Positions

Associate Professor
Department of Medicine Section of Gastroenterology and Hepatology
Baylor College of Medicine
Houston, Texas
Adjunct Associate Professor
Department of Pediatrics Division of Gastroenterology, Hepatology & Nutrition Cincinnati Children's Hospital
University of Cincinnati
Cincinnati, Ohio

Education

BS from Louisiana State University
Microbiology and Biochemistry
PhD from Baylor College of Medicine
Cell and Molecular Biology
Post-Doctoral Fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine
Molecular and Human Genetics

Professional Interests

  • Mechanisms that control intestinal development and homeostasis
  • Human Enteroids

Professional Statement

My laboratory is focused on understanding the mechanisms that control intestinal development and homeostasis, and translating this knowledge into novel therapeutic approaches to treat diseases of the intestine such as IBD and colorectal cancer. My laboratory has elucidated roles for epithelial transcription factors such as Atoh1 (Math1), Gfi1, and Spdef in development and differentiation of the intestine. Moreover, my laboratory has translated these findings to human diseases, by showing that Atoh1 and its target Spdef are tumor suppressors that are frequently silenced in colon cancers, and that these genes are essential targets of Notch inhibitory drugs. In addition to these mechanistic studies, we have recently developed novel organ culture methods to direct differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells into intestinal tissue to study intestinal development and disease, and we have used intestinal stem cell-derived organoids in quantitative assays to evaluate intestinal stem cell activity.

Selected Publications