Methode Bacanamwo, Ph.D.

Methode Bacanamwo, Ph.D. 

Associate Professor


Cardiovascular Research Institute
Location: Research Wing 204
Phone: 404-752-1159


University of Illinois, Champaign/Urbana, IL
Degree: Doctor of Philosophy in Biochemistry & Molecular Biology

Clemson University, Clemson, SC
Degree: Master of Science in Plant Sciences

Research Interests

Dr. Bacanamwo’s laboratory is interested in understanding the role of chromatin remodeling and epigenetic mechanisms in gene expression regulation during the pathogenesis of cardiovascular diseases and the differentiation of vascular cells from stem cells. The long term objective is to develop epigenetic and other novel therapeutic and diagnostic strategies for cardiovascular diseases. We have established that vascular cell differentiation, vascular cell fate determination, and vascular function and lesion formation can be modulated by manipulation of the DNA methyltransferases, histone methyltransferases and demethylases, as well as histone acetyltransferases and deacetylases. Stem cells, various cellular and animal models of vascular diseases are being used along with pharmacological probes and genetic means of manipulating expression of the above epigenetics related genes. Patterns of epigenetic histone and DNA modification genomewide and at promoters and coding regions of specific genes are determined using state-of-the-art high throughput techniques such as ChIP-array, ChIP-Seq, bisulfite modification-Seq, and bisulfite modification-array. The epigenetic modification patterns are linked to gene expression profile changes during vascular cell differentiation from stem cells and during the pathogenesis of vascular diseases such as vascular remodeling, hypertension, obesity, etc… This simulation helps define the epigenetic mechanisms by which disease-promoting environmental conditions alter gene expression leading to the disease. The role of target genes altered epigenetically in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular diseases is further characterized using RNA interference (RNAi, mirRNA), forced gene expression, recombinant protein, and other pharmacological strategies along with routine molecular genetics and biochemistry techniques such as DNA arrays, quantitative real time PCR, various ELISA and Western blot techniques, chromatin immunoprecipitation assays, nuclear run-on, transient and stable transfections, promoter analysis.


Kang T, Lu W, Xu W, Anderson L, Bacanamwo M, Thompson W, Chen YE, Liu D. MicroRNA-27 (miR-27) targets prohibitin and impairs adipocyte differentiation and mitochondrial function in human adipose-derived stem cells. J Biol Chem. 2013 Nov 29;288(48):34394-402. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M113.514372. Epub 2013 Oct 16. PMID: 24133204

Majumder A, Banerjee S, Harrill JA, Machacek DW, Mohamad O, Bacanamwo M, Mundy WR, Wei L, Dhara SK, Stice SL. Neurotrophic effects of leukemia inhibitory factor on neural cells derived from human embryonic stem cells. Stem Cells. 2012 Nov;30(11):2387-99. doi: 10.1002/stem.1201. PMID: 22899336

Chu L, Zhu T, Liu X, Yu R, Bacanamwo M, Dou Z, Chu Y, Zou H, Gibbons GH, Wang D, Ding X, Yao X. SUV39H1 orchestrates temporal dynamics of centromeric methylation essential for faithful chromosome segregation in mitosis. J Mol Cell Biol. 2012 Oct;4(5):331-40. doi: 10.1093/jmcb/mjs023. Epub 2012 Jul 25. PMID: 22831836

Banerjee S, Dhara SK, Bacanamwo M. Endoglin is a novel endothelial cell specification gene. Stem Cell Res. 2012 Jan;8(1):85-96. doi: 10.1016/j.scr.2011.08.006. Epub 2011 Aug 27. PMID: 22099023

Mahpatra S, Firpo MT, Bacanamwo M. Inhibition of DNA methyltransferases and histone deacetylases induces bone marrow-derived multipotent adult progenitor cells to differentiate into endothelial cells. Ethn Dis. 2010 Winter;20(1 Suppl 1):S1-60-4. PMID: 20521387

West FD, Roche-Rios MI, Abraham S, Rao RR, Natrajan MS, Bacanamwo M, Stice SL. KIT ligand and bone morphogenetic protein signaling enhances human embryonic stem cell to germ-like cell differentiation. Hum Reprod. 2010 Jan;25(1):168-78. doi: 10.1093/humrep/dep338. Epub 2009 Oct 19. PMID: 19840987

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