Stead Family Department of Pediatrics

A. Paige Volk, MD


Director, Pediatric Critical Care Fellowship Program
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics  - Critical Care

Contact Information

Office: 7770-C JPP
Iowa City, IA 52242
Office Phone: 319-356-4190



BA, Biochemistry and Chemistry, Cornell College
MD, Medicine, University of Iowa

Residency, Pediatrics, University of Iowa Children's Hospital
Fellowship, Pediatric Critical Care, University of Iowa Children's Hospital

Licensure and Certifications

American Board of Pediatrics
National Board of Medical Examiners
Pediatric Critical Care

Research Summary

As a physician-scientist at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital, Dr. Volk cares for patients in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and runs a research laboratory. Many of her patients are affected by infectious and/or systemic inflammatory diseases in which neutrophil function plays a critical role. The requirement for normal neutrophil function in the innate immune response has been demonstrated unequivocally, both in the literature and in pediatric ICU patients. Inspired by her clinical work, Dr. Volk’s research program is focused on host innate immunity, with a specific focus on neutrophil chemotaxis during the immune response to sepsis. Members of the Volk laboratory study neutrophil chemotaxis in vitro using two complimentary assays: the high-through-put EZ-TAXIScan system; and, the high-resolution Dynamic Imaging Analysis System (DIAS). In addition, the Volk laboratory studies trans-endothelial migration using clinically relevant human dermal and pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells in a TranswellTM system. We have shown that the anion transporters ClC-3 and IClswell are required for normal PMN chemotaxis and shape change. The central hypothesis of this work is that cell volume regulation via the swelling-induced chloride current, IClswell, is required for normal neutrophil migration and that ClC-3 modulates this process. Most recently we have discovered that neutrophils lacking ClC-3 function have a similar phenotype to neutrophils from patients with chronic granulomatous disease in which the NADPH oxidase enzyme (Nox2) is unable to generate reactive oxygen species (ROS). The notion that Nox2-derived ROS are involved in neutrophil migration signaling processes is novel and our laboratory was the first to propose this mechanism at a recent Gordon Research Conference on Phagocytes. In order to determine whether Nox2 is required for normal neutrophil chemotaxis and trans-endothelial migration, the Volk laboratory now employs intravital microscopy techniques (two photon confocal imaging in vivo in a murine model) and is actively investigating this hypothesis.

Center, Program and Institute Affiliations

Inflammation Program
Institute for Clinical and Translational Science

Date Last Modified: 11/24/2014 - 09:38:20