Mower Central Research Lab
The Mower Central Research Laboratory is a 2800 square foot laboratory facility located in the Schapiro Building with interests in physiology, cell biology, cellular metabolism, microenvironments, and bioenergetics. The CRL is designed to assist in the development and performance of investigator-initiated research projects, collaborate with staff and physicians on fundable/funded research opportunities, and mentor department-sponsored resident research activity. An on-site animal housing facility and surgical suites support the CRL projects.
The laboratory receives funding from Dr. Morton Mower who, along with Dr. Michel Mirowski and the research staff at Sinai, worked tirelessly for decades in the cardiology department at Sinai hospital developing and improving the implantable cardiovertor defibrillator. Dr. Mower continues to utilize the CRL for research on emergent electrophysiology technology. Work within the laboratory is supervised and coordinated by Dr. Sean O'Hearn.
Some of the pretty exciting, diverse and on-going research involving the physicians at Sinai, their residents, and students from Hopkins, UMBC, and Towson University: stem cells are being scrutinized for their metabolic properties; biomarkers are investigated for the ability to predict heart attacks; athymic rats and mice are helping us understand breast cancer or restore vision; students measure the contractile velocity and magnitude of heart muscle stimulated by varying electrical waveforms; cellular bioenergetics are manipulated to alter the identity of characterized tissue. Several of the studies at the CRL test the reliability, efficacy, and comfort of medical devices. Some of these device platforms have been designed to use the body’s own stem cells to repair trauma which has become invaluable for understanding chronic human medical conditions.
Recently, part of the lab completed an evaluation of residential winter chemical sidewalk de-icers at a tissue and molecular level. I’m sure you’re familiar with the salts that are used on your sidewalks to melt the ice and snow away. A concerned veterinarian took notice of the large number of dogs that would come into the animal hospitals with bloody, matted paws each winter. The trauma to these paws, caused by the common rock salt deicer, would be a site for irritation and infection in our furry friends’ paws. This veterinarian came to the lab and presented an idea to find alternative deicing material, still effective in their function, just not as harmful to our pets. As to the outcome…look this winter for those residential snow/ice melts that are now more pet friendly.
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