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Rick Mortensen

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Primary Appointment: Molec & Integrative Physiology
Primary PIBS Dept.: Molecular and Integrative Physiology
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Lab Website

  Potential Projects
Our research has focused on: Endocrine Disorders, Diabetes, Obesity, and Cardiovascular Disease Signaling with emphasis on nuclear factor control (e.g. Mineralocorticoid receptor) but also cytokines controlling the immune system and its role in endocrine diseases. The major goal of my laboratory has been to understand basic mechanisms in the consequences and treatment of obesity, diabetes and related cardiovascular disease. Methodologies include transgenic and knockout animals, and physiologic telemetry measurements (blood pressure, EKG, temperature) and a number of mouse injury and disease models.

Immune modulation in stroke, multiple sclerosis models, myocardial infarction, cardiac remodeling and obesity and diabetes.
1. modulating T-cell, neurtrophil, macrophage polarization phenotype in disease models
2. alteration of inflammation by salt

Mineralocorticoid Receptor in Cardiovascular Disease
The mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) is classically thought of as only regulating sodium and potassium absorption and excretion. However, its importance in cardiovascular disease has been more recently been appreciated. We are investigating the role of MR as a regulator of immune cells and inflammation. This is an exciting new area of particular clinical relevance in the use of MR antagonists in cardiovascular disease.
Possible Projects
1. MR function in cardiac hypertrophy, heart failure and fibrosis
2. Function of immune MR in stroke
3. Mechanism of MR proinflammatory effects
4. Mechanism of control of macrophage polarization