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Irina V. Smirnova, Ph.D.

Irina Smirnova portrait
Senior Director, Rehabilitation Science Doctoral Degree Program

Associate Professor, Physical Therapy, Rehabilitation Science, and Athletic Training

Professional Background

Irina Smirnova, Ph.D., is senior director of the doctorate program in rehabilitation science and has teaching responsibilities for courses in pathophysiology and pharmacology for physical therapy students.

She also teaches classes in molecular and cellular basis of rehabilitation to students in the rehabilitation science program. Smirnova is a principal investigator in the Diabetes Research Lab which focuses on diabetic heart disease.

Academic Background
Smirnova earned a master's degree in biochemistry from Lviv State University in Lviv, Ukraine. She completed her doctorate in protein chemistry from the Institute of Bio-organic Chemistry in Kyyiv, Ukraine.

Moving to the United States in the 1990s, Smirnova joined the Neurobiology Research Laboratory at the Kansas City Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Kansas City, Missouri, as a post-doctoral research fellow. She came to the KU Medical Center as a research associate in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and later joined the faculty of the Department of Physical Therapy, Rehabilitation Science, and Athletic Training.



Smirnova is working on cellular and molecular adaptations of the heart to conditions of diabetes. Projects include the analysis of the benefits of physical exercise and pharmacological treatments for diabetic heart disease, and proteomics approaches to identifying molecular mechanisms and pathways affected in the diabetic heart.

Lab Group Site
Diabetes Research Laboratory
Scientists have combined a variety of expertise, such as physiology, molecular and cell biology, biochemistry and animal behavior to unlock the secrets of diabetes.