Robin C. Muise-Helmericks

Robin C. Muise-Helmericks, Ph.D.
Associate Professor

Room 654, Basic Science Building
Office: (843) 792-4760

Email: musehelm@musc.edu


AA Zoology Palm Beach Junior College 1981
BS Microbiology Florida Atlantic University 1984
PhD University of Florida 1991

Research Interests:

Our laboratory focuses on the molecular regulation of angiogenesis by the Akt family of kinases. We are particularly interested in the role of these kinases during angiogenesis as they pertain to metabolism, development and cutaneous wound healing. Our work can be divided into two major subject areas.

Mitochondrial Homeostasis and Angiogenesis: We have shown a pivotal role for Akt3 in the regulation of mitochondrial biogenesis and homeostasis through regulation of PGC-1, a transcriptional co-activator of nuclear encoded mitochondrial genes via its regulation by nuclear export. This pathway links mitochondrial fitness to angiogenic responses and to cell division. These findings are important because endothelial cells (like other plastic or “stem-like” cells) require specific controls for genomic stability to promote reactivation of quiescent vasculature to active angiogenic endothelium.

Tissue Regeneration using a marine derived nanofiber: We are interested in the molecular pathways stimulated by a marine derived nanofiber (pGlcNAc, TalyMed© http://talymed.com/) that results in increased wound repair in cutaneous wound healing models. Our studies are in collaboration with Marine Polymer Inc. This nanofiber stimulates Akt1 dependent pathways that lead to increased angiogenesis via Ets1 activation and increased innate immunity and anti-bacterial activities. Our new findings show that nanofiber stimulation reduces scarring and increases tensile strengths of the wound. Our current projects are geared to understand the underlying pathways which produce optimal tissue regeneration.


