Institute for Environmental Medicine

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Research Programs

Multidisciplinary programs based in the Institute include:

  • Cellular and Molecular Biology of the Lung - This program investigates basic processes in the function of lung epithelium and metabolism of lung surfactant. Emphasis is on lipid and protein synthesis, and on secretion, reuptake, and intracellular processing of surfactant using isolated cell and intact lung systems. Funding is primarily by a Program Project grant from NHLBI with participating investigators from the departments of Physiology, Medicine and Pediatrics.
  • Research in Acute Lung Injury – The focus for this program is mechanisms for lung injury with emphasis on the Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). There is special interest in the initiation of lung injury due to oxidation events, the development of assays for early detection, and the role of anti-oxidant enzymes. The program incorporates a registry for ARDS patients. Funding is primarily by a program project grant from NHLBI. Participating investigators are from the departments of Physiology, Pharmacology, Medicine, Biochemistry, and Epidemiology and Biostatistics.
  • Targeted Therapeutics – This program investigates mechanisms underlying the delivery of proteins and other therapeutic agents, to precise targets. A major emphasis is on targeting of anti-oxidant enzymes to the pulmonary endothelium using immunologic methods and on the use of nanocarriers as enzyme delivery vehicles. Participants are from Pharmacology, Pathology, Medicine, and Bioengineering and is a joint effort with the Institute for Translational Medicine and Therapeutics.
  • Hyperbaric Medicine - This program is oriented toward understanding the role of hyperbaric oxygen therapy and indications for treatment of patients. Special emphasis is directed towards the pathophysiology and mechanisms for CO poisoning in animal models and the use of hyperbaric oxygen in the treatment of patients with problem wounds. Participating investigators are from the departments of Emergency Medicine, ENT, Medicine and the Institute’s clinical staff.