Simon, Liz, MVSc., Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Physiology
Comprehensive Alcohol-HIV/AIDS Research Center

533 Bolivar Street, Room 311
New Orleans, LA 70112
Room 7249
Cell: (217)377-3170
Office: (504) 568-3395
Email: lsimo2@lsuhsc.edu


  • BVSc - Bachelor of Veterinary Sciences 1997, College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Kerala, India
  • MVSc - Master of Veterinary Sciences (Reproductive physiology) 1999, College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Kerala, India
  • Ph.D. – Reproductive Physiology 2005, Tamilnadu Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, India
  • Postdoctoral Fellowship - Endocrine/Stem Cell Biology 2010, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign


After her veterinary training, Simon completed her PhD training in Endocrine Physiology with a National Fellowship from the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, India. Simon completed her postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign in endocrine and stem cell biology. She was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Tuskegee University, Alabama (2010-2013). She also held an adjunct faculty position, Department of Pathology, School of Medicine at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. She joined the Department of Physiology in LSUHSC in 2013 and is currently an Associate Professor.

Clinical Interests

Dr. Simon is a member of the translational LSU Health New Orleans NIAAA-funded P60 Comprehensive Alcohol-HIV/AIDS Research Center of the project Alcohol and Metabolic Dysregulation among PLWH: Mechanisms underlying Metabolic Comorbidities. She is also a co-investigator of the clinical study, Alcohol & Metabolic Comorbidities in PLWHA; Evidence-Driven Interventions. 

Research Interests

Research in our laboratory focuses on studying epigenomic interactions that impair cell function contributing to dysregulated repair, regeneration and metabolic function. We are specifically interested in the dysregulation of skeletal muscle stem cell signaling that alters the fate of these cells in insults including alcohol use and HIV. Our laboratory utilizes in vivo approaches, including models of alcohol administration; cell culture systems; and a wide array of molecular biology techniques to study genetic and epigenetic changes that contribute to dysfunction. Our focus is on microRNAs and histone modifications that regulate gene and protein expression and function. The lab has also developed close collaborations within the department and at LSUHSC to investigate mechanisms of metabolic dysregulation mediated by alcohol and HIV disease.

Teaching Activities

  • Endocrine Physiology - Dental Program
                                             Interdisciplinary Graduate Program
                                             Physical Therapy & Physician
                                             Assistant Programs
  • Cell Biology -                  Interdisciplinary Graduate Program

Committees & Administrative Responsibilities

Professional society committees: 

  • Animal Care and Experimentation (ACE) Committee, American Physiological Society 2017-2019. 
  • Awards Committee, American Physiological Society 2021-2023


  • Faculty Assembly, 2021-
  • Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee, 2021-
  • IDP Mentoring Committee, 2018-
  • Committee on Women’s Affairs 2014-
  • Association of Women in Science (2014-Present). Secretary of the AWIS LSUHSC Chapter (2020-)


  • Faculty Search Committee, 2018-
  • Wellness Committee, 2018-Present

Selected Publications

Simon L, Ford SM Jr, Song K, Berner P, Vande Stouwe C, Nelson S, Bagby G. J, Molina P. E (2017). Decreased myoblast differentiation in chronic binge alcohol and antiretroviral therapy administered simian immunodeficiency virus-infected macaques: role of miR-206. American Journal of Physiology – Regulatory, Comparative and Integrative Physiology. 313 (3): R240-R250. PMID:28637658.

Duplanty AA, Siggins RW, Allerton T, Simon L, Molina PE. (2018). Myoblast mitochondrial respiration is decreased in chronic binge alcohol administered simian immunodeficiency virus-infected antiretroviral-treated rhesus macaques. Physiological Reports. PMCID:5835494, 

Ford SM Jr, Simon L Berner P, Cook G, Vande Stouwe C, Dufour JP, Bagby G. J, Nelson S, Molina P. E (2018). Differential contribution of chronic binge alcohol and antiretroviral therapy to metabolic dysregulation in SIV-infected male macaques. American Journal of Physiology- Endocrinology and Metabolism. PMID 30040479, Co-first author.

Adler K.A, Molina P. E, Simon L (2019). Epigenomic mechanisms of alcohol-induced impaired differentiation of skeletal muscle stem cells; role of Class IIA histone deacetylases. Physiological Genomics. PMID 31398085.

Welsh D. A, Ferguson T. F, Theall K. P, Simon L, Amedee A, Siggins R. W, Nelson S, Brashear M. Mercante D, Molina P. E (2019). The New Orleans Alcohol Use in HIV Study: Launching a Translational Investigation of the Interaction of Alcohol Use with Biological and Socioenvironmental Risk Factors for Multimorbidity in People Living with HIV. Alcohol Clinical and Experimental Research. PMID 30748025.

Levitt DE, Yeh AY, Prendergast MJ, Jr RGB, Adler KA, Cook G, Molina PE, Simon L (2020). Chronic Alcohol Dysregulates Skeletal Muscle Myogenic Gene Expression after Hind Limb Immobilization in Female Rats. Biomolecules. PMID:  32178412

Simon L, Ferguson T, Vande Stouwe C, Brashear M, Primeaux SD, Theall KP, Welsh DA, Molina PE (2020). Prevalence of Insulin Resistance in Adults Living with HIV: Implications of Alcohol Use. AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. PMID: 32449647

Levitt DE, Prendergast MJ, Jr RGB, Chalapati, N, Simon L, Molina PE (2020). Ethanol-Impaired Myogenic Differentiation is Associated With Decreased Myoblast Glycolytic Function. Alcohol Clinical and Experimental Research. PMID: 3294501

Levitt DE, Ferguson TF, Primeaux SD, Zavala JA, Ahmed J, Marshall RH, Simon L, Molina PE Skeletal muscle bioenergetic health and function in people living with HIV: association with glucose tolerance and alcohol use. American Journal of Physiology – Regulatory, Comparative and Integrative Physiology PMID. 34585616

Cucinello-Ragland JA, Mitchell-Cleveland R, Trimble WB, Urbina AP, Yeh AY, Edwards KN, Molina PE, Simon L, Edwards SE Alcohol amplifies cingulate cortex signaling and facilitates immobilization-induced hyperalgesia in female rats. Neuroscience Letters. PMID. 34280506

Additional Info

Center of Excellence

Alcohol and Drug Abuse Center of Excellence