Gastrointestinal Biology and Disease
The Rippe Research Team is dedicated to gaining a better understanding of the molecular basis of hepatic stellate cell activation.
- has identified nearly 30 genes that are turned on or off during activation of hepatic stellate cells. One of the genes turned on during hepatic stellate cell activation is that for intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1). ICAM-1, a protein residing on the surfaces of cells, is responsible for helping white blood cells migrate from the bloodstream to injured tissue.
- was the first to show that hepatic stellate cells actively mediate the migration of white blood cells during the inflammatory response, a role that hepatic stellate cells almost certainly fulfill in the inflammation associated with liver disease.
- has found that the gene for a B-crystallin, a protein that appears to protect liver cells from the stressful effects of assault by excessive alcohol and other harmful stimuli, is also turned on following hepatic stellate cell activation.