Stylianos P. Scordilis

Professor of Biological Sciences, Smith College

S. Scordilis Biology Dept Website

Ph.D.: State University of New York at Albany
Postdoctoral Training: Section on Molecular Cardiology, National Institutes of Health

Biochemistry and Cell Biology of Stress and Contractile Proteins

Our laboratory works on the molecular physiology of skeletal muscle and its gender-specific basis. The molecular response and adaptation of skeletal muscle to unaccustomed exercise is a largely unexplored area of muscle physiology, molecular biology and exercise science.

The metabolism of stress proteins in skeletal muscle and their regulation by transcriptional and translational, as well as signal transduction cascade, mechanisms is the focus our lab. This research analyzes the expression of various stress, also know as heat shock, proteins, HSP27, HSP60, the HSP70 and HSP90 families, by eccentrically-biased exercise, that is lengthening contractions, in both human and mouse skeletal muscle in situ, as well as C2C12 cells in culture. Our work indicates that gender differentially regulates the expression of these proteins both immediately post-exercise and long term after an exercise which reparably damages the muscle and, in humans, causes soreness about two days after the insult. Experiments are under way to identify the actual stressor(s) and the effects of the stress protein and mRNA changes. This work utilizes immunoblotting, immunofluorescence, confocal and electron microscopy, along with qRT-PCR and RNAi knockdowns.

We are also interested in the regulation of the repeated bout phenomenon. This physiological paradigm is exhibited as a significant attenuation of indirect measures (serum creatine kinase elevations, muscle swelling, soreness, etc.) of muscle damage following a second bout of identical exercise for weeks to months after the exercise. Our work indicates that the cellular stress protein response does not attenuate as do the indirect measures to a second bout of exercise one week after the initial bout. In addition, we have uncovered significant gender-specific differences between exercise-naive male and female mice in both the stress protein response and in the MAPK signaling cascades.

Representative publications:

Thompson, H. S., S. P. Scordilis and M. J. DeSouza. Serum creatine kinase activity varies with ovulatory status in regularly exercising, premenopausal women. Hormone Research, 65: 151-158, 2006.

Scordilis, S. P. And T. S. Litwin. Integrating Technology, Science and Undergraduate Education at Smith College: The Creation of Student-Faculty Research Centers. CUR Quarterly, 25: 138-140, 2005.

Robbart, M., P. Peckol, S. P. Scordilis, H. A. Curran and J. Brown-Saracino. Population recovery and differential heat shock protein expression for the corals, Agaricia agaricites and A. tenuifolia in Belize. Mar. Prog. Res. Ser, 283: 151-160, 2004

Thompson, H. S., E. B. Maynard, E. R. Morales and S. P. Scordilis. Exercise-Induced HSP27, HSP70 and MAPK responses in Human Skeletal Muscle. Acta Physiol. Scand. 178: 61-72, 2003.

Thompson, H. S., P. M. Clarkson and S. P. Scordilis. The Repeated Bout Effect and Heat Shock Proteins: Intramuscular HSP27 and HSP70 Expression Following Two Bouts of Eccentric Exercise in Humans. Acta Physiol. Scand., 174: 47-56, 2002.

Thompson, H. S., S. P. Scordilis, P. M. Clarkson and W. A. Lohrer. A Single Bout of Eccentric Exercise Increases HSP27 and HSC/HSP70 in Human Skeletal Muscle. Acta Physiol. Scand., 171: 187-194, 2001.

Schak, K. M., S. P. Scordilis, G. Ferreyra and M. E. Harrington. Neuropeptide Y Activates Protein Kinase C in Hamster Suprachiasmatic Nuclei Brain Slices. Biol. Rhythm Res., 32: 201-206, 2001

Miller, D. D., S. P. Scordilis and P. K. Hepler. Identification and Localization of Three Classes of Myosins in Pollen Tubes of Lilium longiflorum and Nicotiana alata. J. Cell Sci., 108: 2549-2563, 1995.

Briggs, R. T., S. P. Scordilis and J. A. Powell. Myofibrillogenesis in Rodent Skeletal Muscle In Vitro: Two Pathways Involving Thick Filament Aggregates. Tissue and Cell, 27: 91-104, 1995.

Thompson, H. S. and S. P. Scordilis. Ubiquitin Changes in Human Biceps Muscle Following Exercise-Induced Damage. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun., 204: 1193-1198, 1994

Valavanis, C., Y. Hu, Y. Yang, B. A. Osborne, S. Chouaib, L. Greene, J. D. Ashwell and L. M. Schwartz (2001). "Model cell lines for the study of apoptosis in vitro." Methods Cell Biol 66: 417-36.

Valavanis, C., S. Naber and L. M. Schwartz (2001). "In situ detection of dying cells in normal and pathological tissues." Methods Cell Biol 66: 393-415.

Shumway, L. and L. M. Schwartz (2001). "Generalized 96-well format for quantitative and qualitative monitoring of altered protein expression and posttranslational modification in cells." Biotechniques 31(5): 996, 998, 1000.

Cascone, P. J. and L. M. Schwartz (2001). "Post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression during the programmed death of insect skeletal muscle." Dev Genes Evol 211(8-9): 397-405.

Schwartz, L. M., L. Sebbag, R. B. Jennings and K. A. Reimer (2001). "Duration and reinstatement of myocardial protection against infarction by ischemic preconditioning in open chest dogs." J Mol Cell Cardiol 33(9): 1561-70.
Jones, M. E. and L. M. Schwartz (2001). "Not all muscles meet the same fate when they die." Cell Biol Int 25(6): 539-45.

Kuelzer, F., P. Kuah, S. T. Bishoff, L. Cheng, J. R. Nambu and L. M. Schwartz (1999).
"Cloning and analysis of small cytoplasmic leucine-rich repeat protein (SCLP), a novel, phylogenetically-conserved protein that is dramatically up-regulated during the programmed death of moth skeletal muscle." J Neurobiol 41(4): 482-94.