Pathophysiology of tissue repair.
The cell and molecular biology of abnormal tissue repair (scarring/fibrosis) during host-parasite interactions and disease development.
The overall aim of these studies is to better define the fundamental cellular and molecular mechanisms that regulate fibrogenesis, the wound healing responses
to tissue injury, understand how they are altered leading to excessive or continuous healing in scarring/fibrosis, and ultimately to modify these processes
giving potential therapeutic benefit. Several different experimental systems including cell cultures, ex vivo human samples and parasite models or antigenic
materials, as well as a range of cellular, molecular and biochemical techniques are in use to elucidate the pathogenesis of medically important fibrosis disorders.
The core theme between different tissue repair disorders is that although there is involvement of different organs and initiating injuries, they share key
components of tissue injury and repair and typically there are epithelial and mesenchymal cellular components, such as the myofibroblast. This mesenchymal cell
is a central regulator of tissue degradation and repair whose activities are closely regulated by key cytokines and growth factors within the microenvironment
and it is the expression and regulation of these molecules that are the main focus of research.