCM is an inherited form of heart disease that is characterized with heart failure, arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. Therefore, we used mouse models of sarcomere protein genes (cardiac myosin binding protein C; cMyBPC and alpha myosin heavy chain; aMHC) to recapitulate the clinical characteristics of the human disease. These studies have subsequently provided the groundwork toward investigations related to reprogramming cardiac progenitor and similar cells toward cardiac regeneration and heart repair.

    1. Liu Y*, Chen L*, Diaz AD, Benham A, Xu X, Wijaya CS, Fa'ak F, Luo W, Soibam B, Azares A, Yu W, Lyu Q, Stewart MD, Gunaratne P, Cooney A, McConnell BK*†, Schwartz RJ†. Mesp1 Marked Cardiac Progenitor Cells Repair Infarcted Mouse Hearts. Sci Rep. 2016 Aug 19;6:31457. doi: 10.1038/srep31457. PubMed PMID: 27538477
    2. Valenzuela N, Fan Q, Fa'ak F, Soibam B, Nagandla H, Liu Y, Schwartz RJ, McConnell BK, Stewart MD. Cardiomyocyte-specific conditional knockout of the histone chaperone HIRA in mice results in hypertrophy, sarcolemmal damage and focal replacement fibrosis. Dis Model Mech. 2016 Mar;9(3):335-45. doi: 10.1242/dmm.022889. PubMed PMID: 26935106; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4833330.
    3. Rababa'h AM, Deo SV, Altarabsheh SE, De Caro J, Tarboush NA, Alzoubi KH, Ababneh M, McConnell BK, Markowitz AH, Park SJ. N-Acetyl Cysteine Therapy Does Not Prevent Renal Failure in High-Risk Patients Undergoing Open-Heart Surgery. Heart Surg Forum. 2016 Feb 22;19(1):E16-22. doi: 10.1532/hsf.1424. PubMed PMID: 26913679.
    4. Jiang J, Burgon PG, Wakimoto H, Onoue K, Gorham JM, O'Meara CC, Fomovsky G, McConnell BK, Lee RT, Seidman JG, Seidman CE. Cardiac myosin binding protein C regulates postnatal myocyte cytokinesis. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2015 Jul 21;112(29):9046-51. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1511004112. Epub 2015 Jul 7. PubMed PMID: 26153423; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4517252.
    5. Song Q, Schmidt AG, Hahn HS, Carr AN, Frank B, Pater L, Gerst M, Young K, Hoit BD, McConnell BK, Haghighi K, Seidman CE, Seidman JG, Dorn GW 2nd, Kranias EG. Rescue of cardiomyocyte dysfunction by phospholamban ablation does not prevent ventricular failure in genetic hypertrophy. J Clin Invest. 2003 Mar;111(6):859-67. PubMed PMID: 12639992; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC153769.
    6. Semsarian C, Ahmad I, Giewat M, Georgakopoulos D, Schmitt JP, McConnell BK, Reiken S, Mende U, Marks AR, Kass DA, Seidman CE, Seidman JG. The L-type calcium channel inhibitor diltiazem prevents cardiomyopathy in a mouse model. J Clin Invest. 2002 Apr;109(8):1013-20. PubMed PMID: 11956238; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC150949.
    7. Berul CI, McConnell BK, Wakimoto H, Moskowitz IP, Maguire CT, Semsarian C, Vargas MM, Gehrmann J, Seidman CE, Seidman JG. Ventricular arrhythmia vulnerability in cardiomyopathic mice with homozygous mutant Myosin-binding protein C gene.Circulation. 2001 Nov 27;104(22):2734-9. PubMed PMID: 11723028.
    8. McConnell BK, Fatkin D, Semsarian C, Jones KA, Georgakopoulos D, Maguire CT, Healey MJ, Mudd JO, Moskowitz IP, Conner DA, Giewat M, Wakimoto H, Berul CI, Schoen FJ, Kass DA, Seidman CE, Seidman JG. Comparison of two murine models of familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. Circ Res. 2001 Mar 2;88(4):383-9. PubMed PMID: 11230104.
    9. Fatkin D*, McConnell BK*, Mudd JO*, Semsarian C*, Moskowitz IG, Schoen FJ, Giewat M, Seidman CE, Seidman JG. An abnormal Ca(2+) response in mutant sarcomere protein-mediated familial hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. J Clin Invest. 2000 Dec;106(11):1351-9. PubMed PMID: 11104788; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC381468.
    10. McConnell BK*, Jones KA*, Fatkin D, Arroyo LH, Lee RT, Aristizabal O, Turnbull DH, Georgakopoulos D, Kass D, Bond M, Niimura H, Schoen FJ, Conner D, Fischman DA, Seidman CE, Seidman JG. Dilated cardiomyopathy in homozygous myosin-binding protein-C mutant mice. J Clin Invest. 1999 Dec;104(12):1771. PubMed PMID: 10606631; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC480917.
    11. Fatkin D, Christe ME, Aristizabal O, McConnell BK, Srinivasan S, Schoen FJ, Seidman CE, Turnbull DH, Seidman JG. Neonatal cardiomyopathy in mice homozygous for the Arg403Gln mutation in the alpha cardiac myosin heavy chain gene. J Clin Invest. 1999 Jan;103(1):147-53. PubMed PMID: 9884344; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC407864
  3. The basis of altered Β-adrenergic signaling was studied using the Spontaneously Hypertensive Rat (SHR), and other disease models. Specifically, the SHR is an animal model of essential hypertension commonly used to study cardiovascular disease. These studies provided insights toward several novel findings on altered cardiac troponin I (cTnI) phosphorylation and altered calcium sensitivity during development of cardiac hypertrophy.

