About the Oestreich Lab

The Oestreich Lab is located at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute and School of Medicine (VTCRI/SOM), a premier institute of interdisciplinary and translational research in downtown Roanoke, VA. For more information on the VTCRI, click here.

The research in Dr. Oestreich’s laboratory focuses on better understanding how environmental signals and transcription factors govern cellular differentiation and function in the immune system.

The formation of the immune system is entirely dependent on the ability of numerous cell types to arise from a common progenitor. Developmental transcription factors are necessary for regulating the cell-type-specific gene expression patterns dictating the phenotype of each of these unique cells. Unfortunately, mutations in these key factors often lead to their improper function, resulting in cancer and autoimmune disease. Therefore, it is critically important to understand the molecular mechanisms by which transcription factors direct cell-specific gene expression profiles.

By employing cutting-edge molecular biology techniques, our team seeks to elucidate the developmental and dynamic mechanisms that lead to the proper differentiation and function of individual immune cell types. Thus, the overarching goal of our research is to gain a better understanding of how environmental signals and developmental transcription factors regulate gene expression patterns, and to use this knowledge to develop novel immunotherapeutic strategies to aid in the treatment of human disease.