John Douglas Mountz
Professor, Department of Medicine
The University of Alabama, USA
Dr. Mountz is a Professor of Medicine and Physician at the Birmingham Veterans Administration Medical Center. Dr. Mountz received a Ph.D. in High Energy Physics and graduated Summa Cum Laude before carrying out a post-doctoral fellowship in the area of biophysics studying bilayer lipid membranes. Dr. Mountz then received an MD from Ohio State University and carried out an internship of residency and a one-year fellowship in Internal Medicine in Rheumatology. Dr. Mountz was a research staff fellow at the National Institutes of Health for five years and also an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Naval Bethesda Medical Center. Dr. Mountz continues an active research program in arthritis and other autoimmune diseases in both mice and humans.
Dr. John Mountz has identified that germinal center development is promoted by high levels of TH-17 and IL-17 in autoimmune BXD2 mice. IL-17 signals through the IL-17R receptor in B cells resulting in increased classical NF-kB pathway activation that activates several genes, including regulators of G-protein signaling (RGS) 13 and 16. Upregulation of RGS genes impairs signaling through CXCR4/CXCL12 and CXCR5/CXCL13 to arrest migration and movement of T cells and B cells, which enables prolonged and stable interaction of B cells and CD4 T cells.