I have been engaged in the study of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) for four decades and have been treating patients with IBD during this time. My research interests span clinical, basic and translational research and are primarily focused on immunopathologic mechanisms, discovery of novel therapeutics and the translation of basic science and genetic findings for use in diagnosis, prognosis and targeted therapeutic selection in IBD. My goal is to combine all of these areas so that the right patient gets the right treatment at the right time and in the right way.
My laboratory groups have focused on identifying the functional consequences of genetic variation, which in the context of a genetically heterogeneous disease such as IBD, involves numerous biologic and molecular pathways and comprises complex relationships between the intestinal microenvironment and the immune response. The approach includes using novel human and murine experimental systems to determine the in vivo consequences of genetic abnormalities while simultaneously using ex vivo and in vivo technology to determine the biology, identify potential targets and begin to study the impact of target manipulation.
I have enjoyed the opportunity to mentor and train hundreds of students, interns, residents, fellows and postdoctoral researchers over the course of my career and am exceedingly proud that many of my trainees have emerged as today's directors of IBD research programs in North America and beyond.