Canada Research Chair in Immunobiology of Respiratory Diseases and Allergy
Tier 1 - 2002-07-01 Renewed: 2009-07-01
RESEARCH INVOLVESExperiments to explore the cellular and molecular basis of the immune-inflammatory response to aeroallergens.
RESEARCH RELEVANCEIdentification of novel targets and therapeutic approaches for asthma and allied allergic respiratory diseases including the development of genetic immunotherapy strategies.
ASTHMA: FROM TREATMENT TO CUREMore than fifteen million North Americans are presently afflicted with asthma. In Canada, the annual cost associated with asthma and allied allergic respiratory diseases is estimated at more than one billion dollars. Costs are expected to increase given that the prevalence of asthma in Western countries has risen sharply during the last twenty years. While currently used inhaled steroids and short- and long-acting bronchodilators are highly effective to relieve symptoms, it is clear that they do not impact on the underlying mechanisms causing asthma. Dr. Manel Jordana's goal as Chair in Immune Biology of Respiratory Diseases and Allergy is to unravel the cellular and molecular basis of the host immune response to aeroallergens.
Dr. Jordana's program builds upon his research into the processes of allergic sensitization and airway inflammation. His central challenge is to understand why some individuals develop harmful airway inflammatory responses to aeroallergens. Dr. Jordana's primary approach will seek to establish and further develop experimental models that mimic the heterogeneity of asthmatic inflammation so that the role of certain genes, and of interventions to neutralize the function of these genes, can be investigated. His hope is that dissecting the nature of the immunological interactions between the external environment, particularly aeroallergens, and the respiratory mucosa will have far-reaching implications for understanding and managing allergic airway diseases.