Joanna Goral, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Midwestern University
Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine
College of Dental Medicine - Illinois
Department of Anatomy
542-K Science Hall
555 31st St.
Downers Grove, IL 60515

Office: (630) 515-6135



M.S. Biology Wroclaw University, Poland
Ph.D. Cell Biology, Neurobiology and Anatomy Loyola University Chicago


Project I:

The immune system plays a complex role in the injury and repair of the central nervous system after stroke. The immune responses following stroke have either beneficial or detrimental effects. In collaboration with Dr. Andrews' lab in the Department of Anatomy we are investigating inflammatory changes and their effect on extracellular matrix after stroke. We are also studying how alcohol can affect immune responses of the central nervous system.

Project II:

The Achilles and plantaris tendons share close anatomical locations in the lower leg, which has led to a proposed connection between pathological findings in these tendons.  Several orthopedic studies identified such connections in patients with known tendinopathies. My lab is currently examining anatomical and histological characteristics of Achilles and plantaris tendons in human cadavers provided by the Department of Anatomy at MWU. This is a collaborative project with Dr. Sandra Inouye from the Department of Anatomy and Dr. Nathan Fanter from Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital.

Project III:

Flexor hallucis longus (FHL) injury is possibly a more common source of foot pain in non-athletic patients than suspected.  My lab is currently examining histological changes at the sites of the FHL tendon where mechanical wear could occur. FHL tendons are collected from human cadavers provided by the Department of Anatomy at MWU. This is a collaborative project with Dr. Sandra Inouye from the Department of Anatomy and Dr. Nathan Fanter from Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital.

Project IV:

Development of head and neck squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) is linked to smoking, alcohol consumption, and HPV infection. Other factors, such as diet and folate availability, may contribute to the incidence of this cancer. In collaboration with Dr. Jacalyn Green in the Department of Biochemistry, Dr. Mae Ciancio in the Department of Biomedical Scinces, and Dr. Bruno Jham in College of Dental Medicine - Illinois, we are investigating histopathologic and pathophysiologic changes in the mouse model of the oral squamous cell carcinoma. In addition, we are comparing the expression of folate receptors and transporters in human samples from SCC patients with normal tongue tissues collected from human cadavers provided by the Department of Anatomy at MWU.


Goral J, Karavitis J, Kovacs EJ. Exposure-dependent effects of ethanol on the innate immune system. Alcohol 2008; 42: 237-247.

Goral J. Ethanol and Inflammation. Anti-Inflammatory & Anti-Allergy Agents in Medicinal Chemistry 2007; 6: 264-270.

Gomez CR, Goral J, Ramirez L, Kopf M, Kovacs EJ. Aberrant acute-phase response in aged Interleukin-6 knockout mice. Shock 2006; 25: 581-585.

Goral J, Kovacs EJ.  In vivo ethanol exposure down regulates TLR2, TLR4, and TLR9-mediated macrophage inflammatory response by limiting p38 and ERK1/2 activation. J Immunol 2005; 174: 456-463.

Goral J, Choudhry MA, Kovacs EJ. Acute ethanol exposure inhibits macrophage IL-6 production: role of p38 and ERK1/2 MAPK. J Leukoc Biol 2004; 75:553-559.

Boehmer ED, Goral J, Fauce DE, Kovacs EJ. Age-dependent decrease in Toll-like receptor 4-mediated pro-inflammatory cytokine production and mitogen-activated protein-kinase expression. J Leukoc Biol 2004; 75: 342-349.

Goral J, Shenoy S, Mohanakumar T, Clancy J. Antibodies to 70 kDa and 90 kDa heat shock proteins are associated with acute graft-versus-host disease in peripheral blood stem cell transplant recipients. Clin Exp Immunol 2002; 127: 553-559.

Goral J, Mathews HL, Nadler SG, Clancy J. Reduced levels of hsp70 result in a therapeutic effect of 15-deoxyspergualin on acute graft-versus-host disease in (DAxLEW)F1 rats. Immunobiology 2000; 202: 254-266.

Kowal-Vern A, Goral J, Gamelli RL, McGill V, Clancy J. Hsp70, hsp32 and grp78 are increased in thermally injured skin with and without antithrombin (human) concentrate infusion. J Burn Care Rehab 2000; 21: 213-219.

Mathews HL, Goral J, Yamamura Y, Clancy J, Lorens SA. Effect of d-fenfluramine on the lymphocyte response of HIV+ humans. Int J Immunopharmacol 1998; 20: 751-63.

Goral J, Mathews HL, Clancy J. Expression of 70-kDa heat-shock protein during acute graft-versus-host disease. Clin Immunol Immunopathol 1998; 86: 252-258.

Goral J, Mathews HL, Clancy J. Antibodies specific for the 70-kDa heat-shock protein parallel the development of acute graft-versus-host disease in (DAxLEW)F1 rats. Clin Immunol Immunopathol 1995; 75: 147-153.

Lorens SA, Hata N, Handa RJ, Van de Kar LD, Guschwan M, Goral J, Lee JM, Hamilton ME, Bethea CL, Clancy J. Endocrine and immunological response to stress in young and old Fisher 344 male rats. Neurobiol Aging 1990; 11: 139-150.

Clancy J, Goral J, Kovacs EJ. Expression of cytokine genes (TNFα, TGFβ and IFNγ) in acute lethal GVHD. "The physiological and pathological effects of cytokines", p.165-170. Wiley-Liss, New York, 1990.

Clancy J, Goral J, Kovacs EJ, Ellis T. Role of recombinant interleukin-2 (rIL-2) and large granular lymphocytes (LGLs) in acute graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). Transplant Proc 1989; 21: 88-89.

Clancy J, Goral J, Triner J, Ellis T. Lymphokine-activated killer cells (LAK) versus natural killer cells (NK) in graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) versus control rats. Ann N York Acad Science 1988; 532: 442-443.

Polet H, Molnar J, Goral J. The effects of amino acids on protein degradation and translocation of non-histone proteins to the nucleus in lymphocytes. Biochem Biophys Acta 1986; 886: 33-39.

Current Teaching Activities

Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine (CCOM)
      CLIND 1501:  Foundations of Osteopathic Medicine
      ANATD 1511: Medical Histology
      ANATD 1550: Medical Gross Anatomy & Embryology

College of Dental Medicine - Illinois (CDMI)
Integrated Basic Science Sequence (IBSS)
      IBSSD 1501: Cell Function
      IBSSD 1502: Genetics & Cancer; Immune System
      IBSSD 1504: Peripheral Nervous & Muscular Systems
      IBSSD 1505: Cardiovascular System
      IBSSD 1610: Gastrointestinal System
      IBSSD 1620: Basic Science Review
      DENTD 1520: Oral Facial Complex in Health

College of Health Sciences (CHS)
      ANAT 1500: Gross Anatomy & Embryology