Sophie Laberge
    Sophie Laberge
    Research Axis
    Infectious Diseases and Acute Care Axis
    Research Theme
    Respiratory health
    CHUSJ - Centre de Recherche

    514 345-4931 #5409

    514 345-4804

    Career Summary

    My research program focuses on the investigation of the immune responses in asthma and allergic diseases through the study of the role of IL-16, a cytokine which has specific activity on CD4 cells. Our experiments have demonstrated the predominant expression of IL-16 in bronchial biopsies of subjects with atopic asthma as compared to normal controls. Further upregulation of IL-16 expression was observed following segmental allergen provocation in asthmatic individuals but not in normal controls. Epithelial cells are a major source of IL-16 and glucocorticoids are potent inhibitor of its production.

    Our current studies aim to elucidate the potential role of IL-16 in the immune response following allergic stimulation, particularly on the profile of cytokine synthesis by CD4 T cells. Our data show that IL-16 inhibits the production of Th2-type cytokines and promote the synthesis of Th1-type cytokine in circulating T cells from atopic donors in response to allergen stimulation. These data suggest that IL-16 may have a protective role in allergic processes and in asthma. The cellular and molecular mechanisms by which IL-16 regulate cytokine synthesis by T cells are under study. In addition, the role of IL-16 in modulating the allergic airway responses in vivo is investigated using a mouse model of asthma. In addition to this research, studies are designed to determine to role of IL-16 in the production of IgE by B cells.

    Awards and Distinctions

    • Research Scholar, Fonds de la recherche en santé du Québec, 2001-2003.
    • Research Scholar, Canadian Institutes of Health Research, 1996-2001.
    • Armand-Frappier Award, Association pulmonaire du Québec, 1998.
    • Pharmacia Allergy Foundation Award, 1996.

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