Michael Dee Gunn, MD

Professor of Medicine
Professor in Immunology
Associate Professor in Pathology
Member of the Duke Cancer Institute
Campus mail CARL Building Room 180B, Durham, NC 27703
Phone (919) 681-0840
Email address michael.gunn@duke.edu

The focus of my work is on understanding how dendritic cells, monocytes, and macrophages regulate immune responses, contribute to specific disease pathologies, and can be manipulated to stimulate or inhibit specific immune responses. We are also using our knowledge of immunology to develop diagnostics and therapeutics for a variety of human diseases. 

Lab History 

The lab started with our discovery of the lymphoid chemokines, which regulate the migration of lymphocytes and dendritic cells to and within secondary lymphoid organs.  We identified the chemokine (CCL21) that mediates the entry of naïve T cells and activated dendritic cells into lymph nodes and the chemokine (CXCL13) that mediates the entry of B cells into lymphoid follicles.  Our focus then shifted to understanding how specific cell types, primarily dendritic cells, and cell migration events regulate immune responses.  We identified murine plasmacytoid dendritic cells, the cell type that causes pulmonary immune pathology during influenza infection, the dendritic cell type that stimulates Th1 immune responses, and the cell type that induces neuronal injury in Alzheimer's disease.  Our current work continues these basic studies while applying our findings to models of human disease. 

Current Research 

Identification and characterization of inflammatory cell populations in models of human disease – We have developed advanced methods of flow cytometric analysis that allows us to quantify and fully characterize all inflammatory cell types in murine and human tissues.  Using these methods, we are working to identify the cells that mediate a variety of immune pathologies.  Examples include the identification of immune-stimulatory and immune-suppressive cell types in brain tumors, identification of the cells that induce vascular changes pulmonary hypertension, and characterization of the inflammatory response to a variety of infectious pathogens.

Tumor immune therapeutics – We have developed a novel cellular vaccine strategy for the treatment of cancer.  This strategy is much simpler, more cost effective, more clinically feasible, and much more efficacious than classic dendritic cell vaccines.  We are now testing this vaccine in various preclinical tumor models including melanoma and glioblastoma and will soon be advancing it to initial human clinical trials.

Treatment of Acute Lung Injury – We have identified the first small molecule pharmacologic agent that is effective in reducing respiratory dysfunction, vascular leak, tissue injury, and mortality during Acute Lung Injury.  We are currently validating this agent in animal models of chemical-induced ALI and testing its efficacy in reducing ALI caused by other agents such as influenza and smoke inhalation.  We hope to develop this agent as the first effective pharmacologic treatment for ALI in humans.

Development of recombinant antibodies as diagnostic reagents – Our lab has developed novel methods to generate recombinant single chain antibodies using phage display technology.  We are currently using these methods to generate pathogen-specific antibodies for use in diagnostic tests for a variety of human bacterial, viral, and fungal infections.  In collaboration with Duke Biomedical Engineering, we are testing the use of our antibodies in a novel diagnostic assay platform to develop point-of-care assays for the diagnosis of infections by agents such as Zika virus, Dengue virus, Salmonella typhi, and Aspergillus fumigatus.

Education and Training

  • Fellowship in Cardiology, Cardiology, University of California, San Francisco, 0018
  • Internship and Residency, Internal Medicine, Parkland Health & Hospital System, 0018
  • M.D., UT Southwestern Medical School, 1983
Weight
-20

Publications

Inoue, Makoto, Kristi L. Williams, Michael D. Gunn, and Mari L. Shinohara. “NLRP3 inflammasome induces chemotactic immune cell migration to the CNS in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis..” Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 109, no. 26 (June 26, 2012): 10480–85. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1201836109.

PMID
22699511
Full Text

Liang, Jiurong, Yoosun Jung, Robert M. Tighe, Ting Xie, Ningshan Liu, Maura Leonard, Michael Dee Gunn, Dianhua Jiang, and Paul W. Noble. “A macrophage subpopulation recruited by CC chemokine ligand-2 clears apoptotic cells in noninfectious lung injury..” Am J Physiol Lung Cell Mol Physiol 302, no. 9 (May 1, 2012): L933–40. https://doi.org/10.1152/ajplung.00256.2011.

PMID
22287613
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Thompson, Afton L., Brandi T. Johnson, Gregory D. Sempowski, Michael D. Gunn, Baidong Hou, Anthony L. DeFranco, and Herman F. Staats. “Maximal adjuvant activity of nasally delivered IL-1α requires adjuvant-responsive CD11c(+) cells and does not correlate with adjuvant-induced in vivo cytokine production..” J Immunol 188, no. 6 (March 15, 2012): 2834–46. https://doi.org/10.4049/jimmunol.1100254.

PMID
22345651
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Tighe, Robert M., Zhuowei Li, Erin N. Potts, Sarah Frush, Ningshan Liu, Michael D. Gunn, W Michael Foster, Paul W. Noble, and John W. Hollingsworth. “Ozone inhalation promotes CX3CR1-dependent maturation of resident lung macrophages that limit oxidative stress and inflammation..” J Immunol 187, no. 9 (November 1, 2011): 4800–4808. https://doi.org/10.4049/jimmunol.1101312.

PMID
21930959
Full Text

Tighe, Robert M., Jiurong Liang, Ningshan Liu, Yoosun Jung, Dianhua Jiang, Michael D. Gunn, and Paul W. Noble. “Recruited exudative macrophages selectively produce CXCL10 after noninfectious lung injury..” Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol 45, no. 4 (October 2011): 781–88. https://doi.org/10.1165/rcmb.2010-0471OC.

PMID
21330464
Full Text

Dolan, Sharron, Mark Donald Gunn, Claire Crossan, and Andrea Mary Nolan. “Activation of metabotropic glutamate receptor 7 in spinal cord inhibits pain and hyperalgesia in a novel formalin model in sheep..” Behav Pharmacol 22, no. 5–6 (September 2011): 582–88. https://doi.org/10.1097/FBP.0b013e3283478802.

PMID
21597362
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Spesock, April H., Brice E. Barefoot, Caroline A. Ray, Daniel J. Kenan, Michael D. Gunn, Elizabeth A. Ramsburg, and David J. Pickup. “Cowpox virus induces interleukin-10 both in vitro and in vivo..” Virology 417, no. 1 (August 15, 2011): 87–97. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.virol.2011.05.010.

PMID
21658738
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Cain, Derek W., and Michael D. Gunn. “NUR who? An orphan transcription factor holds promise for monomaniacs..” Nat Immunol 12, no. 8 (July 19, 2011): 727–29. https://doi.org/10.1038/ni.2074.

PMID
21772283
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Lin, Kaifeng Lisa, Shari Sweeney, Brian Donghoon Kang, Elizabeth Ramsburg, and Michael Dee Gunn. “CCR2-antagonist prophylaxis reduces pulmonary immune pathology and markedly improves survival during influenza infection..” J Immunol 186, no. 1 (January 1, 2011): 508–15. https://doi.org/10.4049/jimmunol.1001002.

PMID
21098218
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Shelburne, Christopher P., Hideki Nakano, Ashley L. St John, Cheryl Chan, James B. McLachlan, Michael D. Gunn, Herman F. Staats, and Soman N. Abraham. “Mast cells augment adaptive immunity by orchestrating dendritic cell trafficking through infected tissues..” Cell Host Microbe 6, no. 4 (October 22, 2009): 331–42. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.chom.2009.09.004.

PMID
19837373
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