Todd D Camenisch, PhD
Associate Professor and Director
  • Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology
    University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Phone: (520) 626-0240




Bachelor of Science: Microbiology and Immunology,

University of Arizona Tucson, Arizona


Doctor of Philosophy: Microbiology and Immunology

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina



Research Interest

Mechanisms of developmental cardiovascular toxicology, including environmental and drug related toxicities

Scientific Activities:

Research and Professional Experience

1989-1991:      Undergraduate Research Assistant, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.

                        Advisor: David Harris, Ph.D.

1991-1992:      Research Technician, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ

                        Advisor: David Harris, Ph.D.

1992-1998:      Doctoral Student, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC Advisor: H. S. Earp, M.D.

1998-2000:      Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Principle Investigator: J. A. McDonald, M.D., Ph.D.

2000-2002:      Research Associate,  Mayo Clinic Scottsdale, Scottsdale, AZ Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

2002-2008:      Assistant Professor, The University of Arizona, TucsonAZ, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, College of Pharmacy; Department of Molecular & Cellular Biology, The Steele Children's ResearchCenter and Bio5 Institute

2008-present:   Associate Professor, The University of Arizona, TucsonAZ

Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, College of Pharmacy; Department of Molecular & Cellular Biology, The Steele Children's Research Center, SWEHSC,Sarver Heart Center and Bio5 Institute

2011-2013:      Deputy Director, Superfund Research Program (P40) at the University of Arizona Hazardous Waste Risk and Remediation in the Southwest

2011-2016:      Co-founder and CEO, Arizona Cancer Therapeutics, LLC.

2013-: Director of Economic Development and Strategic Partnerships, College of Pharmacy, University of Arizona Community:     2000.   Chair, Judges- Central Arizona Regional Engineering and Science Fair

▪ 2009-2012:    member, Catalina Foothills School Board, Vice President 2011 and 2012

▪  2010:            Democrat Party nominee for LD30 State Senate

▪  2009-2012:  member, Arizona School Boards Association Advocate program

▪2011-2015:member, The University of Arizona Cancer Center Advisory Board

▪ 2011-2013:  member, task force on public health and environmental impact, community response Consortium on Forest Service environmental impact statement on regional mining

▪ 2012-2013:  Director of STEM education project between Superfund Research Program University of Arizona and Mountain View High School Marana Az.

▪2013-2014:    Co-organizer for Society of Toxicology K-12 Education outreach event; Annual  SOT Conference, Phoenix Az.

▪ 2012-:            member, Advisory Council for Marana Unified School District, Career and Technical Education Department, Biotechnology Mountain View High School