    1. McConnell BK, Singh S, Fan Q, Hernandez A, Portillo JP, Reiser PJ, Tikunova SB. Knock-in mice harboring a Ca(2+) desensitizing mutation in cardiac troponin C develop early onset dilated cardiomyopathy. Front Physiol. 2015 Aug 27;6:242. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2015.00242. eCollection 2015. PubMed PMID: 26379556; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4550777.
    2. McConnell BK, Moravec CS, Bond M. Troponin I phosphorylation and myofilament calcium sensitivity during decompensated cardiac hypertrophy. Am J Physiol. 1998 Feb;274(2 Pt 2):H385-96. PubMed PMID: 9486239.
    3. McConnell BK, Moravec CS, Morano I, Bond M. Troponin I phosphorylation in spontaneously hypertensive rat heart: effect of beta-adrenergic stimulation. Am J Physiol. 1997 Sep;273(3 Pt 2):H1440-51. PubMed PMID: 9321836.

Abstracts and Presentations

Contributions to Science (Abstracts presented; 2015-current):

*Suchi Raghunathan, Corey L Reynolds, M. David Stewart, Robert J Schwartz and Bradley K McConnell*. Spontaneous Dystrophic Cardiac Calcinosis in C.B-17 SCID Mice. Experimental Biology 2017 (04/22/17 – 04/26/17; Abstract Number: XXXX; Poster Session Title: YYYY; Poster Presentation; Chicago, IL (April 2017)

Krishna M. Boini, Suchi Raghunathan, Bradley K. McConnell and Saisudha Koka. SIRT1 Activator II Protects against Myocardial Injury in High fat diet-induced diabetic Mice. Experimental Biology 2017 (04/22/17 – 04/26/17; Abstract Number: XXXX; Poster Session Title: YYYY; Poster Presentation; Chicago, IL (April 2017)

*Santosh Suryavanshi, Sonal Singh and Bradley K. McConnell. Experimental Biology 2017 (04/22/17 – 04/26/17; Abstract Number: XXXX; Poster Session Title: YYYY; Poster Presentation; Chicago, IL (April 2017)

*Santosh Suryavanshi, Sonal Singh Faisal Fa’ak, Weidong Gao and Bradley K. McConnell. Gravin-dependent Regulation of Cardiac Calcium Handling and Contractility. 7th National Meeting of ASIOA (Association of Scientists of Indian Origin in America) 2017 (01/15/17 – 01/16/17); Oral Presentation; Houston, TX (January 15, 2017)

