Academics & Research

Immunology, Inflammation, & Infectious Disease (3i) Initiative

All Initiative Faculty

Fred Adler, PhD

Title:  Professor - Biology and Math

Mathematical modeling in virology, epidemiology and immunology, with a focus on linking across different scales of spatial and temporal organization.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: mathematical epidemiology, mathematical immunology, virology, theoretical biology

Email:  adler@math.utah.edu

Krow Ampofo, MBCHB

Title:  Professor - Pediatrics (Infectious Diseases)

My research focuses on the epidemiology and diagnosis of respiratory infections, and the use of metagenomic sequencing as a diagnostic and evaluation tool.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: respiratory viral infection, Influenza, epidemiology, diagnostics, antivirals

Email:  Krow.Ampofo@hsc.utah.edu

Djordje Atanackovic, MD

Title:  Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Hematology/BMT)

Our goal is to develop novel immunotherapies for different types of solid tumors and hematologic malignancies with a focus on Multiple Myeloma. This includes antibody-based and cellular immunotherapies such as CAR T cells and TCR-transduced T cells. We have also developed a number of techniques for the detailed immunomonitoring of clinical trials with novel immunotherapeutic agents.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: cancer immunotherapy, tumor immunology, CAR T cells, TCR-transduced T cells, monoclonal antibodies

Email:  Djordje.Atanackovic@hci.utah.edu

Markus Babst, PhD

Title:  Professor - Biology

My lab is interested in the regulation of nutrient transporters. Particularly, we focus on the post-translational regulation of transporters and study how this regulation is linked to the cell's metabolism.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: protein trafficking, metabolism, cell biology

Email:  m.babst@utah.edu

Amy Barrios, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Medicinal Chemistry

Research in the Barrios lab focuses on developing chemical tools that can be applied to further out understanding of important biological processes such as immunological signaling. We have been working to develop a unified approach to phosphatase selective substrate and inhibitor design and providing the toolkit necessary to elucidate the biological roles of phosphatase enzymes in health and disease.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: enzymology, fluorogenic assays, cellular signaling, protein phosphatases, chemical probes

Email:  amy.barrios@utah.edu

Brenda Bass, PhD

Title:  Distinguished Professor - Biochemistry

The Bass laboratory is focused on understanding the biological functions of long double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) and dsRNA binding proteins. Viruses were once thought to be the sole source of long dsRNA, but the Bass laboratory has identified numerous long dsRNAs that naturally exist in animals, primarily focusing on C. elegans and mammals. Proteins that recognize dsRNA are not sequence-specific, and the Bass laboratory is interested in how these proteins distinguish endogenous and viral dsRNA.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: dsRNA, Dicer, ADAR, antiviral

Email:  bbass@biochem.utah.edu

Ellen Beswick, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Gastroenterology)

Novel immune targets for gastrointestinal cancers.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords:  colon cancer G-CSF, MK2, pancreatic cancer, PD-L1

Email:  ellen.beswick@hsc.utah.edu

Srividya Bhaskara, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Radiation Oncology and Oncological Sciences

Dr. Srividya Bhaskara performed her post-doctoral research work at Vanderbilt University. Her post-doctoral work for the first time showed unconventional functions for mammalian histone deacetylases in genome stability. Her lab at HCI focuses on elucidating mechanisms by which HDACs control genome stability and normal B-cell functions such as VDJ recombination and germinal center reactions. Her lab also performs therapeutic studies for hematological cancers such as leukemia and germinal center derived diffuse large B-cell lymphoma.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords:  histone deacetylases, DNA repair, immune response, cancer therapeutics and hematopoiesis, B-lymphocyte development

Email:  Srividya.Bhaskara@hci.utah.edu

Anne Blaschke, MD, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Pediatrics (Pediatric Infectious Disease)

Work in our laboratory is focused on better understanding the causes of invasive bacterial infections in children. We use new diagnostic technologies to better understand the pathogen-based epidemiology of infections such as pneumonia, meningitis and sepsis. In addition, we are using whole genome sequencing and comparative genomics to better understand the virulence of invasive pathogens such as Streptococcus pneumoniae, Staphylococcus aureus and Haemophilus influenzae.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: molecular diagnostics, pediatrics, pneumonia, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Staphylococcus aureus, Haemophilus influenzae

Email:  Anne.Blaschke@hsc.utah.edu

John Bohnsack, MD

Title:  Professor - Pediatrics (Allergy/Immunology)

My research focuses on identifying genetic mutations in humans that predispose to the development of autoimmune and auto-inflammatory diseases. I focus most of my efforts on Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis in collaboration with investigators in the Utah Genome Project and other internal collaborators, and multiple extramural collaborators.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: genomics, genetics, autoimmunity, auto-inflammatory diseases, Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis

Email:  John.Bohnsack@hsc.utah.edu

Josh Bonkowsky, MD, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Pediatrics (Pediatric Neurology)

The Bonkowsky group uses a combination of bench and clinical research approaches to understand pediatric neurological disorders.

3i Bridge/Pillar: 

Keywords: pediatric, leukodystrophy, epilepsy, zebrafish, hypoxia, big data

Email:  Joshua.Bonkowsky@hsc.utah.edu

Sihem Boudina, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Nutrition and Integrative Physiology

My research is focused on deciphering the mechanisms underlying pathogenic fat expansion in humans and mice. As obesity is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, we are also interested in how obesity affect cardiac metabolism.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Diabetes/Metabolism

Keywords: autophagy, cardiac, mitochondria, adipose progenitors, redox

Email:  sboudina@u2m2.utah.edu

Paul Bray, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Hematology/BMT)

Dr. Bray’s laboratory studies the role of platelets in cardiovascular disease, and disorders of bleeding and thrombosis. He uses state-of-the-art genomic, transcriptomic and bioinformatic technologies to identify and characterize novel genes and gene variants involved in platelet reactivity. He studies the role of microRNAs in human megakaryocyte differentiation and platelet production, as well as the functional consequences of common variants that differ by geographic ancestry (“race”).

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cardiovascular

Keywords: transcriptomics, functional genomics, platelets, megakaryocytopoiesis, microRNAs

Email:  paul.bray@hsc.utah.edu

Mary Bronner, MD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

My research involves molecular diagnostic anatomic pathology and biomarkers of cancer risk in chronic inflammatory gastrointestinal diseases, particularly idiopathic inflammatory bowel disease.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, molecular diagnostics

Email:  mary.bronner@aruplab.com

Sarah Bush, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Biology

My research focuses on the evolutionary consequences of interspecific interactions and the evolution of biodiversity. Specifically, I address these themes by investigating the co-evolutionary ecology of hosts and their parasites, primarily birds and ectoparasitic feather lice. My research involves experimental evolution, comparative research, and faunal surveys.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: Co-evolution, Ecology, Host-parasite interactions, biodiversity, biogeography, and systematics

Email:  bush@biology.utah.edu

Lisa Cannon-Albright, PhD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Genetic Epidemiology)

Dr Cannon-Albright innovatively analyzes extensive genealogic resources like the UPDB to define the familial clustering of health-related phenotypes, to better understand co-morbidities, to identify high-risk pedigrees, and to find the responsible predisposition genes (e.g. BRCA1/2, CDKN2A, GOLM1). She is creating a national genealogy resource linked to VHA patient data to expand her research.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: genealogy, UPDB, pedigree, predisposition gene

Email:  lisa.albright@utah.edu

Demián Cazalla, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Biochemistry

Our laboratory uses biochemistry and molecular biology to dissect the molecular functions of non-coding RNAs and their role in viral infections.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: herpesvirus, miRNA, non-coding RNA, gene expression

Email:  dcazalla@biochem.utah.edu

Bhagirath Chaurasia, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Nutrition and Integrative Physiology

To understand which tissues are most sensitive to ceramide accumulation. Delineating molecular mechanism via which nutrients are sensed by sphingolipids. The regulation of fat metabolism by the immune system.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Diabetes/Metabolism

Keywords: lipotoxicity, insulin, diabetes, inflammation 

Email:  bhagirath.chaurasia@health.utah.edu

Karin Chen, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Pediatrics (Allergy/Immunology)

