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Carl White, PhD

Associate Professor

Dr. White received his PhD in Physiology from the Queen’s University Belfast in the United Kingdom. His graduate work focused on calcium signaling and the use of electrophysiology and microscopy as tools to study cytoplasmic and organellar calcium fluxes in smooth muscle cells. As a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pennsylvania he helped develop cell models and technical approaches for the study of InsP3 receptors in their native membranes. On joining the Department of Physiology & Biophysics Dr. White established an active research program focused on intracellular calcium signaling. His laboratory employs electrophysiology, live cell imaging microscopy and molecular approaches to address important questions relating to calcium signaling dysfunction in cancer, metabolic disease and diabetes.


Recent Publications

Kang, D., Wang, J., Hogan, J. O., Vennekens, R., Freichel, M., White, C., and Kim, D. (2014) Increase in cytosolic Ca2+produced by hypoxia and other depolarizing stimuli activates a non-selective cation channel in chemoreceptor cells of rat carotid body. Journal of Physiology (in press) [PubMed]

Nixon, A., Jia, Y., White, C., and Bradbury, N. A. (2013) Determination of the membrane topology of lemur tyrosine kinase 2 (LMTK2) by fluorescence protease protection. American Journal of Physiology (Cell Physiol), 304, C164–9 [PubMed]

Huang, H., Hu, X., Eno, C. O., Zhao, G., Li, C., and White, C. (2013) An Interaction between Bcl-xL and VDAC Promotes Mitochondrial Ca2+ Uptake. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 288, 19870–81 [PubMed]

Velmurugan, G. V, Sundaresan, N. R., Gupta, M. P., and White, C. (2013) Defective Nrf2-dependent redox signaling contributes to microvascular dysfunction in type 2 diabetes. Cardiovascular Research 100, 143–50. [PubMed]

Featured in the Editorial: Reducing damage through Nrf-2.  Balligand, J.-L. (2013) Cardiovasc. Res. 100, 1–3

Velmurugan, G.V. and C. White (2012) Calcium Homeostasis in Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells is altered in Type 2 Diabetes by Bcl-2 Protein Modulation of InsP3R Calcium Release Channels. American Journal of Physiology (Heart Circ Physiol), 302(1), H124-H134  [PubMed]

Eno, C. O., Eckenrode, E. F., Olberding, K. E., Zhao, G., White, C., and Li, C. (2012) Distinct roles of mitochondria- and ER-localized Bcl-xL in apoptosis resistance and Ca2+ homeostasis. Molecular Biology of the Cell 23, 2605–18 [PubMed]

Bozym, R.A., Patel, K., White, C., Cheung, K-H., Bergelson, J.M., Morosky, S.A. and C.B. Coyne (2011) Calcium signals and Calpain-dependent Necrosis are essential for Release of Coxsackievirus B from Polarized Intestinal Epithelial Cells. Molecular Biology of the Cell, 22(17), 3010-21. [PubMed]

Wang, X., Olberding, K.E., White, C. and C. Li (2011) Bcl-2 proteins regulate ER membrane permeability to luminal proteins during ER stress-induced apoptosis. Cell Death & Differentiation, 18,38-47. [PubMed]

Paul, A.G., Sharma-Walia, N., Kerur, N., White, C. and B. Chandran (2010) Piracy of Prostaglandin E2/EP Receptor–Mediated Signaling by Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpes Virus (HHV-8) for Latency Gene Expression: Strategy of a Successful Pathogen. Cancer Research. 70(9), 3697- 3708. [PubMed]

Eckenrode, E.F., Yang, J., Velmurugan,G.V., Foskett, J.K. and C. White (2010) Apoptosis Protection by Mcl-1 and Bcl-2 Modulation of Inositol 1,4,5-Trisphosphate Receptor-dependent Ca2+ Signaling. Journal of Biological Chemistry. 285(18), 13678-13684. [PubMed]

Ionescu, L., White, C., Cheung, K-H., Shuai, J., Parker, I., Pearson, J.E., Foskett, J.K. and D-O.D. Mak (2007) Mode Switching Is the Major Mechanism of Ligand Regulation of InsP3 Receptor Calcium Release Channels. Journal of General Physiology, 130(6): 631-45. [PubMed]

Li, C., Wang, X., Vais, H., Thompson, C.B., Foskett, J.K. and C. White (2007). Apoptosis regulation by Bcl-xL modulation of mammalian InsP3R channel isoform gating. PNAS, 104(30), 12565-70. [PubMed]

Jones, R.G., Bui, T., White, C., Madesh, M., Krawczyk, C.M., Frauwirth, K.A., Kubek, S., Wang, L.Y., Hawkins, B.J., Lindsten, T., Conway, S., Roderick, H.L., Bootman, M.D., Shen, H., Foskett, J.K. and C. B. Thompson. (2007). Bax and Bak regulate T cell proliferation through control of ER Ca2+ homeostasis. Immunity, 27(2),268-280. [PubMed]

Featured in the Editorial: Playing on Both Sides of the Field. Sci. STKE 2007 (401), tw308.

