SPEAKERS

­­CONFERENCE CO-CHAIRS:

Frank Austen K. Frank Austen, M.D., Astra Zeneca Professor of Respiratory and Inflammatory Diseases, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital
Dr. K. Frank Austen attended Amherst College and Harvard Medical School and served his house staff training years at the Massachusetts General Hospital.  He established an independent laboratory at the MGH in 1962 and moved to the Robert B. Brigham in 1966 to establish a Department of Rheumatology and Immunology which evolved into a department of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH).  After chairing this Department for 25 years, he shifted to the AstraZeneca Professorship of Respiratory and Inflammatory Diseases with an appointment as Director of Inflammation & Allergic Diseases Research Section.  Austen has pioneered many aspects of innate immunity/inflammation through an in depth focus on the functions and regulation of arachidonic acid metabolism to the cysteinyl leukotrienes (cysLTs), the pathways for the development and phenotypic diversity of mast cells, and the pattern recognition path for activation of the alternative complement activating pathway which also serves to amplify the classical complement pathway.  Austen was elected to the National Academy of Sciences and to the American Academy of Sciences in 1974 and as a foreign member of the Royal Society (UK) in 2004.  He has served as President of the American Association of Immunologists, the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, and the American Association of Physicians.

Andy Luster Andrew D. Luster, M.D., Ph.D., Chief, Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology; Director, Center for Immunology and Inflammatory Diseases; Persis, Cyrus and Marlow B. Harrison Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School 
Dr. Luster is the Chief of the Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology, and Director of the Research Center for Immunology and Inflammatory Diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital.  He is the Persis, Cyrus and Marlow B. Harrison Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.  Dr. Luster received his B.S. in 1981 from Duke University, and as part of an NIH-funded Medical Scientist Training Program, his Ph.D. in 1987 from the Rockefeller University and his M.D. in 1988 from Cornell University Medical College.  He received his clinical training in Medicine and Infectious Diseases at the Massachusetts General Hospital and his postdoctoral research training in Genetics at Harvard Medical School.  In 1994, Dr. Luster established his laboratory at MGH where he has remained.

Over the past two decades, Dr. Luster has been a pioneer in the chemokine field.  He has made multiple seminal contributions to this field by describing several members of the chemokine family (e.g., IP-10, eotaxin-1, MCP-4, MCP-5) and then demonstrating how they regulate immune cell trafficking.  Dr. Luster has been at the forefront of elucidating the role of chemokines in the pathogenesis of immune and inflammatory diseases.  More recently, Dr. Luster has expanded his interests to include lipid chemoattractants, such as LTB4 and LPA.  His laboratory has defined novel roles for these potent lipid chemoattractants, in collaboration with chemokines, to control cell trafficking in multiple disease process, including asthma and pulmonary fibrosis.

Dr. Luster has received numerous awards and honors, including a Damon Runon-Walter Winchell Postdoctoral fellowship, a Cancer Research Institute Investigator Award, a Culpeper Medical Scientist Award, an NIH MERIT Award, and, most recently, the 2011 Lee C. Howely Sr. Prize for Arthritis Research from the Arthritis Foundation.  Dr. Luster is the Principal Investigator on a recently awarded NIH/NIAID U19 Asthma and Allergic Diseases Cooperative Research Center at MGH and Harvard.  He has been elected to the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the American Association of Physicians.

 

CONFERENCE SPEAKERS:

Hans Oettgen Hans Oettgen, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School; Associate Chief, Division of Immunology, Children’s Hospital, Boston
Dr. Oettgen received his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees at Harvard Medical School followed by a residency in Pediatrics and fellowship in Allergy & Immunology, both at Children’s Hospital, Boston.  As Associate Chief of the Division of Immunology, he now oversees the clinical care provided in the Allergy & Immunology, Rheumatology and Dermatology programsat Children’s Hospital.  Dr. Oettgen has a longstanding interest in the biology of IgE antibodies.  As a research fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Philip Leder at Harvard in 1994, he generated IgE knock-out mice.  He has used these animals to probe functions of IgE in anaphylaxis, IgE receptor regulation, parasite immunity and mast cell biology.  In addition to studying IgE, his research group has ongoing projects on roles of IL-4R signaling in food allergy and on dysregulation of immune responses to vaccinia virus in the setting of atopic dermatitis.

