Current Research

Modeling blood-brain barrier and blood-nerve barrier development using human pluripotent stem cells

The blood-brain barrier (BBB) and blood-nerve barrier (BNB) serve the critical homeostatic function of regulating ion, molecule, and cellular transport between the blood and nervous system tissues. These barriers, formed by brain endothelial cells (ECs) and peripheral nerve endoneurial ECs, limit drug delivery and are dysfunctional in several neurological diseases. Our research
goal is to better understand the molecular properties of the human BBB and BNB, and the cellular and molecular mechanisms governing their development, which remain incompletely characterized. To this end, we are developing new tools to model the BBB and BNB in vitro, using cells derived from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs).