Molecular Cardiovascular Biology

  • Research Faculty

  • Show All

    Division Head

    A photo of Jeffrey Robbins, PhD.

    Jeffrey Robbins, PhD Director and Endowed Chair, Molecular Cardiovascular Biology

    established the means to direct the heart to synthesize normal and mutant proteins. They can turn these on and off at will and this allows them to establish cause-and-effect relationships between mutant proteins and the development of cardiac disease. The lab is particularly interested in how protein aggregation can cause cardiac disease but also studies the contractile protein mutations that cause hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and heart failure.
    Visit the Robbins Lab.

    513-636-8098
    jeffrey.robbins@cchmc.org

    Jeffrey Robbins, PhD

    Director and Endowed Chair, Molecular Cardiovascular Biology

    Executive Co-Director, Heart Institute

    Associate Chair, Children's Hospital Research Foundation

    Academic Information

    Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-636-8098

    Email: jeffrey.robbins@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Structure function relationships for the contractile proteins;  cardiac-specific gene manipulation in transgenic rabbits; the contractile protein myosin, and human heart failure; molecular studies of human valve disease

    Visit the Robbins Lab.

    Biography

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications

    Grants

    Cardiac Signaling in the Normal and Abnormal Heart. Principal Investigator. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Jun 2002 - Nov 2012.  #P01HL69779.

    Cardiomyocyte Toxicity and Heart Failure in Desmin Related Cardiomyopathy. Principal Investigator. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Jan 2008 - Dec 2012. #R01 HL087862.

    Faculty

    A photo of Burns Blaxall.

    Burns C. Blaxall, PhD, FAHA Director of Translational Science, Heart Institute

    is interested in understanding the molecular mechanisms associated with the development and progression of heart failure. We are particularly interested in developing novel heart failure therapeutics targeting myocardial function and fibrosis. To this end, we also seek to understand the pathologic role of cardiac myocyte and non-myocyte (i.e.. fibroblast) intercellular communication.

    513-803-4005
    burns.blaxall@cchmc.org

    Burns C. Blaxall, PhD, FAHA

    Director of Translational Science, Heart Institute

    Academic Information

    Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-803-4005

    Email: burns.blaxall@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Molecular and signaling mechanisms of heart failure; cardiac fibrosis; drug and therapeutic discovery

    Visit the Blaxall lab.

    Biography

    Dr. Burns C. Blaxall has focused his entire career on understanding the molecular mechanisms of heart failure. He received his PhD in pharmacology from the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, and postdoctoral training at Duke University Medical Center. He then rose through the faculty ranks at the University of Rochester Medical Center and the Aab Cardiovascular Research Institute, where he also directed the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Med-into-Grad Fellowship in Cardiovascular Science. 

    In 2012, he was recruited to the Heart Institute of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, where he is director of Translational Science. Dr. Blaxall has received many academic honors, including the Early Career Investigator Award from the American Heart Association (AHA), the Outstanding Achievement Award from the Founder’s AHA Affiliate, the Merit Award for Research Achievement from Mended Hearts, and election as fellow of the AHA.

    Education and Training

    PhD: University of Colorado HSC, Denver, CO, 1999.

    Fellowship: Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC.

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications
    A photo of James D. Gulick.

    James D. Gulick, MS

    is a member of the Robbins lab, studying cardiac structure and function. His interest lies primarily in understanding how certain mutations in contractile protein genes are able to alter the function of the heart.
    Visit the Robbins lab web site.

    513-803-0994
    james.gulick@cchmc.org

    James D. Gulick, MS

    Academic Information

    Instructor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-803-0994

    Fax: 513-636-5958

    Email: james.gulick@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Understanding how certain mutations in contractile protein genes are able to alter the function of the heart

    Education and Training

    MS: University of Missouri-Columbia, Columbia, Mo, 1983

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications
    A photo of Robert Hinton.

    Robert Bruce Hinton, MD Director, Heart Institute BioRepository (HIBR)

    is a pediatric cardiologist who has basic and translational research programs. His laboratory studies the genetic and developmental basis of pediatric heart disease with a focus on cardiovascular malformations and valve disease.

