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Research interests

My main research interest is the molecular physiology, regulation and function of membrane ion channels of epithelial tissues. I have had a long-term interest in the molecular physiology and pharmacology of epithelial ion channels and K+ channels, specifically, the Ca2+-dependent, intermediate-conductance K+ channel, KCa3.1. Recently, my lab has been examining the anterograde and retrograde trafficking of KCa3.1 to and from the basolateral membrane of polarized epithelia. The cytoskeleton and accessory proteins play major roles in the trafficking of proteins throughout the cell and to and from the membrane. Additoinally, protein complexes such as the Exocyst and Retromer and SNARE proteins play significance roles in proper transport and targeting of ion channels and transporters to the appropriate membranes of epithelial cells.

We are using biotin-ligase acceptor peptide (BLAP) technology to tagged K+ channels in order to examine their cellular and membrane fate. This technique has allowed us to ask many important questions about the molecular physiology and trageting of KCa3.1 to the basolateral membrane of epithelial cells.

I employ electrophysiological (patch-clamp and short circuit current measurements) and molecular biochemical techniques (immunofluorescence, immunoprecipitation, co-immunoprecipitation, cell surface immunoprecipitation, gel electrophoresis, biotinylation, PCR) to address basic questions of cell physiology and biology of ion channels.

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Research topics

  • Molecular physiology of channels
  • Cellular and membrane trafficking of ion channels
  • The role of the Exocyst complex in the trafficking ion channels
  • SNARE protein regulation of ion channel activity via protein-protein interactions
  • The role of Retromer in the trafficking ion channels

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Current funding

  • 2017 Dean's Bequest Fund, University of Otago
  • 2017 Department of Physiology AIM Grant
  • 2016-2017 Lottery Grant (with A/P Fiona McDonald)

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Previous funding

  • 2016 Department of Physiology AIM Fund
  • 2015 University of Otago Research Grant (with A/P Fiona McDonald)
  • 2014-2015 Dean's Bequest Fund – University of Otago
  • 2013-2014 University of Otago Research Grant
  • 2013-2014 OSMS Strategic Grant

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Collaborators

  • Professor Yoshi Marunaka, Department of Molecular Cell Physiology Graduate School of Medical Science, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, Kyoto, Japan.
  • Professor Daniel C. Devor, Department of Cell Biology and Physiology, School of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, USA.
  • Professor Peter Hunter and Dr. David Nickerson, Auckland Bioengineering Institute, University of Auckland,
  • Dr Michael Butterworth, Department of Cell Biology and Physiology, School of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
  • A/Professor Fiona McDonald, Department of Physiology, University of Otago, NZ.
  • A/Professor Antoni Moore, Department of Surveying, University of Otago, NZ.

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Current students

  • Monique Scott, MSc student
  • Yoakim Eckhoff-Bjorngard, BBiomedSc Hons

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Previous students

  • Elliot Pilmore, PGDipSci and MSc student
  • Joshua April, PGDipSci student
  • Rachel Farquhar BBioMed Sci and MSc - now a PhD Candidate with Prof. Jamie Rossjohn, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Monash University, Australia
  • Sibi Narayanana (PGDipSci)
  • Shih-Liang (Bob) Lee (BScHons and MSc) now a PhD Candidate at the School of Medicine, University of Sydney, Australia 

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Teaching

  • Convenor of PHSL 233
  • HUBS 192 Human Biology Studies II
  • PHSL 233 Cellular Gastrointestinal and Renal Physiology
  • PHSL 343 Cellular and Epithelial Physiology
  • PHSL 345 Physiological Aspects of Health and Disease
  • PHSL 473 Cellular Physiology
  • Med 2 - Physiology (Cases Studies)

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Selected publications

Hamilton, K. L., & Devor, D. C. (Eds.). (2020). Ion transport across epithelial tissues and disease: Ion channels and transporters of epithelia in health and disease (Vol. 2) (2nd ed.). Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 390p. doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-55310-4

Hamilton, K. L., & Devor, D. C. (Eds.). (2020). Basic epithelial ion transport principles and function: Ion channels and transporters of epithelia in health and disease (Vol. 1) (Second ed.). Cham, Swizterland: Springer, 563p. doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-52780-8

Hamilton, K. L. (2020). Techniques of epithelial transport physiology. In K. L. Hamilton & D. C. Devor (Eds.), Basic epithelial ion transport principles and function: Ion channels and transporters of epithelia in health and disease (Vol. 1). (Second ed.) (pp. 1-52). Cham, Swizterland: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-52780-8_1

Nickerson, D. P., Noroozbabaee, L., Sarwar, D. M., Hamilton, K. L., & Hunter, P. J. (2020). Mathematical modeling of epithelial ion transport. In K. L. Hamilton & D. C. Devor (Eds.), Basic epithelial ion transport principles and function: Ion channels and transporters of epithelia in health and disease (Vol. 1). (Second ed.) (pp. 115-133). Cham, Swizterland: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-52780-8_4

Cheung, T. T., Geda, A. C., Ware, A. W., Rasulov, S. R., Tenci, P., Hamilton, K. L., & McDonald, F. J. (2020). Retromer is involved in epithelial Na+ channel trafficking. American Journal of Physiology: Renal Physiology, 319, F895-F907. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00198.2019

Hamilton, K. L. (2020). AJP-Cell Physiology begins a Theme of Reviews on "New Frontiers in Protein Trafficking". American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, 319, C402-C403. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00347.2020

Lozano-Gerona, J., Oliván-Viguera, A., Delgado-Wicke, P., Singh, V., Brown, B. M., Tapia-Casellas, E., … Hamilton, K. L., … Köhler, R. (2020). Conditional KCa3.1-transgene induction in murine skin produces pruritic eczematous dermatitis with severe epidermal hyperplasia and hyperkeratosis. PLoS ONE, 15(3), e0222619. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0222619

Valero, M. S., Ramón-Gimenez, M., Lozano-Gerona, J., Delgado-Wicke, P., Calmarza, P., Oliván-Viguera, A., … Hamilton, K. L., … Köhler, R. (2019). KCa3.1 transgene induction in murine intestinal epithelium causes duodenal chyme accumulation and impairs duodenal contractility. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 20(5), 1193. doi: 10.3390/ijms20051193

Bertuccio, C. A., Wang, T. T., Hamilton, K. L., Rodriguez-Gil, D. J., Condliffe, S. B., & Devor, D. C. (2018). Plasma membrane insertion of KCa2.3 (SK3) is dependent upon the SNARE proteins, syntaxin-4 and SNAP23. PLoS ONE, 13(5). doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0196717

Olivan-Viguera, A., Garcia-Otin, A. L., Lozano-Gerona, J., Abarca-Lachen, E., Garcia-Malinis, A. J., Hamilton, K. L., … Köhler, R. (2018). Pharmacological activation of TRPV4 produces immediate cell damage and induction of apoptosis in human melanoma cells and HaCaT keratinocytes. PLoS ONE, 13(1), e0190307. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0190307

Delpire, E., Hamilton, K. L., Hawke, T. J., Isenberg, J. S., Lotersztajn, S., Yuan, J. X.-J., & Adams, J. C. (2018). AJP-Cell Physiology begins landmark reviews in cell physiology: An editorial from the senior editors of AJP-Cell Physiology. American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, 314(1), C1. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00256.2017

Lee, B. S.-L., Devor, D. C., & Hamilton, K. L. (2017). Modulation of retrograde trafficking of KCa3.1 in a polarized epithelium. Frontiers in Physiology, 8, 489. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2017.00489

Farquhar, R. E., Rodrigues, E., & Hamilton, K. L. (2017). The role of the cytoskeleton and Myosin-Vc in the targeting of KCa3.1 to the basolateral membrane of polarized epithelial cells. Frontiers in Physiology, 7, 639. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2016.00639

Hamilton, K. L., & Moore, A. B. (2016). 50 years of renal physiology from one man and the perfused tubule: Maurice B. Burg. American Journal of Physiology: Renal Physiology, 311(2), F291-F304. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00198.2016

Hamilton, K. L., & Devor, D. C. (Eds.). (2016). Ion channels and transporters of epithelia in health and disease. New York: Springer, 1019p. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-3366-2

Devor, D. C., Bertuccio, C. A., & Hamilton, K. L. (2016). KCa3.1 in epithelia. In K. L. Hamilton & D. C. Devor (Eds.), Ion channels and transporters of epithelia in health and disease. (pp. 659-705). New York: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-3366-2_20

Nickerson, D. P., Hamilton, K. L., & Hunter, P. J. (2016). Mathematical modeling of epithelial ion transport. In K. L. Hamilton & D. C. Devor (Eds.), Ion channels and transporters of epithelia in health and disease. (pp. 265-278). New York: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4939-3366-2_6

Hamilton, K. L. (2016). New life in overactive bladder: Focus on "Novel regulatory mechanism in human urinary bladder: Central role of transient receptor potential melastatin 4 channels in detrusor smooth muscle function". American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, 310(7), C597-C599. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00039.2016

Pilmore, E., & Hamilton, K. L. (2015). The role of microRNAs in the regulation of K+ channels in epithelial tissue. Frontiers in Physiology, 6, 352. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2015.00352

Sun, H., Niisato, N., Nishio, K., Hamilton, K. L., & Marunaka, Y. (2014). Distinct action of flavonoids, myricetin and quercetin, on epithelial Cl- secretion: Useful tools as regulators of Cl- secretion. BioMed Research International, 2014, 902735. doi: 10.1155/2014/902735

Bertuccio, C. A., Lee, S.-L., Wu, G., Butterworth, M. B., Hamilton, K. L., & Devor, D. C. (2014). Anterograde trafficking of KCa3.1 in polarized epithelia is Rab1- and Rab8-dependent and recycling endosome-independent. PLoS ONE, 9(3), e92013. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0092013

Hamilton, K. L. (2014). Even an old technique is suitable in the molecular world of science: The everted sac preparation - turns 60 years old. American Journal of Physiology: Cell Physiology, 306(8), C715-C720. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00041.2014

Hamilton, K. L. (2014). Cleavage: What’s up with prostasin and ENaC these days? American Journal of Physiology: Renal Physiology, 307(11), F1196-F1197. doi: 10.1152/ajprenal.00522.2014

Hamilton, K. L., & Butt, A. G. (2013). Glucose transport into everted sacs of the small intestine of mice. Advances in Physiology Education, 37(4), 415-426. doi: 10.1152/advan.00017.2013

Hamilton, K. L. (2013). Robert K. Crane: Na+-glucose cotransporter to cure? Frontiers in Physiology, 4, 53. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2013.00053

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