Dan Jane-wit, M.D., Ph.D.

Dan Jane-wit, M.D., Ph.D.

Institution: Yale University

Project: The Role of ZFYVE21 in COVID-19 Respiratory Complications

Grant(s): COVID-19 Respiratory Virus Research Award

COVID-19 is caused by a novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2. This virus can cause respiratory failure by infecting different cell types within the lung including blood vessels. In severe COVID-19, infected blood vessels in the lung show changes including inflammation, blood clots and altered permeability, resulting in fluid leakage into lung tissues. Endothelial cells (ECs) are cells that form the inner lining of blood vessels and are targeted for infection by SARS-CoV-2. We will explore the role of a set of immune proteins called complement in triggering gene changes in ECs to promote the blood vessel changes of COVID-19. We will test COVID-19 specimens, and use newly developed humanized models to increase the likelihood that our work will yield clinically relevant findings. It is our hope that our studies may inform new therapies to improve survival of COVID-19 patients.

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