Mak, D.-O.D., White, C., Ionescu, L. and J.K. Foskett (2007). The inositol trisphosphate receptor Ca2+ release channel. Physiological Reviews. 87(2),5923- 658. [PubMed]

White, C., Yang, J., Monteiro, M.J. and J.K. Foskett (2006). CIB1, a ubiquitously-expressed Ca2+-binding protein-ligand of the InsP3 receptor Ca2+-release channel. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 281(30),20825-20833[PubMed]

Featured in the Editorial: New Ligand for IP3 Receptors? Sci. STKE 2006 (346), tw259.

Ionescu, L., Cheung, K.H., Vais, H., Mak, D-O.D., White, C. and J.K. Foskett (2006). Graded recruitment and inactivation of single InsP3 receptor Ca2+ channels. Journal of Physiology, 573, 645-662. [PubMed]

White, C., Chi, L., Yang, J., Petrenko, N., Muniswamy, M., Thompson, C.B. and J. K. Foskett (2005). The endoplasmic reticulum gateway to apoptosis: Bcl-XL modulation of the InsP3 receptor. Nature Cell Biology, 7,1021-1028. [PubMed]

Mak, D-O.D., White, C., Ionescu, L. and J.K. Foskett (2005). Nuclear patch clamp electrophysiology of inositol trisphosphate receptor Ca2+ release channels. In Putney, J.W., Jr.(ed), Calcium Signaling, 2nd Ed. CRC Press, Boca Raton.

Kumar D, White C, Fairweather I,and J.G. McGeown (2004). Electrophysiological and pharmacological characterization of K+-currents in muscle fibers isolated from the ventral sucker of Fasciola hepatica. Parasitology, 129,779-93. [PubMed]

White, C. and J. G. McGeown (2003). Inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate receptors modulate Ca2+-sparks and Ca2+-store content in vas deferens myocytes. American Journal of Physiology (Cell Physiol), 285(1),C195-204. [PubMed]

White, C. and J. G. McGeown (2002). Carbachol triggers RyR-dependent Ca2+ release via activation of IP3 receptors in isolated rat gastric myocytes. Journal of Physiology, 542,725-733. [PubMed]

White, C. and J. G. McGeown (2002). Imaging of changes in sarcoplasmic reticulum [Ca2+] using Oregon Green BAPTA 5N and confocal laser scanning microscopy. Cell Calcium, 31,151-159. [PubMed]

White, C. and J. G. McGeown (2000). Ca2+ uptake by the sarcoplasmic reticulum decreases the amplitude of depolarization-dependent [Ca2+]i transients in rat gastric myocytes. Pflűgers Archiv-European Journal of Physiology, 440, 488-495. [PubMed]

White, C. and J. G. McGeown (2000). Regulation of basal intracellular calcium concentration by the sarcoplasmic reticulum in myocytes from the rat gastric antrum. Journal of Physiology, 529,395-404. [PubMed]

Research Projects

Calcium Signaling and Apoptosis

A key feature of established models of apoptosis is the regulation of mitochondrial permeability by both pro- and antiapoptotic members of the Bcl-2 protein family. These proteins also function to modulate intracellular calcium in a highly complex fashion that promotes both prosurvival while inhibiting proapoptotic calcium signals. Our research is focused on identifying the mechanisms involved in translating Bcl-2-modulated calcium signaling into changes in the cellular sensitivity to apoptosis.

Calcium and Redox Signaling in Type-2 Diabetes

Structural and functional alterations in the microcirculation contribute to the pathogenesis of type-2 diabetic complications. Here, our research seeks to define how diabetes affects the molecular mechanisms important in regulating vessel contractility and blood flow in the microcirculation. We are currently exploring how the disease modulates reactive oxygen species and calcium signaling pathways in the smooth muscle cells of resistance arterioles in mouse models. Ultimately, our goal is to identify novel therapeutic strategies that target microvascular dysfunction in type-2 diabetes.