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Mohamed Trebak

Associate Professor

Cutting-edge CNSE nanobioscience research appearing on the covers of two prestigious scientific journals

CNSE Associate Professor Dr. Mohamed Trebak
discusses groundbreaking nanobioscience research


  • NIEHS; National Institutes of Health (NIH). Postdoc (2001-2006)
  • The Wistar Institute, Philadelphia, PA. Postdoc (1999-2000)
  • Université de Liège, Liège, Belgium PhD (1998)
  • Université de Liège, Liège, Belgium M.Sc (1994)
Past Professional Experience:
    • Associate Professor, Center for Cardiovascular Sciences, Albany Medical College, (2010-2012)
    • Assistant Professor, Center for Cardiovascular Sciences, Albany Medical College, (2006-2010)

Areas of Research:

  • Calcium signaling
  • Ion channel electrophysiology
  • Nanobiotechnology
  • Vascular biology and disease
  • Proliferative disease and cancer

Research Description:

We use a variety of biochemical, biophysical and imaging techniques to gain insights into the activation and regulation mechanisms of native Ca2+ permeable channels in cancer cells, vascular and airway smooth muscle cells and endothelial cells. We are particularly interested in two classes of ion channels: the transient receptor potential canonical (TRPC) channels and the molecular components of the store-operated calcium entry (SOCE) pathway, STIM/Orai as they pertain to cancer cell proliferation and invasion, vascular and airway smooth muscle proliferation and migration; endothelial cell permeability and angiogenesis. Our basic research approaches are complemented by the use of animal models of disease as well as knockout mice that are exclusively deficient for a single ion channel molecule in a specific tissue. The basic science studies provide the foundation for the translational studies in animals that are necessary to validate the use of TRPC and STIM/Orai as targets for therapy of cancer, vascular and lung disease.

Honors and Awards (selected):

  • 2004     NIH Fellows Award for Research Excellence (FARE), Bethesda, MD
  • 2006     NIH Transition to Independent Position (TIP) award, Bethesda, MD
  • 2008     Marquis Who’s who in Science and Engineering
  • 2010     Helen H. Molinari Grad. Encouragement/Merit Award, Albany Med. Col. 
  • 2011     Chair of Organizing Committee: 1st International Meeting on Ion Channel signalling Mechanisms. 
  • 2012     City of Paris Visiting Professor. Université Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris 6.

Editorial Boards (selected):

  • 2013-2018; Editorial Board: Journal of Biological Chemistry
  • 2010-; Editorial Board: Frontiers in Ion Channel Pharmacology and Channelopathies
  • 2008-; Editorial Board: Pflügers Archives; European Journal of Physiology

Recent Publications (selected):

