Catherine Lawrence

Senior Lecturer

Personal Statement

My research focuses on the interaction between gastrointestinal (GI) parasitic helminths (worms) and their hosts. Infection with GI helminths parasites has an impact on a number of immunological issues including oral vaccination and dysregulation of immune respones that predispose for intestinal inflammation. This has direct implications for the design and application of anti-parasite therapies and treatments but also has wider importance for immunoregulation in mucosal tissues in general. My work concentrates on two related themes:

Immunopathology - the key mechanisms whereby expulsion of GI nematodes is achieved are still in doubt. It had always been assumed that intestinal pathology was obligatory for expulsion of GIP parasites. However, I have shown that sever pathology is not required for the expulsion of nematode parasites. Recently we showed that mast cell derived cytokines are essential in the promotion of and amplification of the protective and pathological immunes responses associated with infection with GI helminths. This has important implications as it now places mast cells as key cells in the induction, amplification and perpetuation of the Th2 response induced following infection with GI helminths rather than as acting as endpoint effector cells.

Role of mast cells in inflammatory disease - this work is now being further extended to analyse the role of mast cells in inflammatory disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis (in collaboration with Professor I McInnes, University of Glasgow), cardiovascular disease ( Dr P Maffia and S Kennedy, University of Glasgow), and stroke (with Dr H Carswell).

Antiparasiticals

More recently I have been developing research in evaluating novel anthelminthics in collaboration with Dr Chris Carter.

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    Research areas

  • Inflammation, parasitology, Immunology, allergy
  1. British Society for Parasitology

    Activity: Participating in or organising an eventOrganiser of major conference

  2. British Society for Parasitology

    Activity: Participating in or organising an eventOrganiser of major conference

  3. British Society for Parasitology

    Activity: Participating in or organising an eventOrganiser of major conference

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Impact

(1)
  1. Images of Research 2015 Public and Urban Health category winner

    Impact: Impact - for External PortalCulture and creativity, Public understanding, information and debate, Education

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Catherine Lawrence

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