Benjamin Raby Benjamin Raby, M.D., M.P.H., Assistant Professor of Medicine, Channing Laboratory and the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School      
Dr. Benjamin Raby, an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Brigham and Women's Hospital, is a clinician-scientist whose research focuses on elucidating the molecular basis of asthma using genome-wide approaches in human populations. He received his medical degree from McGill University in 1995, followed by his residency in Internal Medicine (1998) and a fellowship in Pulmonary Medicine (2000). He then spent one year as a post-doctoral fellow at the Montreal Genome Center studying the genomics of asthma. He relocated to the Channing Laboratory at the Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School in 2001, and obtained a Masters Degree in Quantitative Methods from the Harvard School of Public Health (2003). He  leads three NIH-funded initiatives aimed at better understanding the genetic basis of asthma. These studies include genome-wide integrative approaches to map regulatory genetic variants associated with asthma and a study of structural genetic variation in childhood asthma. He is also the Principle Investigator of the Asthma BioRepository for Integrative Genomic Research, a multi-centered initiative to develop a biorepository of cell lines and biological datasets from 1,500 subjects from across North America. Dr. Raby has published more than 80 original science papers in peer-reviewed journals. He is the Genetics Section Editor of UpToDate, Inc. and is on several editorial boards of asthma, allergy and genetics subspecialty journals. In addition to his research activities, Dr. Raby practices pulmonary medicine at the Brigham and Women's Hospital.

Christian Mueller Christian Mueller, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Gene Therapy Center, University of Massachusetts Medical School
I arrived to UMass Medical School after completing my PhD and post-doctoral studies at the University of Florida where I focused my research on gene therapy and cystic fibrosis. In July 2007 I was recruited to the UMass Medical School to form part of the newly established gene therapy center directed by Dr. Guanping Gao, which is one of the three centers comprising the UMass Advanced Therapeutic Cluster. The goal of this center is to revolutionize conventional medical therapeutics by providing a research environment that integrates genetics, stem cell biology and biochemistry to pioneer new therapies for the clinic. In that vein I focus a lot of my research on gene therapy mostly utilizing adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors, more recently as a platform for inducing RNAI by delivering artificial miRNAs. Currently I am also collaborating with Dr. Terry Flotte on Phase II clinical trials with rAAV expressing alpha-1antitrypsin in AAT-deficient patients as well as assisting with the preclinical testing of an AAV vector that will be used for patients with cystic fibrosis (CF). Another area of research that I am also heavily vested deals with the effect that mutation of the Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Conductance Regulator (CFTR) has on immune response. In 2006 I developed a novel mouse model that allowed for the first time to accurately study aberrant inflammatory responses in CF mice. This model has allowed me to determine that contrary to conventional wisdom the problem with CF disease may also be inherent to immune cells. This model not only suggests that the CF defect also plays a role in the immune system but correction of the immune cells with AAV may also serve to help the pathology associated with lung disease. Currently I am focusing on determining exactly what cells in the immune system are malfunctioning in CF and by what mechanism is the malfunction caused.

Nora Barrett Nora A. Barrett, M.D., Instructor in Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital





Benjamin Medoff Benjamin Medoff, M.D., Chief, Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit; Associate Director, CIID, Massachusetts General Hospital
Dr. Benjamin Medoff is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Chief of the Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).  Dr. Medoff attended Yale College and Harvard Medical School.  He completed his residency in Internal Medicine at MGH where he also served as Chief Medical Resident.  He then completed his training in Pulmonary and Critical Care at the Harvard Combined Pulmonary and Critical Care Fellowship Program.  Dr. Medoff has been based at MGH as a staff physician since 2000. In 2009 he became Chief of the division.  Dr. Medoff’s research has focused on understanding the molecular basis of immune-mediated lung injury.  Specifically he seeks to delineate the mechanisms of lung inflammation as it relates to T cell-mediated lung disorders such as asthma, lung transplant rejection and respiratory viral infections.  The laboratory utilizes cutting edge molecular biology techniques, genetic manipulation of mice, animal modeling of lung disease, integrative genomics, and translational studies in humans to understand these disease processes.

