Ron Korstanje


Ron Korstanje received his PhD in Genetics at Utrecht University in the Netherlands, working on the genetics of atherosclerosis. He continued this work as a postdoctoral fellow with Beverly Paigen at The Jackson Laboratory in Bar Harbor. He moved back to the Netherlands in 2004 to study the genetics of kidney disease at the University Medical Center Groningen, but after a few years decided to return to Bar Harbor.

Ron is now an assistant professor at The Jackson Laboratory where his main focus is on the aging kidney. He is co-director of the Nathan Shock Center of Excellence in the Basic Biology of Aging and project leader in the Center for Precision Genetics. Ron has published 76 peer-reviewed journal articles and several book chapters, including a chapter in the new edition of the Handbook of the Biology of Aging.

Research Interests

The goal of our lab is to identify key genetic factors that contribute to the decline of function and damage in the aging kidney, to learn their role in the kidney, and to understand why variations of these factors lead to different outcomes. We do this by studying the natural genetic variation in mice and their association with different kidney phenotypes. Once causal genes are identified, we develop precision disease models for further study of the gene and to develop therapeutics that will slow down the decline of kidney function and development of disease.

Student Opportunities

Over the past 10 years we had many students work in our lab, including summer students, international students, rotation students, and students doing their thesis work. We always have projects (mouse studies, bench work, or bioinformatics) for GSBSE rotation students, field studies for Bioinformatics Master students, or thesis work.

For more details on our research:

