Laura Christian has performed research in the contexts of cell biology, immunology, biochemistry, and developmental biology. Her graduate work focused on the roles of dynein and dynein accessory proteins in the focused secretion of vesicles at a target cell during T cell activation. Her postdoctoral research included using mammalian cell culture to explore the roles of ADAM metalloproteases and Eph and Ephrin signaling during neural crest induction in Xenopus laevis. Prior to RPI, she worked as a teaching assistant professor at West Virginia University, where she taught upper division lectures and labs and advised biology majors.
At RPI, Dr. Christian is interested in incorporating undergraduate research into teaching labs. She is collaborating with a national group of faculty to develop a biochemistry and cell biology lab teaching-research experience focused on the enzyme malate dehydrogenase. This enzyme participiates in a number of metabolic processes, has been shown to be of importance in hypoxia and cancer studies, and is post-translationally regulated. Undergraduate research in teaching labs will contribute to the understanding of this important enzyme.
B.S. Chemistry: Georgia Tech
Ph.D. Cell and Molecular Biology: The University of Texas at Austin
Postdoctoral research: West Virginia University