Dan Huh Dan Dongeun Huh, Ph.D., Wyss Technology Development Fellow, Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, Harvard University
Dan Dongeun Huh received a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Seoul National University in 2000, Master’s degrees in Biomedical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering in 2002, and a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Michigan in 2007.  He then joined Don Ingber's group at Harvard Medical School and Children's Hospital Boston as a postdoctoral research fellow.  Since 2009, he has been a Wyss Technology Development Fellow and a Research Associate at the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University.  Dan has authored over 20 papers in Science, Nature, Nature Materials, PNAS, and other major research journals, and has won several honors and awards including a Finalist for INDEX: Design for Life Award, Scientific Breakthroughs of the Year from American Thoracic Society, Best Publication Award and Best Postdoctoral Award from the Society of Toxicology, Wyss Technology Development Fellowship from Harvard, Distinguished Achievement Award from Michigan, Widmer Award from microTAS, and Horace H. Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship.  His research at the Wyss Institute focuses on developing bioinspired microsystems that mimic complex functionality of living human organs.

Andy Tager Andrew M. Tager, M.D., Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit and Center for Immunology and Inflammatory Diseases, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School
Dr. Andrew Tager is a physician-scientist in the Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit, and the Center for Immunology and Inflammatory Diseases, at the Massachusetts General Hospital, an Assistant Professor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and an Associate Faculty Member of the Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard.  Dr. Tager received his M.D. from Harvard Medical School, and completed both his internal medicine residency and his pulmonary and critical care medicine fellowship at the MGH.  Dr. Tager began his own laboratory after his post-doctoral research training in the laboratory of Dr. Andrew Luster, also at the MGH.  Dr. Tager’s laboratory focuses on two separate areas of investigation, (1) the pathogenesis of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis and fibrotic diseases, focusing on bioactive lipid mediators, (2) and anti-HIV immunity, using an improved humanized mouse model of HIV infection.  Dr. Tager has described novel roles for important lipid mediators in multiple lung diseases.  He generated the first mouse genetically deficient for the major leukotriene B4 receptor BLT1, and uncovered a novel role for this chemoattractant-receptor pair in directing T cell recruitment early in allergic pulmonary inflammation.  He identified lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) and its receptor LPA1 as critical mediators of fibrosis in the lung and other organs, driving fibroblast recruitment, vascular leak, epithelial cell death and profibrotic gene expression.  Dr. Tager’s laboratory also identified a fundamental role for sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P) signaling through its receptor S1P1 in protecting the lung from both exudative and fibroproliferative responses to injury.  For studies of anti-HIV immunity, Dr. Tager’s laboratory generates humanized mice which demonstrate robust repopulation of mouse tissues with multiple lineages of human immune cells.  These humanized mice sustain high-level HIV infection that recapitulates multiple important aspects of HIV infection in humans, including the generation of easily detectable human anti-HIV immune responses that can constrain viral replication.  In addition to his own investigations, Dr. Tager runs Humanized Mouse Platforms for the Harvard University Center for AIDS Research and the Ragon Institute, through which his laboratory performs HIV infection experiments in humanized mice with multiple collaborators.

Barry Shea Barry Shea, M.D., Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit , Massachusetts General Hospital
Dr. Shea is a graduate of Dartmouth College and Tufts University School of Medicine.  He did his residency in Internal Medicine at New York-Presbyterian Hospital (Cornell) and completed a research fellowship in Genetic Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College.  He then joined the Harvard Combined Pulmonary and Critical Care fellowship training program in 2004.  After completing his clinical training, he joined the laboratory of Dr. Andrew Tager, where he has been studying the biological mechanisms driving lung fibrosis.  His research has been focused on the lipid mediator sphingosine 1-phosphate (S1P), which appears to regulate both the early exudative and later fibrotic responses to lung injury.  He is also a staff physician in the MGH Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit, where he attends in the Medical ICU and cares for patients in the MGH Interstitial Lung Disease Program.

Pyong Park Pyong Woo Park, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Division of Respiratory Diseases, Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School
Pyong Woo Park is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School. His research focus is the cell biology of the extracellular matrix in diseases. He received his Sc.B. in Engineering from Brown University and his Ph.D. in Molecular Cell Biology and Biochemistry from Washington University. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and was Assistant Professor of Medicine, Molecular and Cellular Biology, and Molecular Virology and Microbiology at Baylor College of Medicine. He is the recipient of several awards, including a Junior Investigator Award from the American Society for Matrix Biology, a Glycoscience Research Award from the Mizutani Foundation, and a Career Investigator Award from the American Lung Association.

