Cardiovascular disease, Hypertension, Dendritic cells, Neo-antigens, Isolevuglandins
The current goal of my research program is to define the molecular mechanisms underlying activation of the immune system in response to hypertensive stimuli including excess dietary salt, sympathetic nerve outflow, and oxidative stress. We are attempting to uncover the mechanisms by which hypertensive stimuli lead to accumulation of isolevuglandins (IsoLGs) in antigen presenting cells and how these may activate the immune system. We are using novel cutting-edge methods to isolate MHC-associated peptides, and use mass spectrometry and proteomics to identify IsoLG-modified peptides presented by MHCs in hypertension. Our goal is to use these modified peptides to design immunotherapeutic approaches in hypertension and cardiovascular disease.