    513-636-0389
    robert.hinton@cchmc.org

    Robert Bruce Hinton, MD

    Director, Heart Institute BioRepository (HIBR)

    Academic Information

    Associate Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-636-0389

    Fax: 513-636-5958

    Email: robert.hinton@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Clinical Interests

    Cardiovascular genetics; echocardiography

    Research Interests

    Valve and aorta disease using human genetics and molecular developmental biology approaches

    Biography

    Dr. Hinton graduated from Bucknell University with degrees in Art History and Philosophy. He earned his medical degree from the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston SC. He completed his pediatric residency training at Memorial Health University Medical Center in Savannah GA and his pediatric cardiology fellowship at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Dr. Hinton went on to pursue a postdoctoral fellowship in Cardiovascular Genetics and Molecular Cardiology at Cincinnati Children’s. He has been an attending staff member of the Division of Cardiology since 2006.

    Dr. Hinton’s clinical interests relate to cardiovascular genetics and echocardiography. He is a member of the cardiovascular genetics service, and staffs the echocardiography laboratory. Dr. Hinton’s academic interests focus on translational research efforts using mouse models of human disease to identify new therapeutic targets. Dr. Hinton is a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Heart Association, the American Society of Bioethics and Humanities, and the American Society of Matrix Biology. He was elected to the Society for Pediatric Research in 2007.

    Education and Training

    BA: Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA.

    MD: Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC.

    Residency: Memorial Health University Medical Center, Savannah, GA.

    Fellowship: Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH.

    Fellowship: Cincinnati Children's  Research Foundation, Cincinnati, OH.

    Certification: Pediatrics, Pediatric Cardiology.

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications

    Grants

    Angiogenesis Inhibition Therapy for Aortic Valve Disease. Principal Investigator. National Center for Research Resources (NIH/NCRR). Jul 2011-Jun 2012.

    Twist1 regulation of valve progenitors. Co-Investigator. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NIH/NHLBI). Jul 2010-Jun 2015.

    Trial of Beta Blocker Therapy (Atenolol) vs. Angiotensin II Receptor Blocker Therapy (Losartan). Co-Investigator. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NIH/NHLBI) Pediatric Heart Network. Sept 2006-Aug 2016.

    Aortic root structure-function relationships in a mouse model of aortic valve disease and aortopathy. Supervisor. American Heart Association, Great Rivers Affiliate. Jul 2011-Jun 2012.

    A photo of Jeanne M. James.

    Jeanne M. James, MD

    is a pediatric cardiologist, interested in exploring the pathological processes that lead to abnormal heart function as well as the compensatory phenomena intrinsic to the myocardium that may assist in recovery of function. 
    Visit the James lab site.

    513-803-3151
    jeanne.james@cchmc.org

    Jeanne M. James, MD

    Academic Information

    Associate Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-803-3151

    Email: jeanne.james@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Cardiovascular genetics, echocardiography, congenital heart disease, medical education, molecular cardiology, ventricular remodeling, cardiac hypertrophy.

    Visit the James Lab.

    Biography

    Jeanne James, MD, is an associate professor of pediatrics at University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and is currently the director of the Cardiology Fellowship Training Program at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center.  

    A native of West Virginia, Dr. James earned her bachelor and medical degrees from West Virginia University in Morgantown, WV. She completed her pediatric residency and pediatric cardiology fellowship at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, TN. Dr. James has been an attending staff member of the Division of Cardiology at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine since 1995.  

    Dr. James' academic interests are in translational research on heart muscle disease, cardiovascular genetics and echocardiography. She has made numerous scholarly contributions to the field with publications describing both laboratory-based and clinical research. She serves as a grant reviewer for the American Heart Association and is a peer-reviewer for a number of scientific and medical journals. 

    Dr. James has established collaborative relationships with laboratory researchers at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and investigators across the United States. As the Director of the Mouse Echocardiography Core, she uses non-invasive imaging to evaluate phenotypes of transgenic mice, including embryonic mice.  

    Dr. James serves as an attending physician in clinical echocardiography laboratory as well as the inpatient cardiology ward and consult team. Dr. James is a member of the Cardiovascular Genetics (CVG) service and has significant responsibilities in the CVG outpatient clinic. Dr. James is a member of the American Society of Echocardiography, the American Heart Association and the Society for Pediatric Research.

