Dr. Brown's laboratory investigates the functional consequences of neuronal communication with epithelial and immune cells in mucosal tissues, particularly those found in the intestine, female reproductive tract and airways. His studies demonstrate that drugs of abuse, which alter peripheral neurotransmission at these sites, can affect protective mechanisms and microbial colonization at mucosal surfaces. Studies are conducted primarily at the molecular, cellular, and tissue levels using an array of cutting-edge methodological approaches. The results of these investigations provide important insights into drug targets for the alleviation of infection, inflammation and pain as well as enhancements in vaccine efficacy and drug delivery.
(For a comprehensive list of recent publications, refer to PubMed, a service provided by the National Library of Medicine.)
- Green BT, Brown DR. Interactions between bacteria and the gut mucosa: Do enteric neurotransmitters acting on the mucosal epithelium influence intestinal colonization or infection? Adv Exp Med Biol. 2016;874:121-41.
- Brown DR. Catecholamine-directed epithelial cell interactions with bacteria in the intestinal mucosa. Adv Exp Med Biol. 2016;874:79-99.
- Brosnahan AJ, Jones BJ, Dvorak CM, Brown DR. Morphine attenuates apically-directed cytokine secretion from intestinal epithelial cells in response to enteric pathogens. Pathogens. 2014;3:249-57.
- Brosnahan AJ, Vulchanova L, Witta SR, Dai Y, Jones BJ, Brown DR. Norepinephrine potentiates proinflammatory responses of human vaginal epithelial cells. J Neuroimmunol. 2013;259:8-16.
- Brosnahan AJ, Brown DR.: Porcine IPEC-J2 intestinal epithelial cells in microbiological investigations. Vet. Microbiol., 2012;156(3-4):229-237.
- Lyte M, Vulchanova L, Brown DR. Stress at the intestinal surface: catecholamines and mucosa-bacteria interactions. Cell Tiss Res. 2011;343:23-32.
Former Graduate Students:
Kristin Schreiber (Ph.D. 2004, Neuroscience, University of Minnesota).