Melanie earned her Bachelor of Science Degree specialized in Cell Biology & Molecular Genetics from the University of Maryland in May 2015. She joined Dr. Todd Brusko’s laboratory as a graduate student in the Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences Program and completed her PhD in May 2020.
Her thesis work was focused on the impacts of insulin-like growth factors (IGF) on T cell biology as well as their use as biomarkers to predict T1D. In addition, she characterized the CD226 knockout non-obese diabetic (NOD) mouse model as partially protective from disease onset as a consequence of improved central and peripheral tolerance.
Melanie’s current work is focused on the use of precision medicine genotyping microarray data to investigate the role of T1D risk loci in promoting immune and pancreatic phenotypes associated with T1D pathogenesis. She is also interested in loci modulating individual response to therapeutics for suspension and/or prevention of T1D development.
JDRF Post-Doctoral Fellowship Grant Key: 3-PDF-2022-1137-A-N. Project Title: Evaluating a Precision Medicine Approach Toward Anti-Thymocyte Globulin (ATG) Treatment in Type 1 Diabetes. $192,000. (03/01/2022 – 02/28/2025)
Diabetes Research Connection Grant: AGR00023909. Project Title: CD226 inhibition to prevent regulatory T cell dysfunction. $50,000. (02/28/2022-03/01/2023)
Experimental Pathology Innovative Grant (EPIG), University of Florida, $5,000 (2021-2022)
F31 DK-117548-01, Shapiro (PI). Predoctoral Individual National Research Service Award. Roles of the
Insulin-like Growth Factor Axis in Pre-Type 1 Diabetes Immune Regulation. (2018-2020)
T32 DK108736-01A1, Trainee, Atkinson (PI). Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Type 1 Diabetes and
Biomedical Engineering. (2018)
Children’s Miracle Network Research Award, University of Florida, $20,000 (2017)
HHMI Gemstone Research Fellowship, University of Maryland, $4,000 (2013-2014)
HHMI Undergraduate Research Fellowship, University of Maryland, $7,500/year (2012-2015)
Awards and Professional Honors
Best Novel Insights Paper Award.(2022). Hormone Research in Pediatrics (HRP). “A Novel Mutation in Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 Receptor (c.641-2A>G) is Associated with Impaired Growth, Hypoglycemia, and Modified Immune Phenotypes”
dkNET DChallenge Finalist, Award for Interdisciplinary Science (2021)
Best Novel Insights Paper Award, Hormone Research in Pediatrics (2021)
Best Oral Presentation, Pediatric Science Research Day, University of Florida (2019)
Exemplary Graduate Student Award, Experimental Pathology, University of Florida (2018)
Advancement to Candidacy Award, University of Florida (2018)
Grinter Scholarship, University of Florida (2015-2018)
Summa Cum Laude, University of Maryland (2015)
Banneker/Key Scholar, University of Maryland (2011-2015)
Diabetes Scholars Foundation Scholarship Recipient (2011)
2017, 2019 Friends for Life, UF Diabetes Institute Representative
2017-2018 Touched by Type One, UF Diabetes Institute Representative
2012-2014 Innoworks Science Summer Camp, Co-Director, Deputy Director, Curriculum Chair
- Thirawatananond P, Brown ME, Sachs LK, Arnoletti JM, Yeh WI, Posgai AL, Shapiro MR, Chen YG, Brusko TM. (2023). Deletion of CD226 in Foxp3+ T cells Reduces Diabetes Incidence in Non-Obese Diabetic Mice by Improving Regulatory T Cell Stability and Function. Diabetes. doi: 10.1101/2022.06.02.494443,
- Shapiro MR, Peters LD, Brown ME, Cabello-Kindelan C, Posgai AL, Bayer AL, Brusko TM. (2023). Insulin-like Growth Factor-1 Synergizes with IL-2 to Induce Homeostatic Proliferation of Regulatory T Cells. Journal of Immunology. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.2200651
