Howard E. Gendelman, MD
Research Interest: The neuroregeneration laboratory provides the student or postdoctoral fellow with broad research experiences in diagnostics, pathogenic mechanisms and therapies for neurodegenerative disorders. The major focus for our research is on the role played by glial inflammatory activities in brain disease. The work bridges immunology, neuroscience and pharmacology and crosses disease barriers for studies of HIV-1-associated neurocognitive disorders, Parkinson’s disease (PD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The major goal is to use immune-based approaches to reverse nerve cell damage. The laboratory initiative is divided into specific programs with cross-disciplinary support provided through experienced senior scientists. Specific expertise is available in proteomics, immunology, molecular neuroscience, infectious disease, neurophysiology and neuropathogenesis. Research priorities in nanomedicine focuses on drug delivery to the central nervous system using "smart" drugs that are packaged into immunocytes and use “Trojan horse” cell-based mechanisms to by-pass the blood-brain barrier and enter diseased brain areas. These are intertwined with studies of disease pathogenesis focused on studies of the biophysical and effector cell properties of blood-borne macrophages that modulate leukocyte entry and glial immunity. Our nanomedicine program provides laboratory experiences in nanoformulations and physical chemistry linked to characterization of nanoparticles as well as animal studies of disease pathobiology using "state of the art" drug delivery systems. Coordinate drug testing (anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective and anti-retroviral) in HIV-1 encephalitis (HIVE) and PD are pursued with adjunctive drugs distinct or part of the nanomedicine efforts. This program is part of multiple National Institutes of Health grant efforts that involve scientists at the University of Nebraska Medical Center (College of Medicine and College of Pharmacy), the University of Rochester, and Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. The focus is to perform translational research that would move quickly from animals to humans and currently involves human phase I testing.
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