Dr. Elizabeth Kovacs joins TACS facultyDepartment of Surgery | University of Colorado School of Medicine Aug 31, 2016
Dr. Kovacs attended Reed College before earning her PhD in Cell Biology at the University of Vermont. She completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Immunoregulation, Biological Response Modifiers Program at the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health and an Executive Leadership Fellowship in Academic Medicine (ELAM) Program for Women at Drexel University.
For more than two decades, her laboratory has been studying models of tissue injury and repair with a focus on the role of leukocytes and inflammatory mediators. She has also worked with leukocyte subsets isolated from the blood and lung of burn patients with inhalation injury, smokers, drinkers and lung transplant recipients, as well as the blood, lungs, liver, intestine and skin obtained from mice subjected to injury. Much of her recent work revolves around immune and inflammatory responses in the context of healthy aging and the effects of injury or infection in the aged. Further, she has been studying the combined insult of binge alcohol intoxication and injury, exploring the role of leukocyte subsets, fibroblasts, and endothelial and epithelial cells in end-organ damage. The laboratory is actively examining both mechanisms of action and therapeutic interventions designed to manipulate the inflammatory milieu and restore normal tissue architecture.
Dr. Kovacs has published over 200 manuscripts in diverse journals such as Journal of Leukocyte Biology, Antioxidant and Redox Signaling, The American Journal of Physiology, The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, and Nature Immunology. She has mentored more than 100 trainees in her laboratory ranging from high school students to visiting professors. The majority of trainees have been graduate students in the PhD and MD/PhD tracks and PhD postdoctoral fellows, along with a handful of surgical residents.
Dr. Kovacs was the PI of an NIH-funded T32 Institutional Training Program for 14 years prior to relocating her lab to the University of Colorado Denver. She also serves or has served as the sponsor/co-sponsor of a dozen NIH-funded National Research Service Awards (F30, F31 and F32) grants and Mentor Clinician Scientist Career Development K23 grants. She has served on numerous NIH Study Sections and was the President of the Society of Leukocyte Biology. She is on the Editorial Board of Cytokine, Alcohol, Journal of Burn Care and Research, and Shock. She has received the Distinguished Service Award from the American Association of Immunologists. In addition to serving as the Director of Burn Research, she is a Faculty Member in the Immunology Graduate Program and the Medical Scientist Training Program and a member of the Colorado Pulmonary-Alcohol Research Consortium and the Mucosal Inflammation Program.