Cav1 (L-type) calcium channels as target for manipulation CD4+ T cell response
Abdallah Badou, Ph.D.
Yale University School of Medicine-Howard Hughes Medical Institute
New Haven, Connecticut
Dr. Badou studied how T-cells are activated in RA. These T-cells orchestrate getting the immune system involved in RA. Badou identified specific proteins, Cav 1, responsible for causing cytokine release. He defined the role of each class of Cav1 channels in T-cell function. Selectively blocking one class of Cav1 channels would only partially alter the calcium response, inhibiting the activation of cells with limited side toxic effects. He worked to block the activation step, i.e. block the specific calcium channel involved, thereby opening the door for new drugs targeting T-cell activation.
Dr. Badou, ANRF’s top scoring applicant for the 2003-04 grant cycle, was awarded the Polard Memorial Fellowship of the ANRF, given in memory of Robert and Dorothy Polard.