*Santosh Suryavanshi, Sonal Singh Faisal Fa’ak, Weidong Gao and Bradley K. McConnell. Gravin-dependent Regulation of Cardiac Calcium Handling and Contractility. 7th National Meeting of ASIOA (Association of Scientists of Indian Origin in America) 2017 (01/15/17 – 01/16/17); Oral Presentation; Houston, TX (January 15, 2017)

*Santosh Suryavanshi†, Sonal Singh, Weidong Gao and Bradley K. McConnell. Absence of Gravin’s Scaffolding Enhances Myofilament Sensitivity to Calcium by Modulating Actomyosin ATPase Activity. Experimental Biology 2016 (04/02/16 – 04/06/16; Abstract Number: 6214; Poster Session Title: Cardiomyocytes/Heart Failure I; Poster Presentation; San Diego, CA (April 03, 2016) †Finalist of the ASPET Best Presentation Award in the Division for Cardiovascular Pharmacology Competition

*Bradley K. McConnell, Santosh Suryavanshi, Faisal Fa’ak, Andrea Diaz Diaz and Sonal Singh. Disruption of Gravin’s Scaffolding Protects against Isoproterenol Induced Heart Failure Experimental Biology 2016 (04/02/16 – 04/06/16; Abstract Number: A150 (1718.6); Poster Session Title: Cardiomyocytes/Heart Failure I; Poster Presentation; San Diego, CA (April 03, 2016)

Santosh Suryavanshi, Sonal Singh, Faisal Fa’ak, Andrea Diaz Diaz and Bradley K. McConnell. Absence of Gravin’s Scaffolding as an Auxiliary Approach with Carvedilol for Heart Failure Treatment. Baylor College of Medicine’s (BCM’s) 4th Annual Cardiovascular Research Institute (CVRI) Symposium; Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (February 4, 2016)

Santosh Suryavanshi, Sonal Singh, Faisal Fa’ak, Andrea Diaz Diaz and Bradley K. McConnell. Absence of Gravin’s Scaffolding as an Auxiliary Approach with Carvedilol for Heart Failure Treatment. Baylor College of Medicine’s (BCM’s) 4th Annual Cardiovascular Research Institute (CVRI) Symposium; Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (February 4, 2016)

Faisal Fa’ak, Santosh Suryavanshi, Sadia Ahmad, Abeer Rababa'h, Sonal Singh, Cori Wijaya Decha Pinkaew, Ken Fujise and Bradley K. McConnell. Fortilin: Role in Cardiac Calcium Cycling. Baylor College of Medicine’s (BCM’s) 4th Annual Cardiovascular Research Institute (CVRI) Symposium; Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (February 4, 2016)

Santosh Suryavanshi†, Sonal Singh, Weidong Gao, and Bradley K. McConnell. Enhanced Cardiac Sensitivity to Calcium in the Absence of Gravin’s Scaffolding in Mice. 2nd Annual Graduate Student and Scholarship Project (GRaSP) Day 2015; A Quarter Century of Team Science. Poster Presentation; University of Houston, Houston, TX (October 30, 2015) †Recipient of the following Awards: (1) University of Houston Graduate School, 2nd Annual Graduate Research and Scholarship Projects (GRaSP), Friday, October 30th, 2015, People’s Choice Award and (2) ThermoFisher Scientific, Invitrogen Science Hero Awards, Wednesday, October 21, 2015, 1st Annual Lab Citizen Invitrogen Science Hero Award

Ahad Azimuddin†, Santosh Suryavanshi, Sadia Ahmad, Abeer Rababa’h, Sonal Singh, Decha Pinkaew, Ken Fujise, and Bradley K. McConnell. Cardiac Calcium Cycling in Fortilin Deficient Mice. University of Houston Undergraduate Day 2015; Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (October 22, 2015) †Winner of the Audience Choice Poster Award

Moawiz Saeed, John Robinson, Santosh Suryavanshi, Genaro Ramirez, and Bradley McConnell. Using Lentivirus Vectors to Subclone and Study Mutations in Human mAKAP in Mice. University of Houston Undergraduate Day 2015; Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (October 22, 2015)

