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Faculty Detail    
Name KAREN LYNNETTE GAMBLE
Associate Professor
Tate Jordan Thomas Professorship in Psychiatric Medicine
Director of the Neuroscience Theme, Graduate Biomedical Sciences graduate program
 
Campus Address SC 720 Zip 0017
Phone  205-934-4663
E-mail  klgamble@uab.edu
Other websites
     

Education
Undergraduate  King University    1996  BA 
Graduate  Georgia State University    2004  PhD 
Residency  Vanderbilt University    2009  Post-Doctoral Fellowship 

Certifications
Clinical and Translational Science Training Program, UAB CCTS  2012 


Faculty Appointment(s)
Appointment Type Department Division Rank
Primary  Psychiatry   Psych - Behavioral Neurobiology Associate Professor
Secondary  Neurobiology  Neurobiology Assistant Professor
Center  Neurology   Alzheimer's Disease Center Associate Professor
Center  Civitan International Research Center  Civitan International Research Center Associate Professor
Center  Comprehensive Diabetes Center  Comprehensive Diabetes Center Associate Professor
Center  General Clinical Research Center  Comprehensive Neuroscience Center Associate Professor
Center  General Clinical Research Center  Ctr for Clinical & Translational Sci Associate Professor
Center  Cell, Developmntl, & Integrative Biology  Ctr for Exercise Medicine Associate Professor
Center  Neurology   Ctr Neurodegeneration & Exp Ther (CNET) Associate Professor
Center  Nutrition Sciences   Nutrition Obesity Res Ctr (NORC) Associate Professor
Center  Vision Sciences (Org-Ret)  Vision Science Research Center (Org-Ret) Associate Professor

Graduate Biomedical Sciences Affiliations
Cell, Molecular, & Developmental Biology 
Genetics, Genomics and Bioinformatics 
Neuroscience 

Biographical Sketch 
The overall goal of my research program is to investigate environmental modulation of circadian clock function in mammalian systems and the contribution of clock disruption to pathological disease. I have spent the past ~20 years investigating chronobiological systems including training in the laboratories of Drs. Elliott Albers and Doug McMahon. I have conducted research in numerous species, including hamsters, mice, and humans. I received my PhD training at Georgia State University in Behavioral Neuroscience, where my training was greatly influenced by not only Dr. Albers, but also Drs. Tim Bartness, Kim Huhman, and Gianluca Tosini (Morehouse School of Medicine). My postdoctoral training began in 2004 at Vanderbilt University in the McMahon laboratory, where I transitioned to research using transgenic mouse models and learned electrophysiology and organotypic culture imaging. In the vibrant chronobiology community at Vanderbilt, I received additional mentoring and training from Drs. Carl Johnson, Terry Page, Shin Yamazaki, and Randy Blakely. This training well prepared me for my faculty position which began in 2009 at University of Alabama at Birmingham. At UAB, I enjoy the outstanding neuroscience community, inter-disciplinary collaborations in research and teaching, as well as opportunities to educate the next generation of scientists. To this end, I am currently serving as the Director of the Neuroscience theme in the Graduate Biomedical Sciences Program.

Society Memberships
Organization Name Position Held Org Link
Society for Neuroscience  Member  www.sfn.org 
Society for Research in Biological Rhythms  Member  www.srbr.org 
Society for Research in Biological Rhythms  2016 Professional Development Chair  www.srbr.org 
Society for Research in Biological Rhythms  2012 Facilities Coordinator   
Society for Research in Biological Rhythms  2012 Travel Awards Committee, Member   
Society for Research in Biological Rhythms  2014 Trainee Day Committee, Organizer   
Society for Research in Biological Rhythms  2012 Trainee Day Committee, Member   



Research/Clinical Interest
Title
NIH funded projects (active): Circadian dysfunction in neurodegenerative disease; The nigral molecular clock and vulnerability to neurodegeneration
Description
The overall goal of my research program is to investigate environmental modulation of circadian clock function in mammalian systems and the contribution of clock disruption to pathological disease. One of the most exciting discoveries that has emerged in recent years is that the circadian molecular clock regulates excitability in neurons that are spontaneously active in the absence of synaptic input. The intrinsic 24-h rhythm in membrane properties of neurons of the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN) has been known for over 30 years. For example, we recently discovered that a sub-threshold sodium current critical for pacemaking exhibits day-night differences in SCN neurons and is regulated by glycogen synthase kinase 3 (GSK3), an important regulator of cognition and neurodegeneration (Paul, et al, 2016, Nat Comm). It is surprising that we know very little about how the circadian clock regulates excitability in other brain regions. Thus, the first goal of my research program is to use our knowledge of molecular clock-controlled gene regulation and day-night differences in membrane physiology in central clock SCN neurons in order to better understand how the molecular clock controls excitability and behavior in other areas of the brain (physiology). In many neurological and neurodegenerative diseases, hyperexcitability is a common pre-clinical symptom of brain dysfunction and/or neurodegeneration. Thus, the second important goal of my research program is to understand the health consequences of aberrant circadian regulation and internal and external dyssynchrony (pathology). The Gamble laboratory is addressing this scientific problem through pre-clinical basic research utilizing transgenic animal models as well as translational research in shift work nurses and collaborative efforts to investigate addiction and attentional impairment in patient populations.

Selected Publications 
Publication PUBMEDID
https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=r5-GrMYAAAAJ&hl=en
 
 

Keywords
circadian rhythms, biological clocks, shift work, entrainment, suprachiasmatic nucleus