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      Research Interests

      Dr Dombrowski’s research focuses on immune mechanisms in tissue damage and repair. Tissue damage can occur in infectious (bacteria, virus, fungi) or sterile settings (trauma, autoimmune attack). We are interested in the underlying immunological mechanisms in sterile inflammation in order to identify novel therapeutic targets for immune-mediated diseases such as Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

      In MS the myelin sheath that covers nerve fibres is damaged due to an autoimmune attack against proteins in the myelin sheath. As a result the nerve fibres die leading to a loss of function, which can result in paralysis and other neurodegenerative symptoms. There is no cure for MS to date and there are no therapies that can restore damaged myelin in order to prevent nerve loss.

      Despite driving pathology in many diseases, the immune system is required for tissue regeneration. Innate immune receptors sense disruption of tissue homeostasis initiating a regenerative immune response that leads to the repair of the tissue. Our central goal is to elucidate the mechanisms of regenerative inflammation in particular the role of the innate immune system in myelin regeneration in MS.

      Current projects of the group focus on the expression and function of inflammasomes in myelin damage and regeneration in the central nervous system and the effects of IL-1 cytokines on oligodendrocyte progenitor cells. Other collaborative projects elucidate the mechanisms of regenerative inflammation in lung repair and the effect of e-cigarette smoke on inflammatory responses in the lung.

      Dr Dombrowski has published her work in high-impact journals and her research has been recognized in prestigious awards including an Early Career Fellowship from The Leverhulme Trust and the invitation to the 64th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting for Physiology and Medicine as one of ten UK representatives. 

       

       

      Achievements and Distinctions

      Selected Awards

       

      2015 The Fritz-Thyssen-Foundation Research Grant

       

      2015 The Royal Society Research Grant

       

      2014 The Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship (career development award)

       

      2015 Prize for best talk at the Postdoctoral Society of the Queen’s University Belfast Meeting

       

      2014 One of ten selected UK participants for the 64th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting for Physiology and Medicine

       

      2014 Prize for best poster at the Irish Society of Immunology Meeting

       

      2014 Prize for best Postdoctoral Researcher of the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences Annual Celebration of Excellence

       

      2013 British Neuropathological Society Pilot Grant

       

      2012 Prize forbest research project in experimental allergyat the German Society of Dermatology Research Meeting

       

       

       

      Invited Speaker

       

      2016 University of Tübingen, Germany, seminar on “Innate and adaptive immune mechanisms in the CNS”

       

      2016 Gordon Research Seminar Myelin, 14th-15th May 2016, Renaissance Il Ciocco, Tuscany, Italy, talk on “Regulatory T cells are required for oligodendrocyte differentiation in demyelinated CNS lesions”

       

      2016 Kenneth B Fraser Symposium, 19th Apr 2016, Belfast, UK, talk on “Innate and adaptive immune mechanisms in the CNS”

       

      2016 Postdoctoral Society of the Queen’s University Belfast, 11th Mar 2016, Belfast, UK, talk on “My experience: Early Career Fellowship from The Leverhulme Trust”

       

      2015 University of Manchester, 1st Dec 2015, Manchester, UK, seminar on “Innate and adaptive immune mechanisms in the CNS”

       

      2015 3rd Translational Immunology Conference, 29th-30th Oct 2015, Würzburg, Germany, talk on “Regulatory T cells promote myelin regeneration in the CNS”

       

      2015 Postdoctoral Society of the Queen’s University Belfast, 20th March 2015, Belfast, UK, talk on  “Treg promote myelin repair in vivo”

       

      2014 British Neuropathological Society Meeting, 5th-7th March 2014, London, UK, talk on “Toxin mediated FoxP3+ cell depletion: Impact on remyelination”

       

      2014 Infection and Immunology Translational Research Group Young Scientist Symposium, 25th Feb 2014, Belfast, UK, talk on “The role of regulatory T cells in CNS remyelination”

       

      2013 Irish Society of Immunology Meeting, 12th-13th Sept 2013, Dublin, Ireland, talk on “Toxin mediated FoxP3+ cell depletion: Impact on remyelination?”

