Lee J. Quinton, Ph.D.

Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine and Pathology

(As of Sept 2021: Professor of Medicine, University of Massachusetts)

BU Profile for Dr. Quinton

Special Interests:

  • Pneumonia
  • The acute phase response
  • Cytokine regulation
  • Acute lung injury

Lung infections account for a tremendous burden of disease, representing the most frequent cause of infection-related deaths and a common cause of acute lung injury. The innate immune response is critical for the prevention of lower respiratory tract infections. Yet, this response must be tightly regulated, such that adequate host defenses do not result in inflammatory lung injury. Our long-term goal is to elucidate intra- and extra-pulmonary signaling events required for an immune response that is both effective and balanced.

The Lung-Liver Axis:

Whether, when, and how the lungs and liver collaborate to improve pneumonia outcome is an active area of research in our laboratory. We have found that the liver robustly responds to lung infections in a way that benefits both the lungs and the liver itself. Ongoing efforts are focused on the biological mechanisms underlying liver-dependent protection.

Tissue Resilience of the Pneumonic Lung:

Lung tissue integrity is threatened by pathogen- and host-derived factors in the wake of infection, demanding inducible protective mechanisms to maintain the vast and delicate epithelial interface through which gas exchange must be preserved. A goal of our laboratory is to identify critical signaling nodes governing tissue protection during pneumonia, including but not limited to transcription factors, cytokines, and other signaling moieties that enable cytoprotective interactions.

Selected Publications:

    1. Traber, K.E., Dimbo, E.L., Symer, E.M., Korkmaz, F.T., Jones, M.R., Mizgerd, J.P., and Quinton, L.J.(2019) Roles of interleukin-11 during acute bacterial pneumonia. PLoS One (in press)


    1. Kim, Y., Allen, E., Baird, L.A., Symer, E.M., Korkmaz, F.T., Na, E., Odom, C.V., Jones, M.R., Mizgerd, J.P., Traber, K.E., and Quinton, L.J.. (2019) NF-kB RelA is required for hepatoprotection during pneumonia and sepsis. Infection and Immunity 87:e00132-19


    1. Quinton, L.J., Walkey, A.J., and Mizgerd, J.P. (2018) Integrative physiology of pneumonia. Physiological Reviews 98: 1417-1464


    1. Traber, K.E., Symer, E.M., Allen, E., Kim, Y., Hilliard, K.L., Wasserman, G.A., Steward, C.L., Jones, M.R., Mizgerd, J.P., and Quinton, L.J. (2017) Myeloid-epithelial crosstalk coordinates synthesis of the tissue protective cytokine leukemia inhibitory factor during pneumonia. American Journal of Physiology: Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology 313:L548-L558


    1. Hilliard, K.L., Allen, E., Traber, K.E., Yamamoto, K., Stauffer, N.M., Wasserman, G.A., Jones, M.R., Mizgerd, J.P., and Quinton, L.J. (2015) The lung-liver axis facilitates pulmonary innate immunity and hepatoprotection during pneumonia. American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology 53(3): 378-90


  1. Quinton, L.J., Blahna, M.T., Jones, M.R., Allen, E., Hilliard, K.L., Ferrari, J.D., Zhang, X., Sabharwal, V., Algül, H., Akira, S., Schmid, R.M., Pelton, S.I., Spira, A., and Mizgerd, J.P. (2012) Combined hepatocyte-specific targeting of NF-B RelA and STAT3 abrogates the acute phase response in mice. Journal of Clinical Investigation 122(5): 1758-63

Please see BU Profile for complete Publications list