Our Team

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Dr. Buford is an Associate Professor in the UAB Department of Medicine and Associate Director of the UAB Nathan Shock Center and the Center for Exercise Medicine. Dr. Buford has also been honored as a named Fellow within the American College of Sports Medicine, the American Heart Association, and the Gerontological Society of America.

Thomas W. Buford, PhD

Principal Investigator

Liliana Baptista, PhD

Post-Doctoral Fellow

A native of Portugal, Dr. Baptista completed her doctorate in Sport Sciences at the University of Coimbra. During her PhD work, she earned the Early Career Researcher award by the International Society of Exercise Immunology. Her research interests focus on how exercise and/ or medications can improve physical function during late-life.

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Lisa Roberts, PhD

Post-Doctoral Fellow

Dr. Buchanan earned her doctorate from the University of Florida in Applied Physiology and Kinesiology. Her research interests include understanding how exercise and pain impact mobility and cardiovascular function of older adults. She is also a postdoctoral trainee on the NIH-funded MERIT program focused on enhancing the teaching and research experiences of underrepresented groups.

Christy Carter, PhD

Principal Investigator

Dr. Carter is an Associate Professor in the UAB Department of Medicine, Investigator in the UAB Evelyn McKnight Brain Institute and co-Leader of the UAB Nathan Shock Center Research Enhancement Core. Dr. Carter is a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America and an active member of the American Aging Association (AGE).

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Abbi Hernandez, PhD

Post-Doctoral Fellow

Dr. Hernandez received her PhD in Biomedicine/Neuroscience from the University of Florida, where she then did a one-year Postdoc Teaching Fellowship. She is currently funded through the UAB Interdisciplinary Training in Pathobiology and Rehabilitation Medicine Program T32. She is interested in the intersection between metabolic health and biological/cognitive aging.

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Yi Sun, PhD

Post-Doctoral Fellow

Dr. Yi Sun is originally from China, where she received her bachelor degree in Sports Science from Beijing Sport University. She then obtained her doctorate from the University of Illinois. Dr. Sun is currently working on pre-clinical studies evaluating the effects of pharmacologic activation of the ACE2/Ang (1-7) axis and physical exercise in late life. 

YouFeng Yang, MD, PhD

Dr. Yang earned his doctorate degree in Cell Biology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Dr. Yang helps to lead the protein and tissue study in our preclinical and clinical projects. His research interests focus on the modification of muscle tissue through exercise and/or medications in late-life.

Sujitha Peramsetty

Undergrad Research Assistant

Sujitha Peramsetty is an undergraduate student assistant in the TEAM Lab. She is a junior biomedical engineering student in the pre-medical track. Sujitha mainly works with tissue homogenization, protein assays, and Western blots.

Anisha Banerjee, MS

Research Assistant

Anisha received her master's in Medical Biochemistry (2016), Master's in Multidisciplinary Biomedical Sciences (2019). Currently working as a Research Assistant in the TEAM lab primarily working on animal and biochemistry experiments.

Anthony Knighton

Undergrad Research Assistant

Anthony Knighton is currently an undergraduate student assistant. He is currently studying biochemistry and is on the pre-MD/PhD track. Anthony mainly works with the gene expression analysis, such as the Polymerase Chain Reaction as well as RNA isolation and quality control.