Erica Lawson, MD.
Dr. Lawson's research seeks to predict long-term outcomes of childhood-onset rheumatic diseases and to improve the transition to adulthood for young adults with childhood-onset rheumatic disease. Her work focuses on health outcomes, education and employment outcomes, health care access and patient self-management.
Emily von Scheven, MD, MAS.
Dr. von Scheven conducts clinical investigations with a focus on pediatric-onset systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). The increased survival of children with SLE to adulthood has resulted in the emergence of morbidities not previously seen in this patient population, such as osteoporosis, premature cardiovascular disease, and various psychosocial complications. Through numerous approaches, including single and multi-site cohort studies and clinical trials, her research program aims to better characterize the long-term outcome of affected youth, identify predictors of outcome, and develop strategies to improve outcome with interventions during childhood. She works collaboratively with national research groups such as the Childhood Arthritis & Rheumatology Research Alliance and the Autoimmune Disease Center of Excellence.
Michael Waterfield, MD, PhD.
Dr. Waterfield is a basic science immunologist who is currently studying the role of AIRE, a protein involved with the development of autoimmunity. He oversees the basic science component of the fellowship training program. Dr. Waterfield sees patients in the in- and out-patients units at UCSF.
Autoimmune disease affects up to 5% of the population and can cause significant morbidity and mortality. Our labs main focus is to understand the basic mechanisms by which immune tolerance is broken in order to identify novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of autoimmune diseases. We utilize a variety of mouse models to study both central tolerance and peripheral tolerance. Central tolerance is the process by which autoreactive T cells are deleted in the thymus through negative selection. We are currently utilizing a variety of novel conditional knockout mice to study the roles of specific proteins in thymic tolerance.
A second area of active research in the lab is the role of effector T cells in autoimmune disease. One subtype of CD4+ effector T cell, termed T helper 17 (Th17) cells have been found to be important in the pathogenesis of multiple autoimmune diseases and Th17 cells have been targeted therapeutically for treatment. We have identified the activating transcription factor 7 interacting protein (ATF7ip) as a novel regulator of Th17 cell differentiation and are currently studying its mechanism of action in Th17 cells and other immune cells.
Geraldina Lionetti, MD
Dr. Lionetti’s research has focused on identifying risk factors for disease and treatment-related sequelae, such as avascular necrosis in Lupus and medication adverse events. She has an interest in autoinflammatory diseases and is an active member of the Childhood Arthritis & Rheumatology Research Alliance (CARRA) Periodic Fever, Aphthous Stomatitis, Pharyngitis, Cervical Adenitis (PFAPA) group which has an emphasis on further characterizing treatment plans and outcomes of this fairly common periodic fever syndrome. In collaboration with other researchers internationally, she has worked on further characterizing and treating patients with hyperzincemia/hypercalprotectinema, which is now considered an autoinflammatory-related disease. She also has participated in the CARRA Juvenile Dermatomyositis and Kawasaki Disease working groups.
Will Bernal, MD, MPH
Dr. Bernal’s research focuses on treatment and outcomes of pain amplification syndromes in children.
Susan Kim, MD
Nicole Ling, MD, MAS
Alice Chan, MD, PhD