Our lab has two areas of focus. The first is the study of mechanisms of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease – the most common cause of liver disease in North America. Our particular area of expertise is in combining genomic and proteomic analyses to generate insights into the pre- and posttranscriptional events that produce the hepatic phenotype associated with this condition. Current work includes study of the protein basis of the histological spectrum of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, from simple steatosis to steatohepatitis with fibrosis.
We employ a wide spectrum of methods in this work, including ICAT / iTRAQ proteomic analysis, high density synthetic oligonucleotide microarrays, 2-D gel electrophoresis, immunoaffinity chromatography, immunoblotting, and real time PCR.
The second area of focus of our lab is viral hepatitis, particularly hepatitis C. We have recently developed a new small animal model of HCV infection, using a strain of mice that are transgenic for human hepatocyte growth factor. This model will facilitate studies of the biology of HCV infection and also to develop and test new therapeutic agents, especially those that might provide passive immunity. We are currently generating a pool of HCV recombinant proteins and polyclonal antibodies for studies of passive and active immunotherapy of HCV infection.
Our lab enjoys a divers portfolio of support, including National Institutes of Health RO1, charitable trust and pharmaceutical industry funding.