Current Students

Karen Howard

Karen Howard

PhD (3rd year)

Department: Cell & Developmental Biology
Advisor: Kenneth Mann, PhD

Research Interests

Why MD/PhD: I completed a MS in Natural Sciences specializing in Immunology at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, and this research experience led me to discover I wanted to add an extra dimension to my medical training by becoming a physician scientist. I realized I wanted to be at the forefront of medicine, and I wanted the training to be able to address that desire.

Why Upstate: The research available, the prospective mentors I met with, the wonderful interview experience, and the location all perfectly suited my needs and expectations for the program. I wanted to make sure for such a long and arduous academic career that I would, above all, be happy. I have not been disappointed!

Research Interests: Orthopedic surgery research, osteoimmunology, cancer biology, oncology.

Research Project: I’m researching causes of aseptic loosening in total knee replacements (TKRs). Upstate is one of the few research centers with access to postmortem retrieved TKRs, which allows us to examine traits and objective measurements of successful TKRs, rather than revision retrievals (failed TKRs). My project is to determine if a quantitative relationship exists between the amount of polyethylene wear debris and the amount of trabecular bone resorption at the cement-bone interface. I am also querying fluid shear stress as an alternative cause of aseptic loosening.

Extracurricular hobbies: Martial arts, comics, painting, hiking, camping, cooking.

What do you love about Syracuse: I love the environment the most. There are the advantages of the smaller, tight knit community while still being in a major city—and great hiking is right down the road!