       

      2013 MS Frontiers, 9th–10th May 2013,London, UK, talk on “Impact of anti-inflammatory FoxP3+ cells in toxin-induced demyelination in vivo”

       

      2013 Infection and Immunology Translational Research Group Away Day, 7th Mar 2013, Belfast, UK, talk on “Impact of anti-inflammatory FoxP3+ cells in toxin-induced demyelination in vivo”

       

      2012 7th German Allergy Congress, 11th-13th Oct 2012, Munich, Germany, talk on “Honey bee venom induces AIM2 inflammasome activation in human keratinocytes”

       

      2012 German Society of Dermatology Research Meeting, 1st–3rd Mar 2012, Marburg, Germany, talk on “Honey bee venom induces AIM2 inflammasome activation in human keratinocytes”

       

      2010 German Society of Dermatology Research Meeting, 18th–20th Feb 2010, Lübeck, Germany, talk on “Cathelicidin antimicrobial peptide LL-37 enables uptake of dsDNA into human epidermal keratinocytes”

       

       

      Teaching

      MRes Students

      Mr Daniel Crooks 2016-2017

      Project: Identifying the roles of inflammasomes in brain repair

      Miss Samantha Gallaher 2016-2017

      Project: Identifying the impact of inflammasomes on lung stem cells

      Miss Natasha Boylan 2015-2016

      Project: Identification of the effect of IL-1beta and IL-18 on oligodendrocyte lineage cells

      Miss Samara Fleville 2014-2015

      Project: Inflammasomes in Central Nervous System Demyelination and Remyelination

       

       

       

      BSc Honours Students

      Miss Lydia Roets 2016-2017

      Project: Identifying inflammasomes in brain repair

      Miss Georgiana Parau 2016-2017

      Project: Identifying danger signals in sterile inflammation in spinal cord damage

      Miss Amy Evans 2016-2017 (Literature review module)

      Project: Regenerative inflammation

      Mr Daniel Crooks 2015-2016

      Project: Investigation of the expression of IL-1beta in the demyelinated CNS

      Mr Calum Macdonald 2015-2016

      Project: Investigating the expression of IL-1alpha in demyelinated/remyelinating CNS lesions

      Mr Andre O. Borba 2014-2015 (Literature review module)

      Project: The influence of inflammasome activity on Multiple Sclerosis pathogenicity

       

       

      Summer Students

      Mr Andre B. Olivera 2014

      Miss Samara Fleville 2013 & 2014

      Miss Maeve Moore 2014

       

       

      Contribution to teaching modules

      BMS2016 Year 2 Biomedical Sciences Immunobiology

      MED2016 Year 2 Medicine Student Selective Component Multiple Sclerosis: Much done much to do

      Tutor Year 2 Medicine Pathology of Disease Immunology

       

       

       

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      Frequent Journals

      • Archives of Dermatological Research

        ISSNs: 0340-3696

        Additional searchable ISSN (Electronic): 1432-069X

        Springer Verlag

        Scopus rating (2016): SJR 0.996 SNIP 0.895

        Journal

      • Experimental Dermatology

        ISSNs: 0906-6705

        Additional searchable ISSN (Electronic): 1600-0625

        Wiley-Blackwell

        Scopus rating (2016): SJR 1.136 SNIP 0.93

        Journal

      • Nature Neuroscience

        ISSNs: 1097-6256

        Nature Publishing Group

        Scopus rating (2016): SJR 14.096 SNIP 3.771

        Journal

      • Cancer Research

        ISSNs: 0008-5472

        Additional searchable ISSN (Electronic): 1538-7445

        American Association for Cancer Research Inc.

        Scopus rating (2016): SJR 4.753 SNIP 1.986

        Journal

      • Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology

        ISSNs: 0091-6749

        Additional searchable ISSN (Electronic): 1097-6825

        Mosby Inc.

        Scopus rating (2016): SJR 5.33 SNIP 2.886

        Journal

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      Contribution to conference papers, events and activities

      ID: 1587916