Selected Publications

  • Reznichenko A, Korstanje R (2015) The Role of Platelet-Activating Factor in Mesangial Pathophysiology. American Journal of Pathology (in press).
  • Noordmans GA, Huang Y, Savage H, van Dijk MCRF, Schaart G, van den Bergh Weerman MA, Heeringa P, Hillebrands JL, Korstanje R, van Goor H (2014) Genetic analysis of intracapillary glomerular lipoprotein deposits in aging mice. PLoS ONE 9(10):e111308.
  • Ananda G, Hinerfeld D, Korstanje R (2014) Whole genome sequence of the C57L/J mouse inbred strain. G3 4(9):1689-1692.
  • Huang Y, Caputo CR, Noordmans GA, Yazdani S, Monteiro LH, van den Born J, van Goor H, Heeringa P, Korstanje R, Hillebrands JL (2014) Identification of novel genes associated with renal tertiary lymphoid organ formation in aging mice. PLOS ONE 9(3):e91850.
  • Korstanje R, Caputo C, Doty R, Cook S, Bronson R, Davisson M, Miner J (2014) A splice site mutation in mouse Col4a4 with abnormal collagen IV protomers: genetic background affects the Alport syndrome phenotype. Kidney International 85(6):1461-1468.
  • Noordmans GA, Caputo RC, Huang Y, Sheehan SM, Bulthuis M, Heeringa P, Hillebrands JL, van Goor H, Korstanje R (2013) Genetic analysis of mesangial matrix expansion in aging mice and identification of Far2 as a candidate gene. Journal of the American Society of Nephrology 24:1995-2001.
  • Long DA, Kolatsi-Joannou M, Price KL, Dessapt-Baradez C, Huang JL, Papakrivopoulou E, Hubank M, Korstanje R, Gnudi L, Woolf AS (2013) Albuminuria: too few glomeruli and too much testosterone. Kidney International 83(6):1118-1129.
  • Sinke A, Caputo C, Tsaih S, Yuan R, Ren D, Deen P, Korstanje R (2011) Genetic analysis of plasma sodium concentration in mice and identification of Nalcn, a novel player in osmoregulation. Physiological Genomics 43(5):265-270
  • Hageman RS, Leduc MS, Caputo C, Tsaih SW, Churchill GA, Korstanje R (2011) Uncovering Genes and Regulatory Pathways Related to Urinary Albumin Excretion in Mice. Journal of the American Society of Nephrology 22(1):73-81.
  • Garret M, Pezzolesi M, Korstanje R (2010) Integrating human, rat, and mouse data to identify the genetic factors involved in chronic kidney disease. JASN 21(3):398-405.
  • Tsaih S, Pezzolesi M, Yuan R, Krolewski A, Korstanje R (2010) Genetic analysis of albuminuria in the aging mouse. Kidney International 77(3):201-210.
  • Cox A, Sheehan S, Kloting I, Paigen B, Korstanje R (2010) Combining QTL Data for HDL Cholesterol Levels from Two Different Species Leads to Smaller Confidence Intervals. Heredity (in press)
  • Xing S, Yuan R, Svenson K, Jorgenson L, So M, Paigen B, Korstanje R (2009) Genetic influence on electrocardiogram time intervals and heart rate in aging mice. AJP Heart and Circulatory Physiology 296(6) H1907-1913.
  • Kamilic J, Lely AT, van Goor H, Buikema H, Tent H, Navis GJ, Korstanje R (2009) Differential ACE expression among tissues in allele-specific Wistar rat lines. Mammalian Genome 20(3):170-179.
  • Tsaih S & Korstanje R (2009) Haplotype Association Mapping in mice. Methods in Molecular Biology 573:213-222.
  • Korstanje R, Desai J, Lazar G, King BL, Rollins J, Spurr M, Joseph J, Kadambi S, Li Y, Cherry A, Matteson PG, Paigen B, Millonig JH. (2008) Quantitative trait loci affecting phenotypic variation in the vacuolated lens mouse mutant, a multigenic mouse model of neural tube defects. Physiol Genomics 35(3):296-304.
  • Ishimori N, Stylianou I, Korstanje R, Marion M, Li R, Donehue LR, Rosen C, Beamer W, Paigen B, Churchill (2008) Quantitative trait loci for bone mineral density in an SM/J by NZB/BINJ intercross population and identification of Trps1 as a probable candidate gene. Journal of Bone and Mineral Research 23(9):1529-1537
  • Su Z, Korstanje R, Tsaih S, Paigen B (2008) Candidate genes for obesity revealed fro a C57BL/6Jx129S1/ SvImJ intercross. International Journal of Obesity 32:1108-1189
  • Doorenbos C, Tsaih S, Sheehan S, Ishimori N, Navis G, Churchill G, DiPetrillo K, Korstanje R. (2008) Quantitative Trait Loci for urinary albumin in crosses between C57BL/6J and A/J inbred mice in the presence and absence of Apoe. Genetics 179:693-699.
  • Matteson PG, Desai J, Korstanje R, Lazar G, Borsuk TE, Rollins J, Kadambi S, Joseph J, Rahman T, Wink J, Benayed R, Paigen B, Millonig JH. (2008) The orphan G protein coupled receptor, Gpr161, encodes the vacuolated lens locus and controls neurulation and lens development. PNAS 105(6):2088-2093.
  • Hamming I, Cooper ME, Haagmans BL, Hooper NM, Korstanje R, Osterhaus AD, Timens W, Turner AJ, Navis G, van Goor H. (2007) The emerging role of ACE2 in physiology and disease. Journal of Pathology 212(1):1-11.
  • Stylianou J, Korstanje R, Li R, Sheehan S, Paigen B, Churchill G (2006) Detailed QTL analysis for obesity reveals multiple networks of interacting loci. Mammalian Genome 17:22-36. (G 2.7)
  • Ishimori N, Li R, Walsh KA, Korstanje R, Rollins JA, Petkov P, Pletcher MT, Wiltshire T, Donahue LR, Rosen CJ, Beamer WG, Churchill GA, Paigen B (2006) Quantitative trait loci that determine bone mineral density in C57BL/6J and 129S1/SvImJ inbred mice. Journal of Bone and Mineral Research 21:105-112. (6.5)
  • Wang X, Ishimori N, Korstanje R, Rolins J, Paigen B (2005) Identifying novel genes for atherosclerosis through mouse-human comparative genetics. American Journal of Human Genetics 77:1-16. (G 12.6)
  • Lyons MA, Korstanje R, Li R, Sheehan SM, Walsh KA, Rollins JA, Carey MC, Churchill GA, Paigen B (2005) Single and interacting QTLs for cholesterol gallstones revealed in an intercross between mouse strains NZB and SM. Mammalian Genome, 16:152-163.
