Faculty Profile

James Gnarra, Ph.D.

College of Osteopathic Medicine
Teaching Area Microbiology , Immunology
Campus Location


Dr. Gnarra is Director of the Masters of Medical Science Program, Professor of Microbiology and Immunology,  and Director of Research. He received his bachelor of science degree in Biological Sciences from the University of Pittsburgh and his doctoral degree in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Virginia.  He did post-doctoral research and was a Senior Staff Fellow at the National Institutes of Health and the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, MD.  Dr. Gnarra held previous academic appointments as principal investigator at the LSU Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, the University of Pittsburgh, and the Medical University of the Americas.  Dr. Gnarra has served on DOD grant review panels and is former Chair of the Research Committee and member of the Board of Directors of the VHL Alliance. Dr Gnarra’s long-standing research interests have been in the cellular and molecular biology and genetics of urologic malignancies.  His main research focus has been on von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) disease and the molecular functions of the VHL tumor-suppressor protein in renal cell carcinoma.  Ongoing studies seek to understand VHL protein associations with mitotic regulators, the effects of inactivation of VHL protein in renal cancer, and related pharmacologic targets for treatment.