Hematopoietic Stem Cell Defense Mechanisms

Our research focuses on understanding the general defense mechanisms used by hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) to protect blood production during the lifetime of an ever-changing organism. This fundamental question is central to tissue maintenance and regeneration, and has implications for every aspect of adult physiology ranging from response to stress, development of diseases and biology of aging. Our laboratory is interested in identifying the mechanisms controlling HSC activity in normal and stress conditions, and in understanding how they are affected during disease development and in physiological aging. Our goal is to identify affected genes and pathways that could be used to develop new therapies to treat human diseases and help combat aging. Current projects investigate the role of apoptosis, autophagy, immune regulations, DNA repair mechanisms and changes in the bone marrow niche in HSC function.