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Mobile, Ala. (June 29, 2009)
Contact: Paul Taylor, USA Hospitals, (251) 470-1682

USA Scientist Elected Chair of International Assembly

 
Dr. Mark Gillespie, chair of the USA department of Pharmacology
Dr. Mark Gillespie, chair of the USA department of Pharmacology
 
Dr. Mark Gillespie, professor and chair of the University of South Alabama department of pharmacology, was recently elected to chair the American Thoracic Society’s assembly on pulmonary circulation at the ATS international conference held last month in San Diego.
    
The ATS assembly on pulmonary circulation includes basic scientists and clinicians from around the world who share an interest in all matters relating to pulmonary circulation. As chair, Dr. Gillespie will coordinate the important exchange of information between members who are dedicated to improving patient care through better understanding of pulmonary circulation.
    
Dr. Gillespie’s research interests focus on low oxygen - termed “hypoxia” - one of the most fundamental stimuli in mammalian physiology and pathology. Hypoxia is involved in wide range of diverse processes such as fetal development, tumor formation, and the growth and remodeling of blood vessels.
    
Dr. Gillespie and his research team are investigating on a cellular level the effect hypoxia has on intricate signaling pathways that cells use to communicate. Specifically, they are examining how hypoxia influences expression of adaptive genes in the lung and other cells types.
    
Previously, Gillespie’s research team discovered that the cell’s power plants, known as mitochondria, produce elaborate reactive oxygen species (ROS) in a low oxygen environment. ROS are small particles that serve as intracellular second messengers linking hypoxic exposure to gene expression.
     
Their work explores previously unappreciated pathways by which normal cell signaling may be linked to cell mutation, and an primary source for diseases such as cancer and the aging process itself.
 
The ATS assembly on pulmonary circulation’s mission is to collect, interpret and disseminate data concerning clinical and research aspects of the pulmonary circulation; to stimulate research in pulmonary circulation; and to promote interdisciplinary planning for clinical pulmonary circulatory aspects of patients with lung disease.
 
Founded in 1905, the American Thoracic Society is the world’s leading medical association dedicated to advancing pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine. The Society has more than 15,000 members who prevent and fight respiratory disease around the globe, through research, education, patient care and advocacy.
 
 
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University of South Alabama - Mobile Alabama 36688-0002 / 1 (251) 460-6101
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Date last changed: October 19, 2009 4:32 PM
http://www.southalabama.edu/healthsystem/pressreleases/2009pr/062909a.html