lung research

Jeanine D'Armiento, MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Medicine and Anesthesiology

The major goal of my research program is to develop insight into lung physiology and pathology through understanding the mechanisms altering lung injury and repair and translating these findings into practical clinical solutions. My research studies mainly focus on the role of matrix metalloproteinases (MMP) in normal physiology and in human disease integrating both in vitro and in vivo approaches. My laboratory is also uniquely situated to characterize the molecular changes in the study of smoke-induced injury and disease so as to identify potential therapeutic targets for smoke induced disease processes.





Charles W. Emala, MD
Professor of Anesthesiology

Dr. Emala's main area of research interest is in the understanding of interactions between signal transduction pathways in airway nerves and smooth muscle and how these interactions contribute to diseases such as asthma. Interaction of anesthetic agents with muscarinic and GABA receptors on airway nerves and smooth muscle is a particular focus of these studies. A broader understanding of the non-neuronal expression and function of GABAA receptors in smooth muscle is a central focus.  The laboratory uses whole animal airway physiology studies, isolated contractile studies of airway and vascular smooth muscle and biochemical and molecular biological techniques in elucidating the expression and function of signaling molecules.




George Gallos, MD
Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology

My research interests includes mechanisms of smooth muscle relaxation, in particular the role GABAA channels may play in modulating airway smooth muscle and uterine smooth muscle relaxation.







Laurence Ring, MD 
Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology

Dr. Laurence Ring’s research focuses on acute lung injury that may be caused by invasive positive pressure ventilation.  About one third of critically ill patients require invasive ventilatory support and about a quarter of those patients are thought to develop ventilator associated lung injury (VALI).  In the time since the significance of this injury was recognized (ARDSNet Trial, 2000), strategies to treat or avoid the injury, namely the use of positive end expiratory pressure and a low tidal volume approach to ventilation, have become engrained in critical care and intraoperative medicine.  However, despite these interventions, the disease still persists.  In an attempt to gain a better understanding of the molecular biology underlying VALI, Dr. Ring’s current research centers on the development of a mouse model of ventilator associated lung injury.  The mouse model will serve to identify novel pathways activated in VALI which may serve as therapeutic or prophylactic targets.  We eventually hope to begin testing protocols and compounds in ventilated mice which will have the potential to reduce morbidity and mortality from VALI in humans.



Columbia University Medical Center Department of Anesthesiology