Dr. Tejpal Gill is a research fellow in the Pediatric Translational Research Branch (PTRB) where she is studying the complex relationship between gut microbiota and experimental spondyloarthritis (SpA) in HLA-B27 transgenic rats. Previously, she described a novel mechanism for the proinflammatory effects of mitochondrial ROS in modulating T cell receptor (TCR) mediated activation, suggesting that changes in T cell microenvironment determine its response during inflammation.
Expression of HLA-B27, a major risk factor for spondyloarthritis (SpA), in a rat model reproduces key features of human SpA including gut inflammation. Dr. Gill and her coworkers are evaluating how the effects of HLA-B27 on gut microbiota are shaped by genetic background and environment. She is interested in host-pathogen interactions at cellular and metabolic levels, and would like to be able to translate these findings into better therapies to ameliorate disease.