RECENT NEWS: Congratulations to H Faridi, S Khan, HW Lee, X Li, SJ Khaliqdina and others in the lab for a new publication in JCI. Here is the link.
CD11b activation suppresses TLR-dependent inflammation and autoimmunity in systemic lupus erythematosus, J Clin Invest. 2017, Mar 6. DOI: 10.1172/JCI88442.
See the New Release here: Tackling Lupus and its renal complications with novel small molecule drug candidate.
RESEARCH THEMES IN THE LAB
We are applying cross-disciplinary approaches to develop novel therapeutics in two research areas:
1. Modulating innate immune response in Inflammation and Cancer: Several years ago, we made a paradigm-changing observation that integrin activation is a novel mechanism for targeting innate immune cells. Subsequently, we identified novel small molecules to target integrin CD11b/CD18 (Mac-1) on neutrophils and macrophages and used it to show that such agents are highly efficacious in reducing cardiovascular inflammation and injury. Current studies are focused on unraveling its molecular and cellular signaling mechanism in models of autoimmune diseases (lupus and lupus nephritis). We have also made a surprising finding that these agents target tumor associated macrophages (TAMs), modify tumor microenvironment and reduce tumor growth, thus also have a significant effort in Cancer Biology.
2. Protecting podocytes from damage in Chronic Kidney Disease: Podocytes form the filtration barrier in the kidneys and their damage is a central hallmark of all chronic kidney diseases. Therefore, we recently developed a first-of-its-kind high content screening assay to identify compounds to protect podocytes from injury. Current studies in the laboratory are focused on understanding the molecular and cellular signaling mechanism of our novel hits as well as their efficacy in models of diabetic kidney disease and FSGS.
Dr. Gupta is also Co-founder of a Startup called Adhaere Pharmaceuticals, Inc. This company is currently completing studies to be able to initiate a new Phase I clinical trial with novel agents discovered in the laboratory.