Musculoskeletal Health

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Indiana Center for Musculoskeletal Health Research Teams

Focused research teams are composed of basic, translational and clinical researchers, including medical and graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and orthopaedic fellows. These cross-departmental research teams also include experts in genetics and precision medicine, trauma, rehab, regeneration, mechanobiology and bone/muscle crosstalk, musculoskeletal cancer, and pediatric musculoskeletal disease.

Cancer in Bone and Muscle

The rising burdens of musculoskeletal diseases include various types of cancer in bone. The Cancer in Bone and Muscle research team focuses on the interactions between bone and cancer, especially breast and prostate cancer as well as multiple myeloma. Additionally, these investigators are interested in understanding the interaction of bone cancers to muscle cachexia and vice-versa. Team Leaders: Theresa Guise, MD and David Roodman, MD, PhD.

Teresita M. Bellido, PhD

Teresita M. Bellido, PhD

Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Andrea Bonetto, PhD

Andrea Bonetto, PhD

Assistant Professor of Surgery
John M. Chirgwin, PhD

John M. Chirgwin, PhD

Professor of Medicine
Jesus Delgado-Calle, PhD

Jesus Delgado-Calle, PhD

Assistant Research Professor of Medicine
Melissa A. Kacena, PhD

Melissa A. Kacena, PhD

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Patrick J. Loehrer, MD

Patrick J. Loehrer, MD

Distinguished Professor
Khalid S. Mohammad, MD, PhD

Khalid S. Mohammad, MD, PhD

Senior Research Professor of Medicine
Lilian I. Plotkin, PhD

Lilian I. Plotkin, PhD

Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Uma Sankar, PhD

Uma Sankar, PhD

Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Attaya Suvannasankha, MD

Attaya Suvannasankha, MD

Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine
Trupti Trivedi, PhD

Trupti Trivedi, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow in Medicine
William C. Thompson, DO

William C. Thompson, DO

Volunteer Clinical Assistant Professor of Family Medicine, Medical Sciences Program
Laura E. Wright, PhD

Laura E. Wright, PhD

Assistant Research Professor of Medicine

Teresa A. Zimmers, PhD

Teresa A. Zimmers, PhD

Associate Professor of Surgery

Lifestyle Modification: Physical Activity and Nutrition

The lifestyle modification team’s research focuses on the lifestyle, nutrition, and behavioral modifications that impact musculoskeletal health and physical function, specifically in regards to nutrition and mobility. The goals of this research is to better understand how musculoskeletal health and physical function affect the overall health of the population and how chronic diseases impact musculoskeletal health. Team Leaders: NiCole Keith, PhD, and Ranjani Moorthi PhD.

Keith G. Avin, PhD

Keith G. Avin, PhD

Adjunct Assistant Research Professor of Medicine
Tarah J. Ballinger, MD

Tarah J. Ballinger, MD

Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine
Robyn K. Fuchs, PhD

Robyn K. Fuchs, PhD

Associate Professor, School of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences
Kathleen M. Hill Gallant, PhD

Kathleen M. Hill Gallant, PhD

Assistant Research Professor of Medicine
Babar A. Khan, MBBS

Babar A. Khan, MBBS

Associate Professor of Medicine
Patricia J. Scott, PhD

Patricia J. Scott, PhD

Adjunct Associate Professor of Surgery
Michael Sturek, MS,  PhD

Michael Sturek, MS, PhD

Chair, Department of Cellular & Integrative Physiology
Stuart J. Warden, PhD

Stuart J. Warden, PhD

Adjunct Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Connie M. Weaver, PhD

Connie M. Weaver, PhD

Adjunct Professor of Pharmacology & Toxicology, IU School of Medicine-West Lafayette
Teresa A. Zimmers, PhD

Teresa A. Zimmers, PhD

Associate Professor of Surgery

Mechanobiology and Muscle/Bone Crosstalk

Focusing on osteoarthritis, effects of exercise on the musculoskeletal system and the new research area of non-mechanical, systematic interactions between muscle and bone, this research team currently includes over 30 musculoskeletal health investigators. To make the most of the collaboration opportunities in a research team this size, leaders David Burr and Teresa Zimmers have organized the team into sub-groups that target specific research goals for experimenting, development, and funding. Team Leaders: David Burr, PhD, and Teresa Zimmers, PhD.

Keith G. Avin, PhD

Keith G. Avin, PhD

Adjunct Assistant Research Professor of Medicine
Teresita M. Bellido, PhD

Teresita M. Bellido, PhD

Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Angela Bruzzaniti, PhD

Angela Bruzzaniti, PhD

Associate Professor of Oral Biology, School of Dentistry
Andrea Bonetto, PhD

Andrea Bonetto, PhD

Assistant Professor of Surgery
Neal X. Chen, MD, PhD

Neal X. Chen, MD, PhD

Associate Research Professor of Medicine
Zhenhui Chen, PhD

Zhenhui Chen, PhD

Associate Research Professor of Medicine
Tien-Min G. Chu, PhD

Tien-Min G. Chu, PhD

Associate Dean for Research, School of Dentistry
Robyn K. Fuchs, PhD

Robyn K. Fuchs, PhD

Associate Professor, School of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences
Theresa A. Guise, MD

Theresa A. Guise, MD

Jerry W. and Peggy S. Throgmartin Professor of Oncology
Nilsson Holguin, PHD

Nilsson Holguin, PHD

Adjunct Assistant Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Jiliang Li, PhD

Jiliang Li, PhD

Adjunct Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Margaret A. McNulty, PhD