My bench and translational research investigations focus on the genetic and mechanistic origins of pediatric-onset primary immunodeficiency and primary immune dysregulatory diseases. The overarching goal of my research is to improve diagnosis and treatment by understanding the genetic and pathophysiologic basis of these diseases.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: primary immunodeficiency disease, NF-kappaB, NFKB2, immune dysregulation, genomics

Email:  karin.chen@hsc.utah.edu

Xinjian Chen, MD, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Pathology

We study targeted therapy in combination with immunotherapy for cancer treatment, using graphene oxide-formulated anticancer antibodies along with tumor-targeted delivery of immune cytokines. Our goal is to convert tumor necroptosis into tumor vaccine in situ to overcome intratumor tolerogenic microenvironment. We also investigate mechanisms of cancer cell necroptosis brought about by graphene oxide-formulation anticancer antibodies.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: anticancer antibodies, graphene oxide, necroptosis

Email:  xinjian.chen@path.utah.edu

Mingnan Chen, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Pharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Chemistry

We are interested in invention of immune tolerant peptide and protein materials for medicine. We also integrate principles of immunology, protein engineering, and drug targeting to develop immunotherapeutics.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: immune tolerated materials, vaccine, cancer immunotherapy, autoimmunity, protein engineering, drug development.

Email:  mingnan.chen@utah.edu

Samuel Cheshier, MD, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Neurosurgery

My research focuses on promoting macrophages to specifically target and "eat" pediatric brain tumors. We aim to combine immune-therapies and standard of care treatments to promote macrophage phagocytosis of tumor cells.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: macrophage, immune-therapy, CD47, medulloblastoma, pediatric, brain tumor

Email:  samuel.cheshier@hsc.utah.edu

Danny Chou, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Chou

We study the cell signaling of insulin receptor isoforms and the hybrid receptors of insulin receptor and insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor. By developing specific probes to target individual receptor subtypes, we aim to understand their impacts on the cellular and physiological levels.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Diabetes/Metabolism

Keywords: insulin signaling, phage and yeast display, chemical probes, cell apoptosis

Email:  dchou@biochem.utah.edu

Jan Christian, PhD

Title:  Professor - Neurobiology and Anatomy

The Christian lab uses targeted mutagenesis in mice together with cell biological and biochemical approaches in Xenopus embryos to study cell-cell signaling in development and disease. We identified Tril (Toll-like receptor4 interactor with leucine-rich repeats) as a gene that coordinately regulates both arms of the transforming growth factor beta (TGFß) signaling cascades, and also coordinately regulates E-cadherin based cell-cell adhesion and Wnt pathway activation. Our ongoing studies suggest that Tril activates an NF-KB independent, non-canonical Toll-like receptor signaling cascade to do so.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: Tril, Tlr4, BMP, Wnt, Xenopus, mouse

Email:  Jan.Christian@hsc.utah.edu

Stacey Clardy, MD, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Neurology

Research focuses on the epidemiology and pathophysiology of autoimmune neurologic disorders (neural autoantibody mediated) and immune-mediated neurologic disorders, including autoimmune encephalitis and paraneoplastic neurologic syndromes, stiffperson syndrome, neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder, neurosarcoidosis and CVID-associated granulomatous Disease and associated neurologic complications of CVID.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Neuroscience

Keywords: autoimmune neurology, neuroimmunology, paraneoplastic, encephalitis, neuromyelitis optica, CVID (common variable immunodeficiency)

Email:  Stacey.Clardy@hsc.utah.edu

Fredric Clayton, MD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

Study of allergic disorders, particularly eosinophilic esophagitis and EGPA.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: allergy, eosinophilic esophagitis, EGPA, Churg-Strauss, IgG4

Email:  fred.clayton@path.utah.edu

Donna Cross, PhD

Title:  Research Associate Professor - Radiology and Imaging Sciences

The Neuroimaging and Biotechnology Lab (NiBL) uses imaging technologies to develop new diagnostics and therapeutic options for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, as well as traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injury. Therapies to support processes such as neuroinflammation, axonal transport and cytoskeletal stabilization are a focus. Other projects include the investigation and optimization of delivery methods for cancer immunotherapies.

3i Bridge/Pillars: Neuroscience

Keywords: MRI, PET, focused ultrasound, Alzheimer’s disease, traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, theranostics

Email:  D.Cross@utah.edu

Darrell Davis, PhD

Title:  Professor - Medicinal Chemistry

The discovery, validation, and development of small molecule inhibitors of viral translation. Specific viruses of interest include Zika, Dengue, Powassan, and HCV. We are particularly interested in how potential therapeutic molecules might affect mechanisms that differentiate viral from host translation.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: viral inhibition, translation, RNA, flavivirus, Zika, Dengue, Powassan, HCV

Email:  darrell.davis@utah.edu

Michael Deininger, MD, PhD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Hematology/BMT)

Our lab is interested in the biology of myeloid malignancies, such as chronic and acute myeloid leukemia. We aim to understand the mechanisms governing malignant transformation, identify vulnerabilities and exploit these weaknesses as therapeutic targets.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: myeloid malignancies, leukemia, targeted therapy, tyrosine kinase inhibitors, cancer metabolism

Email:  Michael.Deininger@hci.utah.edu

Julio Delgado, MD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

Translational research in the field of transplantation immunology and immunogenicity to biologicals.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: transplantation, immunology, alloreactivity, immunogenicity, biologicals

Email:  julio.delgado@aruplab.com

Don Delker, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Internal Medicine (Gastroenterology)

Our laboratory is interested in the molecular mechanisms of serrated colon polyp development. We are investigating colon organoid cultures derived from patients with a high risk for colon cancer, to identify differences in stem cell biology, including non-coding RNA expression that may account for increased cancer risk.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: serrated colon polyps, colon cancer, colon organoids, RNA sequencing, non-coding RNAs, bioinformatics

Email:  don.delker@hsc.utah.edu

Mark Deneau, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Pediatrics (Pediatric Gastroenterology)

Created a consortium of 46 international centers to study a rare disease, pediatric primary sclerosing cholangitis, in a large cohort of children. Risk stratification, prognostic modeling, comparative effectiveness of available therapies, transplant outcomes and search for surrogate endpoints.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: 

Email:  Mark.Deneau@hsc.utah.edu

Tony Donato, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Geriatrics)

The primary research direction in the Translational Vascular Physiology lab is determining how arteries develop inflammation and oxidative stress with aging and increase our risk of developing vascular diseases. Another recent focus is understanding the vascular etiology of a two of rare diseases, systemic sclerosis (SSC) and cerebral cavernous malformations (CCM), and providing novel and important therapeutics to patients.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cardiovascular

Keywords: arteries, endothelium, inflammation, oxidative stress, Aging, rare diseases

Email:  tony.donato@hsc.utah.edu

Micah Drummond, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Physical Therapy

The focus of our research is to examine the mechanisms that are associated with disuse-induced muscle atrophy and metabolic dysfunction in aging.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Diabetes/Metabolism

Keywords: aging, muscle, inflammation, metabolism, insulin resistance, ceramide

Email:  micah.drummond@hsc.utah.edu

Nels Elde, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Human Genetics

My research program investigates host-microbe interfaces and the evolutionary impact of these interactions on genomic and cellular complexity. Protein surfaces at these interfaces often evolve in a manner resembling molecular arms races, providing a conspicuous means to investigate mechanisms underlying the process of evolution.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: 

Email:  nelde@genetics.utah.edu

Elena Enioutina, MD, PhD

Title:  Research Associate Professor - Pediatrics (Pediatric Clinical Pharmacology)

Dr. Enioutina has long-standing interest in the prophylaxis of infectious diseases goes back to medical school years. Immune senescence and modulation of immune responses in aged animals by cholesterol lowering drugs was the topic of her Ph.D. work. Her current research involves the understanding of the relationship between the activity of cord blood myeloid derived suppressor cells and neonatal susceptibility to infections, and discovering therapeutic options aimed to improve immune responsiveness of newborns.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions 

Keywords: 

Email:  elena.enioutina@hsc.utah.edu

Kimberley Evason, MD, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Pathology

