Benjamin Lab

Ivor J. Benjamin MD, FAHA, FACC Ivor Benjamin, MD, FAHA, FACC

Director, Cardiovascular Center
Vice-Chair, Translational Research
Froedtert & Medical College of Wisconsin

Ivor J. Benjamin MD, FAHA, FACC, is a Professor of Medicine at Froedtert Hospital, and the Medical College of Wisconsin. A board-certified specialist and consultant in internal medicine and cardiology, Dr. Benjamin’s clinical interests are general cardiology, inheritable heart failure, and myocardial infarction.

Katie Mitzelfelt, MCW CVC Benjamin Lab Katie Mitzelfelt

Graduate Student

I have a broad interest in the area of stem cells and regenerative medicine. My project in the Benjamin Lab is modeling myofibrillar myopathy induced by a mutation in a small molecular weight heat shock protein, αB-crystallin, using differentiation of patient-specific iPSCs to both cardiomyocytes as well as multi-nucleated myotubes in culture.

Qiang Dai, PhD, MCW CVC Benjamin Lab Qiang Dai, PhD

Research Associate II

Our laboratory has longstanding interests in the role that stress response (HSF/HSP) pathways play in the development, progression, and, ultimately, the prevention of acquired and inheritable cardiac diseases. My studies of genetically engineered mouse models and somatic cell cultures are exploring the mechanisms underlying the effects of genetic, metabolic (e.g., redox), and other perturbations in ischemic cardioprotection and heart failure.

Shuping Lai, PhD, MCW CVC Benjamin Lab

Shuping Lai, PhD

Research Associate II

My research project aims on modeling cardiac diseases in a culture dish by utilizing patient specimens. We are creating cardiomyocytes from human induced pluripotent stem cells, differentiate them into cardiomyocytes and use them as a means to mimic the disease in a dish. My major interests are drug-screenings and biochemical assays to exhibit different susceptibilities of cardiac cells to cardiac drugs, to predict adverse drug responses more accurately and to find best suitable drugs for cardiac diseases.

Melinda Choi, MCW CVC Benjamin Lab Melinda Choi

Lab Technician

I am currently an undergraduate student at Marquette University. In addition to maintaining the lab and carrying out basic lab protocols, I'm interested in exploring projects studying aB-crystallin and utilizing mouse models.

Mai Thao, MCW CVC Benjamin Lab Mai Thao

Postdoctoral Fellow

My project focuses on defining the parameters and conditions for reductive stress using a variety of model systems including cardiomyocytes and animals. By using analytical chemistry along with molecular biology techniques, I am able to determine the redox states of these model systems under certain conditions. Overall, this study will give us insight into the redox states of diseases so that we can properly treat cardiovascular diseases.

Kurt Kolander, MCW CVC Benjamin Lab Kurt Kolander

Postdoctoral Fellow

My current project is focused on studying atrial fibrillation. Using both transgenic rats, and human induced pluripotent stem cells, my goal is to develop systems to elucidate the mechanisms of atrial fibrillation and to test the efficacy of treatments for this disorder. This work will hopefully contribute to the development of personalized treatments for atrial fibrillation and other heart diseases.

Contact Us

MCW Cardiovascular Center
Medical College of Wisconsin
8701 Watertown Plank Rd.
Milwaukee, WI 53226

(414) 955-5611 | Fax (414) 456-6515

Cardiovascular Center Site Map



Medical College of Wisconsin
8701 Watertown Plank Road
Milwaukee, WI 53226
(414) 955-8296
Directions & Maps
© 2017



Page Updated 07/12/2017