Our current efforts are focused on the understanding how the interplay between host and microbiota contributes to health and disease. The key questions we are asking are: 1) Which components of microbiota (microbial taxa and genes) drive specific immune and other host functions; 2) Which of those mechanisms play role in diseases we study; 3) Do environmental and/or host factors alter microbiota in a manner that it acquires properties which are harmful or beneficial to the host?
Our research program consists of three core disease-oriented projects: enteropathy associated with common variable immunodeficiency, type 2 diabetes, and cervical cancer as well as several smaller projects concerned with the effects of specific perturbations such as antibiotics, arsenic, and knockout of a transcription factor Gata4 in the intestine (see Figure).
Network analysis is a core project on its own, with a special role of providing essential analytical tools for the other projects. Reconstructing transkingdom networks helps our lab understand which microbiota and genes are essential for the response to various stimuli, such as medication.