The overarching goal of the Evason laboratory is to investigate mechanisms involved in liver cancer (hepatocellular carcinoma, HCC) in order to develop improved therapies. Our main experimental model is the zebrafish, which represents an excellent model system for studies of human HCC, given the powerful genetics and large brood size of this vertebrate animal, as well as the histologic and genetic similarities between zebrafish and human HCC.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: zebrafish, liver, cancer, Wnt, beta-catenin

Email:  Kimberley.Evason@hci.utah.edu

Julio Facelli, PhD

Title:  Professor - Biomedical Informatics

Facelli’s research interests are centered in the application of advance computing techniques to solve important problems in the biomedical domain. The projects in his research group use similar computational infrastructure and tools to maximize the synergy among projects, benefiting the students, postdocs and faculty in the group who are exposed to a variety of biomedical problems that are addressed by a common set of computational approaches. The principal research projects currently underway in his group are: Distributed Information Systems for Clinical and Translational Research, Protein Structure Prediction of Novel Variants, Temporal Reasoning in Medicine and Big Data Applications to Biomedical Informatics.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: biomedical data integration, biomedical data mining, biomedical temporal reasoning, protein structure prediction

Email:  julio.facelli@utah.edu

Jim Fang, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Cardiovascular Medicine)

My interests include the pathophysiology of heart failure with preserved ejection fraction as well as heart failure with recovered ejection fraction.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cardiovascular

Keywords: heart failure, diastolic heart failure, myocardial recovery

Email:  james.fang@hsc.utah.edu

Bingjian Feng, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Dermatology

Bing’s lab at the University of Utah conducts research on disease gene hunting, elucidation of disease mechanisms, classification of genetic variants as pathogenic or benign for clinical genetic testing, clinical biomarker identification, early diagnostic test development, and the implementation and dissemination of screening and diagnostic tools in a clinical setting. We also develop novel biostatistical and bioinformatics methods and design software tools. Currently, our research focuses on psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, breast cancer, prostate cancer, and head and neck cancer.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: bioinformatics, genetic testing, risk prediction, diagnosis, psoriatic arthritis, biomarker

Email:  bingjian.feng@hsc.utah.edu

Gabriel Fine, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Radiology and Imaging Sciences

Our goal is to develop novel immunotherapies and optimize delivery methods for solid tumors. We are currently targeting hepatocellular carcinoma using cellular therapies such as TCR-transduced T cells. We are also investigating optimal delivery methods and in vivo imaging assessments of efficacy to ultimately improve treatment responses and diminish toxicity.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords:

Email:  Gabriel.Fine@hsc.utah.edu

Tracy Frech, MD

Title:  Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Rhuematology)

My research focus is of the vasculopathy on systemic sclerosis (SSc). Our clinical and translational science lab studies vascular physiology in digital ulcers and gastrointestinal tract dysfunction in SSc.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: systemic sclerosis, Scleroderma, digital ulcers, gastrointestinal tract, Raynaud's phenomenon, renal crisis

Email:  Tracy.Frech@hsc.utah.edu

Michael L. Free, PhD

Title:  Professor - Metallurgical Engineering

Our research group focuses on improving metal extraction and purification, corrosion mitigation and recycling, and materials synthesis and evaluation for new technologies such as chemical sensors, all of which is designed to make our world better and our way of life more sustainable.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: metals, chemical processing, electrochemistry, sensors, corrosion

Email:  michael.free@utah.edu

Robert Fujinami, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

Viral infections of the central nervous system often result in encephalitis which is a risk factor for epilepsy. My lab has developed a new “hit and run” model to study virus-induced epilepsy where a virus infection alters central nervous system connectivity, the virus is cleared by the immune response and epilepsy occurs after the virus is gone. This has opened up how we think about epilepsy.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Neuroscience

Keywords: demyelinating disease, virus-induced autoimmune disease, multiple sclerosis, viral pathogenesis, seizures, epilepsy

Email:  robert.fujinami@hsc.utah.edu

Katsu Funai, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Physical Therapy & Athletic Training

Our laboratory is interested in the intracellular fate of lipids into membrane phospholipids and how they affect cellular energetics. We hypothesize that some of the metabolic defects induced by obesity can be explained by changes in membrane lipid composition.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Diabetes/Metabolism

Keywords: metabolism, lipids, mitochondria, bioenergetics, obesity, exercise

Email:  kfunai@health.utah.edu

Hamid Ghandehari, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Chemistry

Research in our lab involves design and development of polymeric and inorganic materials for controlled drug and gene delivery. The platforms in our lab can easily be utilized for localized delivery of anti-infective agents to maximize efficacy and reduce side effects.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: drug delivery, nanotechnology

Email:  hamid.ghandehari@pharm.utah.edu

Ramkiran Gouripeddi, MBBS

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Biomedical Informatics

My research focuses on developing novel informatics methods and their application to clinical and translational research. I use advanced computational and artificial intelligence methods for domain specific biomedical problems that require integration of distributed information and omics data for big data analytics, and management of their metadata and semantics. More particularly, I am interested in discovering the interactions of the exposome and microbiome with the host's immunome in metabolic disorders.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Diabetes/Metabolism

Keywords: clinical and translational research informatics, semantic integration of information, distributional semantics, metadata discovery, exposomics, machine learning

Email:  ram.gouripeddi@utah.edu

David Grainger, PhD

Title:  Distinguished Professor - Biomedical Engineering

Our work seeks to improve the performance of implants in the body using local drug release, and enhance implant-tissue interfaces by reducing inflammation and infection. We also develop 3-D in vitro cell-based models to analyze drug toxicity, and in vivo assessments of nanoparticle biodistributions.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: medical device, drug delivery, inflammatory response, infection, local therapy

Email:  David.Grainger@hsc.utah.edu

John Greenlee, MD

Title:  Professor - Neurology

My research is in the area of autoimmune and paraneoplastic neurological disease. Studies involve use of organotypic slice cultures and animal models to study human autoimmune neurological disease.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Neurosciences

Keywords: autoimmune neurology, paraneoplastic neurological syndromes, paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration, organotypic brain cultures, autoantibodies, animal models

Email:  john.greenlee@hsc.utah.edu

Christopher Gregg, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Neurobiology and Anatomy

Discovering how epigenetic mechanisms shape behavior and disease

3i Bridge/Pillar: Neuroscience

Keywords: epigenetics, genomics, brain disease, mental health, machine learning, CRISPR gene editing

Email:  chris.gregg@neuro.utah.edu

David Grunwald, PhD

Title:  Professor - Human Genetics

Genetics of susceptibility to osteoarthritis and the role of inflammation in osteoarthritis.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: osteoarthritis, inflammation, innate immunity, Ripk2, mouse models

Email:  dgrunwal@genetics.utah.edu

Scott Hale, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Pathology

My laboratory studies T cells and their role in the generation of immunological memory in response to infection and immunization. We are particularly interested in understanding the genetic and epigenetic programs that regulate the differentiation and maintenance of memory helper T cell subsets. We are currently investigating whether targeting epigenetic programming of helper T cell differentiation can enhance T cell help to B cells to generate improved protective antibody responses against viral pathogens.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: helper T cells, immunological memory, viral immunology, DNA methylation, epigenetics

Email:  scott.hale@path.utah.edu

Ahmad Halwani, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Internal Medicine (Hematology/BMT)

My research focuses on understanding efficacy and safety of novel therapeutics in patients with lymphoma. I also research informatics approaches to leverage electronic health record data to optimize patient care.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: CLL, lymphoma, and health care

Email:  Ahmad.Halwani@hsc.utah.edu

Kimberly Hanson, MD

Title:  Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Infectious Disease)

My research is focused on the development and validation of novel diagnostic tests for infectious diseases.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: 

Email:  kim.hanson@hsc.utah.edu

Mary Elizabeth Hartnett, MD

Title:  Professor - Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences

Studies mechanisms of normal and aberrant angiogenesis, particularly related to diabetic retinopathy, retinopathy of prematurity, and age-related macular degeneration.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: Eye diseases, treatments for Retinopathy of prematurity

