Daniel S. Ory, MD

Professor of Medicine

Washington University in St. Louis (WU)

My lab seeks to understand the basic molecular mechanisms in regulation of cholesterol homeostasis, and the function of the Niemann-Pick C1 (NPC1) protein. A major effort in lab involves genetic screens in cultured cells to identify molecular machinery involved in intracellular cholesterol trafficking. These studies include investigation of the mechanism through which oxygenated forms of cholesterol exert their homeostatic effects, and have led to identification of candidate cholesterol metabolites that are being examined as biomarkers for atherosclerosis and diabetes in human populations. A second area of interest is study of the role of Niemann-Pick C1 (NPC1) in cholesterol homeostasis. The function of NPC1 in cholesterol trafficking in macrophages is being examined in mouse models of atherosclerosis, and the mechanism by which NPC1 loss of function contributes to neuronal cell death is being studied in a mouse knockout model.