  1. Harris, D.T., Kapur, R., Frye, C., Acevedo, A., Camenisch, T.D., Jaso-Fredmann, L., and Evans, D.L.  A species conserved NK cell antigen receptor is a novel vimentin like molecule.  Dev. and Comp. Immunol. 16(5): 395-403, 1992.
  2. Harris, D.T., Camenisch, T.D., Jaso-Friedman, L., and Evans, D.  Expression of an evolutionary conserved function-associated molecule on sheep, horse, and cattle natural killer cells.  Veterinary Immunol. and Immunopathol. 38(3-4):273-282, 1993.
  3. Camenisch, T.D., Jaso-Friedman, L., Evans, D., and Harris, D.T.  Expression of a novel function-associated molecule on cells mediating spontaneous cytolysis in swine.  Dev. and Comp. Immunol. 17: 277-282, 1993.
  4. Nguyen, M., Camenisch, T., Snouwaert, J.N., Hicks, E., Coffman, T.M., Anderson, P.A., Malouf, N.N., Koller, B.H.  The prostaglandin receptor EP4 triggers remodelling of the cardiovascular system at birth.  Nature 390(6655):78-81, 1997.
  5. Camenisch, T. D.,Koller, B.H., Earp, H.S., Matsushima, G.K. A novel receptor tyrosine kinase, Mer, inhibits TNF-and lipopolysaccharide-induced endotoxic shock. J. Immunol. 162: 3498-3503, 1999.
  6. Lu, Q., Gore, M., Zhang, Q., Camenisch, T.D., Boast, S., Casagrande, F., Laio, C., Skinner, M., Klein, R., Matsushima, G.K., Earp, H.S., Goff, S.P. and Lemke. G. Tyro 3 family receptors are essential regulators of mammalian spermatogenesis. Nature 398: 723-728, 1999.
  7. Camenisch, T. D., Spicer, A. P., Brehm-Gibson, T., Biesterfeldt, J., Augustine, M.L., Calabro, A. Jr., Kubalak, S., Klewer, S.E., and McDonald, J.A. Disruption of hyaluronan synthase-2 abrogates normal cardiac morphogenesis and hyaluronan-mediated transformation of epithelium to mesenchyme. J. Clin. Invest. 106:349-360, 2000 (cover).
  8. Camenisch, T. D., and J. A. McDonald. Perspective: Hyaluronan-Is bigger better? Am. J. Respir. Cell. Mol. Biol. 23:1-3, 2000.
  9. Camenisch, T.D.,Biesterfeldt, J., Brehm-Gibson, T., Bradley, J., and McDonald, J.A. Regulation of cardiac cushion development by hyaluronan. Exp. Clin. Cardiol. 6:4-10, 2001.
  10. Dor., Y., Camenisch, T. D.,Itin, A., Fishman, G. I., McDonald, J. A., Carmeliet, P. and Keshet, E. A novel role for VEGF in endocardial cushion formation and its potential contribution to heart septation defects.  Development 128:1531-1538, 2001.
  11. Cohen, P.L., Caricchio, R., Abraham, V., Camenisch, T.D., Jennette, J.C., Roubey, R.A.S., Earp, H.S., Matsushima, G, and Reap, E.A. Delayed apoptotic cell clearance and Lupus-like autoimmunity in mice lacking the c-mertransmembrane tyrosine kinase. J Exp. Med. 196:135-140, 2002.
  12. Camenisch, T.D.,Molin, D.G.M., Person, A., Runyan, R., Gittenberger-de Groot, A.C., McDonald, J.A., and Klewer, S. E. Temporal and distinct TGFb ligand requirements during mouse and avian endocardial cushion morphogenesis. Dev. Biol. 248: 170-181, 2002.
  13. Camenisch, T. D., Schroeder, J. A., Bradley, J., Klewer, S. E., and McDonald, J. A. Heart-valve mesenchyme formation is dependent on hyaluronan-augmented activation of ErbB2-ErbB3 receptors. Nat. Medicine 8: 850-855, 2002.
  14. Dor, Y., Klewer, S.E., McDonald, J. A., Keshet, E., and Camenisch, T.D. VEGF modulates early heart valve formation. Anat. Rec. 271A: 202-208, 2003.
  15. Schroeder, J.A., Adriance, M.C., Thompson, M.C., Camenisch, T.D., and Gendler, S. J. MUC1 alters β-catenin-dependent tumor formation and promotes cellular invasion.Oncogene 22: 1324-1332, 2003.
  16. Enciso, J.M., Gratzinger, D., Camenisch, T.D.,Canosa, S., Pinter, E., and Madri, J.A. Elevated glucose inhibits VEGF-A-mediated endocardial cushion formation: modulation by PECAM-1 and MMP-2. J. Cell Biol. 160: 605-615, 2003.
  17. Schroeder, J.A., Jackson, L.F., Lee, D.C., and Camenisch, T.D. Form and Function of developing heart valves: coordination by extracellular matrix and growth factor signaling. J Mol Med. 81: 392-403, 2003.
  18. McDonald, J.A., and Camenisch, T.D.Hyaluronan: Genetic insights into the complex biology of a simple polysaccharide. Glycoconjugate J. 19: 331-339, 2003.
  19. Camenisch, T. D., Lopez, J.I., Stevens, M. V., Sands, B. J., McDonald, J. A. and Schroeder, J. A. CD44 attenuates metastatic invasion during breast cancer progression. Cancer Res 65: 6755-6763, 2005.  Research Article
