Whitaker International Scholar, 2006-07
Home Institution: Rice University
Host Country, Institution: Switzerland, Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne
Project Title: Lymphatic Response to Tissue Swelling: An In Vitro Model
The objective of this project is to study the effects of mechanical stretch and changes in ECM composition and stiffness on the behavior of lymphatic endothelial cells (LECs), assuming that the state of tissue swelling is transferred or "felt" by the lymphatics as circumferential tension. LECs will be cultured on silastic membranes and subjected to static and dynamic stretch. Changes in gene expression, protein synthesis, and cytoskeletal organization will be measured. This work will be the first to examine whether LECs actively regulate tissue fluid balance (and imbalance).