Dr. Walker received her PhD in Physiology from Queen's University at Kingston and postdoctoral training in the Department of Cell Biology at Duke University. Her post-doctoral research focused on the beta-arresting-mediated regulation of G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) signaling.
In 2000 Dr. Walker was appointed as Assistant Research Professor in Duke's Pulmonary Medicine Division where her research focused on understanding the cellular pathophysiological mechanisms that underlie lung disease (in particular asthma). In 2013, Dr. Walker moved to the Duke University School of Nursing where she continues to study how GPCR signaling bias can be exploited for improved asthma treatments. Dr. Walker teaches physiology to Nursing students and holds the rank of Professor in Nursing and Pulmonary Medicine.
The goals of Dr. Walker's current research are to detail the signaling mechanism by which b-agonists promote pathogenic allergic lung inflammation and identify and test compounds that will prevent this pro-inflammatory and pathogenic signaling. More specifically, the objective is to discover ligands or modulators that bias ¿2AR signaling away from the pathogenic ¿arrestin-dependent signaling arm and toward the protective G protein-dependent signaling.