Experimental Pathology

lab work

Experimental pathology involves the study of disease processes via the examination of cells, tissues or organs or bodily fluids from diseased organisms. The Department’s Experimental Pathology Division is composed of a diverse group of investigators who research the disease mechanisms. Their research covers five overlapping areas, including:

Cancer Research

The goal of the cancer group is to generate improved methods for cancer detection, diagnosis and treatment. Our faculty is capable of defining and screening drug candidates for their abilities to interact with target proteins, in addition to conducting preclinical testing using biochemical, biophysical, cellular and whole animal methods. Employing a strategy based on the atomic structures of proteins involved in specific mechanisms that promote uncontrolled cell growth and division, our interdisciplinary team pursues novel structure-based strategies to define therapeutic agents that can treat a diverse set of cancer cell types, including:

  • Breast
  • Pancreas
  • Liver
  • Colorectal
  • Lung
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Lung
  • Prostate

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Emerging Pathogens

Research interests include:

  • HIV pathogenesis
  • HCV pathogenesis and therapeutic approaches
  • Antibiotic resistance in enteric bacteria
  • Modeling of pathogen evolution Molecular docking approach to drug design
  • Vaccine design

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The goal of our research is to understand the contribution of immune system to disease; to define mechanisms of disease; discover biomarkers; and develop effective treatments.

Our disease-related studies include basic and clinical research on all aspects of the immune system in:

  • Lupus;
  • Type-1 diabetes;
  • Viral infections; and
  • Cancer.

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This specialty focuses on investigating the fundamental mechanisms responsible for the formation of kidney stones to better manage and prevent kidney stone disease. As most kidney stones are composed of calcium oxalate, a concerted effort is to understand the pathophysiological aspects of high urinary oxalate excretion, considered an important risk factor in the development of kidney stones.

Currently, our researchers investigate:

  • Intestinal oxalate transport;
  • Immune response to viral infection;
  • The role of gastrointestinal bacterium, oxalobacter formigenes, in regulating oxalate homeostasis through catabolizing ingested oxalate; and
  • The relationship between oxalate-induced oxidative stress and kidney stone-induced inflammation of the kidney.

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Stem Cell Research

The goal of the UF pathology researchers involved in stem cell biology is to understand the key mechanisms involved in stem cell activation, proliferation and differentiation. They work to define what role(s) stem cells may participate in gene delivery as a potential pathway in correcting inherent metabolic disorders and establish a cohesive collaborative research environment to refine basic research technologies that afford progression of this research toward clinical applications.

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