• Title Associate Professor
    Assistant Dean for Research
  • Education PhD: Boston University School of Medicine
    Postdoctoral training: Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School
  • Office K203
  • Phone 617-358-4409
  • Area of Interest Mechanisms of tissue fibrosis, aortic aneurysm, and mechanotransduction
  • CV

The primary goal of our laboratory is to identify pathways that control extracellular matrix (ECM) synthesis and assembly as they relate to fibroproliferative and connective tissue diseases. Our long term goal is to use this knowledge to develop therapeutic strategies for these conditions. Fibroproliferative responses are similar to wound healing processes involving accumulation of contractile myofibroblasts and ECM secretion and assembly. Because organ fibrosis, cardiovascular, metabolic/obesity, and cancer pathologies are now recognized to be regulated by fibroblast-myofibroblast differentiation and ECM remodeling our research is examining control mechanisms in these diseases. Central to our studies is determining the function of Aortic Carboxypeptidase-Like Protein (ACLP), a secreted, collagen-binding protein that enhances fibrosis and myofibroblast differentiation through mechanisms that involve stimulating the transforming growth factor β (TGFβ) receptor signaling complex and controlling mechanical signaling and ECM remodeling. Recent work is uncovering the role of ACLP and AEBP1 genetic mutations in Ehlers Danlos Syndrome and in aortic aneurysm. There are several active projects in the lab including:

  • Defining the the role of ACLP in mechanotransduction pathways that control vascular integrity and aortic aneurysm
  • Investigating the mechanisms of how ACLP/AEBP1 mutations cause Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS)
  • Uncovering new mechanisms that control adipose tissue fibrosis

Courses Taught:

  • GMS BI777 Techniques Biomedical Research
  • GMS FC762 Critical Thinking in Biomedical Research

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