Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine and Associate Professor of Molecular and Integrative Physiology, Medical School
Research in the Sanderson lab is focused on understanding brain damage caused by ischemic insults during cardiac arrest, ischemic stroke, and neonatal hypoxia/ischemia. Ongoing mechanistic studies are focused on uncovering novel pathologic mechanisms of inner mitochondrial membrane proteins involved in mitochondrial dynamics, quality control, cristae maintenance, and cell death execution. These studies utilize novel cell and small animal models of brain ischemia in transgenic mice to evaluate mitochondrial dysfunction. A second area of focus is the development and clinical translation of neuroprotective therapies that modulate the activity of mitochondria to reduce brain injury. Pre-clinical large animal studies are ongoing to evaluate a novel therapeutic strategy that limits mitochondrial hyperactivity and prevents ROS production following brain ischemia. This research has resulted in two awarded US patents, which formed the foundation of the startup company, Mitovation, Inc. Ongoing studies supported by the NIH and DoD are focused on investigating the mechanisms of this therapy through continued testing in large animals, along with regulatory testing of human therapy devices that can bring this treatment to the clinic.