Santosh Suryavanshi, Sonal Singh, Weidong Gao, and Bradley K. McConnell. Enhanced Cardiac Sensitivity to Calcium in the Absence of Gravin’s Scaffolding in Mice. 25th Annual Keck Center Research Conference 2015; A Quarter Century of Team Science. Poster Presentation; Texas Medical Center, Houston, TX (October 15-16, 2015)

Faisal Fa’ak, Sonal Singh, Santosh Suryavanshi, Andrea Diaz Diaz, and Bradley K. McConnell. Effect of Carvedilol in Mice Lacking Gravin Dependent Scaffolding in a Model of Heart Failure. 25th Annual Keck Center Research Conference 2015; A Quarter Century of Team Science. Poster Presentation; Texas Medical Center, Houston, TX (October 15-16, 2015)

*Sonal Singh, Santosh Suryavanshi, Faisal Fa’ak, Andrea Diaz Diaz, and Bradley K. McConnell. Disruption of Gravin’s Scaffolding as a Potential Therapy for Heart Failure in Combination with Carvedilol. American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions 2015 (11/07/15 – 11/11/15); Abstract #2015-SS-A-16596-AHA; Poster Presentation (Session: Basic Insights into Pharmacological Therapies of Heart Failure: APS.49.02); Orlando, FL (November 8, 2015)

Faisal Fa’ak†, Sonal Singh, Santosh Suryavanshi, Andrea Diaz Diaz, and Bradley K. McConnell. Cardiac Function Changes with β-blockers in the Absence of Gravin’s Scaffolding. Department of Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences 3rd Annual Research Symposium. Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (August 14, 2015) †Recipient of the Best Poster Presentation Award; 2nd Place

Santosh Suryavanshi, Sonal Singh, and Bradley K. McConnell. Gravin Truncated (Gravin t/t) Mice Show Increased Myofilament Sensitivity to Calcium. Department of Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences 3rd Annual Research Symposium. Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (August 14, 2015)

Sonal Singh†, Svetlana Tikunova, Adriana Hernandez, and Bradley K. McConnell. Calcium Desensitizing Mutation in Cardiac Troponin C Leads to the Development of Dilated Cardiomyopathy. Department of Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences 3rd Annual Research Symposium. Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (August 14, 2015) †Recipient of the Best Oral Presentation Award; 1st Place

*Svetlana Tikunova, Sonal Singh, Qiying Fan, Adriana Hernandez, Jesus Portillo and Bradley K. McConnell. Role of Calcium Sensitivity of Troponin C in the Development of Dilated Cardiomyopathy. Experimental Biology 2015 (03/28/15 – 04/01/15); Abstract Number: W376 (1025.10); Poster Session Title: Cardiovascular Pharmacology - Signaling; Poster Presentation; Boston, MA (April 01, 2015)

*Santosh Suryavanshi, Sonal Singh, Steve Bark, and Bradley K. McConnell. Identification of Protein Complexes in mAKAP Signalosome by Mass Spectroscopy. Experimental Biology 2015 (03/28/15 – 04/01/15); Abstract Number: W368 (1025.2); Poster Session Title: Cardiovascular Pharmacology - Signaling; Poster Presentation; Boston, MA (April 01, 2015)

*Sonal Singh†, Santosh Suryavanshi, Andrea Diaz Diaz, and Bradley K. McConnell. Absence of Gravin Scaffolding to the β2-AR Protects against Heart Failure and its Protective Effects are Additive to Carvedilol Treatment Alone. Experimental Biology 2015 (03/28/15 – 04/01/15); Abstract Number: W369 (1025.3); Poster Session Title: Cardiovascular Pharmacology - Signaling; Poster Presentation; Boston, MA (April 01, 2015) †Recipient of the ASPET Travel Award

*Qiying Fan, Cori S. Wijaya, Andrea Diaz Diaz, Henry Vo, and Bradley K. McConnell. Gravin Scaffolding Protein Mediates Signaling Involved in the Regulation of Hyperlipidemia and Atherosclerosis. Experimental Biology 2015 (03/28/15 – 04/01/15); Abstract Number: D149 (627.3); Poster Session Title: Vascular Signaling - Endothelium; Poster Presentation; Boston, MA (March 29, 2015)

