Undergrad research assistant: Structure and function of mucin macromolecules in health and lung diseases
The Kesimer Lab in the Marsico Lung Institute is working on the following project and is seeking undergraduate research assistants:
Gel forming mucins are large polymeric macromolecules that cover and protect epithelial surfaces. In a healthy lung, mucins are secreted in low amounts. In disease, particularly those associated with the chronic stresses induced by cigarette smoke and allergens, mucin concentrations increase dramatically and disproportionately. Indeed, mucins are closely/sensitively related to the initiation and progression of airway obstruction and small airway abnormalities. Beyond this association, we know very little of mucins’ role in airways homeostasis and chronic airways disease pathogenesis. Notably, we know little of mucin’s macromolecular assembly, structure, and gel-making properties. The main focus of this project is to define the unique molecular assembly, structure, and gel making properties of MUC5AC and MUC5B mucins and how these parameters might govern the initiation and pathogenesis of mucoobstructive lung diseases such as COPD and asthma.
If you are interested, please send a cover letter and resume to Dr. Mehmet Kesimer.