Role of GPR183 in EET-signaling

Summer 2017

Kayleigh Cook : Integrative Biology

Mentor: Neel Singhal

My project centers on epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs) which are located in endothelial and vascular smooth muscle cells. From previous studies, they have been shown to be potent vasodilators and though the receptor is not known, their mechanism is believed to rely on calcium activated potassium channels and the hyperpolarization of smooth muscle. In addition to vasodilation, EETs are known to help maintain cardiovascular homeostasis through anti-inflammatory effects and can protect against ischemia and hypertension. Discovering the receptors that control the potential benefits of EETs could lead to new therapeutic options for patients with cardiovascular disease. Based on my preliminary studies using a transfection-based screening strategy in a line of cells expressing fluorescent calcium sensors, my hypothesis is that GPR183 is the receptor through which EET mediates vascular relaxation.

This fellowship was an incredible experience for me. I am truly grateful for the opportunity to spend an entire summer conducting research that I am invested in and will contribute to my future career goals. This program has increased my confidence in conducting independent research and in sharing science concepts with the public. It has shown me that I am capable of using my passion for science to help those who are not in my field understand the work I am doing. I believe participating in the SURF program has better prepared me for my future plans to go to medical school. Thank you again for the opportunity!