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Research interests

Wolfram syndrome is a rare autosomal recessive genetic disorder with clinical signs apparent in early childhood. This condition is characterized by juvenile-onset diabetes, optic nerve atrophy, deafness, diabetes insipidus and neurodegeneration, and it may result in death in middle adulthood.

Accumulating evidence in my laboratory strongly suggests that endoplasmic reticulum (ER) dysfunction is a critical pathogenic component of Wolfram syndrome. However, a complete understanding of the pathways and biomarkers involved in the disease process is still lacking. As a result, despite the underlying importance of ER dysfunction in Wolfram syndrome, there are currently no therapies that target the ER.

The goal of our laboratory is to reveal the molecular mechanisms of Wolfram syndrome and develop patient-based therapeutics for this complex disorder using genetic information from each patient and patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs).

Growing evidence indicates that ER dysfunction is involved in rare genetics disorders, including Wolfram syndrome, as well as more common diseases such as type 1 and type 2 diabetes and Parkinson diseases. Thus, the potential public health implications of our research are considerable.

Clinical interests

Medical genetics, Wolfram syndrome, Wolfram-like syndrome, WFS1-related disorders, genetic testing and counseling, atypical diabetes, genetic forms of diabetes, endocrine genetic diseases.


I always think we have two missions. 1. Make a difference in society through cutting-edge science. 2. Foster next-generation scientists. Both are equally important. I meet my trainees weekly, help them develop research plans, and share important skills (mental attitude, tips, planning and executing experiments, finding important research questions) to realize their full potential vested in them.

Available to Mentor:

  • PhD/MSTP Students


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