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K-State Today

February 24, 2020

Sven-Eric Jordt to present Anatomy and Physiology Seminar

Submitted by Gail Eyestone

Sven-Eric Jordt, associate professor in anesthesiology, pharmacology and cancer biology at the Duke University School of Medicine, will present "TRP Channels in Respiratory Chemical Sensing and Inflammation Control" as part of the Anatomy and Physiology Seminar series. His presentation will start at 4 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25, in the Mara Conference Center, 407 Trotter Hall.

Jordt completed his doctorate at Free University, Berlin. He completed two postdoctoral fellowships, one at the Center for Molecular Neurobiology in Hamburg and the other at the University of California, San Francisco. 

Studies over the last 40 years point to an essential role of peripheral sensory neurons in the initiation and maintenance of chronic inflammation in conditions such as asthma, allergic and atopic dermatitis and arthritis. However, it has remained unclear how immunogenic signals are detected by sensory neurons and how sensory neurons contribute to inflammation.

Research in Jordt's laboratory revealed that TRPA1 is activated by reactive oxygen species and oxidative lipid products, thereby initiating inflammatory pain. In model organisms of allergic asthma they observed that TRPA1-deficient organisms failed to develop allergic airway inflammation and airway hyperreactivity reminiscent to asthmatic bronchoconstriction in humans. The discovery of the involvement of sensory neuronal receptors in asthma was acknowledged by the Early Excellence Award to Jordt by the American Asthma Foundation — formerly Sandler Foundation for Asthma Research. Current studies have revealed that TRPA1 is also promoting inflammation and pruritus in allergic contact dermatitis. Pharmaceutical companies developing TRPA1 inhibitors are preparing clinical trials examining their efficacies in disease conditions — cough, asthma — associated with respiratory inflammation.