- This laboratory conducts integrated research into the physiology of various external stimuli that activate the nervous system and in turn affect bone metabolism, especially the bone specific protein osteocalcin. This protein has recently been identified as a hormone affecting energy metabolism. We have also shown that it is involved in sensory neural response to certain stimuli including thermal, balance, and painful touch..
- We provide training for undergraduates in basic research techniques including animal behavior, hormone analysis, gene expression, and protein localization.
- Function of osteocalcin in relation to physiological and mechanical properties of bone, especially the role of osteocalcin in motor recovery and bone loss resulting from spinal cord injury in wild type and osteocalcin null mutant (knockout) mice;
- Effects of sensory stimuli on gene expression for osteocalcin and sensory receptors in dorsal root and trigeminal ganglia;
- Culture of dorsal root ganglia cells to determine what chemical stimuli alter osteocalcin gene expression and protein synthesis;
- Behavior and stress response of osteocalcin null mutant (knockout) mice