Santosh Suryavanshi, Steve Bark, and Bradley K. McConnell. Identification of Binding Partners in mAKAP-Signalosome by Mass Spectroscopy. Baylor College of Medicine’s (BCM’s) 3rd Annual Cardio-vascular Research Institute (CVRI) Symposium; Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (February 26, 2015)

Sonal Singh, Santosh Suryavanshi, Andrea Diaz Diaz, and Bradley K. McConnell. Comparison of Absence of Gravin Scaffolding and Carvedilol Treatment on Cardiac Function in Failing Mouse Heart. Baylor College of Medicine’s (BCM’s) 3rd Annual Cardiovascular Research Institute (CVRI) Symposium; Poster Presentation; Houston, TX (February 26, 2015)

Invited Presentations

University of Houston, Health and Human Performance; Houston, TX; October 24, 2016; Graduate Student Oral Presentations; Moderator, Session-1

Honors College, University of Houston; Houston, TX; October 13, 2016; Undergraduate Research Day Oral Presentations; Moderator, Session-1

Legacy, PCA; The Woodlands, TX; (host: Dr. Arianna DiFrancesco) February 24, 2016 "Strategies to Improve Cardiac Function in Heart Disease - An Introduction of Health Sciences to High School Students”

University of Houston, College of Pharmacy Dean’s Advisory Council; Houston, TX; (host: Dr. Lamar Pritchard) October 15, 2015; Title:"Strategies to Improve Cardiac Function in Heart Disease”

University of Houston, Mini-Symposium in STEM – Introduction of Health Sciences; Houston, TX; (host: Dr. Bradley McConnell) June 25, 2015; Title: "Opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Mini-Symposium - An Introduction of Health Sciences to High School Students”

University of Houston, Department of Health and Human Performance; Houston, TX; (host: Dr. Melissa M. Markofshi)April 21, 2015; Title:" Scaffolding Protein Interaction Network Regulates Cardiac Cell Signaling”

John P. McGovern Museum of Health and Medical Sciences (The Health Museum); University of Houston College of Pharmacy sponsored High School Summer Camp; Texas Medical Center, Houston, TX; June 26, 2013; Title: “Cardiac Signaling in Health and Disease”

University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB), Department of Cardiology; Galveston, TX; (host: Dr. Ken Fujise) February 25, 2013; Title: “Differential Cardiac Contractility Response to ß-Adrenergic Stimulation in Fortilin Deficient Mice”

University of Houston, Department Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences; Graduate Student Symposium; Houston, TX; August 23, 2012; Title: “Cardiac Signaling in Health and Disease”

University of Houston College of Pharmacy, Classmeister Key Note Address; Class of 2015; Houston, TX; August 18, 2011; Title: “Find your Balance and Achieve Success through the “Work-Life Balance” Student Orientation

University of Houston, Department Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences; Graduate Student Symposium; Houston, TX; August 18, 2011; Title: “Cardiac Signaling in Health and Disease”

University of Houston College of Pharmacy, Convocations; Houston, TX; October 25, 2011; Title: “Cardiac Signaling in Health and in Disease”

University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB), Department of Cardiology; Galveston, TX; February 28, 2011; (host: Dr. Ken Fujise) "Targeted Disruption of Beta-Adrenergic Signaling to Increase Cardiac Contractility”

American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions 2010 Chicago, IL; Novel Aspects of Signaling in Heart Failure Oral Presentation Session #AOS.501.02 (Room N226; 9:45am); November 16, 2010; Title: “Increased Cardiac Contractility and Improved Cardiac Remodeling in Gravin (AKAP12) Knockout Mice: in Response to Chronic ß-Adrenergic Stimulation”

Baylor College of Medicine, Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics; Houston, TX;November 9, 2010; (host: Dr. Xander Wehrens) Title: "Targeted Disruption of Beta-Adrenergic Signaling to Increase Cardiac Contractility”

