Alyson Sujkowski, Ph.D.

Alyson Sujkowski, Ph.D.

Alyson Sujkowski, Ph.D.

Position Title

Assistant Professor of Research in the Department of Pharmacology

Areas of Interest

Conserved Exercise Pathways in Drosophila Melanogaster


  1. Johnson SL, Prifti MV, Sujkowski A, Libohova K, Blount JR, Hong L, Tsou WL, Todi SV. Drosophila as a Model of Unconventional Translation in Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 3. Cells. 2022 Apr 4;11(7):1223. doi: 10.3390/cells11071223. PMID: 35406787
  2. Sujkowski A, Richardson K, Prifti MV, Wessells RJ, Todi SV. Endurance exercise ameliorates phenotypes in Drosophila models of spinocerebellar ataxias. Elife. 2022 Feb 16;11:e75389. doi: 10.7554/eLife.75389. PMID: 35170431
  3. Sujkowski A, Hong L, Wessells RJ, Todi SV. The protective role of exercise against age-related neurodegeneration. Ageing Res Rev. 2022 Feb;74:101543. doi: 10.1016/j.arr.2021.101543. Epub 2021 Dec 17. PMID: 34923167
  4. Sujkowski A, Wessells R. Exercise and Sestrin Mediate Speed and Lysosomal Activity in Drosophila by Partially Overlapping Mechanisms. Cells. 2021 Sep 19;10(9):2479. doi: 10.3390/cells10092479. PMID: 34572128
  5. Johnson SL, Libohova K, Blount JR, Sujkowski AL, Prifti MV, Tsou WL, Todi SV. Targeting the VCP-binding motif of ataxin-3 improves phenotypes in Drosophila models of Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 3. Neurobiol Dis. 2021 Dec;160:105516. doi: 10.1016/j.nbd.2021.105516. Epub 2021 Sep 24. PMID: 34563642
  6. Sujkowski A, Gretzinger A, Soave N, Todi SV, Wessells R. PLoS Genet. Alpha- and beta-adrenergic octopamine receptors in muscle and heart are required for Drosophila exercise adaptations. 020 Jun 24;16(6):e1008778. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1008778. Online ahead of print. PMID: 32579604
  7. *Cobb T, *Sujkowski A, Morton C, Ramesh D, Wessells R. Variation in mobility and exercise adaptations between Drosophila species. J Comp Physiol A Neuroethol Sens Neural Behav Physiol. 2020 Apr 25. doi: 10.1007/s00359-020-01421-x. PMID: 32335730 *These authors contributed equally to this work
  8. Cao T, Sujkowski A, Cobb T, Wessells RJ, Jin JP. The glutamic acid-rich long C-terminal extension of troponin T has a critical role in insect muscle functions. J Biol Chem. 2020 Feb 5. pii: jbc.RA119.012014. doi: 10.1074/jbc.RA119.012014 PMID: 32024695
  9. *Kim M, *Sujkowski A, Namkoong S, Gu B, Cobb T, Kim B, Kowalsky AH, Cho CS, Semple I, Ro SH, Davis C, Brooks SV, Karin M, Wessells RH, Lee JH, Sestrins are evolutionarily conserved mediators of exercise benefits. Nature Communications, 11, Article # 190 (2020), / *These authors contributed equally to this work.
  10. Sujkowski A, Spierer AN, Rajagopalan T, Bazzell B, Safdar M, Imsirovic D, Arking R, Rand DM, Wessells R. Mito-nuclear interactions modify Drosophila exercise performance. Mitochondrion. 2019 Jul;47:188-205. doi: 10.1016/j.mito.2018.11.005. Epub 2018 Nov 6. PMID: 30408593
  11. Sujkowski A, Wessells R. Using Drosophila to Understand Biochemical and Behavioral Responses to Exercise. Exerc Sport Sci Rev. 2018 Apr;46(2):112-120. doi: 10.1249/JES.0000000000000139. Review. PMID: 29346165 Free PMC Article
  12. Sujkowski A, Ramesh D, Brockmann A, Wessells R. Octopamine Drives Endurance Exercise Adaptations in Drosophila. Cell Rep. 2017 Nov 14;21(7):1809-1823. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2017.10.065. PMID: 29141215
  13. Laha SS, Naik AR, Kuhn ER, Alvarez M, Sujkowski A, Wessells RJ, Jena BP. Nanothermometry Measure of Muscle Efficiency. Nano Lett. 2017 Feb 8;17(2):1262-1268. doi: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.6b05092. PMID: 28112520
  14. Sujkowski A, Rainier S, Fink JK, Wessells RJ. Delayed Induction of Human NTE (PNPLA6) Rescues Neurodegeneration and Mobility Defects of Drosophila swiss cheese (sws) Mutants. PLoS One. 2015 Dec 15;10(12):e0145356. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0145356. eCollection 2015. PMID: 26671664
  15. Dourlen P, Sujkowski A, Wessells R, Mollereau B. Fatty acid transport proteins in disease: New insights from invertebrate models. Prog Lipid Res. 2015 Oct;60:30-40. doi: 10.1016/j.plipres.2015.08.001. Epub 2015 Sep 28. Review. PMID: 26416577
  16. Sujkowski A, Bazzell B, Carpenter K, Arking R, Wessells RJ. Endurance exercise and selective breeding for longevity extend Drosophila healthspan by overlapping mechanisms. Aging (Albany NY). 2015 Aug;7(8):535-52. PMID: 26298685
  17. Laker RC, Xu P, Ryall KA, Sujkowski A, Kenwood BM, Chain KH, Zhang M, Royal MA, Hoehn KL, Driscoll M, Adler PN, Wessells RJ, Saucerman JJ, Yan Z. A novel MitoTimer reporter gene for mitochondrial content, structure, stress, and damage in vivo. J Biol Chem. 2014 Apr 25;289(17):12005-15. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M113.530527. Epub 2014 Mar 18. PMID: 24644293
  18. Sujkowski A, Saunders S, Tinkerhess M, Piazza N, Jennens J, Healy L, Zheng L, Wessells R. dFatp regulates nutrient distribution and long-term physiology in Drosophila. Aging Cell. 2012 Dec;11(6):921-32. doi: 10.1111/j.1474-9726.2012.00864.x. Epub 2012 Aug 27. PMID: 22809097
  19. Tinkerhess MJ, Healy L, Morgan M, Sujkowski A, Matthys E, Zheng L, Wessells RJ. The Drosophila PGC-1╬▒ homolog spargel modulates the physiological effects of endurance exercise. PLoS One. 2012;7(2):e31633. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0031633. Epub 2012 Feb 13. PMID: 22348115


2006 BS in Biology from the University of Toledo

2010 MS in Biology (neuroscience) from the University of Toledo

2022 PhD in Physiology from Wayne State University 


Drs. Sokol Todi and Robert Lasley

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