Alexandra Paul

Alexandra Paul
University of Texas at Austin | UT · Department of Biomedical Engineering

Doctor of Philosophy

About

26
Publications
21,475
Reads
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520
Citations
Additional affiliations
March 2016 - present
Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research
Position
  • PhD Student
January 2014 - September 2018
Chalmers University of Technology
Position
  • PhD Student
July 2012 - September 2012
University of California, Santa Barbara
Position
  • research internships

Publications

Publications (26)
Preprint
Brown adipose tissue (BAT) consists of highly metabolically active adipocytes that catabolize nutrients to produce heat. Playing an active role in triacylglycerol (TAG) clearance, research has shown that dietary fatty acids can modulate the TAG chemistry deposition in BAT after weeks-long dietary intervention, similar to what has been shown in whit...
Preprint
Older people have been disproportionately vulnerable to the current SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, with an increased risk of severe complications and death compared to other age groups. A mix of underlying factors has been speculated to give rise to this differential infection outcome, including changes in lung physiology, weakened immunity, and severe immun...
Article
Full-text available
The novel coronavirus caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has reached more than 160 countries and has been declared a pandemic. SARS-CoV-2 infects host cells by binding to the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE-2) surface receptor via the spike (S) receptor-binding protein (RBD) on the virus envelope. Global dat...
Article
Full-text available
Aims/hypothesis Intramyocellular lipid (IMCL) content associates with development of insulin resistance, albeit not in insulin-sensitive endurance-trained athletes (trained). Qualitative and spatial differences in muscle lipid composition may underlie this so-called athlete’s paradox. Here we studied triacylglycerol (TAG) composition of individual...
Article
Aggregation and intracellular deposition of the protein α-synuclein is an underlying characteristic of Parkinson’s disease. α-synuclein assemblies also undergo cell-cell spreading, facilitating propagation of their cellular pathology. Understanding how cellular interactions and uptake of extracellular α-synuclein assemblies depend on their physical...
Article
Full-text available
Lipid droplets (LDs), present in many cell types, are highly dynamic organelles that store neutral lipids, primarily triacylglycerols (TAGs). With the discovery of new LD functions (e.g., in immune response, protein clearage, and occurrence with disease), new methods to study LD chemical composition in situ are necessary. We present an approach for...
Article
Full-text available
β-Adrenergic stimulation of adipose tissue increases mitochondrial density and activity (browning) that are associated with improved whole-body metabolism. Whereas chronically elevated levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in adipose tissue contribute to insulin resistance, transient ROS elevation stimulates physiological processes such as adipog...
Preprint
Full-text available
Lipid droplets (LDs) are highly dynamic organelles that store neutral lipids, primarily triacylglycerols (TAGs), and are found in many cell types. While their primary function is to store excess energy, LDs are also modified in different disease states and during developmental processes. In many cases, not only the presence, but also the compositio...
Article
Proteoglycans (PGs) have been found in Alzheimer's disease amyloid-β (Aβ) plaques and their glycosaminoglycan chains reportedly influence Aβ aggregation, neurotoxicity and intracellular accumulation in cell and animal models, but their exact pathophysiological role(s) remain unclear. We have studied the cellular uptake of fluorescently labelled Aβ(...
Article
Fabrication of three dimensional (3D) 'bead-string' microstructured hydrogels is rationally achieved by controlling the relative timing of chemical crosslinking and physical self-assembly processes of an engineered protein. To demonstrate this strategy, an elastin-like protein (ELP) amino acid sequence was selected to enable site-specific chemical...
Article
Whole-body energy homeostasis at over-nutrition critically depends on how well adipose tissue remodels in response to excess calories. We recently identified serine/threonine protein kinase (STK)25 as a critical regulator of ectopic lipid storage in non-adipose tissue and systemic insulin resistance in the context of nutritional stress. Here, we in...
Article
Full-text available
Heterogeneous hydrogels with desired matrix complexity are studied for a variety of biomimetic materials. Despite the range of such microstructured materials described, few methods permit independent control over micro-structure and microscale mechanics by precisely controlled, single-step processing methods. Here, a phototriggered crosslinking met...
Thesis
Full-text available
Although the negative health impacts of obesity have been well documented, the number of overweight or obese patients has and is predicted to continue rising. One of the causal factors of obesity is a constant positive energy balance mainly from excessively high caloric intake from food compared with limited physical activity (caloric expenditure)....
Article
Full-text available
Obesity and type 2 diabetes increase worldwide at an epidemic rate. It is expected that by the year 2030 around 500 million people will have diabetes; predominantly type 2 diabetes. The CCN family of proteins has become of interest in both metabolic and other common human diseases because of their effects on mesenchymal stem cell (MSCs) proliferati...
Preprint
Obesity and type 2 diabetes increase worldwide at an epidemic rate. It is expected that by the year 2030 around 500 million people will have diabetes; predominantly type 2 diabetes. The CCN family of proteins has become of interest in both metabolic and other common human diseases because of their effects on mesenchymal stem cell (MSCs) proliferati...
Article
Full-text available
Adiponectin is a hormone secreted from white adipocytes and takes part in the regulation of several metabolic processes. Although the pathophysiological importance of adiponectin has been thoroughly investigated, the mechanisms controlling its release are only partly understood. We have recently shown that adiponectin is secreted via regulated exoc...
Article
Full-text available
Shear-thinning, self-healing hydrogels are promising vehicles for therapeutic cargo delivery due to their ability to be injected using minimally invasive surgical procedures. An injectable hydrogel using a novel combination of dynamic covalent crosslinking with thermoresponsive engineered proteins is presented. Ex situ at room temperature, rapid ge...
Article
Full-text available
We show that submicron-sized patterns can be imprinted into soft, recombinant-engineered protein hydrogels (here elastin-like proteins, ELP) by transferring wavy patterns from polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) molds. The high-precision topographical tunability of the relatively stiff PDMS is translated to a bio-responsive, soft material, enabling topogra...
Article
A cantilevered-capillary force apparatus is used to study the time scale for the coalescence of two droplets compressed together with a constant force. Power-law trends for the coalescence time as a function of droplet radius and compression force are experimentally measured. The measurements are compared against several different scaling theories...
Article
Full-text available
With accelerating rates of obesity and type 2 diabetes world-wide, interest in studying the adipocyte and adipose tissue is increasing. Human adipose derived stem cells - differentiated to adipocytes in vitro - are frequently used as a model system for white adipocytes, as most of their pathways and functions resemble mature adipocytes in vivo. How...
Article
Hydrogels have been developed as extracellular matrix (ECM) mimics both for therapeutic applications and basic biological studies. In particular, elastin-like polypeptide (ELP) hydrogels, which can be tuned to mimic several biochemical and physical characteristics of native ECM, have been constructed to encapsulate various types of cells to create...
Article
Camera-based fluorescence correlation spectroscopy (FCS) approaches allow the measurement of thousands of contiguous points yielding excellent statistics and details of sample structure. Imaging total internal reflection FCS (ITIR-FCS) provides these measurements on lipid membranes. Herein, we determine the influence of the point spread function (P...

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