    Education and Training

    MD: West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV, 1987.

    Residency: Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, 1987-90.

    Fellowship: Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, 1991-94.

    Certification: Pediatrics, 1990 - present

    Certified: Pediatric Cardiology, 1996 - present

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications
    A photo of Zaza Khuchua.

    Zaza Khuchua, PhD Research Associate Professor

    research Interests are mitochondrial structure, function, biogenesis and recycling in normal and pathological heart muscle. More specifically we are interested in defects in cardiac lipid and phospholipid metabolism. We employ genetically engineered mice to model human genetic disorders.

    513-636-1340
    zaza.khuchua@cchmc.org

    Zaza Khuchua, PhD

    Research Associate Professor

    Academic Information

    Associate Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-636-1340

    Fax: 513-636-5958

    Email: zaza.khuchua@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Mitochondrial function; structure and dynamics in cardiac cells in normal and pathological conditions; role of mitochondrial phospholipids in aerobic metabolism in heart; role of lipid molecules in cell signaling systems

    Education and Training

    MS: Moscow State University, 1981

    PhD: All Union Cardiology Research Center, Moscow Russia, 1987

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications
    A photo of Marjorie Maillet.

    Marjorie Maillet, PhD Research Instructor

    is interested in understanding the signaling pathways that lead to cardiac hypertrophy and heart disease. Her current projects aim at defining new signaling pathways that regulate calcineurin and NFAT in the heart as well as characterizing MAP kinases targets associated with cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure.
    Visit the Molkentin lab.

    513-636-2467
    marjorie.maillet@cchmc.org

    Marjorie Maillet, PhD

    Research Instructor

    Academic Information

    University of Cincinnati College of Medicine

    Phone: 513-636-2467

    Email: marjorie.maillet@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Signaling pathways, Cellular Biology, Cardiac Hypertrophy & Heart Failure

    Education and Training

    PhD, Paris XI University, Orsay, France, 2003

    Fellowship, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, Cincinnati, Ohio

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications
    A photo of Jeffery Molkentin, PhD.

    Jeffery D. Molkentin, PhD Professor | Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator

    is interested in understanding the intracellular signaling pathways and transcriptional regulatory circuits that control mammalian cell growth and differentiation.
    Visit the Molkentin Lab. 

    513-636-3557
    jeff.molkentin@cchmc.org

    Jeffery D. Molkentin, PhD

    Professor | Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator

    Academic Information

    Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-636-3557

    Fax: 513-636-5958

    Email: jeff.molkentin@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Biography

    Dr. Molkentin's research aims to understand the intracellular signaling pathways and transcriptional regulatory circuits that control mammalian cell growth and differentiation. His work has advanced the understanding of molecular events behind heart disease and muscular dystrophy.

    In 2008 he was named a Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) investigator.

    For a full description of Dr. Molkentin's work, please see his Faculty Lab Site in the Division of Molecular and Cardiovascular Biology.

    Education and Training

    BS Marquette University, Milwaukee WI, 1989.

    PhD: Medical College of Wisconsin, 1994.

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications
    A photo of Enkhsaikhan Purevjav, MD, PhD.

    Enkhsaikhan Purevjav, MD, PhD Research Assistant Professor

    focuses on identifying and screening the potential genes responsible for inherited and acquired cardiac diseases, creating in vitro and in vivo cardiomyopathy models and performing functional studies of mutations identified. Additionally, she studies the effects of factors such as viral infections, drugs (ACE inhibitors and beta-blockers) and mechanical stress (cyclic mechanical stretch, acute and chronic exercise) on cardiac function.

    513-803-2576
    enkhsaikhan.purevjav@cchmc.org

    Enkhsaikhan Purevjav, MD, PhD

    Research Assistant Professor

    Academic Information

    Assistant Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-803-2576

    Fax: 513-636-5958

    Email: enkhsaikhan.purevjav@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Cardiac disease; genetic abnormalities; cardiac mechanosensing; cardiomyopathy

    Biography

    Enkhsaikhan Purejav's, MD, PhD is focused on screening the potential genes responsible for inherited and acquired cardiac diseases and performing functional studies of mutations in these genes by creating in vitro and in vivo models. In addition, she investigates the effects of factors such as viral infections, drugs including ACE inhibitors and beta-blockers, and mechanical stress (cyclic mechanical stretch, acute and chronic exercise) on cardiac function in these models.

