The Laboratory of Host Defenses (LHD) studies the immune functions essential for host defense against infection. LHD also studies the genetics and pathophysiology of inherited primary immune deficiencies. These abnormalities may be associated with recurrent infections and/or dysfunctions of immune homeostasis, which the lab investigates in clinical protocols. LHD clinical investigations aim to develop new diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to the management or correction of immune dysfunction in patients.
Major Areas of Research
- Discovery of the gene mutations causing primary immune deficiencies and autoimmune disorders
- Detection and treatment of associated infections
- Determination of the basis for excessive inflammation and associated autoimmune symptoms
- Use of cytokines, monoclonal antibodies, gene transfer technologies, and other therapeutics to modify or correct immune function, prevent infection, and reduce inflammation
- Application of gene therapy and allogeneic or autologous stem cell and immune cell transplantation for correction of disorders of immune function