Physical Immunology of COVID-19
Our team is working to uncover the physical factors that cause the coronavirus responsible for COVID-19 to be so hyperinfectious and hyperinflammatory. We seek to understand the mechanisms by which SARS-CoV-2 triggers cytokine storms, catastrophic coagulation, skin rashes, and lesions known as MIS-C, 'covid fingers and toes'. Moreover, we seek to investigate the possible connection between COVID and autoimmune diseases such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and atherosclerosis.
We are utilizing our machine learning added analyses to explore why some coronaviruses can cause these severe symptoms while others do not and the phenomenon of 'long COVID'. Studying these factors is critical to developing effective treatments and therapies for COVID-19 patients and preventing future pandemics.
Through our research, we hope to uncover new insights into the complex interactions between the virus and the human body and provide a better understanding of the underlying mechanisms that drive the development of severe COVID-19 symptoms, while simultaneously setting it apart from other viruses.
Some of our previous antiviral works include:
- How viral fusion proteins work (2015 PNAS, Yao, Lee, et al)
- How the influenza virus buds out of membranes (2013 JACS, Schmidt, Mishra, et al)
- What can we learn from the shark’s antiviral defense? (2011 PNAS, Zasloff, Adams, et al)