Volunteer Opportunities


The Muscle Biology and Imaging Lab at the University of Massachusetts Amherst regularly seeks individuals to participate in research studies. View current volunteer opportunities.

Awards and Honors


View awards and honors received by MBIL graduate students.

MBIL Alumni


Doctoral students from the Muscle Biology and Imaging lab have gone onto prestigious positions at top research institutions across the country. View our alumni.

Department and College


Kevin O’Fallon, M.S.

Graduate Research Assistant
(413) 545 6072
kofallon@kin.umass.edu

In 2006, I completed my undergraduate degree in Exercise Science, during which time I served as an undergraduate teaching assistant for Anatomy & Physiology and became a research assistant in the Muscle Biology & Imaging Laboratory (MBIL). In the MBIL I began to develop my interests in skeletal muscle adaptation in response to exercise stress. I served as the assistant study coordinator on a human trial to examine the effects of statins on muscle recovery and acquired valuable skills to assess the human response to exercise-induced muscle damage. As a Master's student, I began to refine my research interests to the area oxidative stress and muscle atrophy and learned various techniques to study atrophy in vitro such as muscle cell culture, Western blot, spectrophotometry, and qRT-PCR. In addition, I coordinated two human trials on the bioavailability and pharmacokinetics of a dietary antioxidant supplement and became interested in exploring its potential mechanisms to protect skeletal muscle at the cellular and molecular levels. In addition to research, I had the privilege to instruct Human Anatomy in the spring of 2007 and serve as a student assistant to the Chair of the UMass Human Subjects Institutional Review Board from 2006-2008. In 2009 I completed my Master's Project, entitled, “Oxidative Stress & Muscle Atrophy: A Novel in vitro Approach" in which I developed an in vitro muscle cell model to study the effects of a novel dietary supplement on oxidative stress and muscle atrophy.

I am currently in the 2nd year of my Ph.D. with an expected graduation date of May 2012. My dissertation project involves using my in vitro muscle cell model to examine how changes in the intracellular redox environment influence skeletal muscle adaptation.

In my spare time I enjoy a variety of outdoor sports and activities, health and fitness, personal growth and development, music and the arts, and friends and family.

Publications

1. Kearns AK, Bilbie CL, Clarkson PM, White CM, Sewright KA, O'Fallon KS, Gadarla M. The Creatine Kinase Response to Eccentric Exercise with Atorvastatin 10mg or 80mg. Atherosclerosis. 200(1):121-125, 2008

Abstracts

1. O’Fallon K, Sewright KS, Bilbie CL, Thompson PD FACSM, Clarkson PM. The Relationship Between Elevated CKMB Relative Index and Aging. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. 39(5):S28, 2007

2. D. Kaushik, K. O’Fallon, P. M.Clarkson, B. Michniak-Kohn. Human plasma and urine levels of quercetin following oral administration. American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists, 2007

3. D. Kaushik, K. O’Fallon, P. M.Clarkson, B. Michniak-Kohn Liquid Chromatography-Ultraviolet Spectroscopy assay for determination of unconjugated quercetin in human plasma and urine samples, Rutgers Pharmaceutical Conference, 2007

4. O’Fallon K, Clarkson PM, Schwartz LM. The Effects of Quercetin on Oxidative-Stress Induced Cell Death in C2C12 Muscle Cells. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise 40(5):D21, 2008

5. The Effects of Quercetin on ROS Generation and Myotube Area in C2C12 Muscle Cells. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise 41(5):135, 2009

Presentations

1. The Relationship Between Elevated CKMB Relative Index and Aging. American College of Sports Medicine, New England Chapter Regional Conference, Providence, RI, November, 2006. Slide presentation

2. The Relationship Between Elevated CKMB Relative Index and Aging. American College of Sports Medicine National Conference, New Orleans, LA, May 2007. Slide presentation

3. The Effects of Quercetin on Oxidative-Stress Induced Cell Death in C2C12 Muscle Cells. American College of Sports Medicine, New England Chapter Regional Conference, Providence, RI, November 2007. Slide presentation

4. The Effects of Quercetin on Oxidative-Stress Induced Cell Death in C2C12 Muscle Cells. American College of Sports Medicine National Conference, Indianapolis, IA, May 2008. Thematic poster presentation

5. Quercetin Pharmacokinetic Studies: Dosage Regimen Establishment. AIBS Review Meeting "Effects of Quercetin on Human Health, Physical & Cognitive Performance: Status of the Science”. Natick, Ma, September 2008. Joint Slide Presentation

6. Western Blotting: Running Down Gels. American College of Sports Medicine, New England Chapter Regional Conference, Providence, RI, November 2008. Tutorial slide presentation

7. The Effects of Quercetin on ROS Generation and Myotube Area in C2C12 Muscle Cells. School of Public Health & Health Sciences, Research Day, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, March 2009. Poster presentation

8. The Effects of Quercetin on ROS Generation and Myotube Area in C2C12 Muscle Cells. American College of Sports Medicine National Conference, Seattle, WA, May 2009. Slide presentation

9. Effects of H2O2 on ROS Generation and Endogenous Antioxidant Gene Expression in C2C12 Muscle Cells. School of Public Health & Health Sciences, Research Day, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, April 2010. Poster presentation

10. Effects of H2O2 on ROS Generation and Endogenous Antioxidant Gene Expression in C2C12 Muscle Cells. American College of Sports Medicine National Conference, Baltimore, MD, June 2010. Slide presentation

Grants/Awards

2005 Outstanding Laboratory Assistant, Motor Control Laboratory, Department of Exercise Science

2006 Outstanding Laboratory Assistant, Muscle Biology and Imaging Laboratory, Department of Exercise Science

2006 Recipient: 13th Annual Timothy K. Moynahan Award, In Recognition for Perseverance and Commitment to Educational Goals and Objectives, Department of Exercise Science

2007 Recipient: Student Investigator Award for Masters Research, American College of Sports Medicine, New England Chapter Regional Conference

2007 Recipient: Specialist Jeremy Bouffard Memorial Scholarship, Massachusetts Army National Guard

2009 Recipient: 1st Place for Research, School of Public Health & Health Sciences Research Day

2009 Career Related Experience in Science and Technology Program (CREST) Appointment- CREST is a program to recruit students and engineers and scientists as technologists and future leaders in areas of military importance. CREST provides summer and part-time employment (to include employment during school breaks), to qualify students for an appointment to a civilian engineer or scientist position in the Army Intern Program.

Muscle Response Research

Activation of NF-kb in cells outside the myofiber boundary, 3h following eccentric exercise (ECC). A. Confocal images of triple stained 10µm sections from a representative ECC sample for dystrophin (dys=blue), the p-65 subunit of NF-kb (p65=green) and nuclei (topro3=red). White square in merged image denotes the boundaries of the inset image. Scale bar in top 3 images and merged image = 20µm; scale bar in inset image = 10µm. Read the abstract.

Resistance Exercise and Cancer

Dr. Clarkson's research on resistance exercise during breast cancer treatment is featured in Medical Hypothesis, a journal of theoretical papers in the biomedical sciences. Read the abstract.

Rhabdomyolysis

Rhabdomyolysis is a serious, potentially life-threatening condition that can develop unexpectedly under supervised conditions. Dr. Clarkson's 2009 paper in The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research examines a case of rhabdomyolysis in a healthy, fit 18-year-old placekicker following a supervised practice session led by the team's strength and conditioning coach. Following eight days of hospitalization with intravenous fluids, the patient recovered without complications. View the full abstract.