Dean’s Advisory Committee, University of Houston College of Pharmacy; Houston, TX; October 14, 2010; Title: “Cardiac Signaling in Health and Disease”

University of Houston, Department Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences; Graduate Student Symposium; Houston, TX; August 18, 2010; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

Baylor College of Medicine, Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics; Houston, TX; (host: Dr. Xander Wehrens); April 15, 2010; Title: "University of Houston: Advantages of Pursuing Biomedical Research at a Predominantly Undergraduate University”

University of Houston, Department Pharmacological and Pharmaceutical Sciences; Graduate Student Symposium; Houston, TX; August 19, 2009; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

University of Texas – Houston Medical School, Department of Integrative Biology and Pharmacology, Houston, TX; February 2009; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

University of Houston, Biology and Biochemistry Undergraduate Association, Houston, TX; October 2008; Title: “Heart Disease: the translation of basic discoveries of cardiac signaling and function into clinical application”

University of Maryland School of Pharmacy Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Baltimore, MD; January 2008; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

National Institute of Health (NIH), The National Center for Research Resources (NCRR) General Clinical Research Centers (GCRC), Bethesda, MD; November 2007; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine, Department of Cellular and Molecular Physiology, Hershey, PA; November 2007; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Office of Clinical Pharmacology, White Oak, MD; October 2007; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

Acidophil LLC / Red Abbey LLC, Baltimore, MD; October 2007; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

Sun Health Research Institute (SHRI), Sun City, AZ; October 2007; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

Jefferson Medical College, Center for Translational Medicine, Philadelphia, PA; October 2007; Title: “Models of Cardiomyopathy and Altered Cardiac Contractility”

Discussion Leader; Title: “New Capabilities, Emerging Issues and Responsible Conduct in Data Management”; Office of Research Integrity of the Department of Health and Human Services and the University of Maryland, Baltimore; ORI Data Management Conference (Sept. 28-29, 2006); Tremont Plaza Hotel; Baltimore, MD

Invited talk at the 1st International Meeting on Anchored cAMP Signaling Pathways in Berlin-Buch, Germany; October 15-16, 2005; Title: “Targeted Disruption of PKA and AKAP Interaction to Increase Cardiac Contractility using in vivo Gene Transfer”

University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD; February 2005; Title: “Heart failure: from mouse models of cardiomyopathy to myocardial gene transfer"

Poster Presentations

Biophysical Society 54th Annual Meeting (February 22, 2010); San Francisco, CA; Title: “Development of Non-Viral Gene Delivery Carriers for Ischemic Heart Disease (IHD)”

Summer Undergraduate Research Day, University of Houston (October 1, 2009); Houston, TX; Title: “Novel Bioreducible Polymeric Gene Delivery System for Ischemic Heart Disease”

Rice-Houston Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (AGEP) Symposium (August 6, 2009); Houston, TX; Title: “Cardiac Signaling: Targeted Disruption of Gravin (AKAP12)”

Cardiac and Vascular Cell Biology Second Annual Mini-Retreat (March 30, 2007); Baltimore, MD; Title: “Targeted Disruption of PKA and AKAP Interaction on Cardiac Contractility, PKA Phosphorylation, and TnI proteolysis in rat hearts in vivo”

16th Annual Perspectives in Biomedical Science Symposium (March 8, 2007); Baltimore, MD; Title: “Targeted Disruption of PKA and AKAP Interaction on Cardiac Contractility in Rat Hearts in vivo.”

Biophysical Society Meeting (March 3-7, 2007); Baltimore, MD; Title: “Increased Cardiac Contractility in Response to Targeted Disruption of PKA/AKAP Interaction”

Heart Failure Society of America (HFSA) (Sept. 10-13, 2006); Seattle, WA; Title: “Targeted Disruption of PKA Binding to AKAPs Increases Cardiac Contractility and Decreases PKA-Dependent Phosphorylation, in vivo.”

