John J.


Division of Nutritional Sciences

206 Savage Hall



John Jeshurun Michael is a Lecturer in the Division of Nutritional Sciences and his area of focus is applying pedagogical methods to facilitate active learning and critical thinking.  John graduated with a B-Tech in Biotechnology from Sathyabama University and he completed his Ph.D. in Veterinary Sciences from Washington State University.  Although teaching was something that “ran in the family”, he considered pursuing a career in teaching only after he received a Teaching Assistant Excellence Award in his final semester of graduate school.  In order to fine-tune his teaching skills, John completed a two-year Teaching and Research Fellowship at the Division of Nutritional Sciences at Cornell University.  As a Lecturer, John implements active learning techniques in the delivery of a wide range of courses including nutrition, physiology, and public health.  John trains both undergraduate and graduate Teaching Assistants in the appropriate pedagogical methods to optimize the learning experience of his students.

Obesity Research - Levitsky Lab

Placental iron transport - O'Brien Lab


  1. John Jeshurun MichaelSampath Gollapudi, Steven J Ford, Katarzyna Kazmierczak, Danuta Szczesna-Cordary, and Murali Chandra. Deletion of 1-43 amino acids in cardiac myosin essential light chain blunts length dependency of Ca2+ sensitivity and crossbridge detachment kinetics, Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2012; Jan 15;304(2):H253-9.
  2. Ranganath Mamidi, John Jeshurun Michaeland Murali Chandra. Interplay between the overlapping ends of tropomyosin and the N terminus of cardiac troponin T affects tropomyosin states on actin, FASEB J. 2013 Sep;27(9):3848-59.
  3. John Jeshurun MichaelSampath Gollapudi and Murali Chandra. Effects of pseudo-phosphorylated rat cardiac troponin T are differently modulated by α- and β-myosin heavy chain isoforms.  Basic Res Cardiol. 2014 Nov;109(6):442.
  4. John Jeshurun Michael and Murali Chandra. Interplay between the effects of dilated cardiomyopathy mutation (R206L) and the Protein Kinase C phosphomimic (T204E) of rat cardiac troponin T are differently modulated by α- and β-myosin heavy chain isoforms. J Am Heart Assoc. 2016 Mar 21;5(3).
  5. John Jeshurun Michael, Sampath Gollapudi and Murali Chandra. Interplay between the effects of a Protein Kinase C phosphomimic (T204E) and a dilated cardiomyopathy mutation (K211Δ or R206W) in rat cardiac troponin T blunts the magnitude of muscle length-mediated crossbridge recruitment against the β-myosin heavy chain background. J Muscle Res Cell Motil. 2016, 37 (3): 83-93.
  6. Masataka Kawai, Tarek Karam, John Jeshurun Michael, Li Wang, and Murali Chandra. Comparison of elementary steps of the cross-bridge cycle in rat papillary muscle fibers expressing α- and β-myosin heavy chain with sinusoidal analysis. J Muscle Res Cell Motil. 2016, 37(6):203-214.


  1. John Jeshurun Michael and Murali Chandra. Interplay between the effects of dilated cardiomyopathy mutation (R206L) and the Protein Kinase C phosphomimic (T204E) of rat cardiac troponin T are differently modulated by α- and β-myosin heavy chain isoforms. 1451-Pos. Presented at the 60th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting, Los Angeles, California. February 2016
  2. John Jeshurun Michael and Murali Chandra. Functional effects of the H1-helix of rat cardiac troponin T on crossbridge detachment rate is differently modulated by α- and β-myosin heavy chain isoforms. 3006-Pos. Presented at the 59th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting, Baltimore, Maryland. February 2015
  3. Sampath K. Gollapudi, Joseph Maricelli, John Jeshurun Michael*, Lynne O. Nelson, Dan B. Rodgers, and Murali Chandra. A Cardiac Troponin T Mutant Missing the N-terminal Extension Causes a Dose-dependent Pattern of Effects on Cardiac Function and Remodeling in Transgenic Mice. 3005-Pos. Presented at the 59th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting, Baltimore, Maryland. February 2015 (* - presenting author)
  1. John Jeshurun Michael, Sampath Gollapudi, and Murali Chandra. Functional Effects of Pseudo-phosphorylating Rat Cardiac Troponin T Residue 204 are Uniquely Modulated by α- and β-Myosin Heavy Chain Isoforms. 3889-Pos. Presented at the 58th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting, San Francisco, California. February 2014
  2. John Jeshurun Michael, Lauren Tal, Jil Tardiff and Murali Chandra. Pseudophosphorylation of cardiac troponin I residues 23/24 decreases myofilament Ca2+ sensitivity in transgenic mice containing D230N mutation in α-tropomyosin. 2466-Pos. Presented at the 57th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. February 2013
  3. John Jeshurun Michael, Ranganath Mamidi, Lauren Tal, Jil Tardiff and Murali Chandra. D230N mutation in tropomyosin and R92L mutation in cardiac troponin T have strikingly different impact on calcium-regulated activation of cardiac myofilaments. 1815-Pos. Presented at the 56th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting, San Diego, California. March 2012
  4. John Jeshurun Michael, Srilakshmi Mallampalli, Ranganath Mamidi, and Murali Chandra. Altering the structure of the H1-helix of rat cardiac troponin T affects Ca2+-mediated activation of rat cardiac thin-filaments. Pos-L208 Presented as a late abstract at the 56th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting, San Diego, California. March 2012
  5. John Jeshurun Michael, Steven J Ford, Katarzyna Kazmierczak, Danuta Szczesna-Cordary, and Murali Chandra. Deletion of 1- 43 amino acids from the N-terminus of myosin essential light chain in transgenic mice decreases force production by reducing the number of myosin cross-bridges. 683-Pos. Presented at the 55th Annual Biophysical Society Meeting, Baltimore, Maryland. March 2011

BOOK CHAPTER: Sampath Gollapudi, John Jeshurun Michael, and Murali Chandra; "Striated Muscle Dynamics" for the Encyclopedia of Human Biology (3rd Edition) (Available online 28 October 2014); doi:10.1016/B978-0-12-801238-3.00251-8;


Teaching undergraduate courses, training graduate and undergraduate teaching assistants, conducting research, and reviewing manuscripts for academic journals.

