Anesthesiology & Pain Medicine >> Research >> Labs >> Morgan & Sedensky Lab
Photo of Margaret M. Sedensky, MD
Margaret Sedensky, MD

Morgan & Sedensky Laboratory
Margaret M. Sedensky, MD

  • Professor, Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine
  • Principal Investigator, Seattle Children's Research Institute
  • Professor, Department of Anesthesiology and Genetics, Case Western Reserve University SOM, University Hospitals of Cleveland, Cleveland, OH


Our research centers on the understanding the mechanism of action of volatile anesthetics. Discoveries using the nematode C. elegans have shown us that common processes underlie the phenomenon of anesthesia across species. We have also found in our animal model that mitochondrial function can determine behavior in anesthetics. In studying mitochondria we have become involved in understanding the role of the mitochondrion in aging and in certain disease states. We are using our work in C. elegans as a base in which to explore how mitochondrial function controls behavior in anesthetics in more complicated organisms.

Honors and Awards

  • 1999 Swedish Medal of Honor from Swedish Medical Society
  • 1993 Elected to Association of University Anesthesiologists
  • 1991 — 1992 B.B. Sankey Anesthesia Advancement Award, International Anesthesia Research Society
  • 1972 Fertilization and Gamete Physiology Trainee, Marine Biological Laboratories, Woods Hole, MA
  • 1972 — 1973 National Science Foundation Pre Doctoral Fellow
  • 1971 — 1972 National Institutes of Health Pre Doctoral Trainee
  • 1971 Danforth Fellowship Finalist
  • 1971 Woodrow Wilson Fellowship Finalist
  • 1967 — 1971 Denman Scholar (New College)

Current Memberships

  • Association of University Anesthesiologists
  • American Society of Anesthesiologists
  • Washington Society of Anesthesiologists
  • Cleveland Society of Anesthesiologists
  • International Anesthesia Research Society
  • Society of Obstetric Anesthesia and Perinatology

Current Funding

Selected Publications

  • Pfeiffer M, Kayser EB, Yang X, Abramson E, Kenaston MA, Lago CU, Lo HH, Sedensky MM, Lunceford A, Clarke CF, Su SJ, McLeod C, Finkel T, Morgan PG, Mills EM. Caenorhabditis elegans UCP4 controls complex II-mediated oxidative phosphorylation through succinate transport. J Biol Chem, In press, 2011. PMCID: PMC Journal - In Process
  • Yang YY, Vasta V, Hahn S, Gangoiti JA, Opheim E, Sedensky MM, Morgan PG. The role of demethoxyubiquinone in the long-lived mutant clk-1. Mech Aging Dev. 132;331-9, 2011.
  • Chen X, Thorburn DR, Wong LJ, Vladutiu GD, Haas RH, Chir B, Le T, Hoppel CL, Sedensky MM, Morgan PG Hahn SH. Quality improvement of mitochondrial respiratory chain complex enzyme assays using C. elegans. Gene Med 2011, In Press.
  • Kayser EB, Suthammarak W, Morgan PG, Sedensky MM. Isoflurane selectively inhibits distal mitochondrial complex I in Caenorhabditis elegans. Anesth Analg. 112; 1321-1329, 2011.
  • Vasta V, Sedensky MM, Morgan PG, Hahn SH. Altered redox status of coenzyme Q9 reflects mitochondrial electron transport chain deficiencies in Caenorhabditis elegans. Mitochondrion 11;136-8, 2011.
  • Suthammarak W, Morgan PG, Sedensky MM. Mutations in mitochondrial complex III uniquely affect complex I in Caenorhabditis elegans. J Biol Chem. 285; 40724-31, 2010.
  • Falk MJ, Rosenjack JR, Polyak E, Suthammarak W, Chen Z, Morgan PG, Sedensky MM. Subcomplex lambda specifically controls integrated mitochondrial functions in Caenorhabditis elegans. PLoS One. 4: E6607, 2009. PMCID: PMC2719872.
  • Yang YY, Gangoiti JA, Sedensky MM, Morgan PG. The effect of different ubiquinones on lifespan in Caenorhabditis elegans. Mech Aging Dev. 130:370-6, 2009. PMCID: PMC2684812.
  • Suthammarak W, Yang, YY, Morgan PG, Sedensky MM. Complex I function is defective in Complex IV-deficient Caenorhabditis elegans. J Biol Chem. 2009; 284(10):6425-35. PMCID: PMC2649102.
  • Falk MJ, Zhang Z, Rosenjack JR, Nissim I, Daikhin E, Nissim I, Sedensky MM, Yudkoff M, Morgan PG. Metabolic pathway profiling of mitochondrial respiratory chain mutants in C. elegans. Molec Genet Metab, 93; 388-397, 2008. PMCID: PMC2424222.
  • Chandler RJ, Aswani V, Tsai MS, Falk M, Wehrli N, Stabler S, Allen R, Sedensky M, Kazazian HH, Venditti CP. Propionyl-CoA and adenosylcobalamin metabolism in Caenorhabditis elegans: evidence for a role of methylmalonyl-CoA epimerase in intermediary metabolism. Mol Genet Metab. 2006;89:64-73. PMID: 16843692
  • Humphrey JA, Hamming KS, Thacker CM, Scott RL, Sedensky MM, Snutch TP, Morgan PG, Nash HA. An Unusual Cation Channel and its Novel Regulator Show Cross-Species Conservation of Effects on General Anesthesia, Current Biol, 17; 624-629, 2007.
  • Carroll BT, Sedensky MM, Morgan PG. Sulfonation of a signal from sensory neurons in C. elegans. J Biol Chem, 281, 35989-35996, 2006.
  • Falk MJ, Kayser EB, Morgan PG, Sedensky MM. Mitochondrial complex I: A mechanism of action for volatile anesthetics. Curr Biol. 16: 1641-45, 2006.
  • Kayser EB, Morgan PG, Sedensky MM, Hoppel CL. The long-lived mutant clk-1 has a novel defect in mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation. J Biol Chem. 2004 Dec 24; 279 (52): 54479-54486.
  • Morgan PG, Hoppel CL, Sedensky MM. Mitochondrial defects and anesthetic sensitivity. Anesthesiology 96: 1268-1270, 2002.
  • Kayser EB, Morgan PG, Hoppel CL, Sedensky MM. Mitochondrial Expression and Function of GAS-1 in Caenorhabditis elegans. J. Biol. Chem. 276: 20551-20558, 2001.
  • Sedensky MM, Siefker J, Morgan PG. Model Organisms: new Insights Into Ion Channel and Transporter Function. Stomatin Homologues Interact in C. elegans. Am J. Phys. Cell Physiol. 280: C1340-C1348 2001.
  • Rajaram S, Spangler, TL, Sedensky MM, Morgan PG. A Stomatin and a Degenerin Interact to Control Anesthetic Sensitivity in C. elegans. Genetics 153: 1673-1682,1999. PMCID: PMC1460880
  • Kayser EB, Morgan PG, Sedensky MM. GAS-1, a mitochondrial gene affecting sensitivity to volatile anesthetics. Anesthesiology. 90: 545-554, 1999.
  • Rajaram S, Sedensky MM, Morgan PG. unc-1, a stomatin homologue controls sensitivity to volatile anesthetics in C. elegans. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. (USA) 1998; 95: 8761-8766. PMCID: PMC21150