Professor, Pharmacology & Toxicology
Ph.D. 1976, University of Florida
My research program is focused on sex differences in the neural and endocrine mechanisms controlling blood pressure in normal and sodium-dependent hypertensive animals. In rat models, central nervous system mechanisms are studied using microinjection and microdialysis techniques to understand the neurochemical basis for changes in sympathoadrenal neural function. Peripheral hemodynamic and neuroendocrine parameters are measured to determine the mechanisms maintaining elevated blood pressure. In related studies, the genetic phenotypes contributing to sodium-dependent hypertension are investigated in a pedigree colony of baboons at Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research in San Antonio, Texas in which markers for hypertension have been demonstrated. Genetically determined alterations in cell sodium regulation in animals that are hypertensive is being investigated as a triggering factor in the hypertensive process. By understanding the mechanisms contributing to the long-term control of blood pressure, a greater understanding of new, effective ways of treating chronic cardiovascular disease will be gained.