Student earns American Heart Association predoctoral fellowship

Renat Roytenberg, a student pursuing a combined M.D. and Ph.D. at the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, was awarded the highly competitive two-year predoctoral fellowship with the American Heart Association.

As part of the fellowship, Roytenberg will investigate thrombosis in the context of COVID-19. Roytenberg is conducting his Ph.D. dissertation research work under the mentorship of Wei Li, Ph.D., associate professor of biomedical sciences. For more than a decade, Li’s lab has been pioneering the study of a novel thrombotic mediator, thymidine phosphorylase (TYMP). Earlier this year, Li’s team found, for the first time, that SARS-CoV-2 infection significantly increased TYMP expression and is positively correlated with disease severity. Roytenberg’s research seeks to clarify the detailed mechanism regarding the involvement of TYMP in SARS-CoV-2 spike protein-induced inflammation and thrombosis. This research could help establish TYMP as a therapeutic target in COVID-19.

Roytenberg earned his undergraduate degree in mathematics, biochemistry and chemistry from La Salle University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The COVID-19 study in the Li lab is supported by the NIH (2R15HL145573-02), WV-INBRE (P20GM103434), and WV-CTSI (U54GM104942) pilot grant programs, as well as NASA WVSGC program.

Date Posted: Wednesday, January 4, 2023