University of Minnesota
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Group Members

Postdoctoral Researchers


Dr. Lee S Parsons

SUNY Upstate Medical University, NY, USA (PhD, Biochemistry)
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities (BS, Biochemistry)

Quantitation of mitophagy-related ubiquitination of proteins.

I am implementing methodologies to characterize ubiquitinated proteins using antibodies targeting ubiquitination signatures and SILAC-based quantitative proteomics.

Graduate Students

Heather Grundhofer

College of St. Scholastica, MN, USA

Novel labeling strategies for mass cytometry.

My goal is to expand the sensitivity and target range of mass cytometry using novel high-capacity lathanide chelating polymers and to develop mass cytometry labels based on aptamers. These strategies will be applied to investigate relationship between autophagy and insulin resistance.


Elyse Krautkramer

St. Norbert College, WI, USA

Monitoring Redox status in cellular systems using luminescent probes.

I am designing and synthesizing peptide-based probes for the determination of mitochondrial redox status.  Luminescence detected in bulk or by capillary electrophoresis with laser-induced fluorescence will be used for quantification of matrix redox status changes in response to biological oxidizers like reactive oxygen species.  This approach will help answer questions about how mitochondrial redox status is related to the onset and progression of age-related neurological conditions.

Deirdre Manion-Fischer

Kent State University, OH, USA

Quantification of mitochondrial DNA damage.

My project aims to monitor mitophagy selectively by analysis of individual organelles by capillary electrophoresis with laser-induced fluorescence detection. Using molecular biology techniques, I aim to characterize the abundance and type of damage in mitochondrial DNA.

Katie Muratore

University of Wisconsin - Madison, WI, USA

Autophagy and cholesterol homeostatis

I study the interplay between autophagy and cholesterol homeostasis. I have developed a new method for monitoring autophagy at the individual organelle level in tissues. Ongoing work is measurement of cholesterol synthesis by multiple reaction monitoring mass spectrometry. I will use my new methods to invesigate the changes in autophagy and cholesterol homeostasis that occur with aging.

Marzieh Ramezani

Sharif University of Technology, Tehran, Iran

Profiling lipids in organelles involved in autophagy.

My goal is to compare organelle-specific lipids under conditions of normal and altered autophagy to understand the role that lipids play in autophagy-related diseases. Currently, I am developing methods for the selective isolation of phagophores, autophagosomes, lysosomes, and autolysosomes. These organelle contents are then analyzed by liquid chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry operated in an MSE mode.

Erik Tyrell

Erik Tyrell

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities, USA

Capillary electrophoretic strategies for analysis of mixed organelle types and co-existing reactive oxygen species.

I am developing instrumentation and techniques to use capillary electrophoresis with laser induced fluorescence for the simultaneous characterization of four types of individual organelles involved in autophagy. I am also developing techniques for the simultaneous quantification of the reactive oxygen species superoxide anion, hydrogen peroxide and hydroxyl radical in mitochondria using micellar electrokinetic chromatography with laser induced fluorescence.

Undergraduate Researchers


Daniel Esping

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities, USA

Longitudinal profiling of mitochondrial membrane potential in C. elegans.

I am creating a Perl program to analyze longitudinal profiles of mitochondrial membrane potential of Caenorhabditis elegans with use of a ratiometric fluorescent probe monitored via COPAS sorting. This program will define regions in which mitochondrial membrane potential changes with age.

Former Group Members

Maggie Donoghue
Vratislav Kostal
Marian Navratil 2004-2008 Postdoc
Christopher Eddy 2004-2006 Postdoc
Guogua Xiong 2001-2005 Postdoc
Richard Walsh 2002-2005 Postdoc
Hossein Ahmadzadeh 2002-2005 Postdoc
Ciaran Duffy 2000-2001 Postdoc
Thane Taylor 2008-2014 PhD
Greg Wolken
Chad Satori
Joseph Katzenmeyer
Yaohua Wang
Xin Xu
Dmitry Andreyev 2001-2007 PhD.
Juan Feng 2004-2007 PhD.
Christofer Whiting 2002-2007 PhD.
Bobby Poe 2001-2007 PhD.
Danni Li-Meany 2002-2007 PhD.
Yun Chen 2002-2006 PhD.
Angela Eder 2002-2006 PhD.
Nilhan Gunasekera 1999-2003 PhD.
Adrian Anderson 1999-2003 PhD.
Kathryn Fuller 1999-2003 PhD.
Lucas Ulmer 2013-2014 M.S.
Shu Luan
Scott Rose
Rongxiao Sa

Distinguished Undergraduates who authored peer-reviewed publications


Year of first publication

Sheik Gafoor 2001
Angela Strack 2001
Jamie Gergen 2002
Abraham McEathron 2002
Chanda Ciriacks 2003
Andrew Presley 2003
Ryan Johnson 2004
Jennifer Chen 2006
Jennifer Hong 2009
Kiara Levar 2011
Mark Swift 2011
Erik Skillrud 2011
Mark Chapman 2011
Benjamin Fossen 2013
Ayoung Noh 2013
Brandon Meyer 2014