Email:  ME.Hartnett@hsc.utah.edu

Xiao He, MD, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Pathology

We are studying role of GILT (gamma-IFN-inducible lysosomal thiol reductase), an enzyme involved in Ag processing, in thymus selection and in pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases, such as type I diabetes.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: GILT, Ag processing, thymus selection, type I diabetes

Email:  xiao.he@path.utah.edu

My Helms, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Internal Medicine (Pulmonary)

The main interests of my laboratory include investigating the role and regulation of epithelial ion channels (ENaC) in lung health and inflammatory diseases. We employ contemporary molecular, cellular, biochemical, and electrophysiological assays to address important mechanistic questions with the long-term goal of developing novel therapeutics for channelopathies and inflammatory diseases.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: epithelial sodium channel (ENaC), oxidative stress, post-translational modification, S-glutathionylation (P-SSG)

Email:  my.helms@hsc.utah.edu

Adam Hersh, MD, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Pediatrics (Infectious Disease)

Clinical epidemiology, health services research focusing on improving the quality and safety of antimicrobial prescribing.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: 

Email:  Adam.Hersh@hsc.utah.edu

Aimee Hersh, MD

Title:  Associate Professor - Pediatrics (Rhuematology)

My research focuses on understanding the long-term/adult outcomes of pediatric rheumatic disease, and the impact of transition from pediatric to adult care on health outcomes for young adults with chronic illness. I am also interested in the genetics of pediatric-onset rheumatic disease and its relationship to treatment response and outcomes.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: Pediatric rheumatology, outcomes, systemic lupus erythematosus, transition, genetics

Email:  Aimee.Hersh@hsc.utah.edu

Chris Hill, D. Phil

Title:  Distinguished Professor - Biochemistry

We take structural and biochemical approaches to understanding the mechanisms of biological processes. We study multiple areas of biology, including HIV-host interactions. These include cellular pathways that are either coopted to support viral replication or function in innate immunity.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: HIV, virus-host interactions, protein structure, Cryo-EM, X-ray crystallography

Email:  chris@biochem.utah.edu

Harry Hill, MD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

Dr. Hill’s research is investigating the role of cytokines, the hormones of the immune system in inflammation and disease including coronary artery disease, autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis, and is investigating, along with his colleagues, the molecular causes of primary immune deficiencies including Job Syndrome of Hyper IgE and Recurrent Infections, Chronic Granulomatous Disease and, more recently Common Variable Immune Deficiency using next generation sequencing as well as other molecular techniques.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: primary immune deficiency, neutrophils, antibodies, inflammation, cytokines  

Email:  harry.hill@path.utah.edu

Sheri Holmen, PhD

Title:  Professor - Surgery

Dr. Holmen’s Lab aims to define critical targets in cancer cells that can become the focus for therapeutic intervention. Current efforts utilize a genetic approach to address this question in tumors that are generally refractory to conventional therapies, including metastatic melanoma and glioblastoma. Identified targets are being further validated using pharmacological inhibitors of clinical importance such that laboratory findings can be quickly translated to the clinic.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: 

Email:  Sheri.Holmen@hci.utah.edu

Janet Iwasa, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Biochemistry

My group creates information-rich and visually compelling animations that capture current hypotheses on diverse molecular and cellular processes. These visualizations have broad applications in scientific research, communication, education and outreach. We are also interested in creating new tools and workflows that will enable researchers to more readily create dynamic visualizations of the processes they study. 

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: visualization, animation, outreach

Email:  jiwasa@biochem.utah.edu

Peter Jensen, MD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

We study the mechanisms that underlie antigen processing and presentation for T cell recognition, and the role of classical and non-classical MHC molecules in the innate and adaptive immune systems. Our work has relevance to type 1 diabetes, other autoimmune diseases, and cancer immunology.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: MHC, HLA, Antigen processing, T cells, diabetes

Email:  peter.jensen@path.utah.edu

Mick Jurynec, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Orthopaedics

My group works to discover and understand the functions of genes underlying the onset and progression of osteoarthritis. We use a combination of approaches including human genetics, bioinformatics, and model organisms (zebrafish and mouse) to elucidate the molecular and biological mechanisms that lead to changes in the synovial joint and contribute to the osteoarthritis phenotype.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: osteoarthritis, arthritis, human genetics, inflammation, mouse models, zebrafish

Email:  mjurynec@genetics.utah.edu

Richard Kanner, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Pulmonary)

COPD, Health Effects of Air Pollution

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords:  COPD, PM2.5

Email:  richard.kanner@hsc.utah.edu

Michael Kay, MD, PhD

Title:  Professor - Biochemistry

Our protein design and peptide chemistry lab develops mirror-image D-peptide inhibitors against a broad range of targets. We are particularly focused on inhibiting viral entry (in HIV and Ebola) and bacterial toxins (e.g., Shiga).

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: phage display, protein design, D-peptides, HIV, drug discovery, Shiga toxins

Email:  kay@biochem.utah.edu

Aaron Kobernick, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Dermatology

With collaborators from Colorado Children's, The University of Arizona, and National Jewish Health, we seek to define and explore the problem of childhood asthma on the Navajo Nation. Through funding from the NIH, we are currently engaged with the Navajo community, schools and clinics to improve care for asthmatic children - and then study the effectiveness of our intervention.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: allergy, asthma, food allergy, oral immunotherapy, Navajo

Email:  Aaron.Kobernick@hsc.utah.edu

John Kriesel, MD

Title:  Research Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Infectious Disease)

Dr. Kriesel's primary interests here are in translational and clinical research. He discovered a major genetic contributor to human cold sores. His research projects involve strategies for the treatment of herpes simplex virus infections, and microbiologic triggers of autoimmune diseases, including multiple sclerosis and sarcoidosis.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: next-generation sequencing, RNA-seq, Multiple Sclerosis, Sarcoidosis

Email:  john.kriesel@hsc.utah.edu

Attila Kumanovics, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Professor

We are interested in primary (genetic) immunodeficiency diseases. First, we utilize whole exome and genome sequencing to identify novel causes of disease, and then develop diagnostic tools, including genetic, phenotypic, and functional assays. Currently, we concentrate on two diseases, common variable immunodeficiency (CVID) and hyper-IgE syndrome (or Job syndrome).

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: primary immunodeficiency diseases, clinical immunology, molecular diagnostics, flow cytometry, mass cytometry, B cell development

Email:  attila.kumanovics@path.utah.edu

Tom Lane, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

Our laboratory focuses on the molecular and cellular mechanism contributing neuroinflammation and demyelination in response to viral infection of the central nervous system (CNS). In addition, we are interested in studying the therapeutic potential of neural stem cells in promoting repair to the damaged CNS.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: neurovirology, neuroinflammation, immunology, demyelination, stem cells

Email:  tom.lane@path.utah.edu

Eszter Lazar-Molnar, Ph.D.

Title:  Assistant Professor - Pathology

Translational research for diagnostic test development and optimization in the area of transplantation immunology, immunodeficiency, and immunogenicity to biologicals.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: HLA, transplantation, transplant monitoring, T cell proliferation, T cell costimulation, immunogenicity, biologicals, immunotherapy

Email:  mailto:eszter.lazar-molnar@path.utah.edu

Molly Leecaster, PhD

Title:  Research Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Epidemiology)

My research focuses on understanding the associations between behavior and infectious disease dynamics. We use wireless sensor networks and electronic health records to collect data on person-to-person and person-to-environment contacts that have the potential to mediate transmission. We use dynamic models and simulations to estimate transmission parameters and test potential interventions to control spread of infection. My statistical interests include spatial models, sample design, and epidemiology.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: social and dynamic network analysis, healthcare-associated infection, biostatistics

Email:  Molly.Leecaster@utah.edu

Lisa Lesniewski, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Geriatrics)

My laboratory explores mechanisms underlying age- and obesity-associated vascular and metabolic dysfunction and disease. Using genetic, pharmacologic and surgical approaches, we explore the role of mi-92a and ARF6 in vascular and metabolic dysfunction as well as atherosclerotic disease progression across the lifespan.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cardiovascular

Keywords: aging, obesity, atherosclerosis, insulin sensitivity, glucose tolerance, endothelium

