Parvatiyar Lab

The Parvatiyar lab is focused on understanding on how remodeling of proteins in the cardiac sarcolemma influences cardiac function as well as the development of cardiometabolic disease. We have found an intriguing role for a sarcolemma protein in the persistence of chronic inflammation that appears to exacerbate cardiac and metabolic dysfunction. Ongoing studies are examining immune signaling and metabolic pathways to better understand factors affecting the communication between adipocytes and cells in the heart.

Faculty / Staff


Michelle Parvatiyar, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor, Lab Director

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Michelle S. Parvatiyar, Ph.D. (PI) – Michelle is from southern Ohio and has a background in molecular genetics, biochemistry and a Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the University of Miami, School of Medicine, Miami, FL. Her research interests have included understanding how variants in sarcomeric proteins can cause hereditary cardiomyopathies, chromatin remodeling in heart failure and stabilizing the sarcolemma to improve cardiac function in Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Michelle obtained her postdoctoral training at UCLA. Her outside interests being outdoors, equestrian sports and the arts.


Isela Valera, Ph.D. Immunology

Research Associate

Isela C. Valera, M.S, Ph.D. (Assistant in Research) – Isela is originally from Los Angeles, CA but grew up in Guadalajara, Mexico. She received her M.S. and Ph.D. in Immunology from the University of Guadalajara. Isela has expertise in autoimmunity and innate immune pathways and received her postdoctoral training in Spain and UCLA. Isela has multiple outside interests one of which is NFL football.

Current Students

Aaron Matthews M.S.,

PhD Student

Coming Soon

Omid Rouzbehani M.S.,

PhD Student

Coming Soon

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Aida Rahimi Kahmini,

Student, Lab Assistant

Aida Rahimi Kahmini “I received my B.Sc. in Radiology from the Medical University of Kurdistan, Iran. I worked for two years in a Cath-Lab where we were diagnosing heart diseases using X-Ray. I am fascinated in muscle and heart diseases related research topics. Outside of science I enjoy hanging out, traveling, cooking and watching movies.”


Rhiannon Crawford,

Student, Lab Assistant

Rhiannon Crawford “I am a sophomore majoring in Biological Science. I’m interested in pursuing an M.D./PhD in the future and am using my time in Dr. Parvatiyar’s lab to learn more about how mutations cause diseases and can affect patients. Working in this lab and those in it, my research interest and knowledge has grown considerably and I hope to continue participating in research while helping others further through clinical work as well.”

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Victoria Kwiat,

Student, Lab Assistant

Victoria Kwiat “As a pre-med student majoring in cell and molecular neuroscience, I am constantly amazed at how research continues to provide valuable information regarding medical care. Through working with Dr. Parvatiyar and her team, I have been able to uncover facets of autoimmunity and cardiology which are subjects that hold a special place in my heart. My experiences in the lab from publishing to sharing my passion for research with others further fuel my excitement for conducting impactful research.”

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Jaelynn Florence,

Student, Lab Assistant

Jaelynn Florence “Greetings, my name is Jaelynn Florence and I am a Junior, majoring in Exercise Physiology. While I aspire to become a dentist, I do have a strong interest in cardiac functions and disease. Some of my other interests include yoga and live music. Additional research I have conducted stems from the UROP program, where we focused on activities of daily life and instrumental activities of daily life of older patients post-open-heart surgery.”

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Reese Rutherford,

Student, Lab Assistant

Reese Rutherford “I am from Madison, Florida and majoring in Exercise Physiology. My career goals include attending FSU’s medical school to become an orthopedic surgeon. I was valedictorian of my 2019 graduating high school class at MCHS. While in high school, I dual-enrolled at North Florida College and received my Associate of Arts degree before graduating high school while working on my prerequisites for medical school. I graduated from high school and North Florida College both with the highest honors, summa cum laude. During my time at North Florida College, I worked in a microbiology lab as a lab assistant for two years. I am a senior and will graduate from FSU this December. I have a passion/interest in anatomy, organic chemistry, cellular biology, sport science, and neuroscience.”

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Sonu Patel,

Student, Lab Assistant

Sonu Patel “I am a freshman undergraduate student majoring in exercise physiology. I have basic research experience and I plan on furthering my knowledge on cell biology research at Dr. Parvatiyar’s Lab. In the future, I am interested in pursuing a career in the medical field. My interests include learning foreign languages, playing tennis, reading, and watching Hispanic television shows.”

Previous Students


Amanda Wacker,

Student, Lab Assistant

Amanda L. Wacker – “I am a senior undergraduate in the Biology Program. I am interested in cell signaling, and the mechanisms that allow cells to adapt to stress or changes in their environment. Currently, I am working to understand the role a specific protein in the heart’s extracellular matrix is playing in regulating cell surface receptors, signaling, and maintaining the heart’s structural stability. My long-term goals include completing a Ph.D. in Molecular and Cell Biology and working to understand how cells and biological systems adapt to extreme environments like space.”


Salma Elsheikh,

Student, Lab Assistant

Salma Elsheikh is a senior undergraduate Clinical Professions major at Florida State University. Salma is a pre-med student who hopes to continue her research aspirations throughout medical school, she is currently working on her honors in the major thesis with the help of Dr. Parvatiyar. In addition to her work in the lab, Salma works as a Peer Assisted Study Session leader at the Academic Center for Excellence, is an Emergency Medical Responder with the FSU Medical Response Unit and is currently developing the Interdisciplinary Medical Sciences Ambassador Program at the FSU College of Medicine.


Khari King,

Student, Lab Assistant

Khari King is a Khari is an undergraduate student from McDonough, Georgia studying Exercise Physiology and Spanish. Involved on and off campus, she represents the University as a University Ambassador, actively participates as a member of the American Medical Women’s Association, and engages in weekly community service in the Tallahassee area. In her free time, Khari enjoys music performance, working out, and traveling.

The Parvatiyar Lab is currently recruiting graduate students please email Dr. Parvatiyar to inquire.