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Research Fellows Directory

Gerry Graham

Professor Gerry Graham

Research Fellow


University of Glasgow

Research summary

Whenever, and wherever, our tissues become damaged or infected, we set up a process called inflammation. This involves the movement of specialised blood cells called inflammatory cells to damaged or infected areas. These cells then kill off bugs and help to repair any damage. They are therefore essential as the first line of protection against damage or infection. Importantly, the inflammatory cells are normally in the blood and they therefore have to know precisely where to go to set up inflammation and help repair tissue damage at just the right site and at just the right time. Exactly how they do this was a mystery until about 25 years ago when a special family of molecules, called chemokines, was discovered. Chemokines are small molecules which are produced at sites of tissue damage or infection and which act as 'beacons' allowing the inflammatory cells to navigate out of the blood into the sites of damage. We have studied this family of molecules for 25 years and have a particular interest in trying to analyse how they establish inflammation and also how the inflammation is then resolved. Understanding this is important as many diseases, such as psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis, are characterised by excessive inflammation which cannot switch off. Therefore by trying to understand how chemokines work to attract inflammatory cells, and how this process is eventually switched off, we believe that we will start to understand what has gone wrong in inflammatory diseases and therefore potentially to develop new therapies.

Grants awarded

Defining the molecular choreography of the inflammatory response.

Scheme: Wolfson Research Merit Awards

Dates: May 2014 - Apr 2019

Value: £50,000