Email:  Lisa.Lesniewski@utah.edu

Daniel Leung, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Internal Medicine (Infectious Disease)

We study clinical, epidemiological, and immunological responses to intestinal infections, focusing on cholera and other pathogens of importance in resource-limited settings. We have a secondary focus on mucosal-associated invariant T (MAIT) cell biology.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: Cholera, diarrhea, MAIT cells

Email:  Daniel.Leung@utah.edu

Theodore Liou, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Pulmonary)

We study survival and its clinical predictors in patients with cystic fibrosis (CF). We have multiple projects to study the roles of inflammation and microbial interactions in the airway. Our research has led to a search for novel antimicrobial agents from bacterial members of airway ecology. Because of our involvement in clinical care of patients with CF, we participate in many clinical trials involving novel agents for the treatment of CF transmembrane mutation defects, CF-associated inflammation and management of malnutrition associated with CF.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: 

Email:  ted.liou@utah.edu

Catherine Loc Carillo, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Internal Medicine (Epidemiology)

Our research is focused in developing translational studies to prevention and treatment polymicrobial infections using experimentally infected animal models. My goal is to conduct well-controlled, impartial research to investigate the possibilities of applying bacteriophages (phages) as biocontrol agents to clinically problematic infections, with particular emphasis on antibiotics resistant bacteria.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: antimicrobial resistance, bacteriophages, polymicrobial infections

Email:  C.Loc.Carrillo@hsc.utah.edu

Tim Luetkens, MD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Internal Medicine (Hematology/BMT)

We are developing novel cellular and antibody-based immunotherapies targeting hematologic and solid malignancies. In addition, we are working on different strategies to increase the selectivity of these approaches for malignant cells to reduce their toxicity.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: cancer immunotherapy, CAR T cells, TCR T cells, monoclonal antibodies, protein engineering

Email:  Tim.Luetkens@hci.utah.edu

Scott McNally, MD, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Radiology and Imaging Sciences

Our group’s scientific mission is to optimally detect vascular disease using advanced imaging techniques, with the overall aim to improve diagnosis and treatment of cerebrovascular disease. 

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cardiovascular

Keywords: magnetic resonance imaging, stroke, blood vessels, atherosclerosis, inflammation, oxidative stress

Email:  Scott.Mcnally@hsc.utah.edu

Elizabeth Middleton, MD

Title:  Instructor - Internal Medicine (Pulmonary)

I work within the Weyrich, Zimmerman, Rondina lab. We are primarily a platelet and megakaryocyte lab with a focus on transcriptional and translational control. My work focuses on alterations in RNA and protein expression in both human and mouse models of sepsis and other inflammatory conditions.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: platelet, megakaryocyte, sepsis, CLP, translation, transcription

Email:  elizabeth.middleton@hsc.utah.edu

Patrice Mimche, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Pathology

The focus of the Mimche lab is to determine the molecular basis of fibrosis, a tissue remodeling process that leads to scarring and organ failure. We are currently investigating the role of EphB/Ephrin-B signaling axis during organs fibrosis with a focus on Scleroderma and liver fibrogenesis. The long term goal is to utilize our findings to develop novel biomarkers and therapeutic agents for the management of fibrosis-related diseases.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: fibrosis, inflammation, angiogenesis, Eph/Ephrin, immunity, vascular damage

Email:  patrice.mimche@path.utah.edu

Satoshi Minoshima, MD, PhD

Title:  Professor - Radiology and Imaging Sciences

In vivo animal and human imaging of immune cells and inflammation.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Neuroscience

Keywords: imaging, PET, MRI, immune cells, inflammation

Email:  sminoshima@hsc.utah.edu

Kathryn Morton, MD

Title:  Professor - Radiology and Imaging Sciences

Causes and consequences of sepsis-induced neuroinflammation.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Neuroscience

Keywords: positron emission tomography, sepsis, neuroinflammation, amyloid beta

Email:  Kathryn.Morton@hsc.utah.edu

Hong-Hua Mu, MD, PhD

Title:  Research Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Rhuematology)

My research has been to study how microbial agents (i.e., bacteria and mycoplasmas, and bacteria toxins)) can cause inflammatory/autoimmune diseases. We focus on the interplay of innate and adaptive immune system, role of T cell activation and differentiation in mouse models of inflammatory/autoimmune arthritis, sepsis and autoimmune colitis. Over the past two decades, we have been particularly studying how immune molecules including TLRs, MHC, co-stimulatory molecules, cytokines and chemokines are regulated by an unique mycoplasma superantigen MAM, and several other bioactive mycoplasma membrane lipoproteins which we have identified and isolated, and these microbial agents are shown to be disease pathogenic in our mouse models.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: autoimmunity, infection, cytokines, autoimmune arthritis, sepsis, and IBD

Email:  Hong-hua.Mu@hsc.utah.edu

Matt Mulvey, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

The Mulvey lab is working to delineate both bacterial and host factors that control the ability of pathogens to colonize and persist within diverse host environments, with a major goal being the development of improved anti-bacterial therapeutics. This research utilizes genetics, microscopy, biochemistry, global gene expression analysis, and molecular biology techniques coupled with cell culture, mouse, and zebrafish infection model systems

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: bacterial pathogenesis, sepsis, urinary tract infections, gut colonization, virulence regulation, antibiotics

Email:  mulvey@path.utah.edu

Charles Murtaugh, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Human Genetics

Research in my lab focuses on development and disease of the mammalian pancreas, using mouse models as well as human cell lines and tissues. Of particular interest is the relationship between differentiation, inflammation and tumor susceptibility.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: pancreas, pancreatitis, cancer

Email:  murtaugh@genetics.utah.edu

Deborah Neklason, PhD

Title:  Research Associate Professor - Epidemiology

Lynch syndrome is an inherited predisposition to colon, endometrial and other cancers due go inherited mutations in mismatch repair genes (MLH1, MSH2, MSH6, PMS2).

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: Lynch syndrome; cancer; inflammation; t-cell mediated immunity

Email:  deb.neklason@hci.utah.edu

Richard Nelson, PhD

Title:  Research Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (Epidemiology)

My research focuses on identifying the optimal use of scarce healthcare resources. In the realm of infectious diseases, I use the tools of health economics to inform decision making related to antibiotic prescribing and strategies to prevent transmission of multidrug-resistant organismss in the hospital.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: healthcare-associated infections, multidrug-resistant organisms, health economics, cost-effectiveness analysis

Email:  Richard.Nelson@utah.edu

Ryan O'Connell, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Pathology

The O’Connell lab is focused on the study of noncoding RNAs, including microRNAs, that regulate immune cell development and functions in health and during diseases that include neuroinflammation, cancer, and metabolic disorders. We are also engaging in the study of intercellular communication by extracellular vesicles that transfer small RNAs and other molecules between immune cells as a novel mechanism of regulating inflammatory responses.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: Noncoding RNAs, microRNAs, inflammation, T cells, dendritic cells, macrophages, metabolism, extracellular vesicles, cancer

Email:  ryan.oconnell@path.utah.edu

Trudy Oliver, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Oncological Sciences

The Oliver Lab develops mouse models of all subtypes of lung cancer including adenocarcinoma, squamous and small cell lung cancer. Our primary interests include investigating the role of the tumor immune microenvironment in lung cancer, particularly the function of neutrophils. We have identified a role for cell fate specifiers SOX2 and NKX2-1 in regulating distinct immune microenvironments in subtypes of non-small lung cancer. In addition, we have shown that small cell lung cancer is composed of distinct molecular and therapeutically-relevant subtypes, which is driven by MYC status. Our expertise includes preclinical drug testing in mice, small animal imaging, and tumor biology.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: tumor immunity, lung cancer, mouse models, neutrophils, MYC, SOX2, single cell sequencing, gd T cells

Email:  Trudy.Oliver@hci.utah.edu

Suzanne Ostrand-Rosenberg, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

We study the role of tumor-induced immune suppression in inhibiting antitumor immunity. Our studies have focused on two important immune suppression mechanisms that are globally present in cancer patients: myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSC) and the programmed death 1 T cell pathway (PD-1/PD-L1). Our studies are aimed at understanding the mechanisms responsible for the immune suppression and the development of therapeutic strategies for neutralizing the suppression.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: antitumor immunity, cancer vaccines, tumor-induced immune suppression

