Follow mitoNET 

Copyright © 2018, MitoNET. All Rights Reserved.

mitoEnergetics

Project Leader

Christopher G. R. Perry, PhD
Faculty of Health - School of Kinesiology & Health Science
Associate Professor
Muscle Health Research Centre
School of Kinesiology and Health Sciences
Faculty of Health, York University, Toronto, Ontario
 
Research Description:
Dr. Perry investigates the role of mitochondrial bioenergetic dysfunction in diseases that cause muscle wasting and weakness. His laboratory focuses on mapping site-specific impairments in energy turnover, reactive oxygen species emission and calcium homeostasis which is then linked to in vitro and in vivo assessments of  muscle function in pre-clinical rodent models as well as human skeletal muscle biopsies performed in his laboratory. His program has received funding from federal (NSERC), provincial (Early Researcher Award), Foundational (Rare Disease Foundation, James H. Cummings Foundation) an Industrial sources (Stealth Biotherapeutics Inc., USA) and has been featured in over 90 news media outlets in Canada, USA and Australia. Through three industrial partnerships, his translational research group applies these fundamental discoveries to testing novel mitochondrial-targeted therapeutics to rescue bioenergetic function and improve discoveries to testing novel mitochondrial-targeted therapeutics to rescue bioenergetic function and improve muscle function. His current work focuses on Duchenne muscular dystrophy- a disease that lacks effective treatments and has no cure-as well as chemotherapy-induced muscle weakness. Dr. Perry has provided over 30 invited presentations in 10 countries since 2012 on this work as well as methodological publications that advance approaches in assessing mitochondrial bioenergetics in small tissue samples. His group is also developing improved methodologies for detecting oxidative stress in small tissue samples. Dr. Perry's team has trained 20 visiting laboratories in mitochondrial bioenergetic approaches and in skeletal muscular microbiopsy sampling in humans across Canada, Denmark, Australia, Sweden, and USA. He has been an invited instructor for international HQP training workshops held in Denmark, Canada, and Austria. Many colleagues in this vast international network have joined mitoNET or expressed intent in contributing to its development. See More
 
 

Network Investigators

Dr. Mary Ellen Harper, PhD
Faculty of Medicine, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario
Professor, University Research Chair in Mitochondrial Bioenergetics
Director, Mitochondrial Bioenergetics Laboratory
Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology
 
 
Research Description
Prof. Harper is a metabolic biochemist; her research focuses on mitochondria and mechanisms and implications of variable metabolic efficiency. She uses iintegrative approaches spanning from bioenergetic flux, metabolomics, structural analyses, protein post-translational modification, and to dietary studies in mice and humans. She has published over 151 peer-reviewed papers, has supervised 40 undergraduate students, 23 graduate students, and 11 Postdoctoral Fellows. Current research foci include mechanisms of control of the uncoupling proteins; Redox and ROS control of mitochondrial structure and bioenergetics; Implications of mitochondrial dysfunction in obesity, T2DM and cardiac diseases.
 
Dr. Jane Shearer, PhD, BPHE
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Associate Professor
Faculty of Kinesiology, Cumming School of Medicine
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta
 
Research Description:
Dr. Jane Shearer, PhD is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Kinesiology, Cumming School of Medicine and the Alberta Children's Hospital Research Institute at the University of Calgary. Her passion is metabolic physiology- how the body creates, uses, regulates energy. In the realm of mitochondrial disease, her laboratory has two avenues of research. her laboratory is interested in how fission and fusion (mitochondrial splitting and network formation) change in response to therapeutic diets/ supplements, mitochondrial disease and neurological disorders such as epilepsy and autism. Also, her laboratory explores the potential of stem cells as vehicles for mitochondrial transfer in mitochondrial disease. Along with our clinical partners , our studies examine how stem cells transfer mitochondria to specific tissues as well as the functionality and longevity of donated mitochondria. The ultimate goal is to replace some faulty mitochondria with new ones derived from stem cells.
Dr. Daniel Kane, PhD
Department of Human Kinetics
Associate Professor
St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, Nova Scotia
 
Research Description
Dr. Kane's research program explores the bioenergetic causes and consequences of mitochondrial fitness in muscle. Past work studied the underlying bioenergetic links to insulin resistance, with a focus on mitochondrial reactive oxygen species in muscle. Current work emphasizes the intersection of non-mitochondrial (i.e., anaerobic glycolytic) and mitochondrial (oxidative phosphorylation) metabolism, to help address the broader question: How does exercise affect mitochondrial fitness, and how does mitochondrial fitness affect exercise capacity and metabolic health? Dr. Kane also innovates refinements in methodologies for assessing mitochondrial bioenergetics in small tissue samples and is routinely invited to lead international HQP training workshops in bioenergetic approaches held in Austria and the USA.
Dr. David A Brown, PhD
Department of HNFE and Virginia Tech Center for Drug Discovery
Associate Professor
Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, USA
 
