The Patel Laboratory



Chronic diseases are on the rise. The World Health Organization called chronic diseases the “invisible epidemic” representing 60% of deaths worldwide yet the most devastating aspect chronic disease is often in the years of debilitating illness prior to death. At the core of most chronic diseases is uncontrolled and/or dysregulated inflammation. Asthma, heart disease, autoimmune diseases and cancer all involve inflammation. Our lab is dedicated to understanding inflammation and the role that endothelial cells play that process.

Endothelial cells serve as gatekeepers during inflammation. They regulate the movement of fluid, macromolecules and leukocytes into the tissue.  Leukocytes are essential mediators of host defense. During inflammation, large numbers of leukocytes leave the bloodstream and traffic into the tissue where they rapidly and effectively locate and destroy invading microorganisms.  Although leukocytes are critical for normal host defense, many chronic diseases are characterized by uncontrolled inflammation and dysregulated leukocyte recruitment and activation. 

Our lab studies the molecular mechanisms that regulate the process of leukocyte trafficking. Understanding these mechanisms is critical for creating therapeutics that can treat these diseases without adversely affecting host defense. 


Microtubules in human endothelial cells