Email:  srosenbe@umbc.edu

Shawn Owen, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Pharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Chemistry

My lab utilizes protein engineering and bioconjugation techniques in developing therapeutic and diagnostic platforms to enable precision medicine. Our current research focus is on 1) controlling the systemic and cellular pharmacokinetics (PK) of antibody-based therapeutics by creating self-amplifying antibody-drug conjugates, 2) evaluating the pharmaceutic stability of antibody-based therapeutics, and 3) engineering binary/ternary complementation-based diagnostic systems that utilize luminescent reporters for detection of important biomarkers.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: antibodies, antibody-drug conjugates, therapeutics, diagnostics

Email:  shawn.owen@hsc.utah.edu

Robert Paine, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Pulmonary)

My laboratory investigates the role of alveolar epithelial cells in pulmonary innate immunity, with a particular interest in the consequences of local environmental factors (oxidative stress, hypoxia or particulate pollution) on epithelial cell expression of key molecules promoting lung defense. We participate in human studies as part of large NIH-sponsored networks investigating acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). I also direct the University of Utah Program for Air Quality, Health and Society.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: innate immunity; GM-CSF; alveolar macrophage; pneumonia; air pollution

Email:  Robert.Paine@hsc.utah.edu

Alex Pastuszak, MD, PhD

Alex Pastuszak, MD, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Surgery

My research focuses on men’s health, with my lab emphasizing genetic factors and pathways that predispose to superficial fibrosing disorders including Peyronie’s, Dupuytren’s and Ledderhose diseases. We identify and characterize genes and pathways that can lead to these conditions using forward genetic screening in affected patients, as well as in vitro assays and animal models. We examine the impact of candidate genes on inflammatory and fibrotic signaling pathways, and how these genes contribute to the molecular and cellular pathogenesis of superficial fibrosing disorders. Our work thus far has demonstrated a link between superficial fibrosing disorders and other genetically influenced conditions, and is currently examining the role of non-canonical pathways in the pathogenesis of Peyronie’s disease. The long term goal of our work is to more thoroughly understand the genetic and molecular determinants of superficial fibrosing disorders, towards the goal of facilitating diagnosis, risk stratification, and ultimately treatment of these conditions.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: Peyronie’s disease, fibrosis, inflammation, fibroblast, Dupuytren’s disease, TGF-beta

Email:  Alexander.Pastuszak@utah.edu

Andrew Pavia, MD

Title:  Professor - Pediatrics (Pediatric Infectious Diseases)

Our group is interested in the epidemiology of diarrheal disease and predictive models, the epidemiology and diagnosis of respiratory infections, and the use of metagenomic sequencing as a diagnostic tool. We also have interest in understanding and improving the use of antibiotics.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: Influenza, diarrheal disease, epidemiology, diagnostics, antivirals

Email:  Andy.Pavia@hsc.utah.edu

Vicente Planelles, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

The research in my lab seeks to understand various aspects of the pathogenesis by human immunodeficiency viruses. Specifically, we study (1) how HIV-1 establishes and maintains latency; how HIV-1 and related viruses evade immune responses via expression of the so called “viral accessory proteins”; and how HIV-1 modulates the host cell cycle.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: V, lentiviruses, latency, accessory genes, SIV, interferon, SAMHD1, vpr, vpx, vpu

Email:  vicente.planelles@path.utah.edu

Wayne Potts, PhD

Title:  Professor - Biology

The lab has two different major projects: 1) We use experimental evolution of viruses to evaluate the role of host and pathogen genetic diversity on virulence evolution. 2) We use seminatural populations of mice to investigate the health consequences of any treatment, which to date have included a) resistance to infectious disease mediated by social status, b) dietary sugars, c) inbreeding, d) hox gene mutations, and e) pharmaceuticals; in every case our approach has proven more sensitive and powerful than conventional approaches.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: immunogenetics, host-parasite coevolution, histocompatibility genes, virulence evolution, experimental evolution, virology

Email:  wp2@utah.edu

Chris Reilly, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pharmcology and Toxicology

Mechanisms of inhaled particulate material toxicity. TRP ion channels in pulmonary toxicology, airway diseases, inflammation and pain. Discovery of TRP channel ligands.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: environmental toxicology, TRP channels, pulmonary diseases, asthma, pain, Cytochrome P450, drug metabolism and pharmacokinetics, and mass spectrometry

Email:  Chris.Reilly@pharm.utah.edu

Jacob Robson, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Pediatrics (Pediatric Gastroenterology)

I am interested in the changing epidemiology of pediatric eosinophilic esophagitis. I am also focused on better tracking and treating of early esophageal fibrosis in children with eosinophilic esophagitis.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: eosinophilic esophagitis, pediatric gastroenterology, epidemiology, esophageal fibrosis

Email:  Jacob.Robson@hsc.utah.edu

Minna Roh-Johnson, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Biochemistry

Cancer cells hijack mechanisms of normal development. In a complex milieu of an animal, in which there are many different signals from many different cells, how does a cell parse through this information to know when and where to migrate? Our long term research goal is to identify these signals, how they are communicated, and how they are interpreted into a downstream response to regulate cell motility during development and cancer. We use a combination of animal models (zebrafish and mouse) and cell culture based models, taking advantage of the strengths of each system to answer outstanding questions in cancer cell biology.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: tumor microenvironment, cell migration, cell-cell communication, macrophages, zebrafish, mouse

Email:  roh-johnson@biochem.utah.edu

Matt Rondina, MD

Title:  Associate Professor - Internal Medicine (General Internal Medicine)

Our research program focuses on platelet and megakaryocyte gene expression and function during thrombo-inflammatory syndromes. To answer clinically-relevant questions, we utilize primary human cells and samples from patients as well as relevant experimental model systems. Current projects in the lab span from studies in patients with infectious diseases (e.g. sepsis, dengue, influenza) to aging and cardiometabolic disorders.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cardiovascular

Keywords: platelets, sepsis, thrombosis, megakaryocyte, and gene expression

Email:  matthew.rondina@hsc.utah.edu

Michael Rubin, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal medicine (Epidemiology)

I am primarily interested in health services research and implementation science encompassing the domains of medical informatics, clinical decision support, and computer simulation modeling, particularly as these relate to topics in infectious diseases and infection prevention. Relevant recent and ongoing projects include longitudinal epidemiologic analyses of multidrug-resistant organism infection rates, hospital-based interventions to reduce device-associated infections and antimicrobial prescribing, and the development of state-of-the-art computer simulation models to test novel healthcare-associated infection intervention strategies and to analyze their clinical and economic impacts.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: biomedical informatics, computer simulation, infectious diseases, infection prevention, healthcare-associated infections, antimicrobial stewardship

Email:  michael.rubin@hsc.utah.edu

Jared Rutter, PhD

Title:  Professor - Biochemistry

The Rutter lab is trying to understand the reciprocal relationship between metabolism and cell behavior and fate decisions.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Diabetes/Metabolism

Keywords: metabolism, mitochondria, signaling

Email:  rutter@biochem.utah.edu

Matthew Samore, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Epidemiology)

My research advances the understanding of how antibiotic use has spread resistant pathogens; uncovers mechanisms of disease spread by healthcare-associated pathogens such as Clostridium difficile; and develops evidence about interventions to reduce inappropriate antibiotic use and control healthcare-associated infection. I also investigate the use of electronic health record data to improve measurement of prescribing practices and patient outcomes.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: multidrug-resistant organisms, healthcare-associated infection, electronic health record, health information technology, prescribing practices, patient outcomes

Email:  Matthew.Samore@hsc.utah.edu

Prashant Sarswat, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Metallurgical Engineering

Prashant K Sarswat, Ph.D., is a Research Assistant Professor in the Metallurgical Engineering Department at the University of Utah. His broad interests in 3i domain includes the development of the low-cost sensors for rapid detection of biomarkers specific to diseases such as diabetes, tuberculosis, lung cancer, childhood hypo-glycemia-growth hormone deficiency, toxic inhalation, and various other diseases.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: biosensors and devices, diabetes, electrochemistry, quantum dots, spectroscopy

Email:  saraswatp@gmail.com

Eric Schmidt, PhD

Title:  Professor - Medicinal Chemistry

We are experts in the chemistry of metabolism, including identifying known and previously unknown compounds from microbes and host animals. Our research includes the chemistry of secondary metabolites, NMR and mass spectrometry, metagenome sequencing and analysis, and biosynthesis (synthetic biology of natural products).

