Member Spotlight - Eduardo Villablanca
Describe your most recent work in the field of Mucosal Immunology.
The focus of my research program is to understand the mechanisms that underlie the initiation and resolution of Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), a condition that affects more than three million people in Europe and for which no cure currently exists. Understanding how IBD initiates and resolves will lead to the identification of novel therapeutic strategies that either prevent the disease or promote mucosal healing upon periods of active disease. I have built my research path focusing on the study of the role of nuclear receptors shaping the immune system, intestinal mucosal immunology and the function of IBD risk polymorphisms, combining both zebrafish and the murine animal model with human primary cells.
Where can we learn more?
Please check our webpage for further information - https://villablancalab.com/
Or take a look at to our research video summary at - https://youtu.be/eBeMm1zHnVM
Any upcoming projects?
My lab has recently stratified UC patients into UC1 and UC2 subtypes, in which only 15% of UC1 patients respond to available treatments (Czarnewski et al, 2019). These response rates highlight the urgent need to identify alternative therapeutic targets, such as those promoting intestinal regeneration. Using RNAseq (bulk and single cell), Spatial transcriptomic and flow cytometry,, we are currently deeply characterizing the process of tissue regeneration upon intestinal inflammation in mice. We have identified novel cell types and pathways that modulate tissue regeneration upon injury in vivo. Our goal is to generate tools and knowledge that can ultimately be used in clinical practice.