Research Focus

Microglia-mediated Neurotoxicity

Microglia are the resident innate immune cells in the brain that serve as central nervous system sentinels, quickly detecting and responding to diverse stimuli.  Excessive and chronic activation has been linked to neuron damage and the progressive nature of neurodegenerative diseases (Block et al., 2007, Nature Reviews Neuroscience).  Our current research focuses on: 1) identifying triggers (environmental and endogenous) that initiate deleterious microglial activation, 2) revealing the redox mechanisms through which microglia cause neurotoxicity, and 3) applying these findings towards halting the progression of neurological diseases, such as Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and Gulf War Illness.

The Puzzle of Microglia as Instigators of Neuron Damage  
Microglia Puzzle