Th2 type T cells in lymphedema pathology

Our research group focuses on the lymphatic system in three different pathological settings: lymphedema, obesity, and cancer. Chronic lymphedema is a morbid disease condition without any cure. Our first goal is to uncover the pathology behind development and progression of cancer-related secondary lymphedema using mouse models and human biopsy samples. Briefly, we are interested in interaction of inflammatory cells (CD4+ T cells) with lymphatic vessels during lymphedema. Our ultimate aim is to come out with a therapeutic intervention to cure and prevent lymphedema by modulating CD4+ T cell inflammation and its negative effect on lymphatic vessels. Our second area of research is obesity, a state of systemic low-grade inflammation that also causes severe lymphatic damage and dysfunction. Our research is aimed at modulating lymphatic structure and function in obesity to reduce the systemic inflammation and obesity-related metabolic syndrome. Last but not the least, we are also interested in understanding the role of tumor lymphatic vessels and lymphatic function in modulating immune tolerance or antitumor immunity.

Pictured: Babak J. Mehrara

Babak J. Mehrara, MD

Research Focus

Physician-scientist Babak Mehrara studies the regulation of lymphatic regeneration after surgery and development of lymphedema.

Lab Members