Jamie Grit, Ph.D.

Jamie Grit, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral fellow, Steensma Laboratory


Dr. Jamie Grit earned her Ph.D. in molecular and cell biology from Van Andel Institute Graduate School and her B.S. in biology from Hope College. Her graduate work focused on identifying mechanisms of targeted therapy resistance in malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors. Dr. Grit’s lab competencies lie in molecular biology and proteomics. In 2021, she joined the lab of Dr. Matt Steensma as a postdoctoral fellow.


Current research focus

Benign neurofibromas cause significant pain, disfigurement and disability for individuals with the genetic disorder Neurofibromatosis Type 1. Dr. Grit uses patient derived neurofibroma explants as a model system for studying how loss of the NF1 gene induces stress-activated MAPKs and promotes tumor growth and inflammatory pain signaling. At the same time, she is developing a neurofibroma inflammatory pain gene expression signature to use as a surrogate marker of “pain relief” in order to screen candidate therapeutics ex vivo.

Education & Training

Ph.D. in molecular and cell biology, Van Andel Institute Graduate School
Thesis: Genetic and epigenetic regulation of cell signaling guides the clinical progression of NF1-related neurofibromas (Advisor: Dr. Matt Steensma)

B.S. in biology, Hope College

Awards & External Funding

Children’s Tumor Foundation Young Investigator Award (2018)


To view a list of selected publications click below.

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Grit JL, Johnson BK, Dischinger PS, J Essenburg C, Adams M, Campbell S, Pollard K, Pratilas CA, Triche TJ Jr, Graveel CR, Steensma MR. 2021. Distinctive epigenomic alterations in NF1-deficient cutaneous and plexiform neurofibromas drive differential MKK/p38 signaling. Epigenetics Chromatin 14(1):7.

Grit JL, Pridgeon MG, Essenburg CJ, Wolfrum E, Madaj ZB, Turner L, Wulfkuhle J, Petricoin EF 3rd, Graveel CR, Steensma MR. 2020. Kinome profiling of NF1-related MPNSTs in response to kinase inhibition and Doxorubicin reveals therapeutic vulnerabilities. Genes (Basel) 11(3):331.

Keaton SA, Madaj ZB, Heilman P, Smart L, Grit J, Gibbons R, Postolache TT, Roaten K, Achtyes ED, Brundin L. 2019. An inflammatory profile linked to increased suicide risk. J Affect Disord 247:57–65.

Keaton SA, Heilman P, Bryleva EY, Madaj Z, Krzyzanowski S, Grit J, Miller ES, Jälmby M, Kalapotharakos G, Racicot K, Fazleabas A, Hansson SR, Brundin L. 2019. Altered tryptophan catabolism in placentas from women with pre-eclampsia. Int J Tryptophan Res 12:1178646919840321.

Peacock JD, Pridgeon MG, Tovar EA, Essenburg CJ, Bowman M, Madaj Z, Koeman J, Boguslawski EA, Grit J, Dodd RD, Khachaturov V, Cardona DM, Chen M, Kirsch DG, Maina F, Dono R, Winn ME, Graveel CR, Steensma MR. 2018. Genomic status of MET potentiates sensitivity to MET and MEK inhibition in NF1 related malignant peripheral nerve sheath tumors. Cancer Res 78(13):3672–3687.