Autoimmunity of Pemphigus
The research interests of Dr. Li's laboratory are in the areas of desmosome-mediated cell-cell adhesion and hemidesmosome-mediated cell-matrix adhesion in normal and pathological conditions. The primary goal of our research is to better understand the pathogenic mechanisms of skin blistering diseases caused by dysfunction of desmosomes or hemidesmosomes. By means of in vitro keratinoycte culture and in vivo mouse models, we are currently working on the following projects:
- Signaling regulation of desmosome assembly, adhesion, and turnover
- The molecular mechanisms of acantholysis (loss of keratinocyte cohesion) in skin blistering diseases, including pemphigus, Darier's disease, and Haily-Haily disease
- Signaling function of BP180, a key adhesion molecule of hemidesmosomes
- Explore the potential therapeutic targets for skin blistering diseases.
Dr. Li's research is NIH-funded.