3i Bridge/Pillars: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: 

Email:  ews1@utah.edu

Craig Selzman, MD

Title:  Professor - Surgery

The Selzman lab is focused on the transcriptional control, and in particular, the inflammatory response to myocardial injury and repair. In addition, we are exploring various forms of regenerative therapies for the damaged heart.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cardiovascular

Keywords: heart failure, myocardial recovery, inflammation, regeneration, ischemia-reperfusion, NF- ΚB

Email:  Craig.Selzman@hsc.utah.edu

Michael Shapiro, PhD

Title:  Professor - Biology

Evolutionary genetics and developmental biology of natural and domesticated populations of vertebrates. We study how variation at the genomic level translates to developmental and phenotypic diversity in morphology and behavior.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: evolution, genetics, genomics, development, pigeon

Email:  shapiro@biology.utah.edu

Jason Shepherd, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Neurobiology and Anatomy

The goal of our research is to understand information storage, from the molecular level through in vivo neuronal networks and how these processes go awry in neurological disorders. My lab utilizes coordinated biochemical, cell biological, electrophysiological and imaging studies both in vitro and in vivo. We recently discovered a novel mechanism of neuronal communication that resembles the life-cycle of retroviruses.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Neuroscience

Keywords: neurodegenerative diseases, neurodevelopmental disorders, synaptic transmission. synaptic membranes, synaptic plasticity, learning and memory, receptor trafficking, Immediate-Early Proteins, endocytosis, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Angelman Syndrome, Fragile X Syndrome, Rett Syndrome, Alzheimer's Disease

Email:  jason.shepherd@neuro.utah.edu

Paul Sigala, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Biochemistry

We use diverse biochemical and cellular tools to understand the metabolic adaptations that enable Plasmodium malaria parasites to survive and proliferate within human red blood cells. Our goals are to broaden fundamental knowledge of fascinating and divergent parasite biology and to identify new therapeutic opportunities to target this dangerous pathogen.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: malaria, metabolism, organelle biology, heme, parasites

Email:  p.sigala@biochem.utah.edu

Bob Silver, MD

Title:  Professor - Obstetrics/Gynecology

My research focuses on stillbirth, placental abnormalities and autoimmune disease in pregnancy with a focus on inflammation.

3i Bridges/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: pregnancy, placenta, stillbirth, autoimmune

Email:  bob.silver@hsc.utah.edu

Adam Spivak, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Internal Medicine (Infectious Disease)

My research focuses on HIV latency and persistence despite antiretroviral therapy. I am working to develop strategies to eradicate this viral reservoir. I am also working on novel clinical strategies to prevent the spread of HIV infection in our community.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: HIV, HIV latency, HIV persistence, pre-exposure prophylaxis

Email:  adam.spivak@hsc.utah.edu

Zac Stephens, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Pathology

My research seeks to understand the ecological and immunological mechanisms involved in the assembly and maintenance of host-associated microbial communities. I am also interested in improvements to high-throughput sequencing and analysis techniques employed to increase our understanding of the many unknown microbial functions.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: microbiome, mucosal immunology, microbial ecology, host-microbe, metagenomics

Email:  zac.stephens@path.utah.edu

Scott Summers, PhD

Title:  Professor - Nutrition and Integrative Physiology

Ceramides are products of fat and protein metabolism that accumulate in individuals prone to metabolic disorders. Once ceramide levels rise above a critical threshold, tissues become unresponsive to insulin, the hormone that facilitates nutrient storage. The Summers Laboratory found that implementing pharmacological or genetic engineering strategies to block ceramide accumulation in rodents improves insulin sensitivity and prevents the onset of diabetes and fatty liver disease. Building upon these discoveries, they now seek to understand the regulatory mechanisms governing ceramide synthesis or action and to identify new therapeutic strategies for reducing ceramides to treat these pathologies.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Diabetes/Metabolism

Keywords: lipotoxicity, diabetes, insulin resistance, immunometabolism, dyslipidemia, ceramides

Email:  scott.a.summers@health.utah.edu

Wes Sundquist, PhD

Title:  Distinguished Professor - Biochemistry

We study the cellular, molecular and structural biology of retroviruses, particularly HIV, and the roles of the ESCRT pathway in cell division and the abscission checkpoint. Major projects in our lab include studies of: 1) HIV budding, 2) designed nanoparticles, 3) ESCRT pathway functions in cell division and the abscission checkpoint, and 4) HIV capsid structure, function and restriction, particularly by the TRIM5α innate immune system.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: HIV, innate immunity, ESCRT, TRIM5alpha, nanoparticles, protein design

Email:  wes@biochem.utah.edu

Sankar Swaminathan, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Infectious Disease)

We work on gene regulation by oncogenic herpesviruses EBV and KSHV. We study how the viruses control cellular transcription and post-transcriptional processing. We also study host factors that operate epigenetically or through the innate immune response to restrict viral replication.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: Epstein Barr Virus, KSHV, oncogenesis, innate immune response, epigenetic, post-transcriptional gene regulation

Email:  sankar.swaminathan@hsc.utah.edu

Kathy Sward, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Nursing

My research focuses on biomedical informatics methods within clinical and translational research. Recent projects included a decision support protocol for pediatric ICU (PICU) ventilator management for patients with acute lung injury, and a simple PICU sepsis risk algorithm. Current work is developing an infrastructure to support integration of person-generated health data from mobile apps and sensors into research on conditions that are influenced by environmental and lifestyle factors, such as pediatric asthma. We are also exploring wearable sensors to detect stress levels in cancer caregivers.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: biomedical informatics, sensors, environment, cancer, asthma, ARDS/ALI

Email:  kathy.sward@nurs.utah.edu

Dean Tantin, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Pathology

Our lab studies the function of mammalian transcription factors and cofactors, how they control lymphocyte function and immune responses, and how they control normal and malignant stem cell/progenitor states. Our lab has major interests in the transcriptional control of immune memory and autoimmunity.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: gene regulation; immune memory, autoimmunity

Email:  dean.tantin@path.utah.edu

Robert Taylor, MD, PhD

Title:  Professor - Obstetrics/Gynecology

My lab studies the molecular actions of estrogen and progesterone, endometrial differentiation and immune cell recruitment, particularly as they relate to the clinical syndrome, endometriosis.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: sex steroid receptors, IL-1β signaling, neuroangiogenesis

Email:  rob.taylor@hsc.utah.edu

Anne Tebo, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Obstetrics/Gynecology

Tebo’s research is centered on the diagnosis and management of autoimmune diseases. Her current efforts are focused on approaches to reliably diagnosis and predict specific outcomes in systemic autoimmune rheumatic disease (SARDs) and antiphospholipid syndrome (APS). She is also actively involved in collaborative initiatives to harmonize and standardize serologic tests commonly used for autoimmune disease assessment.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: autoimmunity, inflammation, diagnosis, management, biomarkers

Email:  anne.tebo@aruplab.com

Dimitri Tränkner, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Biology

Dr. Tränkner develops and applies genetics, optogenetics, and quantitative behavior assays to explore the cellular and molecular basis of psychological and mental disorders using the mouse as a model system. He currently focuses on the causal link between defective immune cells and sex-linked anxiety.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: anxiety, microglia, hormones, optogenetics, cognitive defects, mouse models

Email:  dtrankner@genetics.utah.edu

Cornelia Ulrich, PhD

Title:  Professor - Population Health Sciences

The Ulrich group works on colorectal cancer prevention, biomarkers and survivorship, capturing lifestyle data along with multiple –omics and other biomarkers.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: colorectal cancer, inflammation, aspirin, metabolomics, microbiome, adipose tissue, epidemiology, prognosis

Email:  neli.ulrich@hci.utah.edu

John Valentine, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Gastroenterology)