Edwin Silverman Edwin K. Silverman, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Medicine, Channing Laboratory and Pulmonary and Critical Care Division, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School
Dr. Edwin Silverman is a pulmonologist and genetic epidemiologist whose research focuses on the genetics of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.  He is the Principal Investigator of the Boston Early-Onset COPD Study, which has demonstrated familial aggregation for COPD-related phenotypes, found an increased risk for severe, early-onset COPD in women, and provided the first linkage analysis results in COPD pedigrees.  He also leads the Alpha 1-Antitrypsin Genetic Modifiers Study, the NETT Genetics Ancillary Study, and the Transcontinental COPD Genetics Study.  He is also one of two Principal Investigators of the COPDGene Study.  His current research focuses on genome-wide association studies, rare variant analysis of DNA sequencing data, functional studies of COPD genetic determinants, and dissecting COPD heterogeneity.  He is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, and he is the Co-Director of the COPD Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

Scott Harris R. Scott Harris, M.D., Associate Physician, Massachusetts General Hospital, Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School
R. Scott Harris, MD received his BS in biomedical engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY, and his MD at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, Massachusetts. He did his residency training at Tufts New England Medical Center where he was chief resident. He then came to the Massachusetts General Hospital for his Pulmonary and Critical Care fellowship. He joined the staff in the Pulmonary and Critical Care Unit in July 2000.  For the past 11 years, he has been combining his interests in pulmonary medicine with his bioengineering skills in the Pulmonary Imaging and Bioengineering Laboratory to understand the functional changes that occur in the lungs during disease.  Using this technique, investigations into the pathophysiology of asthma using positron emission tomography have led to new insights into how the airways respond during an acute exacerbation, results which were published in the journal Nature in 2005.  In 2008, he received a grant from the National Institutes of Health to study the vascular changes that occur during bronchoconstriction in asthma.  He has also conducted research in COPD, cystic fibrosis and acute lung injury.  In addition to research, Dr. Harris sees patients in a general pulmonary clinic, attends in the Medical Intensive Care Unit, and teaches housestaff and fellows.  In 2003, he was awarded “Teacher of the Year” for the Harvard Combined Pulmonary and Critical Care Fellowship Program.

Caroline Owen Caroline A. Owen, M.D., Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School
Dr. Owen received her MD at Edinburgh University Medical School, and her Ph.D. at the University of Birmingham, both in the UK.  A long standing focus of her laboratory has been to investigate the cell biology of serine proteinases, matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), and ADAMs (proteinases with a disintegrin and a metalloproteinase domain) in leukocytes and lung structural cells.  In particular, she has been examining the mechanisms by which serine proteinases and MMPs circumvent their physiologic inhibitors, and thereby promote tissue destruction by degrading extracellular proteins during inflammatory responses.  These mechanisms include: 1) binding of enzymes to the cell membranes of leukocytes in proteinase inhibitor resistant forms; 2) binding of enzymes to substrates; and 3) quantum proteolysis (evanescent bursts of obligate catalytic activity which occur following degranulation of leukocytes) which can temporarily overwhelm inhibitors in the pericellular environment of leukocytes.  Her lab is also investigating the mechanisms by which serine proteinases and MMPs bind to the cell membranes of inflammatory cells.  In addition, they are studying the activities of MMPs and ADAM family members in lung biology and pathology by studying mice genetically deficient in MMPs and ADAMs in murine models of COPD, acute lung injury, pulmonary fibrosis, and asthma.

 

 

Co-Chairs

Frank AustenK. Frank Austen, M.D., Astra Zeneca Professor of Respiratory and Inflammatory Diseases, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women's Hospital

Andrew LusterAndrew D. Luster, M.D., Ph.D., Chief, Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology; Director, Center for Immunology and Inflammatory Diseases; Persis, Cyrus and Marlow B. Harrison Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School



Focused Sessions On

Asthma
COPD/Pulmonary Fibrosis