Paul F. Harron Jr. Lung Center

Asthma & Airway Biology Research Program

The Asthma and Airway Biology group is a large multidisciplinary group with a focus on asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD), cystic fibrosis, lymphangioleiomyomatosis and other airways diseases.

The group is led by Rey Panettieri, Jr, MD. Joel D. Cooper, MD of the Department of Surgery at Penn interacts with members of this research group in the conduct of his COPD and lung volume reduction studies.Research is supported by RO1 funding, and support from industry.

Projects range from basic molecular signaling studies to clinical trials.

Specific faculty interests include:

Rey Panettieri, Jr, MD

  • Cellular and molecular mechanisms that regulate airway smooth muscle cell growth
  • Immunobiology of airway smooth muscle
  • Clinical investigations focused on the management of asthma and COPD
  • Interactions of ozone with airway smooth muscle

Andrea Apter, MD, MSc

  • Role of drug adherence in asthma
  • Asthma as a model for eliminating health disparities

Audreesh Banerjee, MD

  • Role of Vitamin D in airway smooth muscle cell biology and asthma

Angela Haczku, MD, PhD

  • Murine models of ozone, cigarette smoke and allergen exposure
  • T-cell antigen presenting cell interactions in allergic asthma
  • Cytokine regulation of surfactant protein gene expression
  • Surfactant protein D and A effects on antigen presenting and T-cells

Vera Krymskaya, PhD and Elena Goncharova, PhD

  • Molecular and cellular mechanisms of lymphangioleiomyomatosis (LAM) and other rare cystic lung diseases
  • Signal transduction in pulmonary vascular smooth muscle
  • Signal transduction in airway smooth muscle

Michael W. Sims, MD

  • Collection and characterization of bronchial samples from patients with asthma and COPD
  • Role of surfactant protein D in COPD
  • Genetic epidemiology of COPD progression