The Department of Physiological Sciences contains a diverse group of top-tier research programs, ranging from environmental toxicology to airway neurophysiology and organ systems biology. These research programs are well-funded by various sources, including the National Institute of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Defense, Florida Department of Environmental Protection, the Florida Department of Health, and a wide variety of other intramural and extramural sources. Faculties in our department have extensive publication records consistent with national and international reputations in their respective fields.
The department’s major research strengths can broadly be divided into three major groups: neurophysiology, toxicology, and organ systems biology; however, departmental faculty work on a wide range of research topics outside these areas.
Research in the neuroscience/neurophysiology area includes studies of traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injury, neural control of cough, respiration and the cardiovascular system, visceral pain, autonomic function, and neural regulation of airway function in diseases such as cystic fibrosis and asthma.
Research in toxicology/pharmacology includes basic toxicology, toxicogenomics, aquatic toxicology using zebrafish and other experimental models, toxicologic risk assessment, environmental endocrine disruptors, drug residues in meat-producing animals, and the emerging field of nanotoxicology. The department also has faculty members working in metabolomics and lipidomics, and CRISPR technology.
Research conducted in the organ systems biology area includes investigations in reproduction, bone biology, cardiovascular function, lung biology, bladder physiology, anatomy and immunology. Specific areas of interest include periodontitis, neuroendocrine tumors, epigenetics, and endocrinology. These areas are actively investigated using a number of techniques and model systems.