Kristen Turner, PhD

Daniel Michele Lab

Areas of Interest

I have a long-standing interest in the biology of striated tissues, particularly skeletal and cardiac muscles. I am currently investigating the physiology of membrane repair in Dr. Daniel Michele’s laboratory. Our overall research goals are to determine possible therapeutic targets that may benefit patients with muscular dystrophy, a disease categorized by progressive muscle weakness, cardiomyopathy and early death. We previously reported that disruption of the actin cytoskeleton impairs recruitment of membrane repair protein dysferlin to the muscle cell membrane.  To better understand these findings, I am identifying cellular/molecular regulators of actin assembly at the plasma membrane of skeletal and cardiac muscles after experimental and physiological injury.

Honors & Awards

  • NIH Institutional Research and Academic Career Development Awards (IRACDA) (K12) (March 2022)
  • University of Iowa Graduate College Summer Fellowship (April 2021)
  • University of Iowa Graduate Fellowship Incentive (FIP) Award (January 2020)
  • University of Iowa Graduate College Graduate Diversity Fellowship (November 2019)
  • Endocrine Society Future Leaders Advancing Endocrinology (FLARE) Program (February 2019)
  • APS Translational Endocrinol. & Metabolism Section Research Recognition (March 2015)


Ph.D. Human Physiology, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA

Published Articles or Reviews

  1. Turner KD, Kronemberger A, Bae D, Bock JM, Hughes WE, Ueda K, Feider AJ, Hanada S, Sousa LGOd, Harris MP, Anderson EJ, Bodine SC, Zimmerman MB, Casey DP, Lira VA. Effects of Combined Inorganic Nitrate and Nitrite Supplementation on Cardiorespiratory Fitness and Skeletal Muscle Oxidative Capacity in Type 2 Diabetes: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial. Nutrients. 2022; 14(21):4479.
  2. Fuqua JD, Mere CP, Kronemberger AK, Blomme J, Bae D, Turner KD, Harris MP, Scudese E, Edwards M, Ebert SM,de Sousa LGO, Bodine SC, Yang L, Adams CM, Lira VA. ULK2 is essential for degradation of ubiquitinated protein aggregates and homeostasis in skeletal muscle. The FASEB Journal. 2019;33:11735-12745.
  3. Zou K, Turner K,  Donghai Z, Hinkley JM, Kugler BA, Hornby PJ, Lenhard J, Jones TE, Pories WJ, Dohm GL and Houmard JA. Impaired glucose partitioning in primary myotubes from severely obese women with type 2 diabetes.  Am. J. Physiol. Cell Physiol. 2020;319, C1011–C1019.
  4. Park S, Turner KD, Zheng D, Brault JJ, Zou K, Chaves AB, Nielsen TS, Tanner CJ, Treebak JT, Houmard JA. Electrical pulse stimulation induces differential responses in insulin action in myotubes from severely obese individuals. J Physiol. 2019;597:449-466.
  5. Hinkley JM, Zou K, Park S, Turner K, Zheng D, Houmard JA. Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery enhances contraction-mediated glucose metabolism in primary human myotubes. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2017;313(2):E195–E202.

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