Lind Lab Research Interests
Our lab focuses on two major questions: How inflammation modulates hematopoiesis in normal and neoplastic scenarios, and how micro-RNAs (miRNA) regulate the function of dendritic cells (DC) and T cells in response to viral and bacterial infections.
Immune regulation of normal and neoplastic hematopoiesisWe examine leukemia from a multidisciplinary perspective, bridging the fields of infectious disease immunology and cancer biology. Hematopoietic stem cells must sense and then respond to infection by increasing bone marrow output. What the signals are and how they control bone marrow homeostasis is still poorly studied. Better understanding how inflammation regulates the dynamics of hematopoiesis will give us novel insights into the initiation and treatment of hematological malignancies.
Epidemiological studies have implicated an infectious origin of some leukemias but no specific pathogen has been identified. We will test the hypothesis that many of the somatic mutations found in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) are an unfortunate side effect of inflammation due to pathogens or autoimmunity. Specifically, we will determine whether proliferation in the precursor pool induced during inflammatory responses increases the risk of genetic damage.
Micro-RNA (miRNA) in adaptive and innate immune responses
The discovery of miRNAs has revolutionized our understanding of protein regulation. The study of how these molecules regulate immune responses has recently become a field of intense interest. Our lab studies how miRNAs modulate both innate and adaptive immune responses. We are specifically testing the impact of specific miRNAs on the ability of DCs to promote protective T cell responses using a verity of bacterial and viral pathogens. Better understanding of how DCs prime T cell responses will allow us to develop more efficient DC based cancer vaccine strategies in the future.