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Kansas State University

The Rudy Clarenburg Lecture Series


Dr. Rudy Clarenburg
Dr. Rudy Clarenburg

The Rudy Clarenburg Lecture Series was established in 1996 to honor the late Rudolf Clarenburg, Professor of Anatomy and Physiology. The Lecture Series brings nationally and internationally acclaimed scientists to Kansas State University to discuss their research interests with students and faculty throughout the University. 

This Spring’s lecture series features Dr. Avril Somlyo, PhD; Professor of Molecular Physiology and Biological Physics, University of Virginia School of Medicine, Charlottesville, Va. Her lectures will be:

"Signaling pathways in smooth muscle and a novel role for N-cadherin in conduction in the heart"  April 24, 2006 at 4:00 p.m.

"Signaling by G-proteins, Rho-kinase and protein phosphatase to smooth muscle and non-muscle myosin II "  April 25, 2006 at 10:00 a.m.

Both seminars will be held in the Practice Management Center, Trotter Hall, College of Veterinary Medicine. Refreshments will be served at 3:30p.m. and 9:30a.m.

Dr. Avril Somlyo
Dr. Avril Somlyo

The molecular mechanisms of excitation-contraction coupling, contractile regulation and the basis of contraction in mammalian smooth and cardiac muscle in normal and pathological states are long-term interests of our laboratory. We are currently working on a signal transduction pathway in smooth muscle, which is activated when physiological transmitters or drugs bind to cell membrane receptors and lead to a marked increase in the sensitivity of the contractile proteins to calcium (Ca2+-sensitization). We have found that this G-protein-coupled process, which operates under physiological conditions, inhibits myosin light chain phosphatase, resulting in an increased population of phosphorylated (activated), cycling myosin motors. The phosphatase is a trimeric complex with a 130 kDa subunit which targets the activity to myosin. Current biochemical and molecular biological studies are directed to establishing the messengers between the membrane receptors/G-proteins and the myosin-associated phosphatase, as well as elucidating the mechanism of inhibition of the enzyme.

We are grateful that Dr. Somlyo will present the Rudy Clarenburg Lecture Series in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University. We hope you will attend her lectures.

For more information about Dr. Somlyo, please view her webpage at:


Former Clarenburg Lecturers

2004 Dr. Jim Riviere
2003 Dr. Jeanne M. Nerbonne
2002 Dr. Michael Welsh
2002 Dr. Gerald DiBona
2001 Dr. George A. Brooks
1999 Dr. Arthur "Buzz" Brown
1998 Dr. Clara Franzini-Armstrong
1998 Dr. Gordon Mitchell
1997 Dr. Kim Johnson
1997 Dr. Larry Sinoway