A Novel Murine Model of Allergic Bronchopulmonary Aspergillosis

Project Leader

Robert A. Cramer, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Microbiology and Immunology
Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth

Co-Investigator

Joshua J. Obar, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Microbiology and Immunology
Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth

The objective of this collaborative pilot project is to establish a novel murine model of allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) at Dartmouth. ABPA is a devastating disease that is under diagnosed in the context of Cystic Fibrosis and other chronic lung diseases. Patients diagnosed with ABPA face deteriorating lung function and poor prognoses. While some understanding of the immunopathogenesis that occurs during ABPA has arisen from focused animal studies, no current model replicates the persistent fungal colonization observed in ABPA patients. Thus, a major impediment to treatment advances in ABPA is a robust animal model where fungal and host factors can be explored and targeted therapeutically for pre-clinical development. Our proposed model will, for the first time, allow investigation into fungal factors that drive pathogenesis in patients with ABPA that will allow us to test and develop novel treatment approaches. In addition, our model will allow us to explore novel immune modulatory therapeutics to minimize the inflammatory mediated damage caused by the immune response to persistent Aspergillus airway growth. Our approach synergizes the fungal molecular pathogenesis expertise of the Cramer Laboratory and immunology expertise of the Obar laboratory to successfully develop this model and move closer to developing novel therapeutic approaches for the treatment of ABPA.

Publications
Robert A. Cramer: Pubmed
Joshua J. Obar: Pubmed