Dr. Sterling N. Wright, Ph.D.

Education/Training 

BS, MS, Texas Tech University, Lubbock TX
PhD, University of Texas at Austin, Austin TX
Research Fellow in Anesthesia (Post-Doc), Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston MA

Research Interests

The research in my laboratory involves the investigation of ion channel pharmacology and biophysics.  Voltage-dependent sodium channels, which are responsible for generating action potentials in muscle (cardiac and skeletal muscle) and neurons, are susceptible to block or modification by numerous naturally occurring neurotoxins and synthetic agents.  My research has focused on the modification of sodium channel kinetics by Site 2 neurotoxins such as aconitine, lappaconitine, and batrachotoxin, as well as the block of sodium channels by a variety of local anesthetics and aminoglycosides.

Classes taught recently

BIO 101 (Biological Concepts), BIO 229/230 (Human Physiology Lecture/Lab), BIO 322 (Animal Physiology), BIO 528 (Neurobiology), BIO 620 (Advanced Physiology)

Selected Publications

*Godwin, S.A. Cox, J.R. and Wright, S.N.  (2005) Modeling of benzocaine analog interactions with the D4S6 segment of NaV4.1 voltage-gated sodium channels.  Biophysical Chemistry 113:1-7 *graduate student author


*Yeiser, A.J., Cox, J.R. and Wright, S.N.  (2004)  Voltage-dependent inhibition of rat skeletal muscle sodium channels by aminoglycoside antibiotics Pflügers Archiv, European Journal of Physiology 448:204-213                 *undergraduate student author


Wright, S.N.  (2003)  Cardiotoxic and antiarrhythmic tertiary amine local anesthetics:  sodium channel affinity vs. sodium channel gating.  Current Vascular Pharmacology 1:239-242


Wright, S.N.  (2002)  Comparison of aconitine-modified human heart (hH1) and rat skeletal (m1) muscle Na+channels: an important role for external Na+ ions. Journal of Physiology (London) 583:759-771


Wright, S.N.  (2001)  Irreversible block of human heart (hH1) sodium channels by the plant alkaloid, lappaconitine. Molecular Pharmacology 59:183-192

Contact Information

Sterling N. Wright, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Biological Sciences
Murray State University
Murray, KY 42071
Office: 1112E  Biology Building
Phone: 270.809.2087
Email: swright@murraystate.edu