Lymphatic function controls tissue homeostasis.
We work under this concept to tackle tissue functions from two directions:
- How tissue pathology regulates lymphatic biology and physiology
- Manipulate lymphatic biology to regulate tissue homeostasis
Our laboratory utilizes some basic methodologies to understand lymphatic biology as well as the roles that lymphatics play. Each basic area includes biology and physiology techniques from gene expression analysis to whole organism functional screening.
- Developing inducible, cell-specific in vivo models.
- Quantifying changes in lymphatic function.
- Engineering in vitro models of 3-D LEC-cell interactions.
As modulator of interstitial flow and molecular transport lymphatic circulation governs tissues homeostasis. We utilize lymphatic physiology in two different ways: first, we address how lymphatic circulation and interstitial flux changes in pathological states and during manipulations to the encompassing cell biology of a given vascularized tissue; second, we employ genetic manipulations of lymphatic endothelial cell biology to quantify effects not only in lymphatic function, but to the tissue’s pathology as a whole. Our research approach incorporates a vast array of tools from protein analysis and lipidomics to tissue engineering and transgenic mouse model generation.
Current ongoing projects are mostly focused on the Lymphatic Physiology of Multi-Organ Systems. In diseases of chronic inflammation, such as diabetes or hypertension, multiple tissue functions dictate pathological outcomes. We are utilizing an extensive toolkit of genetic mouse models and physiologically-relevant in vitro systems to identify how changes in lymphatic biology impact metabolite transport, whole animal metabolism, and solute homeostasis, and response to infection.
Other projects use our toolkit in identifying factors driving the pathology of lymphatic diseases such as generalized lymphatic anomalies (GLA)/lymphangiomatosis and lymphedema. Additional collaborative efforts employ our models in pulmonary and digestive diseases.