Ongoing Research Funded by DHF

Which molecular changes are causing the development of eosinophilic esophagitis?

Principal Investigator: Marie-Pier Tetreault, PhD

Patients with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE), a chronic immune/allergic condition affecting children and adults, develop difficulty swallowing food and food obstructions in the esophagus (food tube between the mouth and stomach).  Dr. Tetreault’s team has created a new mouse model that more accurately replicates the disease process of EoE and exhibit all the features observed in patients with the disease. This game changing animal model offers a unique opportunity to better understand the molecular mechanisms driving EoE. By performing “single-cell RNA sequencing”, Dr. Tetreault hopes to determine how changes in specific molecules in epithelial cells control the development of eosinophilic esophagitis. The team will perform these studies in mice that currently have the disease as well as in mice that have yet to show any obvious signs or symptoms. Dr. Tetreault believes that the early-stage disease models will help identify the initiating molecular events that lead to EoE and provide insight into the development of earlier intervention strategies now lacking in the field of EoE.

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