Mario Robledo presents his research at the 2023 UAB Undergraduate Expo

Mario Robledo is a student at Troy University and was selected to participate in the Surgery Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) offered by the Department of Surgery at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). Mario gave an excellent presentation on his research titled “Using 3-dimensional in vitro models of pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor cells to study Notch signaling.” Congratulations Mario!

Left: Mario presenting at the UAB Undergraduate Expo; Right: Dr. Rachael Guenter and Mario Robledo

Dr. Guenter and Grayson Gimblet receive awards at the 2023 Annual meeting for the American Association of Endocrine Surgeons (AAES)

UAB Division of Surgical Oncology Clinical Instructor Dr. Rachael Guenter was awarded the Geoffrey Thompson Best Poster Award. Dr. Guenter investigates the molecular mechanisms of neuroendocrine cancer and pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma to develop novel therapeutic strategies. Currently, her areas of focus include the development of novel theranostic agents for pancreatic cancers and understanding the role of Notch signaling in gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumors.

Heersink School of Medicine student Grayson Gimblet, along with his faculty advisor Associate Professor Dr. Renata Jaskula-Sztul, won the Best Paper Award for their presentation on “Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone Receptor (TSHR) as a Target for Imaging Differentiated Thyroid Cancer.”

“Grayson did a fantastic job with presenting the paper and answering questions,” says Jaskula-Sztul. “I am proud of him and honored that we were chosen to receive this outstanding award.”

Piyasuda’s wins American Thyroid Association (ATA) award for her research!

We are so proud of graduate student Piyasuda Pukkanasut for winning the 2022 Women Advancing Thyroid Research (WATR) Award from ATA’s 2022 Annual Meeting. This award recognizes and celebrates the work of early career women conducting outstanding thyroid research. Our abstract title is “Targeting Voltage-Gated Sodium Channels in Medullary Thyroid Cancer Using Small Molecules.” In this study, her team identified a small molecule VGSC inhibitor which its half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) in MTC cells were 6-fold lower than the normal thyroid cells (p<0.0001). The treatment of MTC cells with half of the IC50 concentration of the lead compound reduced MTC migration/invasion up to 25%.

The WATR Award is an ATA award sponsored by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. through the Rosalind Franklin Society (

Brendon Herring WINS best oral presentation at 2022 NANETS Annual meeting!

A huge congratulations to lab member Brendon Herring for winning “Best Oral Presentation” at the 2022 Annual NANETS meeting in Washington, DC! Brendon’s presentation was titled: “Transcriptomic Influences of Racial Disparities in Black Patients with Pancreatic Neuroendocrine Tumors.” CLICK HERE TO READ HIS ABSTRACT!
Neuroendocrine Surgery Lab Members celebrate Brendon’s award for best oral presentation!! (from left to right: Weisheng Chen, Dr. Rachael Guenter, Dr. Bart Rose, Brendon Herring)