Terry S. Elton
555 Parks Hall


  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • G-Protein Coupled Receptors
  • miRNA Biology

Professional Interests

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a family of small nonprotein-coding RNAs that have emerged as important regulators in cardiac developmental and pathological processes. They are genomically encoded and are initially transcribed as part of much longer molecules that become processed into a mature ~22-nucleotide-long form. miRNAs are generally regarded as negative regulators of gene expression that inhibit translation and/or promote messenger RNA (mRNA) degradation by base-pairing to complementary sequences within protein-coding mRNA transcripts. Hundreds of human miRNA genes have been identified and bioinformatic analyses indicate that miRNAs might regulate the expression of more than a third of human protein-coding genes, highlighting the potential magnitude of their influence on gene expression. Given the increasingly important roles of miRNAs in heart development and function, the lab hypothesizes that aberrant regulation of miRNAs may play a role in mediating cardiovascular disease. Therefore, one major focus of Elton’s laboratory investigates miRNA expression and gene regulation in various cardiovascular diseases.


  • 1988 Clinical Research Award
  • 1988 Finalist
  • 1984 Summer Graduate Research Assistantship
  • 1981 A.C. Glen King Award


  • Postdoctoral, 1988, University of Alabama
  • Postdoctoral, 1987, Washington State University
  • PhD, 1986, Washington State University, Biochemistry
  • BS, 1981, Weber State University, Chemistry

Recent Publications