Pulmonary Researcher Receives Young Investigator Award

01/3/2009

Gustavo Nino, M.D., Division of Pulmonary Medicine, received the Young Investigator Award from the CHEST Foundation, part of the American College of Chest Physicians. A third-year fellow working in the lab of Michael Grunstein, M.D., Ph.D., Dr. Nino’s research focuses on the pathogenesis of asthma, specifically airway smooth muscle biology.

Dr. Nino is currently working to identify the mechanisms mediating the abnormal contractility and relaxation of airway smooth muscle (ASM) following prolonged exposure to bronchodilatory medications that act as beta2AR agonists, such as salmeterol. He is also looking at the molecular mechanisms that mediate the regulatory effects of glucocorticosteroids in ASM contractility and relaxation.

He received the Young Investigator Award for his research titled “Glucocorticosteroids Prevent the Pro-asthmatic Effects of Prolonged Exposure to a Long-acting Beta2-adrenoceptor Agonist in Airway Smooth Muscle (ASM) by Modulating Phosphodiesterase 4 (PDE4) Activity.”

While beta2AR agonists and glucocorticosteroids are the most effective medications for the treatment of asthma, they have significant side effects. Dr. Nino’s research aims to achieve a better understanding of the mechanisms of action in these medications, which could potentially lead to the development of safer therapies for children with this disease.