University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
Lab of Dr. Julie K. Pfeiffer
Dallas, Texas, USA
Robert Maples earned his Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Afterwards, he became a technician in Dr. J. David Farrar’s lab that studied the role of β2-adrenergic receptor in the immune system. His appreciation for immunology led him to pursue a graduate degree. He joined the lab of Dr. Julie Pfeiffer at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center as a graduate student in 2020.
His focus is on the involvement of circadian rhythms and their influence on gut mucosal immunology and enteric viral infection. We found that mice infected with coxsackievirus B3 in the morning had reduced viral replication compared to nighttime infections. In collaboration with Drs. John Brooks II and Lora Hooper, we found that IRF1 expression fluctuates throughout the day, which renders rhythmic expression of antiviral effector proteins. Lastly, using genetic models, we have identified a role for circadian rhythms in myeloid cells that contribute to different infections efficiencies depending on time of day. Overall, this work may further connect the gut-brain-immune axis.
Cytokines 2023 Oral Presentation: Symposium 8: Cytokines in mucosal immunity and allergic diseases (SMI Session) Session sponsored by Society for Mucosal Immunology “Circadian Control of Enteric Viral Infection Through Rhythmic IRF1-Mediated Innate Immune Responses”