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Katherine Mitsouras, PhD

Assistant Professor of Biochemistry

College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific

E-Mail: kmitsouras@westernu.edu

Phone: 909-706-3484 | Join year: April 2007


Ph.D., Biological Chemistry summa cum laude, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, 2001
B.S., Biochemistry & Molecular Biology with honors, Brown University, Providence, RI, 1995

Education Experience

Postdoctoral Fellow, Microarray Technology Development, Department of Human Genetics, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, 2001-2005.

Teaching Experience

Assistant Professor, Western University of Health Sciences, COMP, Pomona, CA, 2007-present

Teaching Assistant, Eukaryotic Gene Expression Laboratory Course, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Cold Spring Harbor, NY, Summer 1998

Teaching Assistant, Introductory Biology Department of Molecular, Cell and Developmental Biology, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, Spring 1998

Teaching Assistant, Human Biochemistry and Nutrition Laboratory, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, Spring 1997

Teaching Assistant, Introductory Biology, Department of Biochemistry, Brown University, Providence, RI, Spring 1994

Teaching Assistant, Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory, Department of Chemistry, Brown University, Providence, RI, 1993-1994


MCBM: Biochemistry and Medical Genetics. Topics taught: Pathways of carbohydrate metabolism, integration and regulation of metabolic pathways, vitamins and minerals, foundations of medical genetics, genetics of inherited metabolic disorders, pharmacogenomics, stem cell biology,

Endocrine System: Metabolism and diabetes mellitus

Patient Centered Cases, an Interprofessional Approach: Faculty Facilitator

Research Interest

My research focuses on understanding how genetic variation affects complex behavioral and morphological phenotypes, with a focus on clinically relevant traits. I use the domestic dog as a model due to the reduced genetic diversity of modern breeds, and aim to identify and characterize variants in candidate genes associated with cognitive and behavioral phenotypes. I am also interested in the phenotype of cancer susceptibility, and use a comparative oncology approach to identify genetic variants associated with breed-specific cancers that display similarities in biology, pathology, as well as disease progression and outcome with the same tumor types in humans.

I use an integrated approach that incorporates different types of genomic data such as whole genome sequence, genotyping and transcriptional profiling data. This approach involves studying individual genetic variants in candidate loci, and subsequently understanding how the combined effect of these variants affects the activity of biological networks that control normal phenotypes, as well as studying how genetic perturbation of these networks and their components gives rise to disease states. Since the activity of biological networks can be affected by genetic variation that alters the function of individual protein components, and by regulatory changes that alter gene expression levels, or the alternative splicing of individual components, an integrated approach helps reduce genomic complexity and capture even subtle perturbations that are associated with disease.


Dissertation Year Fellowship, UCLA Graduate Division, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, 2000-01
NIH Cell and Molecular Biology Training Grant, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA, 1996-99
Honors Undergraduate Thesis in Biochemistry, Brown University, Providence, RI, 1995
Howard Hughes Undergraduate Research Fellowship, Brown University, Providence, RI, 1994
Women in Science and Engineering Undergraduate Research Fellowship, Brown University, Providence, RI, 1993


  • Irizarry, K.J.L, Malladi, S., Gao, X., Mitsouras, K., Melendez, L., Burris, P., Brockman, J., and Al-Murrani, S. Sequencing and Comparative Genomic Analysis of 1227 Felis catus cDNA Sequences Enriched for Developmental, Clinical and Nutritional Phenotypes. 2012. BMC Genomics 13: 31
  • Mitsouras K, Faulhaber EA, Hui G, Joslin J, Eng C, Barr M, Irizarry K. Development of a PCR Assay to Detect Papillomavirus Infection in the Snow Leopard. 2011. BMC Vet Res 7: 38 (Highly Accessed).
  • Liao G, Wen Z, Irizarry K, Huang Y, Mitsouras K, Darmani M, Leon T, Shi L and Bi X. Abnormal gene expression in cerebellum of Npc1-/- mice during postnatal development. Brain Res. 2010 Apr 14;1325:128-40.
  • Mitsouras K and Faulhaber EA. Saliva as an alternative source of high yield canine genomic DNA for genotyping studies. BMC Res Notes. 2009 Oct 29;2:219.
  • Voith VL, Ingram E, Mitsouras K and Irizarry K. Comparison of adoption agency breed identification and DNA breed identification of dogs. J Appl Anim Welf Sci. 2009 Jul;12(3):253-62.
  • Rickabaugh T, Brown H, Wu TT, Song MJ, Hwang S, Deng H, Mitsouras K and Sun R. Kaposi's Sarcoma-Associated Herpesvirus/Human Herpesvirus 8 RTA Reactivates Murine Gammaherpesvirus-68. J Virol. 2005 Mar;79(5):3217-22.
  • Le K *, Mitsouras K*, Roy M, Wang Q, Xu Q, Nelson SF and Lee C. Detecting Tissue-Specific Regulation of Alternative Splicing as a Qualitative Change in Microarray Data. Nucleic Acids Res. 2004 Dec 14;32(22):e180.*Co-first authors, listed alphabetically.
  • Mitsouras K, Wong B, Arayata C, Johnson RC and Carey M. “The DNA Architectural Protein HMGB1 Displays Two Distinct Modes of Action that Promote Enhanceosome Assembly.”  Mol Cell Biol. 2002 Jun;22(12):4390-401.
  • Johnson K, Mitsouras K and Carey M. “Eukaryotic Transcription: the Core of Eukaryotic Gene Activation.” Curr Biol. 2001 Jul 10;11(13):R510-3.
  • Ellwood K, Chi T, Huang W, Mitsouras K and Carey M. “Cooperative Assembly of RNA Polymerase II Transcription Complexes.”  Cold Spring Harb Symp Quant Biol. 1998;63:253-61.
  • Ozer J, Mitsouras K, Zerby D, Carey M and Lieberman PM.  “Transcription Factor IIA derepresses TATA-Binding Protein (TBP)-Associated Factor Inhibition of TBP-DNA Binding.” J Biol Chem. 1998 Jun 5;273(23):14293-300.

Poster Presentations

  • Barr MC, Wournell AL, Mitsouras K, Irizarry K and Bridges KA. “Molecular Epidemiology of Canine Parvovirus 2c in Southern California Dogs.” 2009. Epidemics2 2nd International Conference on Infectious Disease Dynamics, Athens, Greece
  • Mitsouras K, Galgoul G, Hoholm A, Li C and Irizarry K. “Using Bioinformatics and Comparative Genomics to Map Cancer Associated Phenotypes to the Canine Genome.” 2009. Genes Dogs and Cancer 5th International Canine Cancer Conference, Orlando, FL
  • Mitsouras K and Schmidt P. “Tools for Teaching and Assessing Evidence-Based Practice.” 2008. Annual Lilly Conference on College & University Teaching-West, Pomona, CA
  • Mitsouras K, Le K, Xu Q, Lee C and Nelson SF. “Genome-wide Analysis of Alternative Splicing in Human Tissues and Tumors.” 2003. Annual Meeting, American Society of Human Genetics, Los Angeles, CA
  • Mitsouras K and Carey M. “A Viral Regulatory Circuit as a Model for Combinatorial Control of Transcription.” 1999. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Annual Conference, American Society of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, San Francisco, CA


  • Licinio J, Wong ML, Irizarry KJL and Mitsouras KM. “Compositions and Methods for Determining and Predicting Treatment Response for Depression and Anxiety.” International Patent PCT/US2005/028790, filed 8/12/2005