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    Last Name

    Agata Jurczyk PhD

    InstitutionUniversity of Massachusetts Medical School
    DepartmentProgram in Molecular Medicine
    AddressUniversity of Massachusetts Medical School
    368 Plantation Street, AS7-2046
    Worcester MA 01605
        • Elms College, Chicopee Massachusetts - B.A. in Bio/Chem/Math Magna Cum Laude
        • Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts - M.A. in Plant Biology
        • University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, Massachusetts - Ph.D. in Cell Biology
            My research is focused on mechanisms of insulin secretion in pancreatic beta cells. I am a cell biologist with expertise inmicroscopy and image analysis, molecular biology and cellular biology.  Recently, I have uncovered an unexpected rolefor the centrosomal protein pericentrin in maintaining normal insulin storageand secretion. This research led me to discover a link between centrosomeproteins and diabetes. I am currently trying to understand the molecular mechanism(s)behind high prevalence of diabetes among patients with centrosome and ciliadefects.

           It is known that patients with centrosomeand cilia defects have an elevated risk of developing diabetes, yet themolecular mechanisms underlying this association are not understood. Thecentrosome protein DISC1 (Disrupted in Schizophrenia 1) is a centrosome proteinthat also localizes to primary cilia and it is mutated in schizophrenicpatients who also have elevated predisposition to diabetes. The importance of DISC1in brain development and function is well recognized; however, nothing is knownabout its role in pancreatic beta cells, where it is also highly expressed.Since DISC1 is a direct interacting protein of pericentrin, and we have alreadyshown the importance of pericentrin for insulin secretion, I hypothesized thatdefects in DISC1 function or regulation in pancreatic beta cells may contributeto the development of diabetes. We anticipate that our studies will reveal thenormal function of DISC1 in pancreatic beta cells as well as provide insightsinto the high concordance of diabetes in schizophrenic patients.

           Bardet-Biedl Syndrome (BBS) is a pleiotropicciliopathy characterized by a unique phenotype including obesity, type II diabetesand neurological impairments. The specific link between BBS and the developmentof type II diabetes among BBS patients is not currently understood. My researchexamines how loss of the Bardet-Biedl Syndrome 2 gene affects the function of pancreaticislets. The role of ciliary proteins in pancreatic islets will provide newinsights into the pathogenesis of diabetes and reveal potential new therapy fortreatments.

