Marija Kuna, Ph.D.
B.S. in Biology and Chemistry, Department of Biology, Josip Juraj Strossmayer University of Osijek, Croatia.
Ph.D. in Biochemistry, Department of Biochemistry, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS, USA (Laboratory of Gene L. Bidwell III).
Our lab investigates the regulation of placental development using rat trophoblast stem cell models, genome-edited mutant rat models, and human trophoblast stem cells. These in vitro and in vivo model systems are used to elucidate regulatory pathways controlling the regulation of invasive trophoblast cells and uterine spiral artery remodeling. I am specifically interested in a protein CITED2, a transactivator whose mutagenesis adversely affects placental development in mouse and rat models. My short-term research goal is to elucidate the mechanism by which CITED2 regulates placental development. My long term-goal is to utilize skills and knowledge obtained during my postdoctoral training to form independent hypothesis and pursue my independent research combining a disease model to look at molecular mechanism of a disease and metabolic changes.