Dr. Sweetwyne is a renal cell biologist who focuses on the cellular mechanisms aging kidneys and chronic kidney diseases. In the kidney, aging is accompanied by fibrotic changes to the kidney filtration units, known as the glomeruli. These changes lead to a functional decline in kidney filtration rates, which increases the risk of more severe damage with acute kidney injury and/or developing chronic kidney disease. Dr. Sweetwyne studies how the epithelial cells of renal glomerular filtration units respond to injuries accrued with age with an emphasis on how, and when, in a lifespan renal insults either elicit a return to homeostasis or lead to fibrotic kidney disease.
The kidney is the second most mitochondrial rich tissue in the body, which has led to the theory that age-accumulation of mitochondrial dysfunction might be one mechanism driving renal aging. Most recently, her work has supported this theory, by demonstrating that protection of mitochondrial structure in aged kidneys reduces the burden of aging glomerulosclerosis.
Academic and Medical Appointments
Acting Instructor - Department of Pathology July 2017 - Present
Acting Instructor - Department of Medicine, Division of Nephrology July 2016-2017
Education and Training
Ph.D Cell and Molecular Biology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, 2009
B.S. Zoology, University of Washington, 2003
B.S. Cell Biology, University of Washington, 2003
Latest publications from PubMed