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Betsabel Chicana

Betsabel Chicana

My current research investigates the interactions between the skeletal
system, white blood cell development and immune response. The goal of my
doctoral dissertation is to define the molecular mechanisms underlying the
effects of altered bone cell signaling on the proper production of immune
cells. Preliminary results have shown that conditional deletion of von-Hippel
Lindau (VHL) tumor suppressor gene in bone-embedded osteocyte cells leads to
bone increases; therefore, it can be a target for therapeutics to avoid bone
loss at the expense of proper immune development. This research will provide
information revealing potential side effects in immunity in patients treated
with anabolic bone building drugs for treatment of bone-weakening diseases,
like osteoporosis, and immune deficiencies. After my doctoral studies, I plan
to continue my dream to one day lead my own research laboratory and focus on
improving bone and immune related human disparities.

Advisor: 
Dr. Jennifer Manilay