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Lawrence Schwartz received his MD and PhD (Biochemistry) degrees from Washington University before completing an internal medicine residency (Barnes Hospital) and fellowships in allergy and immunology (Brigham & Women’s Hospital), rheumatology (Brigham & Women’s Hospital) and diagnostic laboratory immunology (Virginia Commonwealth University).

Dr. Schwartz joined the faculty at Harvard in 1980 (Assistant Professor) and moved to Virginia Commonwealth University in 1983, where he is now the Charles and Evelyn Thomas Professor of Medicine, Chair of the Division of Rheumatology Allergy and Immunology, and Program Director of Allergy and Immunology. His laboratory research over the past 30 years has focused on mast cells and resulted in approximately 300 publications.

Noteworthy accomplishments of his research laboratory have been the discovery, purification, cloning and characterization of human alpha/beta tryptases, development of immunoassays for tryptases as biomarkers of disorders involving mast cells, identification of a specific marker for human basophils, identification of in vitro conditions for the development of mast cells from progenitors and for the proliferation of tissue-derived mast cells, and the identification of two types of human mast cells.

Lawrence B. Schwartz, MD/Ph.D.

Charles & Evelyn Thomas Professor of Medicine
Chair, Division of Rheumatology, Allergy & Immunology
Associate Chair for Research
Professor of medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine


lschwart@vcu.edu


BOX 980263
McGuire Hall
Richmond, Virginia 23219
Phone: (804) 828-0283

About the Lab

Members

Education and Professional Experience

Selected Publications

John Kenyon

Department of Internal Medicine


Education:



Research:

Gregorio Gomez

Assistant Professor

Department of Internal Medicine

Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology


gvgomez@vcu.edu


Education:

  1. B.Sc. in Molecular Biology, The University of Texas at Austin, 1992

  2. Ph.D. in Biological Sciences, The University of Texas at Austin, 1999


Experience:

Postdoctoral Fellowship -National Institutes of Health (NIAID)

Postdoctoral Fellowship -National Institutes of Health (NIAMS)


Awards and Prizes

  1. Career Development Award (KOI) -NIH (NHLBI) -2008-2013. Regulation of Mediator Release from Human Mast Cells by Extracellular Adenosine

  2. American Association ofImmunologists Junior Faculty Travel Award -2010.

  3. Adenosine receptor A3AR is responsible for augmenting FC8RI-induced degranulation of  human lung mast cells by extracellular adenosine.

  4. Jeffress Memorial Trust Research Grant -2008

  5. Role of extracellular adenosine on immunological activation of human mature mast cells

  6. The Schwartz lab is known for tryptase analysis and studies on human mast cells and basophils


Research:

My research is focused on understanding the effect of the purine nucleoside adenosine on human mast cell activation and function. The specific aims of the current projects are the following:

  1. Establish a regulatory role for extracellular adenosine (extADO) on mediator release from mature human MCTC cells from skin and MCT cells from lung.

  2. Identify the molecular target(s) of ADOR signaling that inhibit degranulation and augment IL-13 production after FC8RI-initiated activation in mature human MCTC cells from skin.

  3. Identify the molecular target(s) of ADOR signaling that augment degranulation and potentially affect lipid and cytokine production after FC8RI-initiated activation of mature human MCT cells from lung.

Quang Le, Ph.D.

Post-Doc, Department of Internal Medicine


Education:

  1. Ph.D. in Biochemistry, Hanoi National University, 1999


Research:

Work experience includes his research in mast cells. His lab works in biochemistry of mast cells.

Lawrence Schwartz, MD/Ph.Dshapeimage_8_link_0
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Virginia Commonwealth University      •••           School of Medicine

Yoshihiro Fukuoka, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

Department of Internal Medicine


Education:

  1. Ph.D. in Immunology, Tohoku University, Senday, Japan

  2. Post-Doc at the Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA


Awards and Prizes:

  1. Japanese Award for Study Abroad


Research:

Work experience includes mast cell research, tryptase research and study of signaling molecules.

Jiang Hu, M.Sc.

Life/Phys. Sciences Tech II

Department of Internal Medicine


Education:

  1. M.Sc. in Linguistics, SUNY, Buffalo, 1989



Research:

Work experience includes teaching Chinese at VCU for Ten years and working for Dr. Schwartz for 17 years, where her expertise is in testing tryptase.

Hanzhang Xia, B.Sc.

Life/Phys. Sciences Tech II

Department of Internal Medicine


Education:

  1. B.Sc. in Biology, Wuhan University, Wuhan, China


Research:

Work experience is in immunology and mast cell research in Dr. Schwartz’s laboratory.

Michelle Hite, B.Sc.

Laboratory and Research Tech

Department of Internal Medicine


Education:

  1. B.Sc. in Forensic Science, VCU, 2008

  2. Currently pursuing a M.Sc. in Clinical Lab Science


Research:

Work experience includes mast cell research.

Matthew R. Macey, M.Sc.

Department of Internal Medicine


Education:

  1. B.Sc. in Biochemistry, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, 2007

  2. B.A. in Music, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, 2007

  3. M.Sc. in Biology (Microbiology and Immunology), VCU, 2009


Research:

Matthew’s M.Sc. work focused on understanding how the Transforming Growth Factor-beta1 (TGF-beta1) and the Interleukin-4 (IL-4) act as an antagonistic pair in controlling the mast cell response.

  1. Laboratory Specialist I: VCU Department of Pediatrics. Rheumatology, Allergy & Immunology Lab - Sep 2009 to Present. Work in a research-focused laboratory under Dr. Lawrence Schwartz and Dr. Wei Zhao on the mechanistic properties of the mast cell during the process of allergen desensitization. Perform laboratory techniques to gain knowledge on how mast cells become deactivated at the microbiological level.

  2. Senior Laboratory Technician: VCU Department of Biology. Molecular Immunology Lab - Oct 2007 to Aug 2009. Worked in a research-focused laboratory under Dr. John Ryan on the mast cell’s immunological role with regards to allergic disease and autoimmunity. Performed techniques in microbiology including ELISAs, Western Blots, Flow Cytometry, qPCR, and cell culture to study mast cell cytokine release, signaling, and activation in the murine and human models.

  3. GMP Research Technician I: Belfer Gene Therapy Lab at Weill Medical College of Cornell University - Dec 2005 to Mar 2007. Performed techniques in cell biology and tissue culture for development of gene therapy strategies for disease treatment and cure. Developed adenovirus and adeno-associated viruses in accordance with FDA regulations for clinical trial use in gene therapy treatment and experiments.

Constance Hartman, B.Sc.

Laboratory Specialist

Department of Internal Medicine


Education:

  1. B.Sc. in Biology/Pshychology, Tennessee Wesleyn College, 1977


Research:

Work experience includes Sports medicine, Physiology research with the U.S. Army, GI research with Harvard Medical School and VA Hospital in Richmond, VA, and Research in the Microbiology and Immunology of VCU.

In Dr. Schwartz’s Lab, she focuses on the study of mast cells.

Sahar Lotfi-Emran

M.D./Ph.D. Student


Education:



Research: