Derek Braun, Ph.D., Cell Biology and Molecular Genetics, University of Maryland and B.A., Computer Science, Gallaudet University

Science, Technology, Accessibility, Mathematics & Public Health

Derek Braun

Phone Numbers

202-651-5385 (V)


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Hall Memorial Building N449

Derek C. Braun, Ph.D. began teaching at Gallaudet in 1995 as an adjunct and has been tenure track since 2000.

As a graduate student, Dr. Braun was a NIH National Service Research Award (NRSA) fellow. His graduate research at the University of Maryland was on the bacterium Neisseria gonorrhoeae. He investigated and published on the genetics of its lipooligosaccharide antigenic variation. After graduation from the University of Maryland, Dr. Braun worked at the National Cancer Institute, NIH, from 2002 through 2006, where he studied signal transduction pathways important in cancer and pain. Dr. Braun was awarded a provisional patent for developing a fluorescent tool for high-throughput screening of potential anticancer drugs.

In 2006, Dr. Braun was selected to design and direct the Molecular Genetics Laboratory, Gallaudet's first biological research laboratory. This new laboratory was built on renovated space on the 4th floor of the Hall Memorial Building (HMB). Undergraduate students and summer interns perform research in the laboratory alongside deaf faculty.

Dr. Braun has been involved in the honors program for many years and was a honors student while enrolled at Gallaudet. He has taught Honors Introductory Biology, a Honors seminar in Bioterrorism, a Honors interdisciplinary course with Dr. Tonya Stremlau on nutrition science and American food marketing entitled 'The American Diet', and has served as an advisor and second reader for Honors senior capstone projects.

Dr. Braun teaches BIO 211 Genetics, BIO 221 Microbiology, and BIO 321 Pathogenic Microbiology.

Dr. Braun serves as an Editor for the journal CBE Life Sciences Education.

Outside of Gallaudet, Dr. Braun teaches rock climbing courses in ASL at Earth Treks. He is a certified Single Pitch Instructor by the American Mountain Guides Association and a certified Wilderness First Responder.

As one of the very few Deaf geneticists in the world, Dr. Braun was interviewed and featured in "Scientists with disabilities: Access in all areas" in Nature, "Science in Sign Language" in ASBMB Today, and in All in the Mind, a radio show by Australian Broadcasting Corp. He also presented at TEDxMidAtlantic 2013.

Articles In Refereed Journals

  1. Braun DC, Jain S, Epstein E, Greenwald BH, Herold B, Gray M. Deaf intermarriage has limited effect on the prevalence of recessive deafness and no effect on underlying allelic frequency. Plos One. 2020;15(11):e0241609. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0241609

  2. Braun DC, Clark MD, Marchut AE, Solomon CM, Majocha M, Davenport Z, Kushalnagar RS, Listman J, Hauser PC, Gormally C. Welcoming Deaf Students into STEM: Recommendations for University Science Education. CBE Life Sci Educ 2018 Fall; 17(3): es10. doi: 10.1187/cbe.17-05-0081

  3. Majocha M, Davenport Z, Braun DC, Gormally CL. “Everyone was nice...but I was still left out”: An Interview Study About Deaf Interns’ Research Experiences in STEM. J Microbiol Biol Educ 2018; 19(1): 19.1.50. doi: 10.1128/jmbe.v19i1.1381

  4. Braun DC, Gormally C, Clark MD. The Deaf Mentoring Survey: A Community Cultural Wealth Framework for Measuring Mentoring Effectiveness with Underrepresented Students. CBE Life Sci Educ. 2017;16(1):ar10. doi: 10.1187/cbe.15-07-0155

  5. Czikora A, Lundberg DJ, Abramovitz A, Lewin NE, Kedei N, Peach ML, Zhou X, Merritt RC Jr, Craft EA, Braun DC, Blumberg PM. Structural Basis for the Failure of the C1 Domain of Ras Guanine Nucleotide Releasing Protein 2 (RasGRP2) to Bind Phorbol Ester with High Affinity. J Biol Chem. 2016 May 20;291(21):11133-47. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M116.725333

  6. Kedei N, Lewin NE, Géczy T, Selezneva J, Braun DC, Chen J, Herrmann MA, Heldman MR, Lim L, Mannan P, Garfield SH, Poudel YB, Cummins TJ, Rudra A, Blumberg PM, Keck GE. Biological Profile of the Less Lipophilic and Synthetically More Accessible Bryostatin 7 Closely Resembles That of Bryostatin 1. ACS Chem Biol. 2013 Feb 1. doi: 10.1021/cb300671s

  7. Lazar J, Braun DC, Toth A, Wang Y, Pearce LV, Pavlyukovets VA, Blumberg PM, Lee J. Kinetics of penetration influence the apparent potency of vanilloids on TRPV1. Mol Pharmacol. 2006 Apr;69(4):1166-73. Epub 2006 Jan 17. doi: 10.1124/mol.105.019158

  8. Pu Y, Perry NA, Yang D, Lewin NE, Kedei N, Braun DC, Choi SH, Blumberg PM, Garfield SH, Stone JC, Duan D, Marquez VE. A novel diacylglycerol-lactone shows marked selectivity in vitro among C1 domains of protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms alpha and delta as well as selectivity for RasGRP compared with PKCalpha. J Biol Chem. 2005 Jul 22;280(29):27329-38. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M414132200

  9. Braun DC, Garfield SH, Blumberg PM. Analysis by fluorescent resonance energy transfer of the interaction between ligands and protein kinase C delta in the intact cell. J Biol Chem 2005 Mar 4;280(9):8164-71. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M413896200

  10. Braun DC, Cao Y, Wang S, Garfield SH, Hur GM, Blumberg PM. Role of phorbol ester localization in determining protein kinase C or RasGRP3 translocation: real time analysis using fluorescent ligands and proteins. Mol Cancer Ther. 2005 Jan;4(1):141- 50. PMID: 15657361

  11. Blumberg PM, Braun DC, Kedei N, Lazar J, Pavlyukovets VA, Pearce LV. Insights into TRPV1 pharmacology provided by non-capsaicin ligands. In: Malmberg AB, Bley KR, editors.  Turning up the Heat on Pain: TRPV1 Receptors in Pain and Inflammation. Switzerland: Birkhäuser Verlag Basell; 2005. p. 55-69.

  12. Braun DC, Stein DC. The lgtABCDE gene cluster, involved in lipooligosaccharide biosynthesis in Neisseria gonorrhoeae, contains multiple promoter sequences. J Bacteriol 2004 Feb;186(4):1038-49. doi: 10.1128/JB.186.4.1038-1049.2004

Chapters In Books

  1. Blumberg PM, Braun DC, Kedei N, Lazar J, Pavlyukovets VA, Pearce LV. Insights into TRPV1 pharmacology provided by non-capsaicin ligands. In: Malmberg AB, Bley KR, editors.  Turning up the Heat on Pain: TRPV1 Receptors in Pain and Inflammation. Switzerland: Birkhäuser Verlag Basell; 2005. p. 55-69.

Monographs and Reports

  1. Solomon CM, Braun DC, Kushalnagar R, Ladner RE, Lundberg DJ, Painter R, Nuzzo R. Workshop for Emerging Deaf and Hard of Hearing Scientists (White Paper). 2013 Feb. Available from:

Other Articles

  1. Braun DC. A Proposal for Deaf Science Education. Educ Update. 2013 Jan/Feb;18(3):6.

Other Books

  1. Braun DC, Florence BL. Carderock [guidebook]. 2015 Oct 16.


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