We study the role of carbohydrate-binding proteins, specifically galectins, in the pathogenic mechanisms corneal infections and various aspects of wound healing such as angiogenesis, inflammation and development of scar tissue. Studies from my laboratory have shown that a specific member of galectin family, glaectin-3, plays a role in events which mediate angiogenesis, corneal epithelial sheet migration and development of corneal scarring. Our goal is to delineate molecular mechanisms by which galectin-3 modulates fibrosis and to develop galectin-based dual-benefit drugs to control both neovascularization and fibrosis of ocular tissues. In another study, we are investigating the role of another member of galectin family, galectin-8, in the regulation of corneal infection and inflammation. The goal of this project is to investigate our overarching hypothesis that galectin-8 regulates the outcome of Pseudomonas keratitis by modulating the function of toll-like receptors and inflammasomes. All projects in the lab have a solid basic science component to understand cell biological, immunological and biochemical mechanisms of wound healing and infection, and are disease-oriented with a focus on translational research to find better, novel ways to treat blinding diseases of the eye.
BS, Biochemistry, Karachi University
MS, Biochemistry, Strathclyde University
PhD, Biochemistry, Oxford University
Postdoctoral Training, Harvard Medical School