Interests include clinical and translational aspects of inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease) as well as other autoimmune and inflammatory disorders of the intestine. Projects include clinical trials and biomarker development, oncogenesis related to chronic inflammation.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, intestinal inflammation

Email:  john.valentine@hsc.utah.edu

Matthew VanBrocklin, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Surgery

We have developed novel picornaviruses that preferentially target tumor cells and are assessing their ability to promote host anti-tumor immunity. We are assessing local and systemic factors that contribute to viral/tumor response and resistance in order to improve therapeutic strategies for multiple human cancers.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: immunotherapy, oncolytic, virus, checkpoint, cancer, B7-H3

Email:  matthew.vanbrocklin@hci.utah.edu

K-T Varley, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Oncological Sciences

The Varley Lab uses genomics to discover biomarkers and pathways associated with prognosis in breast cancer patients. We have found that cancer cells can express an immune pathway that induces an anti-tumor immune response. We are developing a biomarker test and immunotherapy strategies to harness this discovery in order to improve patient care.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cancer

Keywords: cancer, genomics, immunotherapy 

Email:  K-T.Varley@hci.utah.edu

Michael Varner, MD

Title:  Professor - Obstetrics/Gynecology

I have been facilitating clinical trials in women’s health – mainly obstetrics – for at the past 30 years.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: clinical trials, pregnancy, obstetrics and gynecology, women’s long-term health, fetal origins of disease

Email:  michael.varner@hsc.utah.edu

Monica Vetter, PhD

Title:  Professor - Neurobiology and Anatomy

Microglia are dynamic remodelers of the central nervous system in both health and disease. Our research is focused on understanding the roles of microglia during development of the retina, as well as during retinal neurodegeneration. We are particularly focused on using transcriptome analysis to identify shared molecular pathways that regulate the function of microglia in these diverse contexts.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Neuroscience

Keywords: microglia, development, neurodegeneration, retina

Email:  monica.vetter@neuro.utah.edu

Claudio Villanueva, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Biochemistry

Our lab studies the relationship between adipocytes and type 2 diabetes. We also want to develop an understanding of how type 2 diabetes risk genes lead to changes in glucose metabolism.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Diabetes/Metabolism

Keywords: adipocytes, diabetes, obesity, and inflammation

Email:  villanueva@biochem.utah.edu

Jessica Walsh, MD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Internal Medicine (Rheumatology)

The Utah Spondyloarthritis Program integrates patient care and clinical research, with the goal of optimizing patient outcomes with early detection and treatment of spondyloarthritis and psoriatic arthritis. 

3i Bridge/Pillar: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: spondyloarthritis, psoriatic arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, epidemiology, registries

 

Email:  Jessica.Walsh@hsc.utah.edu

Janis Weis, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

My laboratory studies the inflammatory pathways involved in the development of Lyme arthritis, a condition arising from infection with the tic- borne pathogen Borrelia burgdorferi. Using a genetic approach we have identified numerous pathways that regulate the severity of arthritis in inbred mice, and have developed a model for chronic Lyme disease. Using this model we are testing therapeutic targets for enhanced resolution of arthritis in combination with standard antibiotic regimens.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: Lyme arthritis, Borrelia burgdorferi, genetics, inflammatory pathways

Email:  janis.weis@path.utah.edu

Melodie Weller, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Dentistry

The Weller Lab studies viral profiles associated with the development and progression of Sjogren’s Syndrome and Sjogren’s Syndrome-associated Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. Our primary aims are to identify how viruses are able to contribute to autoimmunity and, most importantly, how patients are being exposed to these pathogens. We are also working on saliva-based diagnostics to detect exposure to pathogens associated with Sjogren’s syndrome and other chronic diseases.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: 

Email:  Melodie.Weller@hsc.utah.edu

Alana Welm, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Oncological Sciences

We investigate breast cancer metastasis and how the tumor microenvironment, such as the host immune system, facilitates metastatic outgrowth. We utilize a number of in vivo models, including patient-derived models, to discover new mechanisms and test new therapies.

3i Bridge/Pillars: Cancer

Keywords: breast cancer, metastasis, tumor microenvironment, tumor immunology

Email:  Alana.Welm@hci.utah.edu

Karen Wilcox, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pharmacology and Toxicology

Dr. Wilcox's areas of research interests include basic mechanisms of pharmacoresistant epilepsy, the role of inflammation in circuit function, seizure generation, and epileptogenesis, and the mechanism of action of anti-seizure drugs.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Neuroscience

Keywords: neuroinflammation, epilepsy, antiseizure drug development, glial cells

Email:  karen.wilcox@hsc.utah.edu

Dustin Williams, PhD

Title:  Research Assistant Professor - Orthopaedics

Our research is focused on developing therapies that target bacterial biofilms, which are highly tolerant to traditional antibiotics and contribute to difficulties in treating chronic wounds, surgical sites, orthopedic prostheses, diabetic foot ulcers and other pathologies. We also develop systems to investigate procedures or treatments that may reduce morbidity and complications such as heterotopic ossification in wounded warriors and civilian patients with the objective of improving quality of life.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: biofilm, antimicrobial, infection, bone, heterotopic ossification, models

Email:  dustin.williams@utah.edu

Matt Williams, PhD

Title:  Associate Professor - Pathology

Our research group seeks to understand the fate decisions that control the differentiation of T cells responding to infections and tumors. We are particularly focused on unraveling the mechanisms underlying the formation of long-lived memory T cells.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: immunological memory, T cell differentiation, anti-tumor immunity

Email:  matthew.williams@path.utah.edu

Jaclyn Winter, PhD

Title:  Assistant Professor - Medicinal Chemistry

Research in my lab focuses on natural products isolation and the bioengineering of natural product pathways for drug discovery and development. We use fungi and bacteria as resources for the discovery of new therapeutic agents and produce new chemical entities for biological activity testing by characterizing and manipulating the mechanisms that nature uses for assembling small molecules.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: natural products biosynthesis, drug discovery, microbial communication, antibiotics, bioengineering, combinatorial biosynthesis

Email:  Jaclyn.Winter@utah.edu

Carl Wittwer, MD, PhD

Title:  Professor - Pathology

Method and instrument development for molecular diagnostics. Rapid cycle and extreme PCR (down to 15 s). High resolution and high speed melting analysis (down to 4 s).

3i Bridge/Pillar: Host-Microbe Interactions

Keywords: molecular methods, high resolution melting analysis, extreme PCR

Email:  u0029724@utah.edu

Christian Con Yost, MD

Title:  Associate Professor - Pediatrics (Neonatology)

My research focuses on regulatory pathways governing inflammation in newborn infants, particularly those born prematurely, who are predisposed to inflammatory tissue damage as part of the pathogenesis for neonatal chronic lung disease, sepsis, and necrotizing enterocolitis. I recently discovered a novel endogenous peptide inhibitor of Neutrophil Extracellular Trap “NET” formation isolated from the umbilical cord blood of newborn infants. I am NIH funded to explore the role of this NET-inhibitory peptide in neonatal sepsis.

3i Bridge/Pillars: Immune Deficiency/Dysregulation

Keywords: neutrophil, neutrophil extracellular trap, NET, sepsis, newborn infant

Email:  christian.yost@u2m2.utah.edu

Guy Zimmerman, MD

Title:  Professor - Internal Medicine (Pulmonary)

Our research group studies fundamental mechanisms of infectious, inflammatory and thrombotic diseases. These include syndromes of impaired host defense, such as the leukocyte adhesion deficiencies, and conditions in which unregulated inflammatory or thrombotic responses contribute to pathogenesis and key complications. Some of the latter disorders include acute respiratory distress syndrome, asthma and other inflammatory airway diseases, and atherosclerosis and its inflammatory and thrombotic complications. Our work is also relevant to other human diseases including cancer. Our approach is to identify and characterize key molecular events using cell biology strategies, in vitro models, and in vitro and in vivo genetic approaches that include knockout mice.

3i Bridge/Pillar: Cardiovascular

Keywords: inflammation, NET, hemostasis, host responses to infection

Email:  guy.zimmerman@u2m2.utah.edu