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Interim chairs named for Cell and Developmental Biology and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology


Mira Krendel, PhD, and Stewart Loh, PhD, have been named interim chairs of the Cell and Developmental Biology and Biochemistry and Molecular Biology departments, respectively. Both appointments were announced by Norton College of Medicine Dean Lawrence Chin, MD.

Krendel joined the Upstate faculty in 2007; she served as vice chair for research in the Department of Cell and Developmental Biology and was named professor in 2023. She has served on numerous committees, including the Upstate Research Advisory Committee and College of Graduate Studies Admission Committee, among others.

Her research work at Upstate has revealed an important role for myosin 1e in maintaining normal kidney functions, and, in collaboration with clinical researchers, the Krendel Lab has discovered that mutations in the MYO1E gene are linked to genetic kidney disease. Her lab works on analyzing myosin role in cell migration, adhesion, and immune response, as well as developing new tools to study kidney functions, including an NIH-funded effort to create a microfluidic model of the kidney filtration unit (glomerulus-on-a-chip). Her work has been funded by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases and the National Institute of General Medical Sciences.

She received her undergraduate degree in biochemistry from the Moscow State University in Russia and her PhD in cell biology from Rutgers University in New Jersey.

Loh joined the Upstate faculty in 1996; was named professor of biochemistry and molecular biology in 2008 and served as vice chair of the department from 2011 to 2023.

Loh has maintained an active research program continuously funded by the NIH, the U.S. Department of Defense, and private foundations. His laboratory develops general strategies by which ordinary proteins can be converted to molecular switches. Their designs emphasize modularity—the ability to mix and match input and output protein domains for specific applications—and the Loh lab is one of the few groups in the country to have introduced multiple protein engineering mechanisms for doing so. The resulting molecules are used for biosensing, functional regulation in the cell, and targeted therapy of viral and other diseases.

Loh earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Utah and obtained his doctorate in biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He was a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University.

He is the recipient of two Upstate President’s Awards, for excellence in teaching and excellence in research by a young investigator.

Caption: Mira Krendel, PhD, interim chair of Cell and Developmental Biology, and Stewart Loh, PhD, interim chair of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.