|Dr. Lin Liu|
The lung is composed of millions of alveoli (air sacs) where gas exchange takes place between the environment and our body. Alveolar epithelium is composed of morphologically and functionally distinct type I and II cells. The major functions of type II cells are to secrete lung surfactant and thus stabilize the alveoli, to repair the damaged alveolar epithelium by trans-differentiation into type I cells, and to maintain fluid homeostasis via various Na+ and Cl- channels. The research projects in the Lung Biology and Toxicology laboratory focus on lung development and lung injury and repair; the molecular mechanisms of lung surfactant secretion; and ion channels and their roles in alveolar fluid transport. The goal of the laboratory is to find cure for pulmonary diseases including Bovine Respiratory Disease, Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia, Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis as well as bacterial and influenza virus infections. The projects in the lab involve multiple levels from gene to whole animal. Major techniques used include DNA microarray, microRNA chips, RNA interference, real time PCR, cloning, various biochemical, molecular and cellular techniques, hyperoxia lung injury model, and in utero gene therapy etc. Potential summer students will participate in one of the ongoing projects.