  • Pletcher MT, McClurg P, Batalov S, Su SI, Barnes SW, Lagler E, Korstanje R, Wang X, Nusskern D, Bogue MA, Mural RJ, Paigen B, Wiltshire T. (2004) Use of a dense single nucleotide polymorphism map for in silico mapping in the mouse. PLoS Biology, 2:e393
  • Korstanje R, Eriksson P, Samnegard A, Olsson, Forsman-Semb K, Sen S, Churchill G, Rollins J, Harris S, Hamsten A, Paigen B (2004) Locating Ath8, a locus for murine atherosclerosis susceptibility and testing several of its candidate genes in mice and humans. Atherosclerosis, 177:443-450.
  • Wang X, Korstanje R, Higgins D, Paigen B. (2004) Haplotypes Analysis in Multiple Crosses to Identify a QTL Gene. Genome Research, 14(9):1767-72.
  • Ishimori N, Li R, Kelmenson P, Korstanje R, Walsh KA, Churchill GA, Forsman-Semb K, Paigen B (2004) Quantitative trait loci that determine plasma lipids and obesity in C57BL/6J and 129S1/SvImJ inbred mice. Journal of Lipid Research, 45(9):1624-32.
  • Korstanje R, DiPetrillo K (2004) Unraveling the genetics of chronic kidney disease using animal models. American Journal of Physiology – Renal Physiology, 287:F347-F352.
  • Korstanje R, Li R, Howard T, Kelmenson P, Marshall J, Paigen B, Churchill G. (2004) Influence of sex and diet on quantitative trait loci for HDL-cholesterol levels in a SM/J by NZB/B1NJ intercross population. Journal of Lipid Research, 45(5):881-888.
  • Lyons MA, Korstanje R, Li R, Walsh KA, Churchill GA, Carey MC, Paigen B. (2004) Genetic contributors to lipoprotein cholesterol levels in an intercross of 129S1/SvImJ and RIIIS/J inbred mice. Physiological Genomics, 17(2):114-121.
  • Lyons MA, Wittenburg H, LI R, Walsh KA, Korstanje R, Churchill GA, Carey MC, Paigen B (2004) Quantitative trait loci that determine lipoprotein cholesterol levels in an intercross of 129S1/SvImJ and CAST/Ei inbred mice. Physiological Genomics, 17(1):60-68.
  • Figge A, Lammert F, Korstanje R, Paigen B, Cohen DE, Shneider BL, Stoltenberg E, Spatz K, Hoda F, Green RM (2004) Hepatic over-expression of the murine Abcb11 increases hepatobiliary lipid secretion and reduces hepatic steatosis. Journal of Biological Chemistry. 279(4):2790-2799.
  • Korstanje R, Albers JJ, Wolfbauer G, Li R, Tu A-Y, Churchill GA, Paigen B. (2004) Quantitative trait locus mapping of genes that regulate phospholipid transfer activity in SM/J and NZB/BlNJ inbred mice. Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology. 24:155-160.
  • Ishimori N, Li R, Kelmenson P, Korstanje R, Walsh KA, Churchill GA, Forsman-Semb K, Paigen B (2004) Quantitative Trait Loci Analysis for Plasma HDL-Cholesterol Concentrations and Atherosclerosis Susceptibility between Inbred Mouse Strains C57BL/6J and 129S1/SvImJ. Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology. 24:161-166.
  • Lyons MA, Wittenburg H, Li R, Walsh K, Leonard MR, Korstanje R, Churchill GA, Carey MC, Paigen B (2003) Lith6: A new QTL for cholesterol gallstones from an intercross of CAST/Ei and DBA/2J inbred mouse strains. Journal of Lipid Research. 44:1763-1771.
  • Korstanje R, Gillissen GF, Versteeg SA, van Oost BA, Bosma AA, Rogel-Gaillard C, van Zutphen LFM, van Lith HA (2003) Mapping of rabbit microsatellite markers using chromosome-specific libraries. Journal of Heredity 94(2):161-169.
  • Korstanje R, Paigen B (2002) From QTL to gene: the harvest begins. Nature Genetics 31:235-236
  • Pitman W, Korstanje R, Churchill GA, Nicodeme, E, Albers JJ, Cheung MC, Staton, MA, Sampson, SS, Harris S, Paigen B (2002) Quantitative trait locus mapping of genes that regulate HDL-cholesterol in SM/J and NZB/B1NJ inbred mice. Physiological Genomics. 9:93-102.
  • Zijlstra C, de Haan NA, Korstanje R, Rogel-Gaillard C, Piumi F, van Lith HA, van Zutphen LF, Bosma AA (2002) Fourteen chromosomal localizations and an update of the cytogenetic map of the rabbit. Cytogenetics and Genome Research 97(3-4):191-199.
  • Korstanje R, Gillissen GF, den Bieman MG, Versteeg SA, van Oost BA, Fox RR, van Lith HA, van Zutphen LFM (2001). Mapping of rabbit chromosome 1 markers generated from a microsatellite enriched chromosome-specific library. Animal Genetics. 32:308-312.
  • Korstanje R, Gillissen GF, Kodde LP, den Bieman M, Lankhorst Æ, van Zutphen LFM, van Lith HA (2001) Mapping of microsatellite loci and association of aorta atherosclerosis with LG VI markers in the rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). Physiological Genomics. 6:11-18.
  • Korstanje R, den Bieman M, Campos R, Esteves PJ, Lankhorst Æ, van der Loo W, van Zutphen LFM, van Lith HA, Ferrand N (2001). Genetic analysis and mapping of biochemical markers in an F2 intercross of two inbred strains of the rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). Biochemical Genetics. 39:169-178.
  • Winkler AA, Korstanje R, Zonneveld BJM, Hooykaas PJJ, Steensma HY (2000) Isolation and characterization of KLUBP2, a ubiquitin hydrolase gene of Kluyveromyces lactis that can suppress a ts-mutation in CBF2, a gene encoding a centromeric protein of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Current Genetics 38:17-22.
  • Korstanje R, O’Brien PCM, Yang F, Rens W, Bosma AA, van Lith HA, van Zutphen LFM, Ferguson-Smith MA (1999) Complete homology maps of the rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) and by reciprocal chromosome painting. Cytogenetics and Cell Genetics 86:317-322.
  • Martin-DeLeon PA, Canaff L, Korstanje R, Bhide V, Selkirk M, Hendy GN (1999) Rabbit calcium-sensing receptor (CASR) gene: chromosome location and evidence for related genes. Cytogenetics and Cell Genetics 86:252-258.