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What's New

  • Postdoctoral positions available. - More Info
  • New paper in Nature Medicine defines novel means of preventing pathogenic tight junction dysregulation (April, 2019) - More Info
  • Congratulations Wei-Ting on being selected for an APS 2019 Research Recognition Award
  • New paper in CMGH shows that IL-22 has divergent effects on epithelial proliferation and pernmeability (March, 2019) - More Info
  • New paper in the Journal of Clinical Investigation reveals that MLCK-mediated intestinal permeability increases drive graft vs host disease (February, 2019) - More Info
  • New paper in the Journal of Biological Chemistry demonstrates critical contributions of ZO-1 to apical epithelial structure (December, 2018) - More Info
  • Congratulations Matt (on being selected for a JBC Author Profile)!!! - More Info
  • The ATLAS OF INTESTINAL TRANSPORT is LIVE! - More Info

Our Research

Intra-villus tight junction organization

Intravital imaging shows a 3D reconstruction of villous tip epithelial cells from a transgenic mouse expressing fluorescent tight junction proteins EGFP-occludin (green) and mRFP1-ZO-1 (red) in small intestinal epithelia. The belt-like organization of the tight junction proteins can be appreciated in these images. Due to overexpression, occludin is present at tight junctions and lateral membranes. Nuclei are shown in blue. The luminal space appears black. J Cell Biol 2010;189:111-26

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Our Goals 

Our interests are focused on how epithelia establish, maintain, and regulate barriers. This fundamental property is essential for survival of multicellular organisms and allows controlled interactions with the external environment and compartmentalization of distinct tissues. The structure that maintains these barriers and regulates flux between cells is the tight junction. The primary goal of our laboratory is to understand the biology of the tight junction.

We take a multidisciplinary approach that integrates cell and developmental biology, transport physiology, electrophysiology, structural biology, molecular biology, and mucosal immunology to define fundamentals of structure and function; understand mechanisms of regulation in vitro and in vivo models; determine the contributions of barrier dysfunction to gastrointestinal disease; understand the role of the epithelial barrier in regulating other mucosal processes, e.g. immune responses; and develop novel means to correct barrier function and restore health.

— Jerrold R. Turner MD, PhD

Jerrold R. Turner, MD, PhD
Professor of Pathology and Medicine

Brigham and
Women's
Hospital

Harvard
Medical
School

NRB 730
77 Avenue Louis Pasteur
Boston, MA 02115