- Perry DJ, Shapiro MR, Chamberlain SW, Kusmartseva I, Chamala S, Balzano-Nogueira L, Yang M, Brant JO, Brusko M, Williams MD, McGrail KM, McNichols J, Peters LD, Posgai AL, Kaddis JS, Mathews CE, Wasserfall CH, Webb-Robertson BM, Campbell-Thompson M, Schatz D, Evans-Molina C, Pugliese A, Concannon P, Anderson MS, German MS, Chamberlain CE, Atkinson MA, and Brusko TM. (2023) A genomic data archive from the Network for Pancreatic Organ donors with Diabetes. Sci Data 10, 323. doi: 10.1038/s41597-023-02244-6
- Brown ME, Peters LD, Hanbali SR, Arnoletti JM, Sachs LK, Nguyen KQ, Carpenter EB, Seay HR, Fuhrman CA, Posgai AL, Shapiro MR, and Brusko TM (2022) Human CD4+CD25+CD226– Tregs Demonstrate Increased Purity, Lineage Stability, and Suppressive Capacity Versus CD4+CD25+CD127lo/- Tregs for Adoptive Cell Therapy. Front. Immunol. 13:873560. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2022.873560
- Sharp RC, Brown ME*, Shapiro MR, Posgai AL and Brusko TM (2021) The Immunoregulatory Role of the Signal Regulatory Protein Family and CD47 Signaling Pathway in Type 1 Diabetes. Front. Immunol. 12:739048. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2021.739048
- Shapiro, M.R., Thirawatananond, P., Peters, L., Sharp, R.C., Ogundare, S., Posgai, A.L., Perry, D.J. and Brusko, T.M. (2021), De‐coding genetic risk variants in type 1 diabetes. Immunol Cell Biol. https://doi.org/10.1111/imcb.12438
- Shapiro MR, Foster TP, Perry DJ, Rosenfeld RG, Dauber A, McNichols JA, Muir A,Hwa V, Brusko TM, Jacobsen LM. A Novel Mutation in Insulin-Like Growth Factor-1 Receptor (c.641-2A>G) Is Associated with Impaired Growth, Hypoglycemia, and Modified Immune Phenotypes. Horm Res Paediatr. 2020;93(5):322-334. doi: 10.1159/000510764
- Shapiro MR, Yeh W, Longfield JR, Gallagher J, Infante CM, Wellford S, Posgai AL, Atkinson MA, Campbell-Thompson M, Lieberman SM, Serreze DV, Geurts AM, Chen Y, Brusko TM. CD226 Deletion Reduces Type 1 Diabetes in the NOD Mouse by Impairing Thymocyte Development and Peripheral T Cell Activation. Front Immunol. 04 Sep 2020. https://doi.org/10.3389/fimmu.2020.02180
- Melanie R. Shapiro, Clive H. Wasserfall, Sean M. McGrail, Amanda L. Posgai, Rhonda Bacher, Andrew Muir, Michael J. Haller, Desmond A. Schatz, Johnna D. Wesley, Matthias von Herrath, William A. Hagopian, Cate Speake, Mark A. Atkinson, Todd M. Brusko. (2019). Insulin-Like Growth Factor Dysregulation Both Preceding and Following Type 1 Diabetes Diagnosis. Diabetes. pii: db190942.
- Shapiro, Melanie R., Atkinson, Mark A., Brusko, Todd M. (2019). Pleiotropic roles of the insulin-like growth factor axis in type 1 diabetes. Current Opinion in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Obesity. 26(4): 188-194. doi: 10.1097/MED.0000000000000484.
- Futch, Hunter & McFarland, Karen & Moore, Brenda & Kuhn, M. & Giasson, Benoit & Ladd, Thomas & Scott, Karen & Shapiro, Melanie & Nosacka, Rachel & Goodwin, Marshall & Ran, Yong & Cruz, Pedro & Ryu, Daniel & Croft, Cara & Levites, Yona & Janus, Christopher & Chakrabarty, Paramita & Judge, Andrew & Brusko, Todd. (2019). An anti-CRF antibody suppresses the HPA axis and reverses stress-induced phenotypes. The Journal of Experimental Medicine. 216. jem.20190430. 10.1084/jem.20190430.
- Graves CL, Li J, LaPato M, Shapiro MR, Glover SC, Wallet MA, Wallet SM. Intestinal Epithelial Cell Regulation of Adaptive Immune Dysfunction in Human Type 1 Diabetes. Front Immunol. 2017 Jan 10;7:679. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2016.00679. eCollection 2016. PubMed PMID: 28119693; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5222791.
- Seeley-Fallen MK, Liu LJ, Shapiro MR, Onabajo OO, Palaniyandi S, Zhu X, Tan TH, Upadhyaya A, Song W. Actin-binding protein 1 links B-cell antigen receptors to negative signaling pathways. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2014 Jul 8;111(27):9881-6. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1321971111. Epub 2014 Jun 23. PubMed PMID: 24958882; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4103327.