University of California at Irvine, USA
Dr. Yusen Liu is a Professor of Pediatrics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. Dr. Liu’s NIH-funded research program focuses on the role of MAP kinase phosphatases in host defense against microbial infection.
Dr. Yusen Liu′s laboratory is interested in the signal transduction pathways that control the innate immunity. Specifically, they are studying the signaling pathways that regulate the production of inflammatory cytokines. They have found that MAP kinase phosphatase (MKP)-1 plays a pivotal role in the restraint of the inflammatory responses in innate immune cells-by dephosphorylating p38 and JNK, MKP-1 deactivates the stress-activated MAP kinases and inhibits the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. We hypothesize that defects in MKP-1 gene may sensitize host to inflammatory diseases. Currently, animal models are developed to test this hypothesis using genetics, biochemistry, and molecular biology techniques. Another research project in the laboratory is to understand the anti-inflammatory mechanism of triptolide, a compound isolated from an anti-rheumatic herb used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine. The long term goals of these research projects are to understand the regulation of inflammation and to develop novel treatments for inflammatory diseases.