The goal of my lab is to understand the molecular mechanisms underlying the patterning of the mammalian respiratory tract during normal development and congenital disease. We focus on the interactions between two major components of the developing lung: the pulmonary epithelium - that gives rise to the conducting airways and the respiratory surface of the lung - and the mesenchyme - that gives rise to cartilage, muscle, connective tissue. Cross talk between epithelium and mesenchyme is required for differentiation of pulmonary cell lineages. Epithelial-Mesenchymal interactions are mediated by signaling pathways and transcription factors including the Wnt signaling pathway and Sox transcription factors, which are object of our studies. Our experimental approaches include genetic studies using transgenic mice and in vitro cell and organ culture.

Current projects: