Share

Five-Year Research Program Will Determine Role of Immune Dysregulation in Skin Inflammation Diseases

Posted: April 1, 2015

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) awarded a $1.6 million grant to Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences (VBS) researchers Drs. Na Xiong and Mary Kennett to study immunologic responses in skin.
PhD student Luming Zhao (left) and Professor Na Xiong (right) prepare samples for genotyping.

PhD student Luming Zhao (left) and Professor Na Xiong (right) prepare samples for genotyping.

Many skin diseases, such as psoriasis and cancer, can result from dysregulation in the body’s immune response. Through a newly funded research project in VBS, Dr. Na Xiong and his graduate students and postdoctoral researchers, along with co-investigator Dr. Mary Kennett, will explore how the immune system balance in skin is regulated and maintained, as well as how dysregulation of this process affects disease development.

Dr. Xiong’s lab focuses on mechanisms by which an important skin-homing molecule called CCR10 influences T cell response. T cells are white blood cells that are important in activating immunologic responses. Determining how CCR10 regulate such responses may help researchers develop therapeutic targets for treatment of skin diseases that arise from destructive forms of inflammation.

This competitive five-year grant is from the National Institutes of Health (NIH)/National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMSD). 

Dr. Xiong is an associate professor of immunology in VBS.  Dr. Kennett is a professor in VBS and Director of Penn State’s Animal Resource Program (ARP).