Institute for Airway Sciences

The Institute for Airway Science (IAS) at the Mount Sinai Health System and Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai is the first clinical and research collaborative of its kind in the nation, dedicated to advancing new therapies for patients with sinus, laryngotracheal airway and lung diseases. Clinical Directors, Eric Genden, MD, MBA and Charles Powell, MD, MBA, and Scientific Director Marek Mlodzik, PhD, lead a multidisciplinary group of researchers and clinicians with deep scientific and clinical expertise in the diseases that impact the airway.

The institute is comprised of translational and basic scientists with expertise in the areas of epithelial science, stem cell science, and transplant immunology. Working with clinicians in otolaryngology, pulmonary medicine, laryngology, and transplant medicine, the IAS is committed to understanding the biology and physiology of the entire human airway system, the epithelium, and its interactions. Some of our collective experts’ areas of study include sinus disorders, disease transmission, lung injury, and tissue regeneration, as well as tracheal and lung transplant.

Our goal at the IAS is to identify new ways to treat disease that will improve patients’ lives. By working together, physicians and scientists from these various disciplines can accelerate discoveries in the laboratory to the clinical setting. A remarkable example of this type of bench-to-bedside translation is the first ever successful human tracheal transplant performed at Mount Sinai in 2021.

The tracheal transplant and the COVID-19 pandemic brought the importance of establishing a multidisciplinary airway collaborative to the forefront. For many years, the airway was considered a simple structure. However, over the past two decades, there has been a growing appreciation for the complexity of the airway and the importance of studying its structures and organs as a unified system.