Robert H. Carnahan, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Visit Lab Site

Faculty Appointments
Associate Professor of Pediatrics Associate Professor of Radiology & Radiological Sciences
Ph.D., Cell Biology, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TennesseeB.S., Biology/Psychology, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana
Office Address
893 PRB
438 PRB
2220 Pierce Ave
Nashville, TN 37232
Clinical Description
Dr. Carnahan received his BS in Biology and BS in Psychology from Indiana University. After several years working for Eli Lilly in the US and in Strasbourg, France, he returned to academics as a visiting researcher at the Institut Pasteur in Paris, France. He subsequently returned to the US to complete his Ph.D. in Cell Biology at Vanderbilt University where he studied the mechanisms regulating actin ring formation and activation in cytokinesis in the laboratory of Kathy Gould, Ph.D. His post-doctoral studies in the laboratory of Al Reynolds, Ph.D. focused on the functions of both the cell adhesion regulator p120 and its interaction partner Kaiso. In 2006, he was appointed as Director of the Vanderbilt Antibody and Protein Resource (VAPR). During his time leading this institutional shared resource lab, he has guided a technology expansion from being a lab one focused exclusively on generating monoclonal antibodies, to one that now has expertise in wide array of molecular approaches, including antibody and recombinant protein engineering, diagnostic and assay development, and biologics cell line development. Numerous NIH shared instrumentation awards and other grants totaling nearly $2.5 million awarded to Dr. Carnahan have provided the needed infrastructure for this technology expansion. In addition to directing the VAPR, Dr. Carnahan is an Associate Professor in the Cancer Biology, Faculty director of the Management and Entrepreneurship for Scientists program, a member of the Medical School admissions IAC committee, and is a faculty instructor for both M.D. and Ph.D. training programs. In 2010 he co-founded the Antibody-Technologies Research Group. This international group, part of a larger scientific organization (Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities), collaborates to develop technical standards, advances in methodologies, and training opportunities for antibody lab directors and personnel. Within the Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities he has also served in numerous other national and regional leadership roles, including most recently as the President of the Southeastern chapter from 2015-2016. Dr. Carnahan is also a recognized expert in Lean Laboratory management practices. He has not only developed and implemented Lean Lab strategies within the VAPR lab, but has served as a consultant and an invited speaker on this topic across the US. He is a member of both the Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities and The Antibody Society. Dr. Carnahan is married to Nikki Carnahan, and they have two children.
Markham NO, Cooper T, Goff M, Gribben EM, Carnahan RH, Reynolds AB. Monoclonal antibodies to DIPA: a novel binding partner of p120-catenin isoform 1. Hybridoma (Larchmt). 2012 Aug; 31(4): 246-54. PMID: 22894777, PMCID: PMC3420552, DOI: 10.1089/hyb.2012.0009, ISSN: 1557-8348.

Kurley SJ, Bierie B, Carnahan RH, Lobdell NA, Davis MA, Hofmann I, Moses HL, Muller WJ, Reynolds AB. P120-catenin is essential for terminal end bud function and mammary morphogenesis. Development [print-electronic]. 2012 May; 139(10): 1754-64. PMID: 22461563, PMCID: PMC3328177, PII: dev.072769, DOI: 10.1242/dev.072769, ISSN: 1477-9129.

Akingbade D, Kingsley PJ, Shuck SC, Cooper T, Carnahan R, Szekely J, Marnett LJ. Selection of monoclonal antibodies against 6-oxo-M(1)dG and their use in an LC-MS/MS assay for the presence of 6-oxo-M(1)dG in vivo. Chem. Res. Toxicol [print-electronic]. 2012 Feb 2/20/2012; 25(2): 454-61. PMID: 22211372, PMCID: PMC3285145, DOI: 10.1021/tx200494h, ISSN: 1520-5010.

Barrett CW, Smith JJ, Lu LC, Markham N, Stengel KR, Short SP, Zhang B, Hunt AA, Fingleton BM, Carnahan RH, Engel ME, Chen X, Beauchamp RD, Wilson KT, Hiebert SW, Reynolds AB, Williams CS. Kaiso directs the transcriptional corepressor MTG16 to the Kaiso binding site in target promoters. PLoS ONE [print-electronic]. 2012; 7(12): e51205. PMID: 23251453, PMCID: PMC3521008, PII: PONE-D-12-22965, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0051205, ISSN: 1932-6203.

