The Centre’s Melbourne University node recently hosted a 7 week visit by Associate Professor Jon Koff of Yale Medical School, who was with us in Australia for his sabbatical.

Jon has brought with him an array of interests and expertise (Asthma; Bronchiectasis; Cystic Fibrosis; Influenza, Human; Lung; Viruses; Respiratory Mucosa) that has been a wonderful addition to our weekly lab meeting discussions.

In 2011, Dr. Koff joined the faculty at Yale University to direct the Adult CF Program. His laboratory focuses on pulmonary innate immune responses to pathogens in chronic obstructive lung diseases and lung injury. His postdoctoral studies led to a research program that implicated EGFR inhibition as a potential therapeutic target for respiratory viral infection (e.g., Influenza, Rhinovirus, RSV), which has important implications for chronic obstructive lung diseases that have increased airway epithelial EGFR signaling, and evidence for increased susceptibility to viral infections. This has led to translational research in virus-induced asthma exacerbations. He also uses in vivo and in vitro models to investigate innate immune responses to post-viral bacterial infections with a focus on signaling pathways that regulate host tolerance during lung injury.

While he was here, Jon presented his work on “Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Regulation of Interferons: Implications in Lung Inflammation and Asthma” to the Department of Pharmacology (pictured below to the left with Centre Director, Professor Alastair Stewart). Many thanks to Jon visiting us and sharing his wealth of experience with the whole team.

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