News and Information

Cell Biology and Immunology

 Robert J. Wordinger, Ph.D. 1945 - 2015

Robert J Wordinger

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Dr. Wordinger on Friday, January 23rd.  He will be missed by many.  Dr. Wordinger was a well respected eye researcher, teacher, graduate mentor, previous department chair/vice chair, hard working committee member and a faithful friend to many here at the Health Science Center.  He has served the UNTHSC community for 36 years. He joins his wonderful wife, the Rev. Barbara Wordinger, who preceded him in 2011 and is now survived by his two children, Kathryn and Paul, step-daughters, Susan and Laurie, and their families.  

The funeral will be this Friday, January 30th, at 11:00 AM at:

First United Methodist Church

521 West Pipeline Road, Hurst, TX

"Dr. Robert Wordinger came to the health science center when it was just TCOM," said Thomas Yorio, PhD, Provost, Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor. "He arrived a year after I did in 1978. During his tenure he served as Professor and Chair of the Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy and as Director of Research for the North Texas Eye Research Institute. Bob was an outstanding educator, mentor and researcher. He trained many students throughout his career and was most proud of their accomplishments.  He was a caring and thoughtful leader who was always there to listen and provide encouragement.  He will be greatly missed by his colleagues, students and friends at the health science center."

Anuja Ghorpade, PhD, Chair of Cell Biology & Immunology, said, "I am deeply sorry about Dr. Robert Wordinger's demise. The Cell Biology department at UNTHSC was his home for more than 35 years. He was a wonderful colleague, an inspiring mentor and a glorious human being. Indeed, Dr. Wordinger was a role model, and like a father figure to many of us, including students, staff and faculty alike.  His unwavering positive outlook to life was a constant inspiration. It is a tragic loss and we will greatly miss him; yet, his memory will live on as a positive imprint in everyone's life he touched."

In lieu of flowers, Dr. Wordinger's family requests that memorial gifts be made to UNTHSC's Wordinger Visual Sciences scholarship fund. Those interested may give online and note the funds are for the Wordinger Scholarship, or account 97129, in the "designation" box. Gifts also may be made by mail.

Flag at half staff for Dr. Wordinger

Graduation 2014

Friday, May 16, 2014 

4:00 - 6:30 PM

Will Rogers Memorial Auditorium

Guest speaker - J. Craig Venter from the Human Genome Project 


Art Schander


Manmeet Kaur

Neha Vartek

Tasneem Sharma-Patliwala

Nathan Horton

Mohana Indramohan

Sangram Raut


Charisse Tan 

UNTHSC Service Awards


Wednesday, April 30, 2014

MET Auditorium

3:00 PM

Reception to follow in MET 109, 110 & 111 

 We recognize those CBIM faculty and staff who have reached milestones this past year in their careers here at the UNT Health Science Center:

35 Years

Robert J. Wordinger, Ph.D.

30 Years

Patrick R. Cammarata, Ph.D.

25 Years

Deanna L. Ranker

 5 Years

Abbot Frederick Clark, Ph.D.

Weiming Mao, Ph.D.

William J. Weiss

Gulab S. Zode, Ph.D.

Thanks to all of you for your outstanding years of service.  Your contributions to the school and this department are greatly appreciated. 


Anuja Ghorpade

Congratulations to Dr. Ghorpade in Cell Biology & Immunology for receiving $62,847.00. for her grant “METH/HIV-1 Regulation of Astrocyte Responses: TAAR1 & Hyperthermia” for the time covering April 10, 2014 through March 31, 2016.


Jerry Simecka

Congratulations to Dr. Simecka in Cell Biology & Immunology for receiving $31,663.24. for his grant “Pharmacokinetic Profiling in Sprague-Dawley Rats and Golden Syrian Hamsters and Mice” for the time period covering February 17, 2014 through February 17, 2015.


Gulab Zode

Congratulations to Dr. Zode in Cell Biology & Immunology for receiving $12,816.49. for his grant “Sodium 4-Phenylbutyrate as a Treatment for Juvenile-Onset Open Angle Glaucoma” for the time period covering July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2014.


Julian Borejdo

Congratulations to Dr. Borejdo in Cell Biology & Immunology for receiving $25,000.00. for his grant, “ Role of Phosphorylation of Myosin Light Chain” for the time period covering April 1, 2014 through August 31, 2015.


Ignacy Gryczynski

Congratulations to Dr. Vishwanatha, Gryczynski & Ranjan for receiving $25,000.00. for their grant, “Molecular Beacon-Based Nanoparticles for TNBC Imaging and Targeted Therapy” for the time period covering April 1, 2014 through August 31, 2015.


Congratulations to Dr. McDowell in Cell Biology & Immunology for receiving $59,988.0. for her grant, “Retina Ganglion Cell Subtype Specific Cell Death in a Mouse Model of Congenital Glaucoma” for the time period covering July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015.

Gulab Zode


Congratulations to Dr. Zode in Cell Biology & Immunology for receiving $774,729.00. for his grant, “Role of ER Stress in the Pathogenesis of Primary Open Angle Glaucoma” for the time period covering April 1, 2014 through March 31, 2017.

