|Contact Information |
|Phone: (404) 752-1163 |
Fax: (404) 752-1174
|Research Interests |
There is a fundamental gap in understanding the causative mechanisms responsible for increased blood pressure in women following menopause although changes in various hormonal and cardiovascular systems have been implicated. I am interested in understanding the normal actions of estrogen in the cardiovascular system and to give further considerations to hormone replacement therapy (HRT) to prevent or treat cardiovascular disease in African Americans. Currently, we are examining the role of estrogen in vascular injury due to salt-induced hypertension in females. A higher prevalence of hypertension-related mortality and morbidity is seen in black women. Our research is significant because what is learned is expected to contribute to a broader understanding of why premenopausal women tend to suffer less from cardiovascular disease than their male counterparts and menopausal women.
Our lab is also interested in the inability of some astronauts to stand following reentry from space. Females have demonstrated greater incidence of syncopal episodes during standing after experiencing microgravity influences. Future missions, including long-duration missions on the space station and eventually to Mars, are expected to include both males and females. Understanding the gender-specific differences in cardiovascular responses among astronauts will become important for long-duration International Space Station and exploratory missions. Using the Hindlimb Unloaded (HU) rat model, we are able to elicit a number of cardiovascular adaptations that occur during exposure to microgravity in humans. Recent findings in our laboratory indicate that increased production and/or release of endothelium-derived relaxing factors (i.e. nitric oxide and prostacyclin) may contribute to post-suspension hypotension in rats and orthostatic hypotension in astronauts. Inhibition of prostanoid synthesis or nitric oxide synthase attenuated the post-suspension hypotension observed in these animals.
Danita Eatman, Ph.D. is a Research Instructor of Pharmacology/Toxicology. She received her undergraduate degree in Chemistry from Morris Brown College in Atlanta, Georgia, and her Doctor of Philosophy degree in the Biomedical Sciences from Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio. She was awarded an American Heart (Ohio Affiliate) Postdoctoral Fellowship during her postdoctoral training at Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine (NEOUCOM) under the mentorship of Dr. John Stallone. Then, Dr. Eatman joined the Space Medicine and Life Sciences Research Center’s Cardiovascular Group at Morehouse School Of Medicine as a Research Associate under the supervision of Drs. Mohamed A. Bayorh and Nerimiah Emmett.
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