Jeffrey L. Browning, Ph.D.

Research Professor Virology, Immunology & Microbiology
72 East Concord Street; E520

BS Michigan State University
PhD University of Wisconsin

See BU Profile for additional information and publications.

Jeff Browning did his PhD training in the Biochemistry Department of the University of Wisconsin with two further postdoctoral studies in lipid membrane structure and solid state NMR in the Biophysics Department in the Biozentrum of the University of Basel and in neurobiology at the University of California, San Francisco.  He joined the biotechnology firm Biogen in 1984 as a research scientist in the Immunobiology Department studying TNF family members.  In 2012, he moved to the Department of Microbiology of Boston University School of Medicine and holds an adjunct appointment in the Rheumatology Section.

Research Interests
My focus centers on understanding how the immune system interacts with stromal elements to form the specialized reticular fibroblastic networks orchestrating cell-cell encounters in lymphoid organs.  Fibroblasts can be found in many different states ranging from basic dermal fibroblasts to perivascular adventitial fibroblasts to the highly specialized reticular networks found in lymphoid tissues.  We are currently trying to create a “guidebook” to these states as they occur in vivo as well as assessing the in vitro counterparts of the various differentiation stages.  A major emphasis is on the states of these cells in human diseases and, to this end, we primarily study skin biopsies from scleroderma and lupus patients as well as the various lymphoid organs.  Our goal is to provide a better understanding of these stages allowing insight into the conversion to the fibrotic state in scleroderma as well as the key events that lead to lymphocyte retention in the perivascular compartment.  Such knowledge should lead to novel approaches to pharmacological intervention in autoimmune diseases and oncology.