Awarded in 2019
Home Department: Immunology
Faculty Advisors: Aida Habtezion (Medicine - Gastroenterology & Hepatology), Purvesh Khatri (Medicine - Biomedical Informatics and Biomedical Data Science) , and Paul (PJ) Utz (Medicine - Immunology and Rheumatology)
Research Title: Elucidating the Role of Epigenetic Modifications in IBD Pathogenesis and Presentation Using Mass Cytometry
Research Description: Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), which includes Crohn’s Disease (CD) and Ulcerative Colitis (UC), impacts 3 million US adults and is increasing in incidence. Despite significant associations between IBD and genetics, diet, and the microbiome, its etiology remains unknown. Epigenetics, or the study of non-genetic modifications to the organism’s gene expression, potentially links all three factors but has not been thoroughly studied in IBD. Using a novel single-cell technology, EpiTOF, Lawrence will study the epigenetics of immune cells from patients with IBD using state-of-the-art analytic methods to better understand and identify epigenetic differences in IBD pathology, which could ultimately lead to development of novel and effective therapies for patients with IBD.
Lawrence is a Life Sciences Specialist at LEK Consulting, where he is working on a variety of strategy-focused projects in the life sciences industry.