Targeting CD11b to reduce Tumor Growth

Infiltration of Tumor Associated Macrophages (TAMs) and other CD11b+ cells into tumor microenvironment is associated with tumor growth, metastases and reduced anti-tumor T-cell response. We are utilizing our newly discovered CD11b agonists in multiple tumor models to determine their efficacy and molecular mechanism.

Modulating CD11b activity to ameliorate lupus (SLE) and lupus nephritis (LN)

We are studying the role of integrin CD11b/CD18 in modulating innate immune response and are targeting this integrin for developing novel therapeutics against lupus and lupus nephritis. The beta2 family of integrins (CD11a/CD18, CD11b/CD18, CD11c/CD18 and CD11d/CD18) are key to the biological function of leukocytes and mediate leukocyte adhesion and migration to the sites of inflammation. We have identified a number of small molecules that modulate the ligand-binding function of beta2 integrins. Detailed in vitro and in vivo characterization of these compounds is currently underway. In addition to being useful as therapeutics, the newly discovered molecules also serve as novel chemical biology probes to study the effects of functional modulation of integrins in vivo and to study the mechanism of integrin activation.

Podocyte Cell-Based High Content Screening for identification of novel reno-protective compounds

We recently developed a novel, phenotypic assay using kidney podocytes. We are utilizing this assay for the discovery and development of novel podocyte protective agents for use as novel therapeutics against chronic kidney disease.

Discovery of Novel Therapeutics via High-throughput Screening

We have a strong interest in identifying novel agents as potential therapeutics using high throughput, high content screening methodologies. Towards that end, we have developed a number of novel cell-based assays and technologies in the laboratory and are using them to screen compound collections. We have recently identified compounds that allosterically modulate function of leukocytic integrins.