  20. Klewer, S. E., Yatskievych, T., Pogreba, K., Antin, P.B., and Camenisch, T.D. Defining Has2 expression during cardiogenesis and its insusceptibility to BMP regulation. Gene Exp. 6: 462-470, 2006.
  21. Stevens, M.V., Parker, P., Vaillancourt, R. R., and Camenisch, T.D.MEKK4 regulates developmental EMT in the embryonic heart.Dev. Dyn. 235: 2761 – 2770, 2006.
  22. Rodgers, L., Lalani, S., Hardy, K., Xiang, X., Broka, D., Antin, P.B., and Camenisch, T.D. Depolymerized hyaluronan induces VEGF, a negative regulator of developmental epithelial to mesenchymal transformation. Circ. Res 99: 583-589, 2006.
  23. Seitz, H.M. Camenisch, T.D., Lemke, G., H. Shelton Earp, and Matsushima, G. K. Macrophages and dendritic cells use different Axl/Mertk/Tyro3 receptors in clearance of apoptotic cells. J Immunol. 178: 5635-5642. 2007.
  24. Rodgers L.S. Lalani, S., Runyan, R.B., and Camenisch, T.D. Differential growth and multicellular villi direct proepicardial translocation to the developing mouse heart. DevDyn. 237: 145-152, 2008. PMC2698440
  25. Stevens, M.V., Broka, D.B., Parker, P., Rogowitz, R., Vaillancourt, R.R., and Camenisch, T.D. MEKK3 mediates TGF-dependent epithelial to mesenchymal transformation during endocardial cushion morphogenesis. Circ. Res. 103: 1430-1440. 2008. PMC 2728220.
  26. Camenisch, T.D., Brilliant, M. H., and Segal D.J. Critical parameters for genome editing using zinc finger nucleases. Mini Rev Med Chem. 8: 669-676, 2008.
  27. Hays A.M., Lantz, R.C., Rodgers, L.S., Sollome, J.J., Vaillancourt, R.R., Andrew, A.S., Hamilton, J.W., and Camenisch, T.D. Arsenic downregulates vascular matrix. Tox. Pathol. 36: 805-817, 2008.PMC2875876
  28. Craig, E. A., Stevens, M. V., Vaillancourt, R.R., and Camenisch, T.D. MAP3Ks central regulators of cell fate during development. Dev. Dynamics. 237: 3102-4114. 2008. PMC 18855897
  29. Park E.J., Watanabe, Y., Smyth, G., Miyagawa-Tomita, S., Meyers, E., Klingensmith, J., Camenisch, T.D., Buckingham, M., and Moon, A.M. An FGF autocrine loop, initiated in second heart field mesoderm, regulates morphogenesis at the arterial pole of the heart. Development, 135: 3599-3610. 2008.PMC 2771204
  30. Rodgers, L., Schnurr D., Broka D., and Camenisch T.D., An improved protocol for the isolation and cultivation of embryonic mouse myocytes. Cytotechnology, 59: 93-102. 2009. PMC 2698440
  31. Craig, E.A., Camenisch, T.D., Size dependent regulation of Snail-2 by hyaluronan: its role in cellular invasion. J Glycobiology, 19, 890-898.2009.PMC 2704900
  32. Meadows, K.N. Iyer, S., Stevens, M.V., Wang, D., Shechter, S., Perruzzi, C.A., Camenisch, T.D., and Benjamin, L.E. Akt promotes endocardial-mesenchyme transition. J.Angio Res. 1:2 .2009. PMC 2776235
  33. Involvement of the MEKK1 signaling pathway in the regulation of epicardial cell behavior by hyaluronan. Craig, E. A., Parker, P., Austin, A.F., Barnett, J. V., and Camenisch, T.D. Cellular Signaling 22: 968-976. 2010. PMC 2846756
  34. Craig, E. A., Austin, A.F., Vaillancourt, R.R., Barnett, J. V., and Camenisch, T.D. Exp Cell Research. TGFb2 mediated production of hyaluronan is important for the induction of epicardial cell differentiation and invasion. Exp. Cell. Res. 316: 3397-3405. 2010.PMC3397912
  35. Lucinas, A., Broka, D., Konieczka, J., Klewer, S.E., Antin, P., Camenisch, T.D., and Runyan R. Arsenic exposure perturbs EMT and gene expression in a collagen gel assay. Tox. Sci. 116:273-285. 2010. PMC2886855
  36. Soria, S.P., and Camenisch, T.D. ErbB signaling in cardiac development and disease. Seminars in Cell and Dev. Biol. 21:929-935. 2010.PMC3032360
  37. Azhar, M., Brown, K., Gard, C., Chen, H., Rajan, S., Elliot, D., Stevens, M., Camenisch, T.D., Conway, S., and Doetschman, T. Transforming growth factor beta2 is required for valve remodeling during heart development. Dev. Dynamics. 240:2127-2141. 2011. PMC3337781
  38. Ellis, S.L., Grassinger, J., Jones, A., Borg, J., Camenisch, T. Haylock, D., Bertoncello, I, and Nilsson, SK. The relationship between bone, hemopoietic stem cells, and vasculature. Blood 118: 1516-1524. 2011. PMID21673348