  1. Lindner HB, Felmly LM, Demcheva M, Seth A, Norris R, Bradshaw AD, Vournakis J, Muise-Helmericks RC. "pGlcNAc Nanofiber Treatment of Cutaneous Wounds Stimulate Increased Tensile Strength and Reduced Scarring via Activation of Akt1." PLoS One. (2015) 10(5):e0127876 [PMID: 25955155 PMCID: PMC4425470]
  2. Corum, D. G., P. N. Tsichlis and R. C. Muise-Helmericks. "Akt3 Controls Mitochondrial Biogenesis and Autophagy Via Regulation of the Major Nuclear Export Protein Crm-1." FASEB J, (2014) 28(1):395-407 [PMID: 24081905]
  3. Gentile, C., R. C. Muise-Helmericks and C. J. Drake. "Vegf-Mediated Phosphorylation of Enos Regulates Angioblast and Embryonic Endothelial Cell Proliferation." Dev Biol 373, no. 1 (2013): 163-75 [PMID: 23103584]
  4. Beeson CC, Beeson GC, Buff H, Eldridge J, Zhang A, Seth A, Demcheva M, Vournakis JN, Muise-Helmericks RC. Integrin-dependent Akt1 activation regulates PGC-1 expression and fatty acid oxidation.  J Vasc Res. 2012;49(2):89-100. doi: 10.1159/000332326. Epub 2012 Jan 13.
  5. Muise-Helmericks RC, Demcheva M, Vournakis JN, Seth A. Poly-N-acetyl glucosamine fibers activate bone regeneration in a rabbit femur injury model.  J Trauma. 2011 Aug;71(2 Suppl 1):S194-6.
  6. Lindner HB, Zhang A, Eldridge J, Demcheva M, Tsichlis P, Seth A, Vournakis J, Muise-Helmericks RCAnti-bacterial effects of poly-N-acetyl-glucosamine nanofibers in cutaneous wound healing: requirement for Akt1.  PLoS One. 2011 Apr 29;6(4):e18996. Erratum in: PLoS One. 2011;6(7). doi: 10.1371/annotation/3966fcd7-6127-45e0-80e6-55063875e826. Tsichilis, Philip [corrected to Tsichlis, Philip].
  7. Liby TA, Spyropoulos P, Buff Lindner H, Eldridge J, Beeson C, Hsu T, Muise-Helmericks RC. Akt3 controls vascular endothelial growth factor secretion and angiogenesis in ovarian cancer cells.  Int J Cancer. 2012 Feb 1;130(3):532-43. doi: 10.1002/ijc.26010. Epub 2011 Apr 20.
  8. Scherer SS, Pietramaggiori G, Matthews J, Perry S, Assmann A, Carothers A, Demcheva M, Muise-Helmericks RC, Seth A, Vournakis JN, Valeri RC, Fischer TH, Hechtman HB, Orgill DP. Poly-N-acetyl glucosamine nanofibers: a new bioactive material to enhance diabetic wound healing by cell migration and angiogenesis.  Ann Surg. 2009 Aug;250(2):322-30. Erratum in: Ann Surg.2009 Oct;250(4):661.
  9. Wright GL, Maroulakou IG, Eldridge J, Liby TL, Sridharan V, Tsichlis PN, Muise-Helmericks RC. VEGF stimulation of mitochondrial biogenesis: requirement of AKT3 kinase.  FASEB J. 2008 Sep;22(9):3264-75. Epub 2008 Jun 4.
  10. Sridharan V, Guichard J, Li CY, Muise-Helmericks R, Beeson CC, Wright GL. Am O(2)-sensing signal cascade: clamping of O(2) respiration, reduced ATP utilization, and inducible fumarate respiration.  J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2008 Jul;295(1):C29-37. Epub 2008 May 7.
  11. Bujor AM, Pannu J, Bu S, Smith EA, Muise-Helmericks RC, Trojanowska M. Akt blockade downregulates collagen and upregulates MMP1 in human dermal fibroblasts.  J Invest Dermatol. 2008 Aug;128(8):1906-14. Epub 2008 Mar 6.
  12. Vournakis JN, Eldridge J, Demcheva M, Muise-Helmericks RC. Poly-N-acetyl glucosamine nanofibers regulate endothelial cell movement and angiogenesis: dependency on integrin activation of Ets1.  J Vasc Res. 2008;45(3):222-32. Epub 2007 Dec 19.
  13. Higuchi T, Bartel FO, Masuya M, Deguchi T, Henderson KW, Li R, Muise-Helmericks RC, Kern MJ, Watson DK, Spyropoulos DD. Thymomegaly, microsplenia, and defective homeostatic proliferation of peripheral lymphocytes in p51-Ets1 isoform-specific null mice.  Mol Cell Biol. 2007 May;27(9):3353-66. Epub 2007 Mar 5.
  14. Fieber CB, Eldridge J, Taha TA, Obeid LM, Muise-Helmericks RC. Modulation of total Akt kinase by increased expression of a single isoform: requirement of the sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor, Edg3/S1P3, for the VEGF-dependent expression of Akt3 in primary endothelial cells. Exp Cell Res. 2006 Apr 15;312(7):1164-73. Epub 2006 Mar 9.
  15. Grund EM, Muise-Helmericks RC. Cost efficient and effective gene transfer into the human natural killer cell line, NK92. J Immunol Methods. 2005 Jan;296(1-2):31-6. Epub 2004 Nov 24.
  16. Grund EM, Spyropoulos DD, Watson DK, Muise-Helmericks RC. Interleukins 2 and 15 regulate Ets1 expression via ERK1/2 and MNK1 in human natural killer cells. J Biol Chem. 2005 Feb 11;280(6):4772-8. Epub 2004 Nov 23.
  17. Yordy JS, Li R, Sementchenko VI, Pei H, Muise-Helmericks RC, Watson DK. SP100 expression modulates ETS1 transcriptional activity and inhibits cell invasion. Oncogene. 2004 Aug 26;23(39):6654-65.
  18. Lavenburg KR, Ivey J, Hsu T, Muise-Helmericks RC. Coordinated functions of Akt/PKB and ETS1 in tubule formation. FASEB J. 2003 Dec;17(15):2278-80. Epub 2003 Oct 2.
  19. Maroulakou IG, Muise-Helmericks RC. Guide to techniques in creating transgenic mouse models using SV40 T antigen. Methods Mol Biol. 2001;165:269-86.
  20. Yordy JS, Muise-Helmericks RC. Signal transduction and the Ets family of transcription factors. Oncogene. 2000 Dec 18;19(55):6503-13.
  21. Muise-Helmericks RC, Grimes HL, Bellacosa A, Malstrom SE, Tsichlis PN, Rosen N. Cyclin D expression is controlled post-transcriptionally via a phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/Akt-dependent pathway. J Biol Chem. 1998 Nov 6;273(45):29864-72.
  22. Muise-Helmericks RC, Rosen N. Identification of a novel repressive element in the proximal lck promoter. J Biol Chem. 1995 Nov 17;270(46):27538-43.
  23. Muise RC, Hauswirth WW. Selective DNA amplification regulates transcript levels in plant mitochondria. Curr Genet. 1995 Jul;28(2):113-21.
Last updated on 06-Oct-2015

¬© 2015  Medical University of South Carolina | Disclaimer