Congratulations to Dr. Zhichao Fan on the award of his Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Pilot Program grant entitled, Impact of CFTR in monocyte adhesion and integrin function.
Congratulations to Dr. Kepeng Wang on the award of his NIH R01 grant through the National Cancer Institute entitled, Control of regulatory T cells by IL-17 in colorectal cancer.
Congratulations to graduate student Blake Torrance for receiving the American Association of Immunologists Trainee Abstract Award for 2021. Blake’s research focuses on how senescence impacts T cell responses to influenza infection.
In this paper, Gasdermin D pore structure reveals preferential release of mature interleukin-1, Ruan and collaborators reported the cryo-EM structure of human Gasdermin D (GSDMD) pore, an inflammatory cell death executioner molecule, at 3.9 Å resolution. GSDMD pore exhibits large differences in symmetry and dimensions from the previously reported GSDMA3, a mouse homolog. Beyond the structure of the human GSDMD pore, the paper also demonstrated that GSDMD forms an acidic shield that directly regulates IL-1 secretion via a charge-based mechanism. This discovery will facilitate future investigation into the GSDMD secretome and, to our knowledge, first proposes how large transmembrane pores may achieve substrate selectivity. This study is a collaborative effort between Dr. Ruan’s lab and the laboratories of Wu and Lieberman at Harvard Medical School, the laboratory of Greka at Broad Institute of MIT, and the laboratory of Jacobson at the University of California San Francisco.
In an article entitled “Intracellular immune sensing promotes inflammation via gasdermin D-driven release of a lectin alarmin” published in Nature Immunology, Dr. Vijay Rathinam’s lab discovered a sugar-binding protein called galectin-1 as bona fide danger molecule that is released during excessive cell death promoting "cytokine storm" and inflammation during sepsis. The findings from the study advances our understanding of pathogenic mechanisms in sepsis, the leading cause of death for patients in the intensive care unit with 270,000 deaths annually in the US. and lay the foundation for identifying novel biomarkers and therapeutic targets in sepsis. This study was led by Dr. Ashley Russo, a previous graduate student in the Rathinam lab and involved key collaborations with the laboratories of Vella, Menoret, Zhou, Ruan, and Vanaja in the Department of Immunology as well as additional labs in University of Florida, Jena University Hospital, Germany and the Experimental Medicine and Biology Institute, University of Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Congratulations to Dr. Sivapriya Kailasan Vanaja for having a paper from her lab, Shiga toxin suppresses noncanonical inflammasome responses to cytosolic LPS, accepted for publication in Science Immunology. The paper first authored by Morena Mendonca, a postdoctoral fellow in the Kailasan Vanaja lab, demonstrates that Shiga toxin, a primary virulence factor of Enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli, suppresses cytosolic LPS-mediated inflammasome responses by inhibiting the cleavage of gasdermin D. The findings from this study provide insights into the mechanisms by which bacterial pathogens modulate the host innate immune responses to successfully establish an infection.
Congratulations to Dr. Penghua Wang on the award of his R21 grant through the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases entitled, A critical role for UBXN3B in IgG homeostasis and maternal transfer.
Dr. Beiyan Zhou has been named the winner of the 2020 Women of Innovation® Research Innovation and Leadership category from the Connecticut Technology Council and Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology. Dr. Zhou was selected by a panel of judges from over 150 nominations. Read more.
Congratulations to Dr. Penghua Wang for receiving a grant through the Office of the Vice President for Research and their COVID-19 Rapid Start Funding Program (COVID-RSF). His project is entitled Elucidation of E3 ligases in SARS-CoV2 pathogenesis.
Members of Dr. Beiyan Zhou’s laboratory will share their research at the American Heart Association Scientific Session on November 17, 2020. Dr. Chuan Li has been invited to give an oral presentation and Dr. Lili Qu and Alyssa Matz have poster presentations.