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Katherine Mitsouras, PhD

Associate 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

Associate Professor, Western Univerisity of Health Sciences, COMP, Pomona, CA, 2019-present

Assistant Professor, Western University of Health Sciences, COMP, Pomona, CA, 2007-2019

Instructor, Department of Biology, Victor Valley College, Victorville, CA, 2006

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, foundations of medical genetics, genetics of inherited metabolic disorders, pharmacogenomics

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.


DO2019 Outstanding BMS Faculty Award, College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific, WesternU,Pomona, CA, 2016

Teamwork Award, College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific, WesternU, Pomona, CA, 2015

Student Focus Award, College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific, Western University of Health Sciences, Pomona, CA, 2014

DNA Genotek Travel Award for Plant and Animal Genome XIX International Conference in San Diego, California, 2011

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


International Association of Medical Science Educators American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology


  • Pearce, D.D, Mitsouras, K., and Irizarry, K.J. Discriminating the effects of Cannabis sativa and Cannabis indica: a web survey of medical cannabis users. 2014. J Altern Complement Med. (10):787
  • 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, M.C., Irizarry, K.J.L., Joslin, J.O., Mockler, T.C., Tetzloff, J., Mitsouras, K., Kendall, V.R. “Snow leopard (Uncia uncia) Functional Genomics Initiative: Integrating genomics into the management of captive endangered species.” 2012. American Association of Zoo Veterinarians Annual Meeting, Oakland, California
  • Irizarry, K., Scudder, J., Mitsouras, K., and Rutlant, J. “Characterization of Bullmastiff Head Morphology and Identification of Runx2 Allelic Variation within the Breed.” 2012. Plant and Animal Genome XIX International Conference, San Diego, California
  • Mitsouras, K., Faulhaber, E.A., Hui, G., and Irizarry, K.J.L. “Development of a PCR-assay to detect papillomavirus in the snow leopard.” 2011. Plant and Animal Genome XIX International Conference, San Diego, California
  • Priest, H.D., Fox, S., Hui, G., Mitsouras, K., Joslin, J., Barr, M.C., Tetzloff, J., Irizarry, K.J.L., and Mockler, T. “Sequencing the Uncia uncia Genome: Endangered Species Conservation Genomics.” 2010. Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon
  • Hui, G., Faulhaber, E.A., Camacho, A., Mitsouras, K., and Irizarry, K.J.L. “Construction of a Comparative Genomics Map to Facilitate the Annotation of the Draft Snow Leopard Genome.” 2010. Merial Veterinary Scholars’ Symposium, Athens, Georgia
  • Voith, V., Chadik, C., Ingram, E., Irizarry, K.J.L., Mitsouras, K., and Marilo, J. “Dog Breed Identification.” 2010. American College of Veterinary Behaviorists and The American Veterinary Society of Animal Behaviorists Symposium, Atlanta, Georgia


  • 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