Dr. Grunstein is a pediatric pulmonologist with research interests in asthma and other chronic lung diseases that affect approximately 8 million children in the United States. His primary objective is to gain new insights into the causes and mechanisms of asthma and, thereby, develop new methods for treating asthma and other conditions associated with airway constriction, such as bronchiolitis and chronic bronchitis. A better understanding of the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying asthma will lead to the development of new and more effective drugs and other therapeutic strategies.
The techniques used in Dr. Grunstein's laboratory are based on tissue and cellular experimental models of asthma which incorporate physiological, biochemical and molecular pharmacological approaches. His most active projects include an assessment of the roles of specific inherited genetic factors (atopy) and acquired factors (e.g. viral infections) in modifying the signal transduction mechanisms that regulate airway smooth muscle contractility and proliferation to produce the pro-asthmatic condition.
These studies examine pro-asthmatic modulation of gene expression of specific immunoglobulins, cytokines, their receptors, as well as the associated G proteins and second messenger systems which regulate airway smooth muscle growth and agonist responsiveness in the asthmatic state.