        selected publications
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        1. Yang C, Loehn M, Jurczyk A, Przewozniak N, Leehy L, Herrera PL, Shultz LD, Greiner DL, Harlan DM, Bortell R. Lixisenatide accelerates restoration of normoglycemia and improves human beta-cell function and survival in diabetic immunodeficient NOD-scid IL-2rg(null) RIP-DTR mice engrafted with human islets. Diabetes Metab Syndr Obes. 2015; 8:387-98.
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        2. Chen CT, Hehnly H, Yu Q, Farkas D, Zheng G, Redick SD, Hung HF, Samtani R, Jurczyk A, Akbarian S, Wise C, Jackson A, Bober M, Guo Y, Lo C, Doxsey S. A unique set of centrosome proteins requires pericentrin for spindle-pole localization and spindle orientation. Curr Biol. 2014 Oct 6; 24(19):2327-34.
          View in: PubMed
        3. diIorio P, Rittenhouse AR, Bortell R, Jurczyk A. Role of cilia in normal pancreas function and in diseased states. Birth Defects Res C Embryo Today. 2014 Jun; 102(2):126-38.
          View in: PubMed
        4. Jurczyk A, Bortell R, Alonso LC. Human ß-cell regeneration: progress, hurdles, and controversy. Curr Opin Endocrinol Diabetes Obes. 2014 Apr; 21(2):102-8.
          View in: PubMed
        5. Jurczyk A, Diiorio P, Brostowin D, Leehy L, Yang C, Urano F, Harlan DM, Shultz LD, Greiner DL, Bortell R. Improved function and proliferation of adult human beta cells engrafted in diabetic immunodeficient NOD-scid IL2r?(null) mice treated with alogliptin. Diabetes Metab Syndr Obes. 2013; 6:493-9.
          View in: PubMed
        6. Yang C, Diiorio P, Jurczyk A, O'Sullivan-Murphy B, Urano F, Bortell R. Pathological endoplasmic reticulum stress mediated by the IRE1 pathway contributes to pre-insulitic beta cell apoptosis in a virus-induced rat model of type 1 diabetes. Diabetologia. 2013 Dec; 56(12):2638-46.
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        7. Yang C, Jurczyk A, diIorio P, Norowski E, Brehm MA, Grant CW, Guberski DL, Greiner DL, Bortell R. Salicylate prevents virus-induced type 1 diabetes in the BBDR rat. PLoS One. 2013; 8(10):e78050.
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        8. Diiorio P, Jurczyk A, Yang C, Racki WJ, Brehm MA, Atkinson MA, Powers AC, Shultz LD, Greiner DL, Bortell R. Hyperglycemia-induced proliferation of adult human beta cells engrafted into spontaneously diabetic immunodeficient NOD-Rag1null IL2r?null Ins2Akita mice. Pancreas. 2011 Oct; 40(7):1147-9.
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        9. Jurczyk A, Roy N, Bajwa R, Gut P, Lipson K, Yang C, Covassin L, Racki WJ, Rossini AA, Phillips N, Stainier DY, Greiner DL, Brehm MA, Bortell R, diIorio P. Dynamic glucoregulation and mammalian-like responses to metabolic and developmental disruption in zebrafish. Gen Comp Endocrinol. 2011 Jan 15; 170(2):334-45.
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        10. Jurczyk A, Pino SC, O'Sullivan-Murphy B, Addorio M, Lidstone EA, Diiorio P, Lipson KL, Standley C, Fogarty K, Lifshitz L, Urano F, Mordes JP, Greiner DL, Rossini AA, Bortell R. A novel role for the centrosomal protein, pericentrin, in regulation of insulin secretory vesicle docking in mouse pancreatic beta-cells. PLoS One. 2010; 5(7):e11812.
          View in: PubMed
        11. Pino SC, O'Sullivan-Murphy B, Lidstone EA, Yang C, Lipson KL, Jurczyk A, diIorio P, Brehm MA, Mordes JP, Greiner DL, Rossini AA, Bortell R. CHOP mediates endoplasmic reticulum stress-induced apoptosis in Gimap5-deficient T cells. PLoS One. 2009; 4(5):e5468.
          View in: PubMed
        12. Pino SC, O'Sullivan-Murphy B, Lidstone EA, Thornley TB, Jurczyk A, Urano F, Greiner DL, Mordes JP, Rossini AA, Bortell R. Protein kinase C signaling during T cell activation induces the endoplasmic reticulum stress response. Cell Stress Chaperones. 2008 Dec; 13(4):421-34.
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        13. Mikule K, Delaval B, Kaldis P, Jurcyzk A, Hergert P, Doxsey S. Loss of centrosome integrity induces p38-p53-p21-dependent G1-S arrest. Nat Cell Biol. 2007 Feb; 9(2):160-70.
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        14. Jurczyk A, Gromley A, Redick S, San Agustin J, Witman G, Pazour GJ, Peters DJ, Doxsey S. Pericentrin forms a complex with intraflagellar transport proteins and polycystin-2 and is required for primary cilia assembly. J Cell Biol. 2004 Aug 30; 166(5):637-43.
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        15. Gromley A, Jurczyk A, Sillibourne J, Halilovic E, Mogensen M, Groisman I, Blomberg M, Doxsey S. A novel human protein of the maternal centriole is required for the final stages of cytokinesis and entry into S phase. J Cell Biol. 2003 May 12; 161(3):535-45.
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        16. Panavas T, Pikula A, Reid PD, Rubinstein B, Walker EL. Identification of senescence-associated genes from daylily petals. Plant Mol Biol. 1999 May; 40(2):237-48.
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        17. Wright ML, Pikula A, Babski AM, Labieniec KE, Wolan RB. Effect of melatonin on the response of the thyroid to thyrotropin stimulation in vitro. Gen Comp Endocrinol. 1997 Nov; 108(2):298-305.
          View in: PubMed
        18. Wright ML, Pikula A, Babski AM, Kuliga K. Distribution and reciprocal interactions of 3H-melatonin and 125I-thyroxine in peripheral, neural, and endocrine tissues of bullfrog tadpoles. Comp Biochem Physiol A Physiol. 1997 Nov; 118(3):691-8.
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        19. Wright ML, Pikula A, Cykowski LJ, Kuliga K. Effect of melatonin on the anuran thyroid gland: follicle cell proliferation, morphometry, and subsequent thyroid hormone secretion in vitro after melatonin treatment in vivo. Gen Comp Endocrinol. 1996 Aug; 103(2):182-91.
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        20. Wright ML, Blanchard LS, Pikula A, Labieniec KE. Circadian rhythms of thyroid secretion, morphometry, and cell division in prometamorphic and climax Rana tadpoles. Gen Comp Endocrinol. 1995 Jul; 99(1):75-84.
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