We are interested in understanding the fundamental mechanisms of cellular lipid homeostasis, trafficking and metabolism, particularly in lipid-loaded macrophage foam cells. During atherosclerosis, foam cells accumulate in the artery wall and are the precursor of heart disease. While today we have lipid-lowering therapies such as statins to prevent atherosclerosis, they are not universally effective and do not reverse atherosclerosis. The ultimate goal is to stop, prevent and reverse the atherosclerotic process, preventing heart attacks and strokes.
Our research program aims broaden our understanding of the mechanisms of cellular lipid removal and to define the role of these metabolic pathways in inflammation and may identify novel therapeutic targets for the development of lipid-removal therapies to treat heart disease and new diagnostic biomarkers of heart disease.