The Wilson lab is focused on two major aspects of regenerative medicine:
1) Developing gene therapy approaches for the study and treatment of lung diseases: The ability to manipulate gene expression in specified lung cell populations has both experimental and therapeutic potential for lung disease. By developing viral vectors that transduce specific lung cell types in vivo, we hope to minimize potential off-target effects while maximizing our ability to target diseased cell populations. We work with lentiviral and AAV vectors to overexpress or knockdown expression of genes important to disease pathogenesis in the lung.
2) Utilizing induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) to study human lung and liver diseases: The Wilson lab is interested in the application of patient-derived iPS cells for the study of lung and liver diseases, such as alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (AATD). We are creating a library of human iPS cells from clinically-phenotyped patients with a variety of AAT mutations to allow us to ask a number of questions such as: