Buttrick & Walker Lab


Dr. Buttrick and Dr. Walker are long-standing collaborators focused on molecular mechanisms underlying heart failure.

Peter M. Buttrick, MD

Chief, Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine

S. Gilbert Blount Endowed Professor

Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus 
12700 E. 19th Ave B-139 
Aurora, CO 80045 
Phone: (303) 724-2089


Lori A. Walker, PhD

Associate Professor

Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine

University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus 
12700 E. 19th Ave B-139 
Aurora, CO 80045 
Phone: (303) 724-5420

Fax: (303) 724-5450

The Buttrick & Walker lab groups are focused on molecular mechanisms underlying heart failure. To approach this broad area, we have analyzed molecular adaptations that lead to biochemical alterations in the sarcomere, with a particular focus on kinase dependent signaling. We have also developed functional assays (isolated sarcomere and myofilament preparations) to evaluate the functional significance of these alterations. Historically, we have relied heavily on transgenic mouse models of disease but more recently we have employed human tissue specimens to confirm findings generated using murine models. Most recently we have begun exploring the plasticity of the adult cardiac myocyte in order to harness its regenerative capabilities. We have shown that we are able to induce dedifferentiation of the cardiomyocyte to a more neonatal like phenotype with renewed ability to proliferate. Harnessing the plasticity of the cardiomyocyte (previously thought to be terminally differentiated) promises to open a new avenue of therapeutic treatment for cardiac disease and injury.

FacultyPeter ButtrickMD
FacultyLori WalkerPhD
Post Doctoral FellowHadi Ali, PhD

B.A., English, B.A.,

Philosophy, Tufts University

Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine, University of Bridgeport College of Naturopathic Medicine

Master of Acupuncture, Institute of Taoist Education and Acupuncture

PhD, Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of Colorado

Proteomic regulation of cardiomyocyte fate
Research AssistantYanmei DuBachelor of Science

Bruns DR, Tatman PD, Kalkur RS, Brown RD, Stenmark KR, Buttrick PM, Walker LA. The right ventricular fibroblast secretome drives cardiomyocyte dedifferentiation. PLoS One. 2019;14(8):e0220573. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0220573. eCollection 2019. PubMed PMID: 31374110; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6677314.


Chi C, Leonard A, Knight WE, Beussman KM, Zhao Y, Cao Y, Londono P, Aune E, Trembley MA, Small EM, Jeong MY, Walker LA, Xu H, Sniadecki NJ, Taylor MR, Buttrick PM, Song K. LAMP-2B regulates human cardiomyocyte function by mediating autophagosome-lysosome fusion. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2019 Jan 8;116(2):556-565. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1808618116. Epub 2018 Dec 24. PubMed PMID: 30584088; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6329949.


Bruns DR, Walker LA. Exercise and Pharmacology as Medicine for Cardiovascular Diseases: From Bench to Bedside and Back. Exerc Sport Sci Rev. 2018 Jan;46(1):2-3. doi: 10.1249/JES.0000000000000133. PubMed PMID: 28902725.


Bruns DR, Buttrick PM, Walker LA. Genetic ablation of interleukin-18 does not attenuate hypobaric hypoxia-induced right ventricular hypertrophy. Am J Physiol Lung Cell Mol Physiol. 2016 Mar 15;310(6):L542-50. doi: 10.1152/ajplung.00166.2015. Epub 2016 Jan 8. PubMed PMID: 26747780; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4796262.


Zhao Y, Londono P, Cao Y, Sharpe EJ, Proenza C, O'Rourke R, Jones KL, Jeong MY, Walker LA, Buttrick PM, McKinsey TA, Song K. High-efficiency reprogramming of fibroblasts into cardiomyocytes requires suppression of pro-fibrotic signalling. Nat Commun. 2015 Sep 10;6:8243. doi: 10.1038/ncomms9243. PubMed PMID: 26354680; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4579788.


Bruns DR, Brown RD, Stenmark KR, Buttrick PM, Walker LA. Mitochondrial integrity in a neonatal bovine model of right ventricular dysfunction. Am J Physiol Lung Cell Mol Physiol. 2015 Jan 15;308(2):L158-67. doi: 10.1152/ajplung.00270.2014. Epub 2014 Nov 21. PubMed PMID: 25416385; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4338944.