Dr. Etty (Tika) Benveniste is the founding Chair of the Department of Cell, Developmental and Integrative Biology (2012-Present), having served as Chair of the Department of Cell Biology (2000-2011). She also holds the Alma B. Maxwell-University of Alabama Health Services Foundation (UAHSF) Endowed Chair in Biomedical Research. Dr. Benveniste also holds professorships in the UAB Departments of Neurobiology and Neurology. She is a member of multiple NIH study sections and chaired three different NIH Study Sections.
During her postdoctoral studies, in the Department of Neurology at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), Dr. Benveniste initiated research on elucidating the mechanisms by which cells of the immune system and the central nervous system communicate and influence functionality, cytokine/chemokine production by glial cells, the effects of cytokines/chemokines on glial cell function, and the ability of glial cells to function as immune effector cells in the brain. Her laboratory is devoted to the study of neuroinflammation and the JAK/STAT and NF-kB signaling cascades.
Dr. Benveniste has served on the editorial boards of multiple journals including The Journal of Immunology, Journal of Neuroscience, and Journal of Biological Chemistry and is currently on the editorial boards of the Journal of Neuro-Virology, Journal of Neuroinflammation, and ASN News. She was elected in 2009 as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). With 27 years of peer-review panel experience, Dr. Benveniste continues as reviewer for such panels as the Michael J. Fox Foundation (2015), National Multiple Sclerosis Society (2015), and NIH Neurological Science and Disorders Committee C (2015). Dr. Benveniste continues to innovate as Chair, UAB Master’s Degree in Biomedical and Health Sciences (2014-Present) and Cancer Biology Undergraduate Degree (2014-Present).
Dr. Benveniste has served as the Director, Graduate Program in Cell Biology (1995-2000) and as Founding Associate Dean, Office of Postdoctoral Education (1999-2001). She became Associate Director of Basic Science Research in the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center in 2006. She is the former co-director of the center’s Cancer Cell Biology Program. She is currently Past-President of the American Society for Neurochemistry (2015-2017), having served as President from 2013-2015. She received the UAB Graduate School Dean’s Award for Excellence in Mentorship in 2014.