Research Description
Dr. Brown is a physiologist inspired to mitigate disease burdens by targeting mitochondria. His primary research interests involve cardiac pathologies and models of genetic mitochondrial disease(s). His team uses a variety of functional studies coupled with imaging modalities to gain new insight into mitochondrial physiology in health and disease. A major focus of his research program is developing therapeutic approaches that target mitochondrial bioenergetics. His group is currently developing peptides that influence mitochondrial structure-function relationships, as well as vectors that deliver cargo to mitochondria. He4 has worked with scores of mitochondria-targeting compounds in pre-clinical development, several of which have progressed to clinical trials. His work frequently bridges academic-industry partnerships, including industry sponsored work and small business technology transfer funding. He is the founder and President of Mitochondrial Solutions, LLC, a mitochondrial consulting firm. Dr. brown has collaborated with clinicians and mitochondrial disease advocacy groups to promote educational effors, and frequently gives talks on the importance of mitochondria to lay audiences and pharmaceutical companies. He has presented his work all over the world, has served as a grant reviewer for numerous governmental and foundation funding agencies, and has published over 150 scientific abstracts and peer-reviewed publications.
Dr. Julie St. Pierre, PhD
Department of Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology
Associate Professor
Ottawa Institute of Systems Biology
Tier 1 CRC in Cancer Metabolism
University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
‚Äč
Research Description
Dr. St. Pierre's research program is focused on metabolic adaptation in cancer progression. The goal of her research program is to identify alternative therapeutic strategies to target metastatic and treatment-resistant breast cancers that are associated with poor patient outcomes. In order to divide, breast cancer cells require energy to build all of the components necessary for making new cells. Dr. St-Pierre's research team has already made seminal discoveries on the importance of altered metabolism in supporting breast cancer growth and progression. They have shown that the PGC-1 family of transcriptional co-activators acts as a central regulator of breast cancer metabolism as well as tumor growth and metastasis. PGC-1alpha regulate numerous metabolic programs to fuel cancer progression, notably glucose and glutamine metabolism. In order to study cancer metabolism, the St-Pierre laboratory uses metabolomics approaches coupled with high-resolution bioenergetics analyses. Her long-term goals are to identify metabolic vulnerabilities of cancer cells in order to develop potential cancer metabolic therapies that could be used either alone or in combination with other anti-cancer drugs.
Dr. Yan Burelle, PhD
Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine
Professor
University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
 
 
Research Description
Dr. Burelle's research program aims to advance the understanding of the complex mechanisms linking mitochondrial biology to health and disease susceptibility. He has received uninterrupted funding from, the Canadian Institutes and Health Research (CIHR) and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) for more than a decade. He has published more than 60 articles cited more than 6500 times. His laboratory has developed a broad array of methods to assess multiple facets mitochondrial function (respiration, ROS dynamics, Ca2+ regulation, and cell death signalling) in vitro isolated organelles and permeabilized cells, or in situ in intact cells and organs. These approaches have been used not only in basic studies using animal models, but also in tissues from patients in the context of translational research. His laboratory also studies mitochondrial quality control mechanisms both in vitro with biochemical and confocal imaging approaches, and in vivo  with quantitative electron microscopy and mitophagy reporter proteins. Overall, this enables his laboratory to tackle several questions related to mitochondria at multiple levels of biological complexity.
Dr. Ryan Mailloux, PhD
Department of Biochemistry
Assistant Professor
Mitochondrial Redox Biology Laboratory
Memorial University, St. Johns, Newfoundland
 
Research Description
Dr. Mailloux's research interests include defining the function of redox signals in regulating mitochondrial ROS release, characterization of the velocity for ROS release from the potential 12 sites of production, and the contribution of mitochondrial antioxidant defenses in the clearance of cellular ROS. His lab is currently invested in fully characterizing the function of protein S-glutathionylation in controlling mitochondrial bioenergetics and the role these redox signals play in 1) regulating whole body energy metabolism, 2) the adaptation of muscle to exercise, 3) controlling ROS release from the 12 sites of production in liver and cardiac tissue. Dr. Mailloux's research also focuses on the function of transhydrogenase in clearing ROS formed in the cytoplasm and the potential implication of mitochondria in degrading cellular redox signals generated by cytoplasmic ROS producers like NADPH oxidase. Finally, his work is also invested in ascertaining which high velocity sites for ROS release from mitochondria contribute to the development of heart disease and reperfusion injury to the myocardium.