Dr. Ackermann studies diabetes (types 1 and 2) and congenital hyperinsulinism using mouse models, cell lines, and primary human tissue. She aims to identify novel pathways regulating beta cell insulin secretion, leading to innovative therapeutic strategies for these disorders. Current studies include in vivo mouse physiology, ex vivo human islet physiology, CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing, epigenetic modification, and single-cell functional genomics.
Dr. Romberg investigates the regulatory mechanisms enabling our immune systems to fight infections without injuring ourselves. He is particularly interested in the immune system of patients with primary immunodeficiency who are susceptible to both life-threatening infections and autoimmune diseases. Greater insights into these rare diseases may enable rationale development of targeted therapies for more common diseases with an immunologic basis.
When you have a chronic allergic disorder, it’s easy to blame the trigger — an early pollen season or furry pet — but the real culprit is your own immune system. Designed to attack foreign substances such as bacteria and viruses, T cells are the immune system’s watchdog to recognize serious threats. But sometimes T cells can be too zealous and set in motion a signaling cascade that can cause allergic reactions to everyday things and even attack your body’s healthy cells by mistake.
When the immune system inappropriately destroys blood cells, in a relatively rare group of diseases called autoimmune cytopenias, children may suffer for years with anemia, uncontrolled bleeding, and vulnerability to infections, while their parents struggle to find a diagnosis.