Jami Saloman, PhD

PhD – University of Maryland (2012)
B.A. – Boston University (2006)

Office: E1457 BSTWR
200 Lothrop Street,
Pittsburgh, PA 15261

Skype: jami.saloman
Phone: 412-383-5120
Fax: 412-624-3578
E-mail: jls354@pitt.edu

Research Interests:

The Saloman laboratory focuses on the role of sensory neurons in the development of tumors. This work is being conducted in collaboration with several members of the cancer center including Dr. Brian Davis (Neurobiology) whose research focuses on neural circuitry of the viscera and Dr. Nicole Scheff (Neurobiology) whose research focuses on head/neck cancer pain. Our recent studies indicate that neuro-immune interactions regulate both cancer pain and tumorigenesis. In collaboration with Dr. Dario Vignali (Immunology), our goal is to identify neuro-immune circuitry that can become the basis for early detection as well as new targets for novel therapies.

Another primary focus of the Saloman laboratory is understanding mechanisms underlying pain associated with complex multifactorial syndromes such as chronic pancreatitis. Utilizing both animal models and patient data, the Saloman lab is focused on differentiating molecular signatures associated with specific subtypes of pain arising from distinct pathologies that may be present (e.g. inflammation, nerve injury) and identifying novel targets for therapeutic development. In collaboration with the physician-scientists of the Pancreas Research Group, the laboratory is focused on using patient-reported data, sensory testing, and biochemical analyses to develop predictive tools to guide in treatment decisions for pain management.

Changes in sensory neurons are thought to contribute to pain associated with complex disorders including pancreatitis and cancer. Importantly, altered sensory neurons can directly contribute to the disease process itself. In addition to debilitating sensory deficits such as pain, recent studies suggest that dysregulated sensory neuron signaling directly alters progression of multiple diseases including cancer. The research in the Saloman laboratory utilizes anatomical, behavioral, optogenetics, calcium imaging as well as traditional cellular and molecular techniques to elucidate the role of the peripheral nervous system in regulating homeostasis as well as pathological conditions, including pain and tumorigenesis.

Nerves and Cancer. We and others have shown that early denervation of visceral organs, particularly pancreas, dramatically retards tumorigenesis. Currently, we are using a variety of in vivo and in vitro techniques including histology, immunhistochemistr, single cell multi-spectral imaging, flow cytometry, PCR and single cell molecular analyses to test the hypothesis that neuro-immune interactions drive the microenvironment toward a pro-tumorigenic state.

About Dr. Saloman:

Dr. Saloman is a member of the Pittsburgh Center for Pain Research, a multi-departmental center comprised of basic and clinical scientists focused on identifying molecular, cellular, and physiologic changes that occur in neuronal pathways that underlie persistent pain states that can develop in association with injury or disease.

Dr. Saloman is a member of the Biobehavioral Cancer Control Program in the UPMC Hillman Cancer Center (formerly the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute) that brings together a range of disciplines with the shared mission to engage in research that will advance the understanding, diagnosis and treatment of cancer.

The Saloman Lab is hiring. For more information email jls354@pitt.edu