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Faculty Detail    
Campus Address MCLM 660 Zip 0005
Phone  205-934-0842
Other websites

Faculty Appointment(s)
Appointment Type Department Division Rank
Primary  Cell, Developmntl, & Integrative Biology  Cell, Developmntl, & Integrative Biology Professor
Center  Biomedical Engineering  Biomatrix Eng Regen Med (BERM) Ctr Professor
Center  Pathology   Cell Adhesion & Matrix Research Center Professor
Center  Comp Arthritis, MSK, Bone & Autoimmunity Ctr  Comp Arthritis, MSK, Bone & Autoimmunity Ctr Professor
Center  Comprehensive Cancer Center  Comprehensive Cancer Center Professor

Graduate Biomedical Sciences Affiliations
Cell, Molecular, & Developmental Biology 
Genetics, Genomics and Bioinformatics 
Medical Scientist Training Program 
Pathobiology and Molecular Medicine 

Biographical Sketch 
Rosa Serra, Professor of Cell Biology, received her B.S. degree in Biology from St. Louis University in 1986 and her Ph.D. degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology from The Pennsylvania State University, College of Medicine in 1992. Dr. Serra pursued her postdoctoral fellowship in the laboratory of Dr. Harold Moses at Vanderbilt University then continued at Vanderbilt as a Research Assistant Professor in Cell Biology. In 1999, Dr. Serra was appointed to the faculty of Molecular and Cellular Physiology at the University of Cincinnati, College of Medicine. Dr. Serra joined the UAB faculty in 2002. She was promoted to Full Professor in 2008. Dr. Serra was the Associate Director of the Cell Molecular and Developmental Biology graduate program from 2008 to 2011. She was the Director of the Cancer Biology graduate program from 2011 to 2014. She is currently an Associate Director for the Global Center for Craniofacial, Oral, and Dental Biology.

Research/Clinical Interest
Mechanism of TGF- Action in Developmental and Disease Processes
The TGF- family of polypeptides consists of multifunctional factors involved in the development of many organ systems and in the progression of disease. The overall goal of the laboratory is to understand the role and mechanism of TGF- signaling in embryonic and post-natal development, particularly in the skeleton, and to apply this knowledge to the understanding and treatment of musculoskeletal disease. We are using several molecular and genetic tools to address these issues, including transgenic mice, mouse organ cultures, primary cell cultures, adenovirus expression systems, as well as gene arrays and next generation sequencing.

Selected Publications 
Publication PUBMEDID
Cox MK, Appelboom BL, Ban GI, Serra R.
Exp Cell Res. 2014 Nov 1;328(2):410-8. 
Wang Y, Cox MK, Coricor G, MacDougall M, Serra R. Inactivation of Tgfbr2 in Osterix-Cre expressing Dental Mesenchyme Disrupts Molar Root Formation, Developmental Biology, 382:27-37, 2013.  23933490 
Chang C-F, Ramaswamy G, Serra R. Depletion of primary cilia in articular chondrocytes results in reduced Gli3 repressor to activator ratio, increased Hedgehog signaling, and symptoms of early osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis and Cartilage 20:152-161, 2011.  22173325 
Ramaswamy G, Sohn P, Eberhardt A, Serra R. Altered responsiveness to TGF-ß results in reduced Papss2 expression and alterations in the biomechanical properties of mouse articular cartilage. Arthritis Research and Treatment. 14:R49, 2012.  22394585 
Sohn P, Cox M, Chen D, Serra R. Molecular profiling of the developing mouse axial skeleton: a role for Tgfbr2 in the development of the intervertebral disc. BMC Dev Biol. 2010  20214815 
Seo H-S, Serra R Deletion of Tgfbr2 in Prx1-cre expressing limb mesenchyme results in defects in the development of the long bone and joints. Developmental Biology 310:304-316, 2007.  17822689 
Song B, Haycraft CJ, Yoder B, Serra R, Intraflagellar transport proteins are required for post-natal development of the growth plate. Developmental Biology 305:202-216, 2007.  17359961 
Baffi, MO, Slattery E, Sohn P, Moses HL, Chytil A, Serra R ,: Conditional Deletion of the TGF-b Type II Receptor in Col2a Expressing Cells Results in Defects in the Axial Skeleton Without Alterations in Chondrocyte Differentiation or Embryonic Development of Long Bones. Developmental Biology, 276:124-142, 2004   15531369 
Alvarez J, Sohn P, Zeng X, Doetchman T, Robbins D, Serra R: TGF-ß2 mediates the effects of Hedgehog on Hypertrophic Differentiation and PTHrP Expression. Development 129:1913-1924, 2002.   11934857 
Serra R, Johnson M, Filvaroff E, Laborde J, Sheehan D, Derynck R, Moses HL: Expression of a truncated kinase defective TGF-ß type II receptor in mouse skeletal tissue results in defects in chondrocyte differentiation and an osteoarthritis-like phenotype. Journal of Cell Biology 139:541-552, 1997.   9334355 

developmental biology, bone, cartilage, teeth, intervertebral disc, osteoarthrits, skeletal disease