Zimmermann Lab
Current Projects

Current Projects

Eosinophilic Diseases

Currently, we are focused on understanding the molecular mechanism of eosinophil survival and death that lead to this damage. One thing in common of all situations with hypereosinophilia is that they cause heart damage, which tends to be the main cause of morbidity and mortality in patients. Thus, we have a model of eosinophilic heart disease in which we are studying the mechanisms of eosinophil-induced damage. We use a spectrum of approaches, from in vitro cell biology and immunology and mouse modeling to patient-centered studies. These studies are performed in collaboration with Daniel Prows, PhD and Onur Kanisicak, PhD (University of Cincinnati).

Mast Cell –Mediated Disease

Currently, we are investigating whether there is a subset of patients who have increased levels and / or activation of mast cells in the gastrointestinal tract, as we hypothesize that these mast cells, through interaction with nerves, cause these non-specific symptoms and that this subset of patients would benefit from mast cell–targeted therapies. These studies are performed in collaboration with Jonathan Bernstein, MD (University of Cincinnati).

Related: Read Dr. Zimmerman's journal article, "Standardized Quantification of Mast Cells in the Gastrointestinal Tract in Adults" from The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice, October 2023. 

Cancer Immunology

In collaboration with a large team of investigators, including basic scientists (Laura Conforti, PhD, from the University of Cincinnati and Susanne Wells, PhD), medical oncologists (Trisha M. Wise-Draper, MD, PhD from the University of Cincinnati) and radiation oncologists. Currently, our team is studying the effect of proton irradiation on head and neck cancer and its interplay with immunotherapy (checkpoint inhibitors).