Christine Fillmore Brainson, PhD

Christine Fillmore Brainson, PhD

University of Kentucky Research Foundation

Research Project:
Targeting Lung Fibrosis with Epigenetic Therapy

Grant Awarded:

  • Innovation Award

Research Topics:

  • basic biologic mechanisms
  • combination therapies experimental therapeutics
  • gene expression transcription
  • pathology

Research Diseases:

  • interstitial lung disease
  • occupational lung disease
  • pulmonary fibrosis

Funded by the James and Marlene Ryan Innovation Award

Lung fibrosis is a progressive, incurable disease with few treatment options. Our research involves epigenetics, the study of how behaviors and environment can cause changes that affect the way genes work. Drugs that regulate epigenetic changes, or ‘epi-drugs,’ may be useful in treating lung fibrosis. We will investigate whether targeting the epigenetic enzyme EZH2 using the FDA-approved drug tazemetostat would be a viable therapeutic option for lung fibrosis patients. In order to test our hypotheses, we will use a mixture of innovative organoid cell cultures, patient samples and well-established mouse models of lung fibrosis. We will examine three different cell types that are known to be involved in the fibrotic process. This research will not only test the utility of the new drug at combating lung fibrosis, but will also expand our knowledge about how epi-drugs can influence other types of lung disease.

Page last updated: October 16, 2023

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