  • Abdullaev IF, Bisaillon JM, Potier M, Gonzalez JC, Motiani, RK and Trebak M. 2008. Stim1 and Orai1 Mediate CRAC Currents and Store-Operated Calcium Entry important for Endothelial Cell proliferation. Circulation Research.103:1289-1299.
  • Potier M, Gonzalez JC, Motiani RK, Abdullaev IF, Bisaillon JM, Singer HA and Trebak M. 2009. Evidence for STIM1- and Orai1-dependent Store-Operated Calcium Influx through ICRAC in Vascular Smooth Muscle cells. The FASEB J. 23:2425-37
  • Trebak M, Ginnan R, Singer HA, and Jourd’Heuil D. 2010. Modulation of Calcium Signaling by Reactive Oxygen and Nitrogen Species in Vascular Smooth Muscle. Antioxidants & Redox signaling. 12: 657-674
  • Bisaillon JM, Motiani RK, Gonzalez JC, Potier M, Halligan KE, Alzawahra W, Singer HA, Jourd’heuil D, and Trebak M. 2010. Essential Role for STIM1- and Orai1-Mediated Calcium Influx in PDGF-Induced Vascular Smooth Muscle Migration. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 298(5): C993-1005. 
  • Motiani RK, Abdullaev, IF and Trebak M. 2010. Selective requirement for Orai3 versus Orai1 in mediating store-operated calcium entry and ICRAC in Estrogen receptor positive versus Estrogen receptor negative breast cancer cells. Journal of Biological Chemistry. 285: 19173-83. 
  • Zhang W, Halligan KE, Zhang X, Bisaillon JM, Gonzalez-Cobos JC, Hu G, Vincent PA, Zhou J, Singer HA, Matrougui K & Trebak M. 2011. Orai1-mediated ICRAC is essential for neointima formation after vascular injury. Circulation Research;109: 534-42. (Featured in Cover).
  • Galán M, Kassan M, Choi SK, Partyka M, Trebak M, Henrion D, Matrougui K. 2012. A novel role for epidermal growth factor receptor tyrosine kinase and its downstream endoplasmic reticulum stress in cardiac damage and microvascular dysfunction in type 1 diabetes mellitus. Hypertension. 60: 71-80. (Editorial Commentary: Hypertension. 2012;60:20-21)
  • Oulès B, Del Prete D, Greco B, Zhang X, Lauritzen I, Sevalle J, Moreno S, Paterlini-Bréchot P, Trebak M, Checler F, Benfenati F & Chami M. 2012. Ryanodine receptors blockade reduces Amyloid-beta load and learning and memory impairments in Tg2576 mouse model of Alzheimer disease. Journal of Neuroscience. 32:11820-34.
  • Wang X, Hu G, Gao X, Wang Y, Zhang W, Yund-Harmon E, Zhi X, Xu Z, Lennartz MR, Barroso M, Trebak M, Chen C & Zhou J. 2012. The induction of YAP expression following arterial injury is crucial for smooth muscle phenotypic modulation and neointima formation. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 32:2662-9.
  • Spinelli A, González-Cobos JC, Zhang X, Motiani RK, Rowan S, Garrett J, Zhang W, Matrougui K, Vincent PA, Singer HA & Trebak M. 2012. STIM1 and Orai1 are upregulated in asthmatic mice and mediate PDGF-induced airway smooth muscle migration. Pflugers Arch-European Journal of Physiology.464: 481-92.
  • Motiani RK, Zhang X, Harmon KE, Keller RS, Matrougui K, Bennett JA & Trebak M. 2013. Orai3 is an Estrogen Receptor α-Regulated Ca2+ Channel that Promotes Tumorigenesis. The FASEB J. 27: 63-75.
  • Shinde AV, Motiani RK, Zhang X, Abdullaev IF, Adam AP, Gonzalez-Cobos JC, Matrougui K, Vincent PA & Trebak M. 2013. STIM1 Controls Endothelial Barrier Function Independently of Orai1 and Ca2+ Entry. Science Signaling. 6(267):ra18. (highlighted in perspective & cover article; Editors’ choice Science magazine)
  • González-Cobos JC, Zhang X, Zhang W, Ruhle B, Motiani RK, Schindl R, Muik M, Bisaillon JM, Shinde AV, Fahrner M, Singer HA, Matrougui K, Barroso M, Romanin C & Trebak M. 2013. Store-Independent Orai1/3 channels Activated by Intracrine LeukotrineC4: Role in Neointimal Hyperplasia. Circulation Research. 112(7):1013-25. (highlighted in editorial & cover article)
  • Merlet E, Atassi F, Motiani RK, Mougenot N, Jacquet A, Nadaud S, Capiod T, Trebak M, Lompré AM & Marchand A. 2013. miR-424/322 regulates vascular smooth muscle proliferation and differentiation by altering Ca2+ signaling and cyclin D1 expression. Cardiovascular Research. In Press.
  • Motiani RK, Hyzinski-Garcia M, Zhang X, Henkel M, Abdullaev IF, Kuo Y-H, Matrougui K, Mongin AA & Trebak M. 2013. Orai1-mediated ICRAC is essential for glioblastoma invasion. Pflugers Arch-European Journal of Physiology. In Press.

For additional publications please check PubMed at:

Invited University Lectures (selected):

  • Department of Physiology. University of Leuven, Belgium. 2009
  • Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Toronto. 2009
  • Department of Animal Sciences, University of Massachusetts Amherst. 2009
  • Department of Biochemistry; Temple University, Philadelphia PA. 2010
  • INSERM UMRS 956 – Faculté de Médecine Pierre et Marie Curie, Paris, France. 2010.
  • Department of Biophysics. Saarland University D-66421 Homburg; Germany. 2010.
  • Department of Pharmacology and Physiology. The University of Rochester NY. 2010.
  • The cardiovascular Research Center. Mount Sinai School of Medicine. New York. 2010.
  • Department of Pharmacology. Weil-Cornell College of Medicine. New York. 2011.
  • Department of Physiology. Tulane University, New Orleans LA. 2011
  • Department of Pharmacology. University of Illinois Chicago (UIC). 2011.
  • Institute of Environmental Medicine University of Pennsylvania. Philadelphia PA. 2011
  • Laboratory of Signal Transduction. NIEHS/NIH. Research Triangle Park NC. 2012.
  • Department of Pharmacology. University of Vermont. Burlington VT. 2012.

Invited Meeting/symposia presentations (selected)

  • European Calcium Society 3d Workshop. Seix (Toulouse) France. 2011. 
  • 17th International conference of Calcium binding proteins. Beijing China. 2011.
  • 3rd ion channel Structure, Function & Therapeutics meeting. Shanghai, China. 2011.
  • HERACLES Spanish scientific network. Barcelona, Spain. 2011. (Keynote Lecture)
  • Biophysical Society Meeting. Orai symposium. San Diego CA, USA. 2012.
  • Smooth muscle underground symposium. San Diego CA, USA. 2012.
  • Fourth International meeting Ion channels/oxidative stress. Turkey. 2012. (Session Chair)
  • Printemps de la Cardiologie. société française de cardiologie. Marseille, France. 2013
  • Gordon Research Conference “Calcium Signaling”. Barga, Italy. 2013. 
  • 10th International Congress on Cell Volume Regulation: Moscow, Russia. 2013. (Session Chair)
  • 2nd Conference on Impedance-Based Cellular Assays (IBCA 2013). Budapest, Hungary. 2013