Isaac Campos, BS – Graduate Student
Isaac joined Dr. Faul’s laboratory in 2018. He is a PhD student in the Graduate Biomedical Sciences (GBS) Doctoral Training Program and in the Cell, Molecular and, Developmental Biology (CMDB) theme at UAB. He is originally from California, and he received his undergraduate training at the University of California in Merced. Isaac’s PhD thesis project focuses on studying the direct effects of phosphate on the heart and the conribution of hyperphosphatemia to pathologic cardiac remodeling in CKD. His work is supported by a student fellowship from the NSF.
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Kylie Heitman, BS – Graduate Student
Kylie joined Dr. Faul’s laboratory in 2019. She is a PhD student in the Graduate Biomedical Sciences (GBS) Doctoral Training Program and in the Pathobiology, Physiology, and Pharmacology (PPP) theme at UAB. Kylie is originally from Holland in Michigan, and she received her undergraduate training in Biology at the Albion College in Michigan. She has been a dedicated equestrian for over 15 years, and her passion for horses has shaped her as a scientist. Kylie’s PhD thesis project focuses on studying the direct effects of elevated FGF23 and phosphate on skeletal muscle and whether they contribute to CKD-associated muscle atrophy and wasting. Her work is supported by a T90 fellowship spot on the NIH/NIDCR-funded Dental Academic Research Training (DART) Program at UAB.
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David Westbrook, MS – Lab Manager
David joined Dr. Faul’s group in January of 2020. He has been at UAB and in academic research for over 25 years. Originally from Arkansas, he received a BS in Microbiology, David continued microbial pathogen research started at the University of Arkansas by completing an MS in Food Safety at Alabama A&M University. Based on his 15 years of basic research in the field of mitochondrial genetics and metabolomics at UAB, 20 peer-reviewed articles were published. In Dr. Faul’s laboratory, David is responsible for organizational business as well as maintaining and managing all mouse colonies. His research project focuses on the direct pathologic effects of phosphate on various tissues, analyzing rodent models of CKD and mice receiving a high-phosphate diet.
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Christopher Yanucil, PhD – Postdoctoral Fellow
Chris joined Dr. Faul’s laboratory in 2015. He was a graduate student in the Programs in the Biomedical Sciences (PIBS) at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. In early 2017, he transferred with Dr. Faul to UAB, where he joined the Graduate Biomedical Sciences (GBS) Doctoral Training Program and in the Cell, Molecular and, Developmental Biology (CMDB) theme as a PhD student. Chris is originally from New Jersey, and he received his undergraduate training at the Ursinus College in Collegeville, PA. Before joining graduate school, Chris worked in the pharmaceutical industry, including Merck. Chris’ PhD thesis project focuses on studying the crosstalk between FGF23 and klotho in the regulation of signal transduction and cardiac remodeling. He has developed a protocol to purify recombinant klotho protein as well as an assay to detect bioactive klotho in solution. Furthermore, Chris studies the role of FGF21 in diabetic cardiomyopathy. He has been supported by an F31 fellowship from the NIH/NIDDK. To date, Chris has published eight peer-reviewed articles with Dr. Faul, and he gave oral and poster presentations about his thesis project at several conferences, including the Kidney Week of the American Society of Nephrology (ASN), the Annual Meeting of the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) and Gordon Research Conferences (GRC). Chris successfully defended his PhD thesis in July of 2020, and since then he continues his research in Dr. Faul’s lab as a PostDoc.
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