My service, teaching and research activities focus on kidney disease. I am the lead renal pathologist, evaluating transplant and native renal biopsy specimens. I am Director of the Renal and Transplant Pathology Program, with the mission to conduct transplant pathology related activities, including inter-disciplinary seminars, quality assurance meetings and research. I teach residents and fellows from pathology, nephrology, and transplant. I am also the Director of the Clinical Immunohistochemistry Laboratory which provides immunohistochemical and in situ hybridization testing for the entire department.
My research is directed at the extracellular matrix biology of kidney disease, with a view to elucidate the mechanisms of diabetic nephrology, in both native and transplanted kidneys. With these objectives in mind, I am working to develop innovative approaches using renal biopsy specimens and manipulation of 3-D cell cultures. In collaboration with Dr. Michael Walsh of Pathology I am also studying the spectral changes in diabetic tissue using Fourier-transformed infrared microscopy.
I also study the molecular mechanisms of renal carcinogenesis utilizing tissue and DNA microarrays to examine 3-D cultures of kidney carcinoma cells (CaKi) and human tubular epithelial cells (HK-2). Ongoing studies of the effect of high levels of clucose in cell culture medium indicate that multiple matrix and vascular regulators are involved in aggressive tumor cell behavior. Genomic studies are underway to identify the genes responsible for tumor cell growth and metastasis. Candidate genes are to be studied in patient renal tumor tissue.