Founder's Medal Recipient

John AschenbrennerAt Saturday's White Coat Ceremony (July 21, 2012) John Aschenbrenner, Ph.D., of the Department of Cell Biology & Immunology received the Founder's Medal, which is awarded to a deserving individual in recognition of significant contributions to health care and/or osteopathic medical education in honor of the founders of the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine. Dr. Aschenbrenner is adjunct associate professor of Cell Biology and Immunology at UNTHSC and has been an integral part of the faculty since 1973.  

He joined the school and what was then the Department of Anatomy when they were in their infancy and Medical Anatomy Labs were taught in the bowling alley on the corner of Camp Bowie and Montgomery (where MED 1 now stands).  He has taught Human Anatomy to almost every graduate of the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine.  Thank you Dr. A!


Robert Wordinger Robert Wordinger, PhD, professor of Cell Biology and Immunology and associate director of the North Texas Eye Research Institute, has been appointed as a permanent member of the newly created NIH Study Section, Disease and Pathophysiology of the Visual System (DPVS).

2011 - 2012 Graduate Student Association Awards

CBAN Awardees

Outstanding Graduate Faculty Member

Anuja Ghorpade, Ph.D.
Anuja Ghorpade, Ph.D.

Award for Outstanding Graduate Student

Donald Rosario
Donald Rosario, Cell Biology

Ankur Jain
Ankur Jain, Visual Sciences

Sigma Xi Research Society Inductees

Ankur Jain
Ankur Jain

Brett Mueller

Dean's Awards for Scholarly Achievement

Barret Cromeens
Barret Cromeens, Academic

CBAN Holiday Potluck

Click on the image above to launch an MP4 video in a new window (best with Firefox or Safari)

We welcome Dr. Jonny He,
his family & laboratory members.

Dr. He will serve UNTHSC as CBAN faculty &
Associate Dean of GSBS

He family

Summer Reception Graduation 2011 GSBS Awards

Family Spring Celebration

Open Positions

dr and mrs wordingerThe Department of Cell Biology and Immunology mourns the loss of Rev. Barbara Wordinger, wife to Professor and past-Chair, Dr. Robert Wordinger.   The Wordinger family is in our thoughts and prayers.

If you would like to send a message to the Wordinger family, an online journal is available through CaringBridge.

Euless - Reverend Barbara Wordinger, 69, a loving wife, wonderful mother, caring sister, adoring grandmother and devoted friend, peacefully passed away on July 6 and is now with our Heavenly Father.
Funeral: A Service of Celebration and Remembrance was held at First United Methodist Church of Hurst on Monday, July 11, at 4pm. A private internment service will be held at Bluebonnet Hills Memorial Park.
Rev. Barbara Wordinger was born December 12, 1941 to William and Elizabeth Keeney of Newtown Square, Pennsylvania. Barbara married, Robert, the love of her life on August 10, 1974. They met at the University of Pennsylvania and were best friends ever since. She graduated from the University of Texas-Arlington with a Major in Philosophy and then graduated from the Southern Methodist University Perkins School of Theology with a Masters of Divinity. Barbara was ordained an Elder in the United Methodist Church. She served the First United Methodist churches in Fort Worth, Palo Pinto, Graford, Bethel United Methodist Church and Westcliff United Methodist in Fort Worth. She retired from the ministry in 2005. She was active as a clergy member in initiating the Central Texas Walk-to-Emmaus. She had a warm and loving spirit that touched so many lives. She was a teacher, a great encourager and comforter. Barbara was one of God’s special people.
Memorials: In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Mission Central c/o First United Methodist Church, 521 West Pipeline, Hurst TX 76053.
Survivors: Barbara is survived by Robert Wordinger, her husband of 36 years; children, Susan Strickland, Laurie and her husband Rev. George Ashley, Paul Wordinger and his wife Melinda and Kathryn Cane and her husband Erik; grandchildren, Nickolas Strickland, George Ashley III, Jacob Ashley, Hannah Ashley, Avery Cane and Connor Wordinger; brother, Robert Keeney and many loving aunts, uncles and cousins.

Summer Reception Flyer

Summer Reception

The Summer Reception was a great success with the CBAN family celebrating May and June birthdays, awards, grants and couple farewells. 

Cara Fisher has accepted an assistant professor position at the University of Western States in Portland, OR and Lois Fisher is planning to indulge herself with travel in the coming months.

Many thanks to all those who attended and to our wonderful admin staff who made it happen.

anirudh grad


Congratulations to Dr. Anirudh Sethi. Dr. Sethi has accepted a position at  University of Texas Southwestern as Postdoctoral Scholar.


The Department of Cell Biology and Immunology was well represented at the 2011 Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences (GSBS) Annual Awards Ceremony on May 6th, 2011.


Discipline Award winners:

Outstanding Graduate Student in Cell Biology:
Adam Fields

Outstanding Graduate Student in Structural Anatomy:
Barrett Cromeens

Graduate Student Association
Award winners:
syndi EspinosaAbe Clark

Outstanding Staff Member:
Syndi Espinosa

Outstanding Faculty Member:
Abe Clark, PhD

Golden Apple Award for Teaching:
Abe Clark, PhD

ankurreevesGraduate School of Biomedical Sciences Award winners:

Rachel Dauphin Memorial Scholarship:
Ankur Jain

CBAN Spring Fling montage

CBAN Family Spring Celebration

On April 4th, 2001, we celebrated the arrival of new faculty, staff and grants.  We also said farewell to treasured colleagues as they retired or left for other institutions.

For a full list please click here.

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This page last updated 28th Jan 2015