Medical Professional Publications

NIH Grant to Support Biomedical Research at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and The Ohio State University

(From the May 2017 issue of Research Now)

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recently awarded Aaron J. Trask, PhD, principal investigator in the Center for Cardiovascular Research at The Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, a $315K Shared Instrumentation grant (S10) to support existing, federally-funded researchers at Nationwide Children’s and The Ohio State University in a multitude of disciplines, including cardiovascular research, tissue engineering, microbial pathogenesis, biomedical engineering, perinatal research and childhood cancer.

At Nationwide Children’s, Dr. Trask is the second recipient of this type of NIH grant, which will be used to purchase a state-of-the-art atomic force microscope (AFM) that will be a shared resource for both institutions. The first-ever recipient was Peter White, PhD, director of the Biomedical Genomics Core, for the Illumina HiSeq 2000 platform.

The AFM will suit both current and foreseeable needs of NIH-funded investigators and other investigators at Nationwide Children’s, and allow them to conduct cutting-edge research into how the mechanical properties of tissues and cells affect their biological functions.

“Understanding the fundamental mechanics driving biological changes as diverse as cardiovascular disease, microbial pathogenesis, biomedical engineering, perinatal diseases, and cancer will be crucial to the advancement of our research efforts to improve the health of children and beyond,” says Dr. Trask, who is also an assistant professor of Pediatrics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. “The AFM is critical to add and maintain advanced biomechanical and imaging technology in the shared Morphology Core Laboratory at Nationwide Children’s.”

The Morphology Core is one of 12 core facilities or shared resources on the Nationwide Children’s campus, and is overseen by Cynthia McAllister, technical director, who will be responsible for the daily operations of the AFM, including training users and maintenance. Dr. Trask and his lab will also be available for secondary training and as a resource for data collection, handling and analysis.

In addition to supporting a major cardiovascular research project led by Dr. Trask, the AFM will be used by nine other research groups led by principal investigators at Nationwide Children’s and two research groups led by investigators at The Ohio State. A variety of trainee groups will also benefit from the use of the AFM equipment.

Projects to be supported by the AFM:

  1. “Differential Macro- and Micro-Vascular Remodeling in Type 2 Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome” (Dr. Trask, Center for Cardiovascular Research, Nationwide Children’s Hospital)
  2. “The Role of Sox9 in Calcific Aortic Valve Disease” and “The Role of Notch in Calcific Aortic Valve Disease” (Joy Lincoln, PhD, Center for Cardiovascular Research, Nationwide Children’s Hospital)
  3. “Mechanisms of Vascular Neonatal Formation in Tissue Engineered Vascular Grafts” and “Computational Model Driven Design of Tissue Engineered Vascular Grafts” (Christopher K. Breuer, MD, Tissue Engineering Program, Nationwide Children’s Hospital)
  4. “Novel Immunotherapeutics for the Management of Otitis Media Due to H. Influenzae” (Steven D. Goodman, PhD, and Lauren O. Bakaletz, PhD, Center for Microbial Pathogenesis, Nationwide Children’s Hospital;)
  5. “Determinants of H. Influenzae Virulence in Otitis Media” (Lauren O. Bakaletz, PhD, Center for Microbial Pathogenesis, Nationwide Children’s Hospital)
  6. “Patient-Specific Modeling of Eustachian Tube Function and Middle Ear Pressure Regulation,” “Biomechanical Mechanisms of Oncogenic Epithelial to Mesenchymal Transition,” and “Mechanobiology of Microbubble Induced Cellular Injury in the Pulmonary System” (Samir Ghadiali, PhD, Biomedical Engineering, The Ohio State University)
  7. “Molecular Mechanisms of Aortic Valve Formation” and “The Role of Notch in Calcific Aortic Valve Disease” (Vidu Garg, MD, Center for Cardiovascular Research, Nationwide Children’s Hospital)
  8. “The Role of Notch in Calcific Aortic Valve Disease” (Brenda Lilly, PhD, Center for Cardiovascular Research, Nationwide Children’s Hospital)
  9. “DHA Attenuates Inflammatory Responses Through Altering RAGE Signaling” (Lynette K. Rogers, PhD, Center for Perinatal Research, Nationwide Children’s Hospital)
  10. “’Driver’ vs. ‘Passenger’ Epigenetic Events in Ewing Sarcoma” (Stephen L. Lessnick, MD, PhD, Center for Childhood Cancer and Blood Diseases, Nationwide Children’s Hospital)
  11. “Emergent Behaviors Arising from Simple Mechanically-Mediated Cell-Matrix Interactions” and “Matrix Stiffness and Cardiac Fibroblast Phenotype” (Keith Gooch, PhD, Biomedical Engineering, The Ohio State University)
  12. Biofilm research (Samantha J. King, PhD, Center for Microbial Pathogenesis, Nationwide Children’s Hospital)

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