    Education and Training

    MD: Leningrad Pediatric Medical Institute, Russia, 1989

    Residency: Saint’s Petersburg Pediatric Medical Academy, Russia

    Certification: Pediatric Cardiology, 1994

    PhD: Shimane Medical University, Japan, 2003

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications
    A photo of Joshua Waxman.

    Joshua S. Waxman, PhD Assistant Professor

    uses genetic, molecular and cellular biological techniques to understand the underlying mechanisms of congenital heart defects and cardiomyocyte formation during development.
    Visit the Waxman Lab.

    513-636-7232
    joshua.waxman@cchmc.org

    Joshua S. Waxman, PhD

    Assistant Professor

    Academic Information

    Assistant Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-636-7232

    Fax: 513-636-5958

    Email: joshua.waxman@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Understanding the molecular underlying nature of congenital heart defects; cardiomyocyte formation

    Visit the Waxman Lab.

    Education and Training

    BA: New College, Sarasota, FL,1999.

    PhD: University of Washington, Seattle, WA, 2004.

    Postdoctoral Fellow: Skirball Institute/NYU School of Medicine, New York, NY, 2004-2009.

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications
    A photo of Katherine Yutzey.

    Katherine Yutzey, PhD

    is focused on the molecular mechanisms of heart development and disease. Particular emphasis is on signaling pathways and transcription factors that control heart valve development as well as contribute to pediatric and adult valve disease. Additional projects address the development of coronary vasculature, cardiac fibrosis and maturation of cardiac muscle after birth.

    Visit the Yutzey Lab.

    513-636-8340
    katherine.yutzey@cchmc.org

    Katherine Yutzey, PhD

    Academic Information

    Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics

    Phone: 513-636-8340

    Fax: 513-636-5958

    Email: katherine.yutzey@cchmc.org

    Show All

    Specialties

    Molecular regulation of heart development; valve development and disease mechanisms; cardiomyocyte proliferation, cardiac connective tissue lineages.

    Visit the Yutzey Lab.

    Biography

    Visit Dr. Yutzey's Lab Web Site.

    Katherine E. Yutzey, PhD, is a professor who joined the Division of Molecular Cardiovascular Biology at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center in 1995.

    Dr. Yutzey is the first recipient of the Fifth Third Bank/Charlotte R. Schmidlapp Women Scholars Award and was also a recipient of a Children's Hospital Medical Center Trustee Award. Her work is also supported by grants from National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the American Heart Association.

    The focus of Dr. Yutzey's research program is the regulation of normal and abnormal heart development. Congenital heart defects represent one of the most common classes of human birth defects. Increasing evidence exists for a genetic basis of certain instances of congenital heart disease.

    Dr. Yutzey’s lab also studies molecular mechanisms of cardiac connective tissue cell lineage development and disease.  This work focuses on heart valve development and disease as well as mechanisms of cardiac fibrosis.

    Education and Training

    BA: Oberlin College, Oberlin, OH, 1986.

    PhD: Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN,1992

    Fellowship: Cornell University Medical College, New York, NY,1992-1995.

    Publications

    View PubMed Publications

    Grants

    Twist1 regulation of valve progenitors.wist1 regulation of valve. National Institutes of Health. 2010-2015. R01 HL082716.

    Wnt signaling in heart valve development and disease. Principal Investigator. National Institutes of Health. 2012-2016. #R01 HL094319.

    Cell signaling mechanisms of calcific aortic valve disease. Principal Investigator. National Institutes of Health.
    2012-2016. #R01 HL114682. 

    Trainee support

    The role of COX2 in the progression of human and mouse aortic valve disease. Elaine Wirrig, Fellow. K Yutzey, Sponsor. NIH NHLBI Post-Doctoral Fellowship. 2012-2014. F32 HL110390.