Thomas Brett, Ph.D.

Washington University

Understanding Mucus Overproduction in Asthma

Mucus acts as a protective barrier and filter by coating the lining of organs to trap foreign substances, pre-venting them from invading the body and causing sickness. A number of lung diseases can cause excess mucus to build up in the lungs leading to coughing and difficulty breathing. Using advanced biochemical and structural biology techniques, Dr. Brett and his team will examine how a protein called CLCA1 works to mediate the overproduction of mucus. This information will be used to develop inhibitors to CLCA1 that could be used as anti-mucus treatments for asthma.

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