Goals and Approach

As an educator, I view myself as an explorer leading an expedition through a jungle.  There are paths in this jungle that have been well-trodden by those who have traversed before me, but the landscape is constantly changing, as new foliage keeps growing.  To me, the well-trodden paths are the well-established concepts and principles in the sciences.  Similarly, the growing foliage refers to the new challenges that constantly arise.  These challenges give researchers an opportunity to blaze trails through unexplored territories and push the frontiers of our current scientific knowledge.  Thus, on this expedition, I want my students to not only gain an appreciation for the constant flux in the sciences but also be able to apply the concepts that they learn to real-world situations.  Furthermore, I want my students to develop an appreciation for diverse opinions, and thereby maximize their learning when interacting with those who hold a different perspective.

To accomplish these goals, I have found that the class size can greatly influence the type of teaching methods that I choose to implement.  In larger classes that are often geared toward introductory topics, I will use a teaching style that combines traditional lectures with active learning techniques.  While traditional lectures conducted using PowerPoint presentations allow a large portion of the material to be covered in a short amount of time, a common challenge is retaining student’s motivation and attention.  To break the monotony, I will structure the lectures to incorporate short video clips, at regular intervals, to highlight how the material presented in class is applicable in a variety of real-world situations.  Another method that I plan to incorporate is cooperative learning, a subset of active learning techniques.  I will begin my lecture with a couple of questions so that my students can listen with a better sense of anticipation.  After delivering the lecture for about 10 minutes, I will display these same questions that test their understanding and give them a couple of minutes to individually come up with answers.  Next, I will ask them to discuss their answers with their neighbors and modify them if necessary.  Finally, I will randomly call on a student from each group to explain their answer or viewpoint to the rest of the class.  I have found that the responsibility of answering in front of the class motivates students to be attentive during the lecture and also makes them more eager to learn from their peers.  Because these breakout sessions can take away a portion of my lecture time, it would be imperative for students to come prepared to class, having read the assigned text.  When students complete their readings before coming to the class, it will allow me to focus on complex concepts and common misunderstandings in class.  To ensure that students complete the reading assignments before coming to class, I will require them to complete a short online quiz which would contribute to a portion of their final grade.  I have found that conducting short quizzes on a regular basis can help students keep up with the topics as they go and maximize learning.

            In smaller classes that are usually designed for advanced courses, I aim to facilitate interaction among students so that they learn from each other at a deeper level.  These interactions would allow me to demonstrate that one of the greatest and yet often forgotten resources in classrooms are students themselves.  I strive to convince my students that bringing together a diverse set of minds, each with their unique experience and backgrounds, is a treasure that may not be found in textbooks.  To maximize student learning via peer interactions, I would assign small group projects where students can hone and practice a variety of skills.  These skills include time-management, becoming effective team-players, searching for information from primary literature, integrating and synthesizing various concepts, delivering effective presentations, including using oral and written communication skills.  Evaluating these skills would also allow me to assess higher-order learning among my students in a variety of ways, unlike larger classes which mainly use multiple-choice questions.

Interactions with Students

            Regardless of the class size and level of difficulty, it is my firm conviction to be a role model to my students, in the very values that I desire to inculcate in them.  One of the things I want to model is the willingness to learn and be eager to accept all forms of feedback.  Conducting surveys and evaluations on a regular basis allows me to adapt my teaching strategies to best suit student needs.  For example, at the end of my first semester at Cornell University I thanked my students for the feedback that they gave me during the mid-semester evaluations and explained how all of us benefitted from my implementation of this constructive feedback.  To encourage my students to step of out their comfort zone and to interact with others, I have found it effective to share my own story.  For example, in graduate school, I took up learning conversational Japanese and Mandarin as hobbies which have continued for the last five years.  Both endeavors opened my eyes to the intellectual riches that can be gained by stepping outside of my comfort zone and being open-minded in my interactions with those from different linguistic backgrounds.  Moreover, I have found that modeling an enthusiasm for learning something new from every batch of students can be contagious and helps students become more receptive.  Finally, I want to model an attitude of service to my students by demonstrating a genuine interest in their well-being by going the extra mile.  For example, when exam time came, I organized several extra help sessions outside of my regular hours.  I was greatly encouraged to see that each one of these sessions had very high attendance and students expressed their gratitude for this additional support.  It is my strong conviction that my students should also demonstrate such an attitude of service in their various professions as they enhance health through the field of nutrition.

NS1150 - Nutrition, Health, and Society

NS1160 - Personalized Concepts and Controversies

NS 1600 - Introduction to Public Health

NS3420 - Human Anatomy and Physiology Laboratory

NS3030 - Nutrition, Health, and Vegetarian Diets


Ph.D. in Veterinary Sciences   - Washington State University, Pullman, WA    (2009 – 2015)
Bachelors in Technology, Biotechnology - Sathyabama University, Tamil Nadu, India    (2003 – 2007)


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