Smith AL, Friedman DB, Yu H, Carnahan RH, Reynolds AB. ReCLIP (reversible cross-link immuno-precipitation): an efficient method for interrogation of labile protein complexes. PLoS ONE. 2011; 6(1): e16206. PMID: 21283770, PMCID: PMC3024417, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0016206, ISSN: 1932-6203.

Carnahan RH, Rokas A, Gaucher EA, Reynolds AB. The molecular evolution of the p120-catenin subfamily and its functional associations. PLoS ONE. 2010; 5(12): e15747. PMID: 21209830, PMCID: PMC3013132, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0015747, ISSN: 1932-6203.

Lund L, Dubrowski A, Carnahan H. A modular approach for training urologists in laparoscopy. BJU Int. 2007 Dec; 100(6): 1216-8. PMID: 17979919, PII: BJU7253, DOI: 10.1111/j.1464-410X.2007.07253.x, ISSN: 1464-410X.

Wildenberg GA, Dohn MR, Carnahan RH, Davis MA, Lobdell NA, Settleman J, Reynolds AB. P120-catenin and p190RhoGAP regulate cell-cell adhesion by coordinating antagonism between Rac and Rho. Cell. 2006 Dec 12/1/2006; 127(5): 1027-39. PMID: 17129786, PII: S0092-8674(06)01407-3, DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2006.09.046, ISSN: 0092-8674.

Xia X, Carnahan RH, Vaughan MH, Wildenberg GA, Reynolds AB. P120 serine and threonine phosphorylation is controlled by multiple ligand-receptor pathways but not cadherin ligation. Exp. Cell Res [print-electronic]. 2006 Oct 10/15/2006; 312(17): 3336-48. PMID: 16935280, PII: S0014-4827(06)00274-6, DOI: 10.1016/j.yexcr.2006.07.007, ISSN: 0014-4827.

Carnahan RH, Feoktistova A, Ren L, Niessen S, Yates JR, Gould KL. Dim1p is required for efficient splicing and export of mRNA encoding lid1p, a component of the fission yeast anaphase-promoting complex. Eukaryotic Cell. 2005 Mar; 4(3): 577-87. PMID: 15755920, PMCID: PMC1087801, PII: 4/3/577, DOI: 10.1128/EC.4.3.577-587.2005, ISSN: 1535-9778.

Reynolds AB, Carnahan RH. Regulation of cadherin stability and turnover by p120ctn: implications in disease and cancer. Semin. Cell Dev. Biol. 2004 Dec; 15(6): 657-63. PMID: 15561585, PII: S1084-9521(04)00089-8, DOI: 10.1016/j.semcdb.2004.09.003, ISSN: 1084-9521.

Carnahan RH, Gould KL. The PCH family protein, Cdc15p, recruits two F-actin nucleation pathways to coordinate cytokinetic actin ring formation in Schizosaccharomyces pombe. J. Cell Biol [print-electronic]. 2003 Sep 9/1/2003; 162(5): 851-62. PMID: 12939254, PMCID: PMC2172828, PII: jcb.200305012, DOI: 10.1083/jcb.200305012, ISSN: 0021-9525.

Tasto JJ, Carnahan RH, McDonald WH, Gould KL. Vectors and gene targeting modules for tandem affinity purification in Schizosaccharomyces pombe. Yeast. 2001 May; 18(7): 657-62. PMID: 11329175, DOI: 10.1002/yea.713, ISSN: 0749-503X.

Bost AG, Carnahan RH, Lu XT, Denison MR. Four proteins processed from the replicase gene polyprotein of mouse hepatitis virus colocalize in the cell periphery and adjacent to sites of virion assembly. J. Virol. 2000 Apr; 74(7): 3379-87. PMID: 10708455, PMCID: PMC111839, ISSN: 0022-538X.

Zhao G, Yeh WK, Carnahan RH, Flokowitsch J, Meier TI, Alborn WE, Becker GW, Jaskunas SR. Biochemical characterization of penicillin-resistant and -sensitive penicillin-binding protein 2x transpeptidase activities of Streptococcus pneumoniae and mechanistic implications in bacterial resistance to beta-lactam antibiotics. J. Bacteriol. 1997 Aug; 179(15): 4901-8. PMID: 9244281, PMCID: PMC179340, ISSN: 0021-9193.