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UNCP Home Academics at UNCP Colleges, Schools & Departments Departments Biology What's New Archives Archive 2015 2016 Dr. Conner Sandefur Joins Biology Department (fall 2015)
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Dr. Conner Sandefur Joins Biology Department (fall 2015)

Dr. Conner Sandefur

The Department of Biology's newly hired Assistant Professor Conner Sandefur received his PhD in Bioinformatics from the University of Michigan. There, he investigated the formation of toxic protein aggregates in protein misfolding diseases (e.g. Alzheimer's disease and diabetes). He selected to train in bioinformatics and computational biology in part because of the huge increase in publicly available (i.e. free) experimental data online. Dr. Sandefur believes these datasets provide a new way to do impactful research in human disease at universities like UNC Pembroke (UNCP), where large biomedical research labs may be infrequent but talented, hard working and passionate students are not infrequent.

After obtaining his PhD, Dr. Sandefur completed a three-year postdoctoral fellowship in the Seeding Postdoctoral Innovators in Research and Education (SPIRE) program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. SPIRE provides a mentored research and teaching experience for biomedical scientists who are invested in increasing diversity in STEM. At Chapel Hill, Dr. Sandefur received training in systems and epithelial cell biology, research which he will continue at UNCP. Specifically, students in the Sandefur lab will investigate COPD and diabetes - diseases with high incidence in rural communities - through mathematical modeling and 'big data' analysis. Interested students and faculty collaborators are encouraged to contact Dr. Sandefur about opportunities.

Dr. Sandefur is a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation, a southeastern American Indian tribe now located in south central Oklahoma. This fall, he will be teaching Microbiology lab and Genetics lecture and lab. In his free time, Dr. Sandefur can be found fishing and spending time with his family and friends. He also thoroughly enjoys visiting with people and can be tweeted at (@oshehoma), emailed (conner.sandefur@uncp.edu), found online (www.sandefurlab.com) or in his office (2230 Oxendine).

Dr. Conner Sandefur