Manipulating the expression in genes in primary keratinocytes is a key component of research and a challenge in translational research. In joint research with Northwestern's nanotechnology experts, department members have been investigating new strategies to deliver of siRNA, antisense DNA and miRNA into primary keratinocytes, as well as through the stratum corneum and into mouse and human epidermis to treat inflammatory, neoplastic and genetic skin disease. The DNA/RNA Delivery Core of the Skin Disease Research Center supports gene manipulation into skin cells through lentiviral and retroviral construct generation for researchers throughout Northwestern. Laboratories in the Department of Dermatology studying DNA/RNA delivery are listed below.
Genetic basis of inherited and acquired immunological disorders and skin cancer
a) Investigating how epidermal gangliosides regulate signaling at the membrane level.
b) Utilizing siRNA and antisense Spherical Nucleic Acids (SNAs) to treat skin disorders.
Primary and Secondary Prevention of Melanoma
Investigates novel biomarkers for metastatic melanomas and related mechanisms.