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Office Location
BST E1200

Lab Location
Straub Lab / BST E1200


Phone: 412-648-9921

Katherine Wood, PhD

Research Assistant Professor
Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine


Dr. Katherine Wood completed her undergraduate studies in Political Science at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. She went on to get her PhD in Molecular and Cellular Physiology from the Louisiana State University of Health Sciences Center-Shreveport, where her research work in Dr. Neil Granger’s group focused on elucidating the contributions of the circulating blood cell and vascular endothelial cell compartments to P-selectin, NADPH oxidase and uncoupled endothelial cell nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) in the cerebral vasculopathy of sickle cell disease (SCD). Early postdoctoral research work at the NIH, under the mentorship of Drs. Mark Gladwin and Gregory Kato primarily focused on identifying important contributions of red blood cell eNOS to physiological blood pressure regulation and nitrite homeostasis, with secondary projects that determined differences in vascular tolerance induction by nitroglycerin and nitrite, as well as anesthetic modulated effects on tissue nitrite fluctuations. Subsequent postdoctoral studies at LSU Health Sciences Center-New Orleans queried the importance of nitric oxide (NO) metabolism to neuroendocrine tumor angiogenesis, specifically the role of aldehyde dehydrogenase in tumor angiogenesis and response to anti-angiogenic pharmacological therapies.

Research Interests

Dr. Wood’s current research in the Straub lab is focused on determining the role of a novel reduction-oxidation (redox) regulation mechanism — the CyB5R3-dependent reduction of sGC — in the control of NO sensitivity in vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) and its impact on SCD vasculopathy. SCD vasculopathy is multifactorial and the pathogenesis remains incompletely understood, although both clinical and experimental evidence concludes that reduced NO bioavailability and/or responsiveness are contributing factors. Dr. Wood researches the impact of this signaling pathway on the development of cardiopulmonary vasculopathy in the humanized transgenic sickle cell mouse (Townes) and chimeras transplanted into tamoxifen-inducible Cre-Lox smooth muscle specific CyB5R3 knock-out and loss of function CyB5R3 T117S polymorphic variants. The overall goal of the research is to test personalized and precision medicine approaches to improve the health of individuals with SCD-associated pulmonary hypertension. Considering the defining role of sGC in NO signaling and the fact that the oxidation state of sGC may predict responses to new classes of sGC activator and stimulator medications, is research aims to significantly impact our understanding of biology, precision therapeutics (right drug for the right patient) and pharmacogenetics (polymorphism based drug selection).

Education and Training

PhD (Molecular and Cellular Physiology), Louisiana State University of Health Sciences

Selected/Representative Publications

For a complete bibliography, click here.