American Heart Association (Scientific Sessions 2005), Dallas, TX; Title: “Targeted PKA/AKAP disruption using an adenoviral mediated peptide inhibitor increases contractility in normal rat hearts, in vivo”

Membrane Biology Conference, University of Maryland, Harper’s Ferry, WV; Title: “Targeted PKA/AKAP disruption using an adenoviral mediated peptide inhibitor increases contractility in normal rat hearts, in vivo”

American Heart Association Council on Basic Cardiovascular Science – Targeting Heart Failure: New Science, New Tools, New Strategies, (July 2005); Keystone, CO; Title: “Discovery of a heart-specific and failure-associated gene in human heart failure”

Laboratory Members

  • Fan Zhang, M.D. (Visiting Scholar)

  • Santosh Suryavanshi, M.S. (Ph.D. Student)

  • Suchi Raghunathan, M.S. (Ph.D. Student)
  • Yan Li, B.S. (Ph.D. Student)

  • Julia Roh (Pharm.D. Student)

  • Jane (Quynh Giao) Truong (Pharm.D. Student)

  • Ahad Azimuddin (Undergraduate Student; HBS Scholar)

  • Manasa Kanukurthy (Undergraduate Student; HBS Scholar)

  • Alexander Le (Undergraduate Student; HBS Scholar)

  • Moawiz Saeed (Undergraduate Student; HBS Scholar)

  • Peter Vu (Tier One Scholar; Undergraduate Student)

  • Sarah Cruthirds (Baylor University; Undergraduate Student)

Available Positions

Positions are available in the laboratory for (1) research technicians and (2) post-doctoral fellows wishing to help identify new and pertinent information regarding beta-adrenergic signaling mechanisms and its regulation of cardiac contractility in health and in cardiac disease, using molecular, biochemical, cellular and physiological technologies. Experience in calcium imaging, fluorescent microscopy, animal models of cardiac disease, molecular biology or biochemistry is preferred.

Please send a copy of your cover letter, CV, a brief statement of research interests, and contact information to: Bradley McConnell at bkmcconn@central.uh.edu.

Awards and Honors

  • Undergraduate Research Award for Mentoring Undergraduate Research; University of Houston, 2016
  • Faculty Award for Excellence in Service, UH College of Pharmacy Faculty, 2015
  • Elected Fellow, American Physiological Society, 2014
  • Faculty Award for Excellence in Research, UH College of Pharmacy Faculty, 2013  
  • Elected Fellow, American Heart Association, and Fellow, AHA Council on Basic Cardiovascular Sciences
  • National Institutes of Health (NIH;NHLBI) R01 American Recovery and Re-Investment Act (ARRA) of 2009 Research Grant Supplement, Principal Investigator Targeted Disruption of Beta-Adrenergic Signaling to Increase Cardiac Contractility, 2009 - 2012
  • Graduate Research Supplement for Ashley Guillory (Ph.D., graduated 2012), B. McConnell (PI): Targeted Disruption of Beta-Adrenergic Signaling to Increase Cardiac Contractility, 2009-2013
  • National Institutes of Health (NIH;NHLBI) R01 Research Grant, Principal Investigator: Targeted Disruption of Beta-Adrenergic Signaling to Increase Cardiac Contractility, 2007-2013
  • State of Maryland OTRD (Other Tobacco Related Diseases) Research Grant, Association of Human β-Adrenergic Signaling Pathway mAKAP Gene Polymorphisms, 2006-2007
  • New Investigator Travel Award, at the Second Annual Symposium of the American Heart Association Council on Basic Cardiovascular Science – Targeting Heart Failure: New Science, New Tools, New Strategies, July 23-27, 2005; Keystone, Colo., 2005
  • University of Maryland School of Medicine Intramural Research Grant, 2005-2006
  • American Heart Association (Mid-Atlantic) Beginning Grant-In-Aid, 2004–2006
  • Howard Hughes Medical Institute Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship, Harvard Medical School, 1997–2001
  • Finalist, Student Research Achievement Award—Honorable Mention (Biophysical Society Meeting), 1996
  • National Institutes of Health (NIH) Training Grant Science Award (T32), CWRU, 1993–1997
  • Academic Scholarship, Department of Physiology & Biophysics, CWRU, 1991–1993
  • Hammond Academic Scholarship, Department of Biology, Pennsylvania State University, 1990–1991