Dr. Burbank is a pediatric allergist and immunologist whose research efforts centers on the study of novel therapies for asthma. Her focus involves translational and early phase clinical trials examining the airway effects of inhaled and intranasally-administered pollutants, allergens, and other inflammatory stimuli as well as the investigation of novel therapies capable of reducing or preventing these inflammatory responses. She is also pursuing research focused on clinical pharmacology of asthma treatments in different populations. Through this work, her group is working to gain better understanding of the most effective treatments for different asthma phenotypes and endotypes (i.e. TH2 high/low, neutrophil-predominant, obesity-associated), with the goal of providing patients with precise and personalized treatment plans.
Her long-term research objectives are 1) to study the differential effects of inflammatory stimuli on different phenotypes/endotypes of asthma, 2) to design studies examining the airway deposition of different inhaled corticosteroid formulations (i.e. varying particle size, delivery device) in subjects with particular asthma phenotypes/endotypes using gamma scintigraphy, and 3) design interventional trials to study the efficacy of particular formulations.
She also aims to examine the impact of inhaled mucolytics on mucociliary clearance and inflammation in response to airway challenge using different inflammatory stimuli. Mucous production and plugging are understudied and underappreciated aspects of asthma-associated symptomatology and contribute to morbidity and mortality of this disease. Her hope is to use the information gained from these studies to provide tailored treatment to patients with asthma.