Erik Beadle was recently featured as a graduate of Biological Sciences at Louisiana Tech. Erik completed his BS in Biological Sciences and then continued to work in the lab to earn his MS in Molecular Science and Nanotechnology. Erik was a great student who demonstrate a strong work ethic and compassion for those around him. I have missed having him in Carson-Taylor Hall but am so proud of what he is achieving in a PhD program at Vanderbilt.
Erik is currently a 3rd year PhD candidate at Vanderbilt University in the program for cancer biology. He recently passed his qualifying exams, a huge milestone in graduate school. Erik works in the lab of Dr. Julie Rhoades, where his lab predominantly focuses on tumor induced bone disease (TIBD). They use engineering and biological approaches to block tumor cells’ ability to induce bone resorption by disrupting the “vicious cycle”, which is outlined in the figure below. This includes the use of 3D printed scaffolds that mimic the internal architecture of bone and drug delivery nanoparticles to model tumor drug response and tumor cell behavior in the bones.
Tumor induced bone disease is often the result of tumor cells secreting proteins that coax bone cells to destroy bones faster than they build them. The particular bone tumor that Erik studies is osteosarcoma, a very aggressive pediatric tumor. He studies the molecular mechanism that the Gli2 protein uses to induce bone breakdown by osteosarcoma.
You can learn more about his lab here.
Outside of the lab Erik was able to rotate with clinicians in the oncology clinic for a course through Vanderbilt aimed at understanding precision cancer medicine. This course is largely beneficial for PhD students to see how their research translates back to the clinic. Erik has also begun to become more involved in attending many of the cancer oriented events around Nashville, and was recently named the top individual fundraiser at the American Liver Foundation’s Liver Life Walk in September. Outside of that he’s been enjoying what Music City has to offer!
Learn more about his graduate program and the IGP at Vanderbilt!
Feel free to email him with any questions about graduate school, Nashville, or Vanderbilt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The vicious cycle of tumor induced bone disease: Tumor cells colonize the bone microenvironment and secrete PTHrP. PTHrP stimulates osteoblasts to express RankL, which promotes osteoclast differentiation and accelerates bone resorption. This bone resorption releases matrix bound growth factors that promotes tumor growth. Gli2 is a transcription factor of the Hedgehog pathway that increases PTHrP expression and bone resorption.
Joseph Straub, a PhD student in the lab, presented at the weekly biology seminar on his summer internship. Joseph, with the support of New Mexico's INBRE and the Louisiana Tech's School of Biological Sciences, spent 6 weeks in New Mexico learning skills in bioinformatics. He shared his experience with undergraduates, graduate students and faculty, discussing the basics of bioinformatics, applications, and his experience away from Louisiana in cooler, dryer New Mexico! He did a great job introducing people to a necessary and evolving field of biological research!
The University has begun a project to regularly feature an academic program with a video, an undergraduate profile, a faculty profile, and an alumni profile. I am proud to say that the Newman Lab is featured in many of the promotions this week! I was the faculty feature, former undergraduate and graduate student, Erik Beadle, was the featured alum, and there is a brief second of me and my students in the video. It is an honor to be chosen to represent the program and the University!
We are all back from summer break and the seniors are beginning to figure out their next step. I am proud to congratulate undergraduate student, Hannah Logan, on her acceptance to LSU School of Medicine in Shreveport! Hannah has been working in the Newman Lab for almost 2 years and in that time has demonstrated an initiative and dedication that is admirable. She has been awarded a CBERS Award for Undergraduate Research and recently accepted the challenge of completing an honors thesis, following in the footsteps of another strong undergraduate, Rachel Eddy. I am so proud of Hannah and can't wait to see what she does next! Congratulations on your acceptance to medical school, Hannah!!!
Dr. Jamie Newman
Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences