Santanu Banerjee, Ph.D.
- Assistant Professor
Dr. Banerjee's principal research projects deal with innate immunity and inflammation (both sterile and pathogenic), where one hand they look at the inflammation in gut, lungs and system due to dual insult of drug abuse/clinical drug administration and pathogens; on the other hand, they look at sterile inflammation due to metabolic disorders like diabetes and physiological conditions like obesity, where most often than not, the situations are go hand in hand. Chronic morphine, and resultant immunosuppression, leading to persistent yet low-level inflammation, has been one of the flagship projects. With this proposal, Dr. Banerjee intends to probe the longitudinal cascade of events leading to gut pathology due to HIV infection, in the context of drug abuse. Emphasis will be laid on microbial dysbiosis and metabolic changes in the context of aforementioned dual insults. They propose to do this using the powerful NSG-BLT humanized mice model, with engrafted human microbiome, which they have been preparing in-house and using for the past 2 years. This is one of the closest translational models to do this work. For this proposal, Dr. Banerjee will receive valuable inputs from his past mentor Prof. Sabita Roy, who has several decades of experience in opioid pharmacology and immunology.