Toni Trumbo Bell, Ph.D.


Toni Trumbo-Bell
Professor of Biochemistry, PMSS Coordinator

University of Louisville, Ph.D., 2002
University of Louisville, M.S., 2001
University of Louisville, B.A., 1996

Contact Information


CHEM108 Physiological Chemistry lecture and lab (and lab coordinator)
CHEM442 Biochemistry 2, lecture and lab
INTSTUDY300 Pre-Medical Sciences Seminar
CHEM230 Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry lecture and lab

Research Interests

Mild traumatic brain injury (concussion)-In a collaborative project with Dr. Joseph Hazzard of Exercise Science, we are working toward finding biomarkers for concussion in human body fluid samples. Timothy Shuey (class of 2016, now a medical student at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine) was the first students working on the project. Since then, Diane Cruz (class of 2016, now a Second Lieutenant in the United States Army) and Andrew Denisenko (class of 2017, accepted to Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine) have furthered the project. Cruz and Denisenko discovered a potential marker. Through meta-analysis, Alison Martin (class of 2019) discovered that women soccer players have statistically significant higher levels of the marker in saliva than men soccer players. We are preparing a manuscript for publication in a neurology journal.

Alison Martin and Christopher Holdren (graduate student in Exercise Science, class of 2018) have begun to further investigate the differences in biomarker levels between women’s soccer and men’s soccer players. Levels of biomarker are being correlated with scores in a balance assessment. Holdren will write up the work as his master’s thesis, as well as a manuscript for publication.

Zero calorie sweeteners-Zero calorie sweeteners (ZCS) are common dietary component for Americans who wish to restrict calorie and/or carbohydrate intake while still enjoying sweet foods and beverage. It is not known how carbohydrate-based ZCS, such as sucralose or extracts of the stevia plant, interact with digestive enzymes. The first enzyme we are targeting is amylase. Amylase is secreted by saliva glands into the mouth when foods containing starch are eaten. Amylase begins the breakdown of starch into glucose. Jessica Popolow (class of 2018) and Pinkay Oscar (class of 2019) finished working out the method and began data collection for uninhibited amylse in fall 2017. In spring 2018, Oscar and Popolow will compare the behavior of amylase with only starch, versus the same reaction in the presence of sucrose and then in the presence of sucralose.

Inhibitors of blood clot formation-Inappropriate formation of blood clots results in deep venous thrombosis, heart attack, and stroke. Many former researchers have helped me in my search for orally viable blood clot inhibitors. Most recently, Morgan Lewis (class of 2017) and Hovanes Gulasarian (class of 2017) have finished developing a method for rapid and inexpensive analysis of clot formation in the presence of an inhibitor.

Service Activities

fall 2004-present Pre-Professional Advisory Committee
fall 2004-present Coordinator-BU Science Iditarod
spring 2004-present ACS High School Chemistry Exam
fall 2017 Chemistry and Biochemistry Search and Screen Committee
fall 2017-present Transfers Strategic Enrollment Planning Work Group
fall 2017 elected to serve on the Bloomsburg Town Council