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Kulkarni Lab

Research Interests

ciiia and mucociliary epithelium, regeneration and disease modeling

Research Area

WE USE FROGS TO STUDY DEVELOPMENT, DISEASE, AND REGENERATION PRECISION MEDICINE OF BIRTH DEFECTS Every parent that loses their baby to a birth defect wants to know why and if it will happen again. My lab works at the interface of clinical and basic science to answer those questions. We recruit patients with birth defects to discover novel genes and variants using whole exome and genome sequencing. We use CRISPR/Cas9 to introduce patient mutation in the frog genome to characterize the disease phenotype and identify underlying cell biological function using advanced microscopy and biochemistry techniques. HOW TO BUILD AN AIRWAY Multiciliated cells (MCCs) line the airway epithelium and play a central role in removing pathogens to prevent chronic respiratory diseases. Therefore, much attention is now given to understanding how the mucociliary (mucus+cilia) epithelium is formed to bioengineer motile cilia and the airway epithelium. We use frog embryonic skin to address this question. We integrate multiple approaches, from machine learning and high-resolution live imaging to skin organoids and mechanobiology. REGENERATION Multiciliated cells (MCCs) of the airway are constantly injured from smoke, pollution, and acid reflux. These injuries can impair mucus clearance and can cause and exacerbate chronic respiratory diseases (CRD). Interestingly, MCCs and cilia can regenerate, re-establish airway clearance, and improve the symptoms of CRD. My lab uses fluorescence and cryo-electron microscopy combined with proteomics and transcriptomics to uncover the mechanisms of cilia regeneration.

Current Members

Kulkarni, Saurabh (Principal Investigator/Director) Contact


Institution: University of Virginia

UoV School of Medicine
Department of Cell Biology
200 Jeanette Lancaster Way
Charlottesville, VA
22903, USA

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