Dr. Asrar Malik is a Distinguished Professor of Pharmacology at the University of Illinois College of Medicine. The overall goal of his research is to address signaling mechanisms mediating pulmonary vascular barrier function and dysfunction and regulation by cell surface receptors and activation of signaling pathways in the endothelium. An additional objective of his laboratory is to develop and test novel strategies for drug delivery. They are specifically interested in targeting cells of the vessel wall which are critical in the pathogenesis of inflammatory diseases, atherosclerosis, and cancer metastasis. The intent is to prevent, in a specific manner, the expression of endothelial adhesion molecules. Among the approaches being studied include the selective expression, using inducible promoters target the expression of “anti-adhesive” proteins in endothelial cells.
Dr. Malik’s lab is also developing non-viral means including nanoparticles of delivery to transduce endothelial proteins of interest. The approaches taken involve molecular biology as well as physiological monitoring in genetic mouse models. His laboratory’s more recent work has resulted in several key publications in J Clin Invest., Circ Res., Nature Immunol., and J Expt Med.
His research is focused on regulation of the barrier properties of endothelial and epithelial cells, drug delivery and signaling mechanisms.