Our laboratory is dedicated to the exploratory studies on membrane transport proteins under both physiological and pathological conditions using multidisciplinary approaches. Our major research interest is focused on regulation of membrane transporters and channels under physiological and pathological conditions. We are exploring; 1) the potential role of nuclear receptors in regulation of membrane transporters and channels as well as identification of possible drug target candidates. 2) Drug transporters-mediated drug-drug, herb-drug interaction, and drug-induced nephrotoxicity.
Specific research areas of interest are listed below.
1. Role of membrane transporters in drug pharmacokinetics, herb-drug interaction, and drug-induced nephrotoxicity Our work is focused on understanding the molecular and cellular physiology of therapeutic drug excretion by the kidney. The kidney, particularly the proximal tubule, actively secretes a wide array of xenobiotics including therapeutic drugs and herbs. Thus, it plays an important role in determining the efficacy of therapeutic drugs and their toxicities. However, this task also places the kidney in harms, and the development of nephrotoxicity. We are currently studying the transport function of several transporters at several different levels of biological organization.
Cellular Level: We use cultured cells in studies of the activity and regulation of transport activity.
Tissue Level: We use isolated, intact renal proximal tubules (single non-perfused tubules and renal slice) to study the process of organic electrolyte secretion as it occurs in the native renal epithelium.
Organ Level: We use whole animal to study and/or confirm the results obtained from both cellular and tissue levels.
2. Role of nuclear receptors in normal and pathological conditions including diabetes, obesity, and polycystic kidney disease We are currently investing pharmacological effect of agonists of nuclear receptors in regulation of cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) which has been validated as to play a crucial role in polycystic kidney disease. The polycystic kidney disease is studied using in vitro and animal model.
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