The experimental work in our lab aims to answer intensely burning as well as long-term smouldering questions in chemokine biology to bring new understanding of mechanisms in immunity and disease pathogenesis. From their humble beginnings on the fringes of experimental research, known initially as a couple of leukocyte chemoattractants, chemokines became one of the largest families of coherently functioning, intercellular signals, involved in a mutitude of cellular processes and studied now by the cutting edge mainstream molecular science and medicine. Chemokines are now known as versatile units of inter-cellular communications, the building blocks of a universal cell language, "chemokinese", the cell Esperanto.
Chemokine activities contribute to almost every aspect of our biological existence, starting with the moment of our conception, through months of intrauterine confinement; protecting us during the years of growth, health and wellbeing, only to push us later, along countless avenues of debilitating diseases, ultimately into the grave. It is impossible to encompass the breadths of all chemokines' activities and account for their multifaceted roles, therefore the experimental work in our lab lately focuses on the biology of atypical chemokine receptors, ACKR1 and ACKR4, in particular.
These unusual receptors are able to modulate the availability and function of their cognate chemokines and achieve this in particularly unpredictable but powerful ways, thus importantly modifying chemokine-encoded messages.
Our lab is generously supported by the Wellcome Trust, Versus Arthritis and the British Heart Foundation.
"I am a human, and nothing human is alien to me"
"I am a pathologist, and no pathomechanism is alien to me, especially if it involves chemokines"