Welcome to the Chen Lab »

The immune system regulates almost every physiological process and hence is intimately linked to health and diseases. The goals of our lab are to understand the behavior of the immune system in inflammation, infection, cancer and reproduction. Our recent work has defined important regulators in the control of the production and diversification of systemic and mucosal antibodies to combat infections. We have also studied immune cells, specifically maternal B lymphocytes, during human pregnancy and revealed the function of these cells in promoting healthy pregnancy and their defects in conditions such as pretem birth.

We are based in the Wayne State University School of Medicine and the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, an NCI-designated comprehensive cancer center. Immunological concepts and technologies are integral to our work. We also collaborate with many scientists and clinicians in the academia and the industry.

~ Current Research Areas ~

Antibody responses in health and diseases
Currently, we are focusing on understanding the processes of antibody diversification and production by B cells and how the regulation of such processes are defective in human immunodeficiencies, autoimmune diseases and cancer.

Immune regulation of pregnancy
A large number of reproductive and developmental disorders have an immunological basis. Leveraging our expertise in immunology, specific areas under investigation include the immunology of pregnancy and pregnancy complications, and mucosal immunity in the female reproductive tract.

Maternal regulation of neonatal diseases
We want to understand the immunological interaction between the mother and the fetus during pregnancy and early infancy, i.e., how changes in the mother's immune system, such as those seen in infections, allergies and cancer, impact fetal development and contribute to neonatal diseases.

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