Dr. Glass’ laboratory investigates transcriptional mechanisms that regulate the development and function of the macrophage, a cell that plays key roles in immunity and inflammatory diseases. Current efforts are to determine the biochemical and biological roles of sequence-specific transcription factors and their associated co-regulators at gene-specific and genome-wide scales. A combination of biochemical, cellular and genetic model systems are used, incorporating macrophage-specific knockouts, microarray technologies, massively parallel sequencing and bioinformatics approaches, to unravel the contributions of specific factors to the development of specialized macrophage functions in immunity and the pathogenesis of inflammatory diseases.
We are exploiting natural genetic variation provided by different inbred strains of mice as a ‘mutagenesis strategy’ to define transcription factor networks in macrophages. These approaches are being extended to understand the effects of natural genetic variation on disease phenotypes in humans.