  39. Sanchez, N.S., Hill, C.R., Love, J.D., Soslow, J.H., Craig, E.A., Austin, A.F., Brown, C.B., Czirok, A., Camenisch, T.D., and Barnett, J.V. The cytoplasmic domain of TGFbR3 through its interaction with the scaffolding protein, GIPC, directs epicardial cell behavior. Dev. Biol. 358: 331-343. 2011. PMC3183347
  40. Sanchez-Soria, P., Broka, D., Monks, S.L., and Camenisch, T.D. Chronic low-level arsenite exposure through drinking water increases blood pressure and promotes left ventricular hypertrophy. Tox. Pathol. 40: 504-512.2012.PMC3593732
  41. Doetschman, T., Barnett, J.V., Runyan, R.B. Camenisch, T.D., Heimark, R.L., Granzier, H.L., Conway, S.J., and Azhar, M. Transforming growth factor beta signaling in adult cardiovascular diseases and repair. Cell and Tissue Research 347: 203-223. 2012. PMC3328790
  42. Druwe, I.L., Sollome, J.J., Sanchez-Soria, P., Hardwick, R.N., Camenisch, T.D., and Vaillancourt, R.R.Arsenite activates NFkB through induction of C-reactive protein. Toxicol. Appl. Pharmacol. 261(3): 263-270. 2012. PMC3598891
  43. Allison, P., Huang, T., Parker, P., Broka, D., Barnett, J.V., and Camenisch, T.D. Disruption of canonical TGF-beta signaling in murine coronary progenitor cells by low level arsenic. Toxicol. Appl. Pharmacol. 272: 147-153. 2013. PMC3972124PMID23732083
  44. Sollome, J., Thavathiru, E., Camenisch, T.D. and Vaillancourt, R.R., MTK1 Signals Through HER2/HER3 and Heregulin to Regulate Extracellular Acidification and Cell Migration through MTK1(MEKK4). Cellular Signaling. 26, 70-82. 2013. PMC24036211
  45. Sanchez-Soria, P. Broka, D., Quach, S., Hardwick, R.N., Cherrington, N.J., and Camenisch, T.D., Fetal exposure to arsenic results in hyperglycemia, hypercholesterolemia, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease in adult mice. J. Toxicol. and Health.1:1, 2014.
  46. Huang, T. Barnett, J., and Camenisch, T.D. Cardiac Epithelial Mesenchymal Transition is Blocked by Monomethylarsonous Acid (III). Toxicol. Sciences. 142, 225-238. 2014. PMID25145660
  47. Allison, P., Espiritu, D., Barnett, J.V.., and Camenisch, T.D. Type III TGFb Receptor and Src direct hyaluronan-mediated invasive cell motility. Cell Signal. 27(3), 453-459. 2014. PMID25499979
  48. Huang, T., Ditzel, E., Perrera, A., Broka, D.M., and Camenisch, T.D. Arsenite disrupts Zinc-dependentTGFb-SMAD activityduring murine cardiac progenitor cell differentiation. Tox Sciences. 148(2), 409-420. 2015.
  49. Broka, D.B., Ditzel, E., Quach, S. and Camenisch,T.D.  Methylation of Inorganic Arsenic by embryonic fetal tissue explants. Drug and Chemical Toxicology. 1-5, Oct. 7 2015.
  50. Ditzel, E., Nguyen, T., Parker, P., and Camenisch, T.D. Effects of arsenite exposure during fetal development on energy metabolism and susceptibility to diet-induced fatty liver disease in male mice. Environ Health Perspectives. 124 (2), 201-209. 2016.
  51. Allison, P., Espiritu, D., and Camenisch, T.D. BMP2 rescues deficient cell migration in Tgfbr3-/- epicardial cells and requires Src kinase. Cell Adhesion and Migration. 10 (3), 259-268.2016.PMCID: PMC4951173
  52. Cholanians, A.B., Phan, A.V., Ditzel, E., Camenisch, T.D., Lau, S., Monks, T.J., Arsenic induces accumulation of alpha-synuclein: Implications for synucleinopathies and neurodegeneration. Toxicol Sciences. 153 (2), 271-281. 2016.
  53. Ditzel, E.J., Li, H., Foy, C.E., Perrera, A.B., Parker, P., Cherrington, N.J., and Camenisch, T.D., Altered hepatic transport by fetal arsenic exposure in diet-induced fatty liver disease. J BiochemMol Toxicology. 2016.
Book Chapters
  1. Runyan, R. Heimark, R. Camenisch, T. D.and Klewer, S. E. Epithelial-Mesechymal transformation in the embryonic heart. In Rise and Fall of Epithelial Phenotype, P. Savagner Ed. KluwerAcademic/Plenum Publishers. 2004
  2. Camenisch, T. D., Runyan, R. and Markwald R. R. Molecular Regulation of Cushion Morphogenesis, chapter 6. In Heart Development and Regeneration, N. Rosenthal and R. Harvery Ed. Elsevier Publishers. 2010.
  3. Ramos, K.S., Camenisch, T.D., and He Q. Technological advances and predictive assays in molecular toxicology. In Reference Module in Biomedical Sciences. Submitted, 2016.

Environmental and Toxicological Studies-flyer