Jennifer M. Alexander-Brett, MD, PhD

Instructor in Medicine

Washington University in St. Louis (WU)

My research interests focus on cytokine pathways relevant to lung epithelial stem cell function in airway disease. Taking a translational approach to disease mechanism, I employ human airway specimens, mouse models, stem cell culture, molecular and structural biology. My postdoctoral work under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Holtzman has to date involved the phenotypic and functional characterization of disease-associated IL-33 expressing airway cells and their pathogenic role in driving chronic airway disease. As I transition to independence, my research on this cytokine system will focus on the pathway of cellular IL-33 activation/release, including biochemical and structural definition of intracellular (nuclear, transcriptional regulatory) and extracellular aspects of this unique dual-functioning cytokine. Results of this analysis will guide efforts toward development of IL-33 antagonists as therapeutics for chronic airway disease.

My clinical interests include lung transplantation, particularly management of factors contributing to development of chronic allograft rejection, and critical care medicine.