Margaret A. McNulty, PhD

Assistant Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Khalid S. Mohammad, MD, PhD

Khalid S. Mohammad, MD, PhD

Senior Research Professor of Medicine
Thomas M. O'Connell, PhD

Thomas M. O'Connell, PhD

Associate Professor of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery
Fredrick M. Pavalko, PhD

Fredrick M. Pavalko, PhD

Professor of Cellular & Integrative Physiology
Lilian I. Plotkin, PhD

Lilian I. Plotkin, PhD

Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Alexander G. Robling, PhD

Alexander G. Robling, PhD

Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Uma Sankar, PhD

Uma Sankar, PhD

Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Michael Sturek, MS,  PhD

Michael Sturek, MS, PhD

Chair, Department of Cellular & Integrative Physiology
William R. Thompson, PhD

William R. Thompson, PhD

Assistant Professor of Physical Therapy, School of Health & Rehabilitation Sciences
Stephen B. Trippel, MD

Stephen B. Trippel, MD

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Joseph Wallace, PhD

Joseph Wallace, PhD

Associate Professsor, School of Engineering & Technology
Stuart J. Warden, PhD

Stuart J. Warden, PhD

Adjunct Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Hiroki Yokota, PhD

Hiroki Yokota, PhD

Adjunct Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology

Pediatric Musculoskeletal Disease

The pediatric musculoskeletal disease team is investigating the causes of childhood musculoskeletal diseases, including those that affect bone and muscle such as diabetes, obesity, and the sarcomas with special interest on osteosarcoma. The goal is better understand the causes of pediatric musculoskeletal disease and how they relate to other childhood illnesses. Team Leaders: Linda DiMeglio, MD and Erik Imel, MD.

Imranul Alam, PhD

Imranul Alam, PhD

Assistant Research Professor of Medicine
Tyler W. Christman, DO

Tyler W. Christman, DO

Assistant Professor of Clinical Orthopaedic Surgery
Linda A. DiMeglio, MA,  MD,  MPH

Linda A. DiMeglio, MA, MD, MPH

Professor of Pediatrics
Marcia V. Felker, MD

Marcia V. Felker, MD

Assistant Professor of Clinical Neurology
Erik A. Imel, MD

Erik A. Imel, MD

Associate Professor of Medicine
Melissa A. Kacena, PhD

Melissa A. Kacena, PhD

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Grzegorz Nalepa, MD,  PhD

Grzegorz Nalepa, MD, PhD

Assistant Professor of Pediatrics

Precision Medicine

The precision medicine team is focused on genetic musculoskeletal diseases, such as X-linked hypophosphatemia, autosomal dominant hypophosphatemia, and genomic, metabolomics, protemic determinants of bone density, osteoporosis and sarcopenia in aging and chronic disease. These investigators focusing on the causes of these diseases, and working to develop treatments and cures. Team Leaders: Todd Skaar, PhD and Ken White, PhD.

Matthew R. Allen, PhD

Matthew R. Allen, PhD

Assistant Dean for Faculty Affairs and Professional Development
Teresita M. Bellido, PhD

Teresita M. Bellido, PhD

Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Angela Bruzzaniti, PhD

Angela Bruzzaniti, PhD

Associate Professor of Oral Biology, School of Dentistry
Neal X. Chen, MD, PhD

Neal X. Chen, MD, PhD

Associate Research Professor of Medicine
Michael J. Econs, MD

Michael J. Econs, MD

Glenn W. Irwin, Jr. Professor of Endocrinology and Metabolism
Erik A. Imel, MD

Erik A. Imel, MD

Associate Professor of Medicine
Uma Sankar, PhD

Uma Sankar, PhD

Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology

Trauma Regeneration and Rehabilitation

Team Leaders: Melissa Kacena, Ph.D., Brian Mullis, MD.

Focusing on developing patient-specific interventions, these investigators are working to treat patients sustaining musculoskeletal injury, specifically injuries that result in acute and chronic musculoskeletal disease. These treatment goals include acute interventions, regenerative interventions for both bone and muscle, and eventually identifying the optimal means of rehabilitation for the patient to resume a normal lifestyle.

Keith G. Avin, PhD

Keith G. Avin, PhD

Adjunct Assistant Research Professor of Medicine
Mary Beth Brown, PhD

Mary Beth Brown, PhD

Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine
Angela Bruzzaniti, PhD

Angela Bruzzaniti, PhD

Associate Professor of Oral Biology, School of Dentistry
Tien-Min G. Chu, PhD

Tien-Min G. Chu, PhD

Associate Dean for Research, School of Dentistry
Thomas J. Fischer

Thomas J. Fischer

Volunteer Clinical Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Melissa A. Kacena, PhD

Melissa A. Kacena, PhD

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Nilsson Holguin, PHD

Nilsson Holguin, PHD

Adjunct Assistant Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Jiliang Li, PhD

Jiliang Li, PhD

Adjunct Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Farzad Loghmani, MD

Farzad Loghmani, MD

Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine
Todd O. McKinley, MD

Todd O. McKinley, MD

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Brian H. Mullis, MD

Brian H. Mullis, MD

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Uma Sankar, PhD

Uma Sankar, PhD

Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Stephen B. Trippel, MD

Stephen B. Trippel, MD

Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Stuart J. Warden, PhD

Stuart J. Warden, PhD

Adjunct Associate Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Hiroki Yokota, PhD

Hiroki Yokota, PhD

Adjunct Professor of Anatomy & Cell Biology
Teresa A. Zimmers, PhD

Teresa A. Zimmers, PhD

Associate Professor of Surgery