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Systems Biology Laboratory
The Systems Biology Lab applies methods of multiscale modeling to problems of cancer and cardiovascular disease, and examines the systems biology of angiogenesis, breast cancer and peripheral artery disease (PAD).
Using coordinated computational and experimental approaches, the lab studies the mechanisms of breast cancer tumor growth and metastasis to find ways to inhibit those processes.
We use bioinformatics to discover novel agents that affect angiogenesis and perform in vitro and in vivo experiments to test these predictions. In addition we study protein networks that determine processes of angiogenesis, arteriogenesis and inflammation in PAD. The lab also investigates drug repurposing for potential applications as stimulators of therapeutic angiogenesis, examines signal transduction pathways and builds 3D models of angiogenesis.
The lab has discovered over a hundred novel anti-angiogenic peptides, and has undertaken in vitro and in vivo studies testing their activity unde...r different conditions. We have investigated structure-activity relationship (SAR) doing point mutations and amino acid substitutions and constructed biomimetic peptides derived from their endogenous progenitors. They have demonstrated the efficacy of selected peptides in mouse models of breast, lung and brain cancers, and in age-related macular degeneration.
The Ramanathan Lab
Chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) is a leading cause of morbidity globally and is the single most common self-reported chronic health condition and accounts for billions of dollars in health care costs and lost work days annually. Exposure to air pollutants is thought to be a critical modifier of CRS susceptibility. Despite marked reductions in air pollution levels in the United States, the fine particulate component of air pollution (PM2.5) and ultrafine pollutants secondary to traffic continue to remain a recalcitrant issue globally and in the United States. The Ramanathan Lab focuses on studying the role of air pollution (PM2.5) in CRS. In collaboration with scientists at the Bloomberg School of Public Health, we have utilized a state of the art air pollution exposure system to develop a novel mouse model of air pollution induced rhinosinusitis that mimics many of the features of CRS in humans. Our lab uses transgenic mouse models and novel immunologic/genomic techniques to study the mec...hanisms by which PM2.5 causes eosinophilic inflammation and sinonasal epithelial barrier dysfunction. We are also interested in the role of the antioxidant transcription factor, Nrf2, which has shown to stabilize the epithelial barrier and reduce eosinophilia in PM induced rhinosinusitis as a potential therapeutic target. view more