The laboratory is focused on transplantation immunobiology. One focus of his research in is to delineate the role of innate immune response in islet cell transplantation. A major challenge of pancreatic islet transplantation is the protection of the already marginal islet cell mass. To provide insight into mechanisms of early graft dysfunction the impact of TLR stimulation on graft survival following transplantation and potential endogenous ligands are investigated. The current data provide the first direct evidence that islet cell-expressed TLRs are relevant mediators of the posttransplant inflammation associated with early graft dysfunction. These effects require recipient T cells and can be fully reproduced by stimulation with HMGB1, a putative endogenous TLR ligand that is released by pancreatic tissue after sterile injury.
The second focus of his laboratory is aimed at improving outcomes in kidney and liver transplant recipients through testing biomarkers for early injury to the transplanted organ. Ischemia and reperfusion injury at the time of transplantation can result in increased allograft immunogenicity and decreased long-term survival. This ongoing research is based on the hypothesis that the susceptibility to graft injury at the time of transplantation is modified by inherited genetic polymorphisms that alter the level of response in genes that are known to modify the response to tissue damage; and that distinct gene expression patterns can be identified in the transplanted allograft that can predict and that can reliably discriminate complex mechanisms of ischemia reperfusion injury.
Bernd Schroppel, MD
1468 Madison Avenue
New York NY 10029