Autoimmune and autoinflammatory diseases are a major health issue. The National Institutes of Health reports that up to 23.5 million Americans are afflicted. The American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association reports the number is closer to 50 million. Scientists and clinicians at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston can address the diagnosis and treatment of these conditions, as well as the latest advances in research.
Sandeep K. Agarwal M.D., Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the Division of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunogenetics at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston. Agarwal is available to discuss clinical and research aspects of diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, systemic lupus erythematosus, myositis, and scleroderma. His research focuses on the fibroblast-immune interactions and cytokine regulation of autoimmune diseases.
Frank Arnett, Jr., M.D., professor of internal medicine and pathology and laboratory medicine at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston, is a leading rheumatology investigator. He can answer questions about lupus, scleroderma and gout. Arnett has been with the university for 25 years and is a past chief of rheumatology at Memorial Hermann - Texas Medical Center and the Lyndon B. Johnson General Hospital.
Shervin Assassi, M.D. is available to discuss the genetic and clinical risk factors for various complications of scleroderma, specifically pulmonary fibrosis. He is also able to discuss the clinical and genetic factors behind occurrence of ankylosing spondylitis and spondyloarthritis in families. Assassi is an assistant professor of rheumatology at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston and sees patients at UT Physicians in the UT Professional Building clinic and the Harris County Hospital District's Lyndon B. Johnson General Hospital.
Staley A. Brod, M.D., professor of neurology at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston, is devoted to research directed at understanding the underlying immune abnormalities of human autoimmune disease. He follows 750 patients with multiple sclerosis and is principal investigator for four clinical trials in multiple sclerosis and a study on the effect of oral interferon alpha on juvenile diabetes. Brod is a member of the American Academy of Neurology and the International Society for Interferon and Cytokine Research and a reviewer for publications including Neurology, Archives of Neurology, the Journal of Autoimmunity and the Journal of Neuroimmunology and Diabetologia. He was included in the 2009 America's Top Physicians by the Consumer's Research Council of America.
Adelaide Hebert, M.D., professor of dermatology and pediatrics who serves as director of Pediatric Dermatology at The University of Texas Medical School, has treated and studied children with psoriasis. The University of Texas Dermatology Clinical Research Center was one of the sites involved in the study of children with psoriasis treated with Etanercept, the results of which were published in a 2008 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. She is former president of the Society of Pediatric Dermatology.
Dorothy E. Lewis, Ph.D., a professor of infectious disease in the Department of Internal Medicine at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston, is researching the possibility that treatments designed to restore immune function in Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) patients may exacerbate their susceptibility to autoimmune and autoinflammatory diseases. In addition, she says obesity may contribute to the development of these diseases. Lewis can also answer questions about flow cytometry, which is the measurement of different types of cells in the immune system.
John D. Reveille, M.D., professor and director of the Division of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunogenetics at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston, is a world expert in ankylosing spondylitis. His research has been published in many journals and is funded by the National Institutes of Health. He can answer questions about ankylosing spondylitis, lupus, scleroderma and HIV-associated rheumatic diseases. Reveille has been with the university for nearly 25 years. Reveille is chief of rheumatology at Memorial Hermann - Texas Medical Center.
Dat Q. Tran, M.D., assistant professor of allergy/immunology at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston, is available to discuss the involvement of immune cells in autoimmune and auto-inflammatory diseases and the therapeutic applications of these cells, particularly regulatory T cells, to control inflammation, immune dysregulation and autoimmunity. Tran is an allergy/immunology specialist for Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital.
Yang Xia, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston, provided pre-clinical evidence suggesting that a potentially deadly pregnancy complication known as pre-eclampsia could be an autoimmune disease. Her research has appeared in major publications. Co-investigators include Rodney E. Kellems, Ph.D., professor and chairman of UT Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Xia can answer questions on priapism and cardiovascular diseases as well.
Jerry S. Wolinsky, M.D., is professor of neurology and director of the Multiple Sclerosis Research Group and Magnetic Resonance Imaging Analysis Center at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston. He is active in the design, implementation, conduct and analysis of clinical trials of multiple sclerosis and has authored more than 200 publications on neurovirology and neuroimmunology. He serves or has served on review and advisory committees of the National Institutes of Health, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and the Food and Drug Administration. Wolinsky is also a member of the graduate faculty of the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at The University of Texas.
Xiaodong Zhou, M.D., an associate professor in the Division of Rheumatology and Clinical Immunogenetics at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston, is researching the impact of silica and other environmental factors on the development of scleroderma. He is in the midst of 4-year study comparing scleroderma patients and healthy men and women. He can answer questions about systemic sclerosis and ankylosing spondylitis with particular emphasis on gene-environment interactions and complex genetic networks.