• Julie Ledford, PhD

    Immunological Roles of Endogenous Lung Proteins

  • Samantha Harris, PhD

    Understanding Myosin Binding Protein-C in Health and Disease

  • Jean Wilson, PhD

    Cell biology of barrier function in inflammatory bowel diseases

  • Noel Warfel, PhD

    Modeling the Effects of Hypoxia on Cancer Cells and Tumor Angiogenesis

  • Casey Romanoski, PhD

    Systems Genetics Approaches to Identify Mechanisms of Complex Diseases

  • Curtis Thorne, PhD

    Discovering Signals Controlling Cell Fate of Regenerative Tissues

  • Cynthia Miranti, PhD

    Targeting the Extracellular Matrix and Tumor Microenvironment

  • Ray Runyan, PhD

    Regulation of Cell Invasion in Development and Cancer

  • Gus Mouneimne, PhD

    Understanding How Cytoskeletal Architecture Regulates Cancer Metastasis

  • Yana Zavros, PhD

    Organoid-based Pre-clinical Models to Study Gastric and Pancreatic Diseases

  • Clark Lantz, PhD

    Understanding How Early Life Environmental Exposures Leads to Adult Disease


    A Thriving Environment for Biomedical Discovery


    Training Our Next Leaders in Biomedical Research

  • Darren Cusanovich, PhD

    Understanding How the Genome Regulates Diverse Cell Types in Development and Disease

  • Brett Colson, PhD

    Deciphering the Structural Basis for Muscle Contraction at the Molecular Level


Message from the Chair

The mission of the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine (CMM) is to provide pre- and post-doctoral, medical and graduate education in an interdisciplinary environment through research activities, to advance knowledge of biological structure as related to function and disease from the molecular level to the whole organism.


Dr. Darnell receives two College of Medicine Outstanding Teaching Awards (February 5, 2020)

Professor Diana Darnell, PhD has received two 2020 College of Medicine Faculty Teaching Awards: Outstanding Teacher in a Block, Preclerkship phase and Outstanding Use of Educational Technology.  She will be honored for these accomplishments in March at the 40th Annual Faculty Teaching Awards Ceremony, presented by the Academy of Medical Education Scholars (AMES), an organization that recognizes the College’s most outstanding educators. 

Dr. Gregorio elected as 2020 AACBNC councilor (January 29, 2020)

Professor and Department Head Carol Gregorio, PhD was recently elected to the position of Councilor for the Association of Anatomy, Cell Biology, and Neurobiology Chairpersons. This organization of academic departmental leaders provides advocacy in the biomedical sciences and represent the interests of investigators working within these disciplines to develop policy, identify and address emerging issues, and share expertise for the improvement of academic medicine and basic biomedical science.

Rogers Lab publishes organellogenesis study in the Journal of Cell Biology (December 17, 2019)

In a new study of organelle biogenesis from the laboratory of Gregory Rogers, PhD, former CMM student and postdoc Tiffany McLamarrah and colleagues characterize an early step in centriole duplication. They show that Polo-like kinase hyperphosphorylates the assembly factor Ana2, which increases the affinity of Ana2 for the G-box domain of Sas4, promoting Ana2’s accumulation at the procentriole and, consequently, daughter centriole formation.   PMID: 31841145

CMM Master's Student Receives 2019 Centennial Achievement Award (December 3, 2019)

Michelle Ennabe, CMM Master's Student, is one of three Masters Awardees of this year's prestigious Centennial Achievement Award.  Founded in 1987, this honor recognizes graduating students who demonstrate outstanding academic achievement and contributions to community and family despite facing challenging obstacles along the way.  Read more here.

Mouneimne Lab publishes mechanosensing study in Journal of Cell Biology (October 14, 2019)

In this newest study from the laboratory of Gus Mouneimne, PhD, recently-graduated CMM student Julieann Puleo and colleagues discovered that EVL, the Ena/VASP protein, is crucial for actin polymerization at focal adhesions (FAs). Importantly, they determined that EVL-mediated FA actin polymerization regulates FA maturation and mechanosensing, which are significant steps in mechanically-directed motility and durotactic invasion. This work is a significant contribution to our understanding of how cells interact with their microenvironment in normal and pathological contexts.   PMID: 31594807

Dr. Vercelli's research mentioned in the Washington Post (September 30, 2019)

We are (fortunately) not alone. Microbes should no longer be seen as foes that need to be eliminated at all costs. Work from Donata Vercelli, PhD's laboratory recently featured in the Washington Post shows that living in traditional farming environments means living in a place that is extremely rich in microbes — the right microbes that our immune system has evolved to live with and learn from. The constellation of organisms found in soil and on farm animals programs how a child responds to allergens throughout her lifetime. This programming likely starts in utero and continues to shape the immune system during the first few years of life.  Read more here.

Upcoming Events

CMM Seminar Series: Ray Runyan, PhD
Thursday 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Student Seminar Speaker: Raymond Runyan, PhD, University of Arizona

Talk title: TBD

HSIB 880

Ethical Issues in Biomedical Research
Thursday 2:00pm to 3:30pm

Facilitators: Dr. Michael Kruer, Professor - College of Medicine – Phoenix ✦ Dr. Ron Hammer, Co-director - Clinical Translational Sciences

Tucson: Health Sciences Innovation Building, Room 531 Phoenix: Biomedical Sciences Partnership Building, Room E112

Seminar in Cardiovascular Biology
Friday 9:00am to 10:00am


Lauren Schulz (Gregorio Lab) and Jordan Fink (Goldman Lab)

Sarver Heart Center 4137


Sarver Heart Center Grand Rounds
Friday 12:00pm

Speaker: Dr. Scott Klewer, MD, Cardiology 

Professor, University of Arizona-SHC

Sarver Heart Center 4137

CMM Seminar Series: Jessika Iwanski
Thursday 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Student Seminar Speaker: Jessika Iwanski, GPMM MD/PhD Student, Gregorio Lab

Talk title: TBD

HSIB 880


Drs. Ledford and Kraft win $10K UA Shark Tank Prize

Drs. Julie Ledford, PhD (left) and Monica Kraft, MD (right) win the $10,000 prize during UA Research Day's ‘Shark Tank’ Event for their pitch on a new, inhaled therapeutic for the treatment of asthma and potentially even COPD, cystic fibrosis and pneumonia.