Research

Rhinology/Skull Base

Dr. Eugene Chang is a surgeon-scientist with a clinical and research focus in endoscopic sinus and skull base surgery. His research areas include: Cystic fibrosis (CF) research, Dr. Chang is investigating the role of the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene in the pathogenesis of chronic sinusitis. He published the first animal model of CF sinus disease, and has characterized novel therapies including gene therapy vectors and CFTR potentiators in improving CF sinus disease in both animals and humans.

Sinus microbiome research: the “microbiome” is the microbial community that is present in the human body. The sinonasal cavities have traditionally been thought to be sterile cavities, but new research is beginning to elucidate the vast number of microbial communities that populate our sinus. With this knowledge, we are investigating how our current therapies can influence this microbial population and prevent sinus disease.

Impact of the upper and lower airway: as otolaryngologists, our focus has been in the airway of the head and neck. Dr. Chang has been investigating how the upper airway can influence disease of the lower airway, and vice versa. This research can influence the understanding of common diseases of the lower airway, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Dr. Chang receives active funding research support from the NIH, and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Dr. Chang's dedicated lab website can be viewed here.

Laryngology/Voice

Dr. Robin Samlan, Assistant Professor in the College of Speech and Hearing, received her Ph.D. from the University of Arizona in 2012.  Prior to her Ph.D., Dr. Samlan worked as a faculty speech therapist in the Department of Otolaryngology at Johns Hopkins.  She has had multiple collaborations with Drs. Paul Flint and Allen Hillel and has great experience working with Otolaryngology residents and faculty in collaborative research studies.  After an additional post-graduate year of training at UCLA in 2012, Dr. Samlan returned to the UA in June of 2013 to begin her career as an Assistant Professor in the College of Speech and Hearing Sciences.  

The Vocal Function Laboratory studies the anatomy, physiology, measurement, and perception of voice and resonance in normal and impaired systems. Current and future work are focused on understanding how vocal fold asymmetries alter voice production and perceived quality. Laboratory projects involve collection and analysis of videostroboscopic, high-speed video, acoustic, aerodynamic, and electroglottographic data.

Head and Neck Cancer

Dr. Carlos Caulin is the Director of Translational Head and Neck Cancer research for the Department of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery. His laboratory studies molecular mechanisms that promote head and neck cancer development, with a primary focus on squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) and salivary adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC).