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Marc Peters-Golden

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Primary Appointment: Int Med-Pulm./Critical Care
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  Our lab has longstanding interests in the cell biology of macrophages and fibroblasts and their roles in inflammatory, immune, and fibrotic disorders - particularly in the lung. We use integrated approaches including in vitro molecular and cell biologic studies, animal models of disease, and cells/tissues from diseased patients.

Lung macrophages face unique challenges and are phenotypically distinct in many ways from macrophages which reside at other sites. We have recently found that lung macrophages have the capacity to secrete an important inflammatory brake - suppressors of cytokine signaling (SOCS) - within extracellular vesicles. These SOCS-containing vesicles can be taken up by neighboring epithelial cells to attenuate inflammatory signaling. Current work is examining mechanisms regulating the modulation of packaging of SOCS into vesicles, the mechanisms and modulation of vesicle uptake by epithelial cells, deregulation of these processes in infection, allergic asthma, and cigarette smoking, and therapeutic targeting using vesicular SOCS. Another project is examining regulation of SOCS expression. Finally, transcriptional control of lung macrophage proliferation is also under investigation.

Pulmonary fibrosis kills more patients yearly than breast cancer, yet remains poorly understood and treated. We have been interested in understanding how fibroblasts - the key effector cells which elaborate collagen in fibrotic diseases - are dysregulated in such diseases. Our studies are focused on understanding transcriptional and signaling pathways which control various fibroblast functions, how these are altered in disease, and how these rogue pathways can be remedied in vitro and in vivo.