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John (Jack) Walker

Graduate Student, Powers laboratory, Molecular Physiology & Biophysics

I am an MD/PhD student who joined the lab of Al Powers and Marcela Brissova in 2016. I am originally from Kansas City and did my undergraduate work at Washington University in St. Louis. In undergrad, I worked on research projects that used novel chemical techniques to elucidate protein structure and function. In the Powers and Brissova lab, I am interested in mechanisms of human islet function and dysfunction and use unique models including in vivo transplantation of human islets and dispersion and reaggregation of islet cells to form pseudoislets. I am also characterizing the functional, morphologic, and transcriptional profiles of islets, sorted α and β cells, and pancreatic tissue from individuals with type 2 diabetes and using viral manipulation in the pseudoislet system to understand mechanisms of islet dysfunction in type 2 diabetes. I plan to pursue a career as a physician-scientist in pediatric endocrinology upon his return to medical school.