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Environmental Lung Disease Consultant

Technical Consultant #1321


  • Pulmonary fibrosis and pulmonary pathology.
  • Lung diseases such as asthma and bronchitis.
  • Environmental lung disease.
  • Metal toxicity, vanadium toxicity.
  • Carbon nanotube pulmonary toxicity.
  • Occupational lung disease.
  • Air pollution particles and associated lung disease.

Research Interests

  • Cellular and molecular mechanisms of pulmonary fibrosis and chronic airway remodeling in asthma and bronchitis.
  • Disruption of intracellular signaling pathways by air pollution particulate matter and metal-induced oxidative stress, particularly vanadium pentoxide.
  • Pulmonary responses to manufactured carbon nanotubes and nanoparticles.
  • Epithelial-fibroblast interactions in mediating airway remodeling and fibrosis.
  • Growth factor receptor tyrosine kinases and their role in lung fibroblast proliferation, apoptosis, and cytokine production.
  • Control of growth factor activity by extracellular cytokine-binding proteins.
  • Strategies for the intervention of pulmonary fibrosis.


Academic Appointments

Undisclosed University, Present

  • As Associate Professor studying the cellular and molecular mechanisms through which toxic environmental agents such as particles, nanoparticles, and metals cause fibroblast growth or matrix production resulting in fibrosis.
  • Utilizing molecular techniques in genomics and transgenic mouse models, identified intracellular signaling pathways and novel genes that contribute to the progression of fibrosis.
  • Research focus on two families of cell surface growth factor receptor tyrosine kinases (RTK) that mediate these cellular responses: the platelet-derived growth factor receptor family (PDGFR) and the epidermal growth factor receptor family (EGFR).
  • Identified these RTKs as potentially important targets for therapeutic intervention of pulmonary fibrosis.
  • New initiatives in nanotechnology aimed at understanding the possible health effects of manufactured nanomaterials (carbon nanotubes and nano-sized metal catalysts).
  • Determine the physico-chemical properties of nanomaterials that trigger fibrotic reactions in the lung in order to provide information for the design of safer nanomaterials.
  • Particular interest is determining the fibrotic potential of nanomaterials in mouse models of pre-existing lung disease such as asthma, viral infection, and bacterial endotoxin-induced inflammation.

Research Areas

  • Lung fibrosis, asthma, nanotoxicology, metals, particles, fibers and microbial infections.

CIIT Centers for Health Research, Research Triangle Park, NC, 2004 - 2010

  • Associate Investigator

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, NC, 1990 - 2004

  • Head, Airway Inflammation Group, 1993 - 2004

Laboratory of Pulmonary Pathobiology

  • Staff Fellow and Senior Staff Fellow, 1990 - 1995

Adjunct Faculty Positions

  • Adjunct Associate Professor of Pathology, Duke University, Durham, NC
  • Adjunct Associate Professor, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC

Teaching Appointments

North Carolina State University

Department of Toxicology

  • Graduate Level Biochemical Toxicology 710 Biochemical Toxicology Course; lecture on "Respiratory Cell and Molecular Toxicology." 701 Introductory Toxicology Course, lecture to undergraduates on "Basic Principles of Respiratory Toxicology."

Veterinary Medical Sciences

  • 570 Cell Biology Course, Department of Anatomy, College of Veterinary Medicine; lecture on "Growth Factors in Health and Disease".

Duke University

  • Pathology 200 Core Course for Medical Students, Department of Pathology, Basic Principles of Pathology, lecture on "Mechanisms of Environmental Lung Injury."

Honors & Publications

Academic and Professional Affiliations

  • Member, American Heart Association Mid-Atlantic Consortium Study Section, Baltimore, MD
  • Ad Hoc Reviewer, National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) Acute Lung Injury SCCOR Study Section, Bethesda, MD
  • Ad Hoc Reviewer, University of California Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program Study Section, San Francisco, CA
  • Ad Hoc Reviewer and Committee Member, Berrylium Rule Advisory Committee. U.S. Depart. of Energy
  • Committee member, North Carolina Visiting Pulmonary Scholar Program, co-hosted by Duke University, University of North Carolina, North Carolina State University, Glaxo-Welcome, US EPA and CIIT Centers for Health Research
  • Coordinator, North Carolina Visiting Pulmonary Scholar Program
  • Member, American Thoracic Society
  • Sigma Xi Honorary Member
  • Board Member, Environmental Federation of North Carolina

Editorial Activities

  • Editor, Experimental Lung Research

Continued Education

  • NIH Postdoctoral Fellow, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina


Ad Hoc Reviewer for Journals

  • Journal of Biological Chemistry
  • Journal of Clinical Investigation
  • Journal of Experimental Medicine
  • Journal of Immunology
  • American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology
  • American Journal of Physiology: Lung Cell and Molecular Physiology
  • American Journal of Pathology
  • Free Radical Biology & Medicine

Overall Publications

  • Completed publications in Scientific Journals - 52
  • Manuscripts submitted or in preparation - 4
  • Book chapters and review articles - 20


  • Ph.D. Animal Physiology, Mississippi State University, Starkville, MS
  • M.S. Biology, Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, TN
  • B.S. Biology, Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro, TN
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